Nikon f3 with Non AI Lenses?

Discussion in 'Modern Film Cameras' started by cary_chin|1, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. Can the Nikon F3 be used with non AI lenses?
     
  2. In general, this is the easiest source for Nikon lens compatibility:
    http://www.nikonians.org/nikon/slr-lens.html
    Pay attention to the footnotes, it's important to "flip the lever" for the F3
     
  3. Yes, but you need to flip up the AI tab. Metering is via the stop-down method, and works in either A or Manual modes. See photo below...
    00b12z-503461884.jpg
     
  4. If you don't have a manual for one, go here.
    http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/classics/nikonf3ver2/f3manual/index.htm
     
  5. bob I guess MIR is down. it is really good site
    try here
    http://www.butkus.org/chinon/#AGFA
     
  6. That flip-up coupling lever does make it easy to adapt non-AI lenses:
    [​IMG]
    (Experimenting with an F-mount Vivitar Series 1, 200mm f/3)
     
  7. The F3 is the last Nikon to accept non-Ai lenses. Manual focus Nikon camera anyway.
     
  8. Just a little note in response to Jean-Yves's Vivitar modification. This is definitely a working solution for pre AI Vivitar lenses (I did much the same with a piece of copper on my 20/3.5), and others whose aperture rings are flush with the mount, but will not work on Nikkors and many others, because the aperture ring extends further back. For those one must mill or file off part of the aperture ring. It's more work, but when done correctly it works well and the remaining un-removed part of the aperture ring works as the AI follower.
    There are instructions in various places on the web that tell you exactly where the milling must end for different lenses (the step seen in upper left portion of picture) in order to duplicate the AI tab position. Shown is an old 85/1,8 lens milled to AI. Note that part of the rabbit ear base must also be removed. Most AI lenses have the ear base reversed for clearance.
    00b1JY-503609584.jpg
     
  9. "The F3 is the last Nikon to accept non-Ai lenses. Manual focus Nikon camera anyway."
    The F5 could be fitted with a flip-up Ai tab by Nikon.
     
  10. Matthew:

    Looking at a 50mm f/1.4 Nikkor-S on my F3HP, I think it would work just as well as with the Vivitar - the
    hook is positioned to catch the body's AI indexing tab in its flipped-up position, so no modification to the
    lens's aperture ring would be necessary.
     
  11. The F5 could be fitted with a flip-up Ai tab by Nikon.​
    The tab is native to the F4, making it the last film model which doesn't need modification to take pre-Ai lenses .
     
  12. "The tab is native to the F4, making it the last film model which doesn't need modification to take pre-Ai lenses ."
    Whatever. It was a fairly cheap mod but said more about Nikon's devotion to the F-mount than any real need for NAI lenses among F5 shooters in the late 90s. Still, I wonder if it's a possible mod on FX DSLRs?
     
  13. I don't think Nikon offer the mod to any DSLR that has the AI coupling. Of course low end DSLR which doesn't have AI coupling can use non AI lenses.
     
  14. Absolutely, all you have to do is flip the meter coupling prong out of the way. The F4 was the last F-series camera which had this feature. You will of course lose full auto metering. I have converted two non-AI lenses to AI using a Dremel and cut off wheel. Not a good idea if you don't have a steady hand. The trick is to make the cutout at the precise position you need. I found it on both by looking at photos of the AI versions of the same lens and then made my cut opposite the f/ number on the AI. Of course you want to take the aperture ring (you have to take off the mount first) because you don't want a bunch of aluminum particles to get inside the lens.
     

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