Pentax K2 Modification

I loved my Pentax K2 right from the start as you can easily tell when I wrote about it here. Beautifully made, metal-bodied SLR with aperture priority automation. It was also the first Pentax with a vertically running metal focal plane shutter which just sounds sublime. For a short while, the K2 sat atop the Pentax line.

Most every old film camera has one thing that you wish you change. Some things you can’t, like the fumbly ASA setting ring around the K2’s lens mount. Not sure why Pentax did that. It wasn’t a feature that carried on to any other Pentax camera that I know of. Perhaps they knew they made a mistake and never did it again. I am usually pretty good at figuring out how to use cameras without having to look in the online instruction manuals, but darn if I couldn’t figure out how to adjust the thing. Turns out there is an obscure little button around the bottom side of the ASA ring that must be pushed just the right way to allow it to turn. It’s not very user friendly, but since I don’t have to adjust it much, it is not a deal breaker.

What was missing from my K2 and is pretty critical for the eyes of an aging photographer, was split image focusing. Most of the K2s came with just a micro-prism focusing screen and while I could focus ok with it, having a split image screen in the K2 would make it pretty close to perfect.

Focusing screens in the K2 are not user changeable…at least not by someone with hardly any repair skills like me. But I was curious to see if perhaps my go to Pentax expert Eric Hendrickson might be able to help me modify my K2. Eric responded that he had one split screen left that would fit my K2 and would be happy to change it out for me. Ten days later, my K2 is back in hand with modified split image focusing and WOW! It makes all the difference. Eric had already CLA’d this camera for me last year, but it came back with an added bonus of a thorough cleaning. Nice!

Pentax K2 back from the shop!

Pentax K2 back from the shop!