Nikkor 360T questiongreenspun.com : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread
A friend of mine and I both bought Nikkor 360T lenses recently, and I noticed a difference. Mine has supplementary aperture position markings for the 500mm rear lens unit, his has the markings for the 500mm and 720mm rear lens units. Would I be correct in assuming that that makes mine an older vintage than his, as perhaps the 720mm unit wasn't produced until after the Copal shutter on mine was contracted by Nikon? Am I correct that, if so inspired, I could still use the 720mm rear unit on mine, despite the lack of markings? (I realize from looking at his that the aperture reading will be 2 stops different from where I set the lens with the 360mm markings, 1 stop diff. from the 500mm markings) Finally, I can go to Schneider's Website and look up the approximate age of all my Schneider lenses. Is there an equivalent place to check the vintage of my Nikkor? TIA!
-- Todd Caudle (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 13, 2000
My collection of Nikkor large format literature isn't as extensive as my Fujinon collection, but I'll take a stab at it based on what I have and what I know.
From the brochures and instruction manuals that have date codes that I can decipher, here's a list of the Nikkor T-ED models listed in each:
12/78 - none 05/82 - 270mm, 360mm 03/83 - 270mm, 360mm/500mm, 600mm/800mm 04/86 - 270mm, 360mm/500mm/720mm, 600mm/800mm/1200mm 08/89 - 270mm, 360mm/500mm/720mm, 600mm/800mm/1200mm
So, although I can't tell you exactly when your lens was made, it looks like sometime in the window between the 05/82 printing and the 04/86 printing. Your friend's lens would indeed appear to be newer (sometime after 03/83 at the earliest).
Schneider is the only one of the LF lens manufacturers that openly shares their serial number data. Of course these days it's almost impossible to get Nikon or Fuji to even admit they make large format lenses, so getting serial number data seems a little hopeless.
Yes, you can use your lens with the 720mm rear element. You can either just set the aperature, as you stated, or you can order a replacement aperture scale from the Nikon parts department. My 360mm T-ED is even older than yours. When I bought mine used several years ago, it came with the 500mm rear element, but the aperture scale was only labeled for the 360mm focal length. For the first few years, I just stopped down one stop from the 360mm markings when using the 500mm rear element. About four years ago, I called the Nikon parts department and ordered a replacement aperture scale with the markings for all three focal lengths. I don't have my receipt handy, but if are unable to locate the number for the Nikon parts department, or need the exact Nikon part number for the replacement scale, I can probably dig it up. The replacement scale was only about $10 and was easy to install (just a couple small screws). Even though it seems difficult to obtain info on the Nikkor LF lenses, I actually found the Nikon parts department quite responsive and friendly to deal with.
-- Kerry Thalmann (email@example.com), December 14, 2000.
Thanks for the research, Kerry. Sounds reasonable to me. Since the lens is marked with 360mm and 500mm markings, I'll be able to easily deduce where to set the aperture for a 720mm rear unit, provided I ever decide to get one.
Keep up your great work. Your photos are inspirational!
-- Todd Caudle (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 14, 2000.