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RE: Non-Nikon Customer Service for 105mm f2.8 Micro Nikkor lens?

lens repair nikon 105

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#1 mchalup

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Posted 14 December 2017 - 04:22 PM

I have an (older, non-VR) 105mm f2.8 Micro Nikkor AF-D lens that needs servicing; optic is not giving sharp focus at 1:1 reproduction ratio (at least imaging using a D800 sensor)

 

After initially contacting Nikon US Customer Service and providing images to demonstrate the problem, they recommended sending the lens in for servicing.  Unfortunately, once received and based on serial number, Nikon stated that the lens was 'grey market' (for the United States), and that unless I could submit documentation that it was purchased outside of this country, they could not perform any service.  Given that I bought the lens new 18-19 years ago, and no longer have any documents, nor recollection from whom it was obtained and whether it was 'grey market' or not, I'm now stuck.

 

Before I toss this lens on the scrap heap (along with its customized XIT404 focus ring - ouch!), is there any non-Nikon service in the US that someone would recommend?

 

Thanks for your input!

 

Mike (who enjoys a day imaging on the bottom of Monterey Bay) 



#2 Undertow

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 02:32 PM

I'd check with Nikons authorized (but independant) repair centers listed on their site. I used one in NYC called Photo Tech and they did a great job. No idea if they would do 'grey' items but worth a phone call to ask.

#3 mchalup

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 02:47 PM

OK, good reference for Photo Tech.  My initial checks didn't indicate an independent Nikon repair center that would work on Nikkor lens, but worth a try.  Thanks and good diving!



#4 ChrisRoss

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Posted 17 December 2017 - 07:17 PM

You could probably pickup a second hand example from Ebay at a lower price than any service charge:  this link shows completed Ebay sales for Nikon 105mm lenses, this shows what they have sold for and as you can see there is quite a range of prices, some very low:

 

https://www.ebay.com...c&LH_Complete=1



#5 mchalup

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Posted 19 December 2017 - 04:38 PM

Yes, after poking around E-Bay I realized that the price for a good used 105mm f2.8 Micro Nikkor (older AF-D) didn't exceed by a whole lot the quote from Nikon for the cost of repair (which was ~$160 USD).

 

There is at least one extenuating circumstance that does make me prefer a repair versus replacement; having a lens gear that XIT404 very graciously custom made for this particular optic when the stock version was tight enough to bind up the helicoid barrel.  The cost of the gear is probably ~equal to the value of the lens.

 

What I really would like to answer is whether the poor focus sharpness of the 105mm at 1:1 reproduction ratio is due to actual lens damage or is a hard limit of its optical performance?  Using the D800 body, I've seen a similar performance issue with an older zoom, but not with any of my other prime lens.  Compared to the my 60mm Micro Nikkor (of newer vintage; also focused for 1:1 reproduction ratio and both at f22), the image sharpness is definitely inferior for the 105mm (different depths of field taken into account). 

 

See if can get any traction with Photo Tech in New York.  If not, probably down for a newer 105mm f2.8 Micro VR ED optic along with another focus gear.

 

After several decade of U/W photography, you'd think I'd stop trying to save money at this point...

 

Thanks,  Mike