Modern Classic SLRs Series
Nikon F - The camera Body

 


  1. Controls and Operation

Part I covers: Shutter Controls | Flash Sync Selector | Self Timer
Part II covers: Depth of Field (DOF) Preview | Mirror Lock-Up
Lens Bayonet (Bajonet) Release | Prism Release
Part III covers: Lens Bayonet (Bayonet) Release | Prism Release
Part IV covers: Film Advance Lever | Frame Counter and Film Load Reminder |

Nikon F Front View.jpg (21k) Loading..

Film Rewind Crank | Film Guide Rails and Pressure Plate | Serial Number and Film Plane Indication | Film Speed Reminder | Shutter Speed Dial | Shutter Release Button | Shutter Curtain | Camera Back | Tripod Socket

Relative:
Nikon F Photomic | Nikon F Photomic T | Nikon F Photomic Tn | Nikon F Photomic FTn

Film Transport Controls

These comprise the film advance lever (on the top deck of the camera, on the right edge), shutter release (on the top deck, between the advance and shutter speed selector), A/R (Advance/Rewind) collar (coaxial with the shutter release), rewind knob (on the top deck, left edge), and the back opening control (on the bottom deck, directly under the rewind knob). Useful indicators include current frame (front window on film advance lever hub), a reminder of the total number of exposures for this roll of film (manually set, back window of the same hub), and film speed (ISO) reminder (on the bottom plate, under the advance lever, and also manually set -- newer backs have red and black arrows indicating color or B&W film, respectively).

Nikon F TopView No finder.jpg (21k)
You may wind the camera with either a series of short, inching strokes (if you are a Leica M3 refugee ... or want to keep your motions inconspicuous) or a continuous 135 degree stroke (if you enjoy getting fingers caught in your shoulder strap).


The film advance lever also incorporates a 15 degree standoff, so that you can enjoy poking yourself in the eye (left-eyed folks) or slip your thumb in for easier access. Unlike the F2, the standoff does not automatically activate the meter -- you still need to fiddle with separate buttons or extinction covers. Incidentally, there are two useful checks to make sure that your film is advancing properly -- one is when you take out the slack in the film, the rewind knob should rotate when you wind the camera on. The more subtle one is the little window in the middle of the shutter speed selector, where a little dot (as well as the red dot on the shutter release) will make one complete revolution for each frame advanced. This is useful for exact registration of multiple exposures (in fact, I think that this is the only way to make ME's). If you have a Photomic finder, you will need to dismount it before being able to see this window.

Winding Stroke.jpg (12k)
The shutter release is active only when the A/R collar is set to A and the shutter has been cocked by a full advance of the advance lever. Note that the design of this entire cluster -- shutter speed selector, wind-on lever, and shutter release -- is a direct descendant of the rangefinder control design.

Having the release on the back edge of the top plate needs some getting used to, but proves to be fairly comfortable and quite rapid to use. The A/R collar sets the transport mechanism to either advance or rewind the film (it declutches the take-up spool as well as the engaging sprockets to rewind). The shutter release is surrounded by a threaded insert, which provides the mounting for the appropriate F/F2-type cable release.


Dual Functions.jpg (13k)
The rewind knob is also simple to use. With the A/R collar at "R", unfold the tiny lever out of the knob and wind in the direction of the arrow to rewind the film. If you want to leave the leader out, stop rewinding as soon as the resistance to rewinding loosens.

If you've developed your F rewinding technique to such a point that your fingers never slip while gripping the weensy knob at the end of the lever, please let me know your secrets -- three years of shooting with the F and still I can't rewind effectively. Nikon really sweated the details on the back locking mechanism, although I suppose that they had better than ten years' experience with their rangefinders (and nearly thirty years of Contax experience before that ... but that's another story). Flip open the small lever with a fingernail and turn the arrow to point to "open" and slip the camera back off. I really appreciate the fact that you can't put the lever back into its recess while the back is not locked -- it's saved me, I'm sure, from many dumb errors (now, if only I could remember to take the darkslide out of my Koni-Omega every time ...). Loading film is easy, too:

Film Takeup Spool.jpg
  1. pull enough leader out of the canister to reach from the left (cartridge) well to the take-up spool
  2. insert the tip into one of the slots, making sure that one sprocket is engaged by a tooth on the take-up spool
  3. give the take-up spool a couple of quick turns, right to left (clockwise, if you are looking down from the top plate) to wind the film onto the spool.

The manually-set indicators are entirely optional and can be safely ignored, especially if you run film through the camera in one sitting. Otherwise, it might be useful to remind yourself what you've got in the camera at any one time by setting the film speed (rotate the dial on the bottom) and number of exposures (move the indicator with the silver pin).

| Next | Next three sections cover:
Part I covers: Shutter Controls | Flash Sync Selector | Self Timer
Part II covers: Depth of Field (DOF) Preview | Mirror Lock-Up
Lens Bayonet (Bajonet) Release | Prism Release
Part III covers: Lens Bayonet (Bayonet) Release | Prism Release
Part IV covers: Film Advance Lever | Frame Counter and Film Load Reminder | Film Rewind Crank | Film Guide Rails and Pressure Plate | Serial Number and Film Plane Indication | Film Speed Reminder | Shutter Speed Dial | Shutter Release Button | Shutter Curtain | Camera Back | Tripod Socket

Main Reference map in HTML & PDF:
Body with FTN Finder | FTN finder | camera body |
External links for F & F2

| Back | to Nikon-F - Main Index Page
Michael C Liu's Nikons Classic Site

Other Nikon F Variations

logo.gif (3k)   | Message Board | for Nikon F Series SLR Camera(s)
| Message Board | for your Nikon Optics in a shared environment
| Message Board | Specifically for Dispose or Looking for Nikon/Nikkor Photographic Equipment

| Back | to Pictorial History of Nikon SLR / rangefinders / Nikonos / digital cameras.

The Eyes of Nikon:-
Nippon Kogaku KK Rangefinder RF-Nikkor lenses:- Main Index Page
Nikon Auto Focus Nikkor lenses:- Main Index Page
Nikon Manual Focus Nikkor lenses- Main Index Page
Fisheye-Nikkor Lenses - Circular | Full Frame | Ultrawides Lenses - 13mm15mm18mm20mm | Wideangle Lenses - 24mm28mm35mm |
Standard
Lenses -
45mm 50mm 58mm | Telephoto Lenses - 85mm105mm135mm180mm & 200mm |
Super-Telephoto
Lenses - 300mm 400mm 500mm 600mm 800mm 1200mm |
Special Application lenses:
Micro-Nikkor Lenses - 50mm~55mm -60mm 85mm -105mm 200mm Micro-Zoom 70-180mm
Perspective Control (PC) - 28mm 35mm PC-Micro 85mm
Dedicated Lenses for Nikon F3AF: AF 80mm f/2.8 | AF 200mm f/3.5 EDIF
Depth of Field Control (DC): 105mm 135mm
Medical Nikkor: 120mm 200mm
Reflex-Nikkor Lenses - 500mm 1000mm 2000mm
Others: Noct Nikkor | OP-Nikkor | UV Nikkor 55mm 105mm | Focusing Units | Bellows-Nikkor 105mm 135mm
Nikon Series E Lenses: 28mm35mm50mm100mm135mm | E-Series Zoom lenses: 36~72mm75~150mm70~210mm
MF Zoom-Nikkor Lenses: 25~50mm | 28~45mm | 28~50mm | 28~85mm | 35~70mm | 36~72mm E | 35~85mm | 35~105mm | 35~135mm |
35~200mm | 43~86mm | 50~135mm | 50~300mm | 70~210mm E | 75~150mm E | 80~200mm | 85~250mm |
100~300mm | 180~600mm | 200~400mm | 200~600mm | 360~1200mm | 1200~1700mm

Tele-Converters: TC-1 | TC-2 | TC-200 | TC-201 | TC-300 | TC-301 | TC-14 | TC-14A | TC-14B | TC-14C | TC-14E | TC-16 | TC-16A | TC-20E

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Nikon F
| Nikon F2 | Nikon F3 | Nikon F4 | Nikon F5 | Nikon F6 | Nikkormat / Nikomat |
Nikon FM
| Nikon FE/ FA | Nikon EM/FG/FG20 | Nikon Digital SLRs | Nikon - Other models

MIR Supports for Photographic Community: Various Message Boards/Community Forums
Nikon F-series| Nikon F2-series| Nikon F3-series| Nikon F4-series| Nikon F5-series|Nikkormat/Nikomat-series
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|Nikon FE-series|Nikon FA|Nikon Digital SLR series|Various Nikon Models|Nikkor Optic -shared

Others:- Free Trade Zone - Photography| Free Trade Zone - Business Community |Free To Zouk - Photographic Community
Apple's
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Recommended links to understand more technical details related to the Nikkor F-mount and production Serial Number:
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/index-153.html by: my friend, Rick Oleson
http://www.zi.ku.dk/personal/lhhansen/photo/fmount.htm by: Hansen, Lars Holst
http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/nikonfmount/lens2.htm
http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/serialno.html

Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon F - Index Page

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Copyright © 1998. Michael C. Liu ®

Site rearranged by: leofoo ®. Credit: Hiura Shinsaku® from Nikomat Club of Japan for feeding some useful inputs on the introductory page. The great 3D logo by Kiasu; Ted Wengelaar®, Holland for his continuous flow of input of early Nikon bodies. Stephen Gandy's Cameraquest; Marc Vorgers from Holland for his additinal images on Nikon F Apollo; Hayao Tanabe corrected my Red Dot and Early F assertions. Gray Levett, Grays of Westminster publishes an excellent monthly historical look at Nikon products, from where I learned about the high-speed F's. Made with a PowerMac, broadcast with a Redhat Linux powered server.

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