Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon F2 - Camera Body and Features Part III

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The Titanium Shutter Unit

The shutter used in the F2 was designed and manufactured by Nikon as an integral part of the camera, the shutter uses exotic materials and precision engineering to maintain accurate and consistent performance under all operating conditions.

The shutter curtains themselves are made of quilted titanium foil, a material that Nikon introduced to the photographic industry. Titanium is one of the world's strongest, yet lightest materials; it also has a very unique metal property where its specific gravity is approximately half that of brass, yet its hardness is almost the same as that of steel, and corrosion resistance. But blending Titanium for commercial use in photographic industry was a pioneered achievement for Nikon as the Company has already master the technique to use this special industrial metal for its shutter curtain design even back to the rangefinder days ! Both the professional rangefinder model, Nikon SP and the Nikon F employed a shutter curtain which was made of quilted titanium foil. Incidentally, the famed workhorse electronic Nikon F3 was the last Nikon F-series model which still uses a shutter curtain with Titanium.

Titanium foil is used due to its high resistant to heat and exhibits low heat conductivity and small thermal dilatation. The surfaces of the curtain are dimpled for high tensile strength with a minimum of elongation and high fatigue strength which may be require to withstand continuous pounding high speed motor drive operations which are common for professional usage.

<<<<<<<----- The Titanium Shutter should provide a minimum of 100,000 exposure cycles, an almost standard set by Nikon for all its professional F-series camera. Subsequent F3's shutter, also based on Titanium Foil design, has an officially announced target of achieving 50% more to 150,000 exposure cycles - a feat hard to catch up in durability test by any any other 35mm SLR camera manufacturers.

Shutter curtain travel time across the film gate is just 10 milliseconds for maximum speed and accuracy, it was also contributed to the F2's
maximum shutter speed of 1/2000 second and slightly higher X-synchronization at speeds up to 1/80 second than Nikon F's 1/60 sec.

A specially designed main shaft, spring and precision ball bearings provide precise, accurate and highly dependable performance, and a Nikon patented shutter braking system keeps the camera virtually vibration free at the moment of exposure. Further, a mirror linkage minimize curtain bounce which is apt to become more pronounced as the shutter curtain speed is increased.

<<<<<<<<-----Download a copy of the PDF File (142k) Shutter Timing in relation to various camera operations, which includes time duration for bulb flash.

The shutter's advanced design can be deduced from its top speed of 1/2000 sec. Very few cameras can furnish such a fast shutter speed with a horizontally traveled shutter design, let alone one with the consistency and accuracy as the F2's wide range of shutter speeds. The shutter speed dial is calibrated 1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1 /60, 1/125, 1/250, 1 /500, 1/1000, 1/2000 second plus B. (the "T" setting is made with the fingerguard ring around the shutter release button).

The shutter speeds are marked clearly on the dial in white (B to 60) and green (125 to 2000) with fluorescent paint (B). A red line (C) indicates the 1/80 second setting, up to which speed X-synchronization takes place. The dial can be rotated 360° in either direction (when the Photomic finder is not attached). There is a confirmation window at the center for checking proper film advance(D). The red dot (E) unveil after pull out the film advance lever is a meter-on switch or Photomic finder.

An amazing feat is, despite being a mechanical camera, the range of shutter speeds from 1/2000 sec. down to 1/80 sec. is actually operated steplessly, enabling you to set exactly the speed you require for ultra-precise exposure control when working with color materials or the Reflex-Nikkor lenses. That amazing feat was made possible due to improved precision cams and other related parts for fine exposure adjustments without changing the lens diaphragm aperture. The protruding pin rests on top of the shutter dial (A) is for direct coupling with the Photomic finders.

F2ShutterRing.jpg XKShutterRing.jpg
In terms of features, the Minolta XK model truly deserved some respect. It was very advanced and in certain aspect, better than the F2 - It has almost a Nikon F3 look and feel. Its shutter speed range has even extended down to 16 sec and incorporating an aperture priority AE exposure, eye piece shutter, built-in dioptric control and interchange with a few prisms and focusing screens !

With proper finder attached, slow speed range itself extends down to a full 10 seconds, which would even fulfill scientific research or industrial usage while extending the usable slow film speed critical for fine prints or possible enlargements.

This meticulous attitude is applied to the selection of only the strongest metals and alloys, ensuring that the strength built-in manifests itself in practice. Add production and assembling facilities that were some of the best in its class during its era, and probably you are beginning to understand why the F2 has the reputation it has.

<<<< ---- Mountain view, Malaysia... Copyright © images 2000. Arthur Teng® Hosted by: Malaysian Internet Resources

Reflex Mirror/Mirror Lock Up Mechanism

The reflex mirror of the Nikon F2 incorporates a special damping device which reduces to a minimum mirror bounce. The new suspension system also allows the mirror to be locked up at any time, independently of the shutter mechanism. A 135° turn of the mirror Lock-up lever, located at the base of the depth-of-field preview button, locks the reflex mirror out of the optical path.

The Independent mirror control is also used when running the MD-2 motor drive at its highest speed setting, or when using one of the few, very specialized Nikkor lenses such as OP Nikkor, early version of ultra wide Fisheye Nikkor lenses that has a protruding rear elements that make reflex viewing impossible. The Lock-up mechanism is independent of the shutter release or film advance mechanism, so the mirror can be locked-up or lowered at any time.

Although seldom used in ordinary shooting situations, mirror Lock-up is an essential professional control and is extensively used in high magnification close-up photography, photomicrography and astrophotography to eliminate any possibility of vibration degrading the image. The Mirror Lock-up lever is coaxial with the depth-of-field preview button.


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Fisheye-Nikkor Lenses - Circular | Full Frame | Ultrawides Lenses - 13mm15mm18mm20mm | Wideangle Lenses - 24mm28mm35mm |
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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
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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
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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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Recommended links to understand more technical details related to the Nikkor F-mount and production Serial Number: by: my friend, Rick Oleson by: Hansen, Lars Holst

About this photographic site.

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HOME - Photography in Malaysia

Copyright © 2000. leofoo ®. MIR Web Development Team.

In memory of my friend Com. Augusto Staut, Brazil, 1971-2000.

Credit: Chuck Hester, US for his patience, encouragement and help to setup the various content in this site; Robert Johnson for some of his original images on the F2H-MD appeared in this site; my ex-staff, KiaSu for his superb 3-D logo appeared in this Nikon F2 site; Marc Vorgers from Holland who generously provide me with some of his images of F2AS; MCLau®, who has so much time with me to re-edit the content in this site and not to mention buying a Nikon Coolpix 990 just for this site. Keat Photo, Kuala Lumpur for providing their Nikon F2A to take some images for this site; again, Mr Edward Ngoh the great camera collector who provides us his collection of F2AS with MD-2; for their images on the Speed Magny film backs; Sean Cranor for his image on Nikon F2 25th Anniversary Model; Ted Wengelaar®, Holland for his continuous flow of input on some of the early Nikon bodies; CYLeow ® , photo editor of the Star newspaper, Malaysia for some of his images used in this site. Ms Rissa Chan, Sales manager from Shriro Malaysia who has helped to provide some of the very useful input. HiuraShinsaku®, Nikomat ML, Japan for some of his images on various F2 models; my staff, Wati, Maisa, Mai and my nephew, EEWyn®, who volunteered and helping me did so many of the film scanning works. Contributing photographers or resellers: Jen Siow, Foo KokKin, Arthur Teng, Mark Fallander, John Ishii, Ed Hassel, YoonKi Kim, Jean-Louis, M.Dugentas (Dell, Mr "Arsenall" and a few images mailed in from surfers with no appropriate reference to their origin. Dedicated to KU Yeo, just to express our mutual regrets over the outcome of a recent corporate event. Made with a PowerMac, broadcast with a Redhat Linux powered server.

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