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Pentacon Six project – Step 4 Pentacon Six Viewfinder repair

Whilst I’m carrying out repairs and adjustments on the shutter assembly of my Pentacon Six, I’ve also been looking at the viewfinder and lens which both needed some attention.  In this post I’m going to show the repairs and cleaning which took place on the viewfinder.

When I first received the Pentacon Six the viewfinder was in a reasonable state cosmetically, with just a couple of scratches, but optically it had a couple of chips in the prism, and these appear in the viewfinder (although obviously not on any picture). In order to fix these I was going to need to replace the prism, so I was pleased to find a replacement unit on eBay which was in a poor condition cosmetically but with an undamaged prism which I got for a single bid at the starting price of 99p. In fact the replacement has the added bonus of also having the optional flash bracket as well.

In order to get the viewfinder apart there are three screws which need to be removed, and these are under the cloth trim so it needs to be peeled back in the locations shown in the pictures.

Pentacon Six viewfinder images

I also undid the two screws which held the eyepiece in place and pulled it out of the housing.

Even with the screws out it isn’t easy to get the prism out of the housing – I had to get the blade of a pen knife between the base and the case and prise it in order to move it. Once I had the unit apart I put it to one side until the new viewfinder turned up.

Once I had the replacement viewfinder I assumed it would be a relatively easy matter to replace the prism unit with the unit from the damaged viewfinder however it turned out to be not quite as simple as I assumed. It turned out the replacement viewfinder was of a different design to the one supplied with my Pentacon six because it didn’t have a condenser lens fitted under the prism. So instead of replacing the prism, I actually replaced the whole of the viewfinder inner part. I can’t tell if the removal of the condenser lens will make a difference – I’ll only know that once I get the rest of the camera back together and working.

Still, at the moment that makes the first part of my Pentacon six project which I can say to the best of my knowledge is complete.


I’m a software developer by profession but I’ve been taking pictures since I was about 8 years old. In that time I’ve owned cameras of all types and sizes from 120 roll film thro’ 35mm to my current Pentax K-5, Ricoh GXR + P10/S10/A12 28mm/A12 50mm, Canon S95 and recently acquired Sony NEX 6.

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