Soldering tiny stuff is hard, if not impossible, without some optical assistance. [Ad_w00000] was having just this problem, so built himself a soldering magnifier to help.
The magnifier uses a variety of components [Ad_w00000] had lying around. For the optical side of things, an old Canon DSLR zoom lens was pressed into service as the main magnifying element. The lens was then fitted with an old laptop webcam, which was glued into an old lens extender to avoid modifying the main lens itself. The webcam is hooked up to an Asus Tinkerboard fitted with a touchscreen display to show the images. The whole lens assembly is then fitted onto an old TV stand to enable it to sit far enough above the work surface to focus properly.
The build is a great example of building something useful out of whatever you have on hand. Sometimes, that’s cheaper and quicker than spending money and waiting for something to ship. It also has the bonus that you’ll learn useful skills along the way.
We’ve seen other great soldering hacks recently, too, like this gimbal to help steady hand tremors. If you’ve got your own coming together, be sure to let us know!
10 thoughts on “Old DSLR Lens Becomes Useful Soldering Magnifier”
Canon FD mount lenses were for SLR cameras not DSLR’s.
As someone who bought a couple of telephoto lenses from 2nd hand stores(cheap!), before I realized they didn’t work with my DSLR, I welcome this project!
A few years back you could find FD mount lenses and even near mint Canon AE-1 bodies at the local Goodwill for pennies.
Our local Vinnes (equivalet in Australia) has had a perfectly standard nothing exciting but OK lens in their window for 10 years, because the price is ridiculous. I guess the people that run it and do the pricing probably value it as it was “in their day”, not what it’s worth now
Funny, all my old Pentax lenses work just fine on my new DSLR bodies with only minor issues (like screw-drive autofocus being omitted on the newest bodies).
Exactly why I bought a K3 last year. Not a cheap camera, even as dated as it is, but having a pile of “dime a dozen” lenses that just work is pretty sweet.
Now If I can ever get around to re-engineering a K1000 body. . .
Let’s just find an in-stock replacement for the aperture solenoids.
Yeah… My K-70 is currently semi-crippled because of that. Considering doing the surgery myself. It’s on about page 7 of the ToDo list.
I hope that image shown is not representative of the usual image quality — that’s awful. Since (it looks like) the webcam used has its own lens, the results likely will be better with that SLR lens reversed, so close focus happens on the side of the lens it’s designed for.
Damn so I wasted a whole 12 quid buying a digital microscope on ebay
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