Leica Carl Zeiss Jena 13.5cm F4, converted to Leica Mount

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
See this thread:

Wartime Sonnar 1:4 f=13.5cm

"Wow'd" by the rare Wartime Sonnar, and STUNNED by the prototype pre-war uncoated Sonnar- as in Few made and TWO made, I had to do something!

I've shot with my perfect-glass 1937 CZJ 13.5cm F4 Sonnar using a Contax to Leica Adapter, but the focus was just not "good Enough". I've custom indexed a Cam for an adapter to use my 8.5cm F2 Sonnar, and focus is good across range- but it is dedicated to that one lens.

I bought a Jupiter-11 to investigate using the J-11 Focus mount for the pre-war, uncoated Sonnar. These are all test shots, short answer: focus is good from 2.5m closest focus to infinity. The tolerances on the J-11 mount are so close to the Zeiss optics that the F-Stop index comes up to "almost" where the original J-11 index was. I've done a lot of conversions of 5cm Sonnars, only a few come this close- typcially I have to re-index the aperture ring.

Converted Sonnar
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Miserable, wet day today- heavy overcast, so these are quick focus tests to make sure the shim is set correctly. Tomorrow should be sunny.

2.5m, wide-open

Sonnar 13.5cm F4, Wide-Open
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Infinity, wide-open.

Sonnar 13.5cm F4, Wide-Open
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Wet Flowers, wide-open.

Sonnar 13.5cm F4, Wide-Open
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Downed Tree- wide-open

Sonnar 13.5cm F4, Wide-Open
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

I did shoot with the J-11, it is quite good. Now it is in Contax mount, with the original shims and index mark in place. This is easily convertible back and forth. The Sonnar is sharper, despite being uncoated. After 80 years, bloom acts like a lens coating- it certainly does on this lens.

Converted Sonnar
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr
 
Last edited by a moderator:

radi(c)al_cam

Regular
Oct 20, 2016
Alexander
Particularly re the aeroplane — full aperture plus infinity — shot: I wonder whether the vignetting is an artifact due to digital use?
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
The Vignetting from the infinity shot was the Hood that I grabbed- from a Nikkorex. I switched to a vented hood after that.

Will do some more today.

EDit- More shot on a morning walk, the Sun playing hide-and-seek. This is an infinity shot with a Vented hood. The Nikkorex hood imposes at the edges, I had been using it on the I-26m which at F2.8: no problem.

13.5cm F4 Sonnar, Test
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr
 
Last edited by a moderator:

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
More from the morning walk-

Focus calibration test-

13.5cm F4 Sonnar, Test
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

13.5cm F4 Sonnar, Test
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

13.5cm F4 Sonnar, Test
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

DOF-

13.5cm F4 Sonnar, Test
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Minimum focus is 2.5m, much farther than the Nikkor 13.5cm F3.5 and most of my others. This makes it more difficult to focus via the RF as the object is smaller. These are wide-open on the M9, using a 1.25x magnifier. I have no trouble with the Nikkor at min distance as it is so much closer.
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
I added 0.03mm to the shim, the aperture index lines up perfectly now and the focus is better. Well within the DOF, but with modern pixel-peeping: it's better. Also: when my M Monochrom is back, focus will shift towards infinity with a deep yellow, orange, and red. This will help.

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

Sun came out, I also shot at F8-

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr


Wide-Open,

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr


F8,

Spring 2017, Sonnar 13.5cm F4
by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
Been a while since I pulled out this lens- Blue sky, blossoms blooming- this lens does not get close, but good enough for some shots of the trees in the neighborhood.

All wide-open, and min focus. The uncoated Zeiss lenses really bring out the blue in the sky.
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rayvonn

Hall of Famer
Jan 19, 2015
Been a while since I pulled out this lens- Blue sky, blossoms blooming- this lens does not get close, but good enough for some shots of the trees in the neighborhood.

All wide-open, and min focus. The uncoated Zeiss lenses really bring out the blue in the sky.
View attachment 216540View attachment 216541View attachment 216542View attachment 216543
I often find it hard differentiating how much of that wonderful rendering is the sensor and how much of it is the lens.
 

BrianS

Legend
Jul 7, 2010
Rendering of the sky: I've shot coated and uncoated lenses of the same formula within minutes of each other of the same scene. The coated optics render more of a cyan. The uncoated lens yields a deeper blue- similar to what you get with a Polarizer. Next nice day, I'll try the 1954 J-11 and CZJ Sonnar. The KMZ J-11 from 1954 has German glass in it.
 

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