If you are looking for M39 lenses from Russia other other eastern countries, please pay attention: there were SLR cameras with
M39 mount, the most common was the Zenit. Their FFD is 45.2mm instead
of the Leica 28.8mm. So you can't use these lenses without an extra
adapter, difficult to make. Quite some sellers "forget" to indicate
this problem. It's easier and cheaper to buy the M42 version of these
lenses, as their adapters are available. Braun Paxette lenses have a similar problem, hints for those are on this page.
there is a solution for nearly everything. You can start with an M42
adapter which is 45.46mm FFD. The next thing you need is a tiny M42 to
M39 adapter ring. They are easy to find and very cheap. This is what it
An M42 to M39 adapting ring next to a Helios-44.
Ring screwed on Jupiter-9 lens.
you can screw your lens into your M42 to Sony adapter. Check whether
you can focus to infinity (~15m is not infinity!), the lens being
widest open. If you have several M42 adapters, take a caliper and find
out, if there is a shorter one and have a test again. These adapters
are adjustable, there are 3 screws which hold the ring with its M42
thread. In the first place this lets you turn the screwed-in lens to
shift the reading marks towards the top. If you can't reach infinity,
you have to sand down this ring.
Threaded ring unscrewed. The shims are not part of this adaption.
the threaded ring and take it out. Put sandpaper on flat surface and
move the back of the ring on it in circular movements. Most of the
rings are made of aluminium, so it's quickly done. You only need to
sand down less than 0.3mm, check with a caliper. Clean, clean and clean
again, you don't want filing dust on your sensor. Put the ring back,
fasten it and check again with camera and lens. Should be fine now.
Some general remarks: many interesting Russian
lenses are more than 50 years old. Some have been stored under doubtful
conditions. According to my experience there are sellers which have a different
view about honest descriptions. An exemple: I bought a lens that was
described as "Glass is clean. No scratches, no fungus, no dust." There
was dirt and something which looked like scratches inside the lens. To
me it seemed as if somebody had tried to clean fungus inside the lens
but didn't succeed. When I told this to the seller, his answer was:
"...given the age of this lens - more than 50 years - it is normal if
it does not affect the quality of work." Not exactly what I would have
expected. So look for a reliable seller, even if he might be a bit more
expensive. Most of the sellers were very helpful and there was no problem with shipping.
lenses have no particular problems. And beware, there is one mount
which is only adaptable if you are a (near-)professional: the Kiev 10
or 15 mount. So keep your eyes open.
Here are most of my beauties:
row: Mir 20H (converted to M42), Industar-69 (adapted
to M39 FFD), Jupiter-12 (M39), Jupiter-8 (M39),
second row: Industar-26m (M39), Industar-61 L/D (M39), Helios-44 (M39 Zenit),
row: Jupiter-9 (M39 Zenit), Jupiter-11(M39
Zenit). Missing on the photo: Orion-15 (M39).