Anamorphic Chop Shop – Jupiter 9 Extreme Mod

December 18, 2016

The second lens out of the three in the Russian amber set, the Jupiter 9 is a wonderful mid-telephoto, 85mm. It’s a long tutorial, and it was quite challenging to shoot.


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Tito Ferradans here to tackle another lens mod project. Today’s choice is the Jupiter 9. I’m following the same style I used in my Helios 44-2 tutorial, so the color is orange. The goal here is to make a set of matching lenses, the last of them being the wide angle Mir 1B.

The Jupiter 9 is a quite famous fast little 85mm from the Soviet Union. It goes really well with the Helios 44-2, delivering astonishing images. From all my Russian primes, I believe the Jupiter 9 is the one I like the most. It features a preset ring for aperture and focuses down to 0.8m. In this mod we’ll be opening it up to install an oval aperture with a flare filter to simulate the anamorphic look, as well as tint various bits inside the lens. Here’s what it will like when we’re done. Oh, yeah, you can follow this tutorial for both versions of the Jupiter 9, the one with the smooth ring and the one with the finger indents!

Here’s our list of ingredients!

Optional items are a piece of cloth and metal polish (I use Autosol), but we’ll get to that.

Start by opening the lens. The Jupiter is pretty much a beefed up version of the Helios. I highly recommend taking photos or filming the process of disassembling, just to make sure you know how to put it back together. Here we go. Get a firm grip of the focus ring and rotate the front block – the one with the aperture rings. That will set the optical block free. Put the focusing helicoid aside.

Now grab the frontmost part and twist it off to release the front optical block. Like the Helios 44, unscrew the rear optical block. Get the glass out using a lens wrench.

On the front, remove the locking ring and the front element comes off. Then get the second element out by removing the smaller locking ring in the back.

If you want a slower version of the process, you can check out this other video by Retro Photo House.

ALSO, if you have trouble unscrewing the front block, there’s probably a screw on your way. To take it out loosen the tiny screws on both aperture rings, take them out and find this screw here. Mine has already been taken out. That will allow you to move forward. Put your aperture rings back just the way you found them.

The rear block has less pieces than the Helios, just one instead of two. Get it out anyway.

We’ll first tackle the spray painting so it can dry off while we work on the glass. With the metal parts at hand, sand the black paint that covers the space between the front-most and middle elements. This part will be painted to bounce some color onto the light that comes in. Repeat the process for the rear tube.

Mask each piece carefully, making sure paint won’t stick to anything else. I usually rip small pieces of tape into even smaller pieces so they cover all the tiny edges and then overlay thicker pieces over this fine patchwork.

Wearing gloves, go outside and spray orange over these two pieces. I messed up and forgot the gloves. Enjoy my orange fingers. Give it a few minutes and add another layer of paint just to make sure you have a bright and saturated color. While this dries off, head back. Don’t even bother taking the gloves off.

With the optics at hand, pour a little acetone on the cotton pad and melt away the black paint that covers the sides of the optics. Keep your window open while you do that, since the smell is very strong and the fumes are not the best thing to be breathing in.

Once you’re done, you have an optional step. Using the piece of cloth and metal polish you can remove the coatings from the glass and add a ton of microscratches, making the lens a tad softer, diffusing the light, lowering contrast and creating bloom around strong highlights in the frame. I’m gonna skip this part as I’m fonder of the unpolished glass. If you want more details on how to that, watch my first Helios 44-2 mod tutorial.

Moving on, with the orange sharpie, paint the sides of all glass elements. This adds a level of radioactive shine to the lens and influences the tint a little more. If you have any mishaps and add some orange to the front or back of the glass, just wipe it off with a tiny bit of acetone. After this step I always do a lens-cleaning round, wiping away all the smudges, oil, grease and fingerprints away before putting the lens back together.

Fetch your spray painted parts and remove the masking tape. We’re moving to the last steps.

Time to wreck the gloves. With your trusty sandpaper, grab your acrylic aperture disc – if you want to buy some, here’s my listing! If you want to get them cut, here’s the file (PDF/DXF)! – and sand it paper-thin.

Blow away the dust and paint it orange with the sharpie. Paint both sides a few times to build up a nice color. While it dries, cut a small section of fishing line and two tiny pieces of double-sided tape.

Holding the fishing line across the oval shape, tape the top and bottom areas over the acrylic disc. Paint the fishing line orange as well to tint your streak flares. If you want them neutral, skip this step. Cut both ends of the line.

I like to use tweezers to remove the white layer of the double-sided tape. Stick the aperture disc to the inner side of the rear group, it should fit perfectly.

Now put everything back together. The rear group goes into the small tube and that screws over the aperture mechanism. Then the front, locking both retaining rings. Get the focusing helicoid back and screw it in.

Add a layer of double-sided tape to the inside of your 3d-printed focus gear.

You can download the STL file for printing below. Just click on your version of the Jupiter 9.

Slide the gear over the focus ring, it should fit tightly. Remove any scraps of double sided tape that squeeze off, for cosmetic purposes.

The last step is to add the rotating M42 adapter so you can quickly align the direction of the oval and flare as you go.

Now contemplate your handiwork and have fun shooting the most gorgeous pictures, like these tests!

It wasn’t that hard, was it? You must be getting the hang of taking lenses apart by now! If you wanna get even better at it, subscribe and check these other videos, where I mod the Helios 44-2 and the Pentacon 29mm! If you happen to love anamorphics and you’re looking for LOTS of information, check my blog! I don’t know about you, but I’m quite exhausted by doing the mod AND filming all of it at the same time, so I’m taking off. See you next week. Ferradans, out.