Yashica ML 28-85mm Cleanup
While looking for some lenses in Contax/Yashica mount for both mirrorless and film, I happened across a buy now offer on eBay for a used Yashica ML 28-85mm f/3.5-4.5 Macro. These are scarce to locate and probably more sought after than other C/Y Yashica branded zoom lenses, as they have a reputation for edge clarity, color rendition, and sharpness. When they do show up for sale, they may not always be in the best optical and/or mechanical shape due to some inherent design issues.
This particular lens was listed at a good price but as noted from the seller, it was suffering from heavy hazing on the internal elements. Aside from that, it was fully functional and in reasonably good cosmetic condition. I clicked the 'Buy Now' button and had it in-hand several days later. This wasn't going to be my first lens tear down or cleaning, but it would be my first attempt with a zoom lens.
Adapt | Convert | Reuse
This article could easily start out as a kind of chicken and egg joke, like "Which came first... the camera or the lens?" I should add in 'legacy' or 'vintage' before the word "lens" to be more in keeping with the title.
Internal mirrors and pentaprisims started disappearing from cameras somewhere around 2008-2009, and makers offered lens mount adapters for their new mirrorless designs with the new mounts they used. Most of these adapters were produced by the OEMs themselves, and provided a quick path for brand loyalists to use their existing lenses on these new digital models, or even a conversion to a new body with a differently scaled sensor. Sony's full frame Alpha and SLT series and the NEX line offered this - or Nikon's D series (both FX & DX) when the Nikon 1's were introduced.