Introduction: 28mm Optical Finder for Ricoh GR Digital - Upcycling an Old Movie Lens

Sometimes I miss an optical finder for my GR II specially at bright and sunny days.

I decide to build one which is attached a bit higher than the GV-1 because my nose is always touching the display when I look through it.

The result is a "better-than-expected" optical finder for a low budget - much better than one of these plastic finders which you can use from a 28mm point & shoot camera.

Of course there are no frames inside but I don`t have a need for the 21mm frame anyway.

The construction is very easy without much tooltime.

I really love the old-fashioned look of the chromed accessory - the Pentacon accessory shoe has a very nice painted surface which looks very close to the GR paint structure too.

Note that the finder is not suitable for close-up photography because it is mounted around 6cm above the taking lens but perfect for landscape and street.

Parts list:

- Eumig Eumicron 0,5x lens

- Pentacon accessory shoe #208770

- M18 filter

- slip-on UV filter

- piece of cardboard or very thin alu sheet

- rubber cable gland or washer

Tools list:

- metal file (or little milling machine), fine sandpaper

- vise & plier

- small rubber mat

- drill stand and bits

- sharp knife

- black paint

- glue

Step 1: Eumicron 0.5x Lens

The Eumicron 0.5x is a wide-angle conversion lens for the Eumig C3 8mm movie camera made back in the 50thies.

If you find some dust or fungus in yours, you can remove the front element for cleaning:

- remove the tiny "head-less" screw on the knurled ring and turn it anti-clockwise.

- it won`t be come off very easy - I put it in a vice and use a plier - both protected with a thick piece of rubber

You can remove the front lens now by removing the slotted ring.

The edge of the back of the lens is black - through the age the paint chipped away on mine, so I repainted it - this is important to avoid reflections inside.

You don`t have to modify the Eumicron as I did - you can use it as is. I removed the knurled section and made it a bit smaller for cosmetical reasons.

Step 2: Pentacon Accessory Shoe

Actually this adapter is attached to the prism finder of Praktica Nova, Super TL and Pentacon Six TTL cameras to put a flash on top.

Luckily the screw mount for the finder is the same as for the Eumicron (18mm)

I am using it upside down, so you have to convert the accessory shoe into a "ISO standard" feet for the Ricoh.


- unscrew the finder ring (the 18mm thread is inside the bracket)

- drill away the two rivets and remove the flash shoe

- trimm the sides on ca. 18mm wide for the flash shoe of your camera

- use fine sand paper to make it smooth to avoid any marks on your camera shoe

- remove the glass of the M18 filter and screw it in

- screw in the Eumicron into the filterring

- glue on the half of a rubber cable gland as "eyepiece" (or any other round piece of rubber or washer)

You can ignore the 1/4" thread and the two Philips screws on my holder - this is for my remote release adaptor only.

Step 3: Slip-on Filter

For the mask you need a vintage slip-on UV filter which fits on the front of your Eumicron.

If you can find use one with a interchangeable filterglass, so you can put in the mask very easy.

For the mask I used a very thin sheet of aluminium but a piece of paper or cardboard should work too.

The inner size of the mask is appr. 14x21mm for a 28mm lens. You can use smaller masks if you want to build a finder for any other focal length like 35mm.

Paint the mask flat black and put it behind the filter glass - this will protect it.

Step 4: Finished Finder

I have compared the finder with the Ricoh GV-1 and the optical image quality seems equal or a bit better in my eyes.

The magnification is a bit higher cus the GV-1 is actually a 21mm finder with a 28mm frame.

As the mask is located on the front you don`t see it "sharp" in the finder - further I cannot see the corners cus I am wearing glasses but that`s the same for the GV-1.