How to Change Lenses on an SLR/DSLR




This is my first instructable. Sorry about the pictures, I had to have one hand to take the pictures (my digital does not have a slef timer)

This Instructable will teach you how to put the lens on a SLR/DSLR camera.

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Step 1: Remove Dust Cover (If Applicable

Grab the dist protector and pull of while gently holding you camera down.

Step 2: Remove Rear Lens Cap

Twist the rear lens cap off (mine is removed my twisting it to the right)

Step 3: Put Lens on the Body

Put the lens on the body of the camera. The numbers (aperture numbers. theres a name for them, i just dont know it off hand.) should be facing to the right, applying slight pressure turn the lens towards the left.

The Lens is now on.

Step 4: Removing the Lens

To Remove the lens press the button on the right of the camera and turn the lens to the right. Remove the lens.

Step 5:

Go Take some pictures!

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    8 Discussions


    8 years ago on Step 4

    To keep dust out of your camera and lens, remove and install the lens while the camera is pointed down - do the same while removing the dust cap from your lens by pointing the "open" end of the lens down. Also, try to find a clean, dust free environment before ever removing your camera's lens or dust cover.

    For DSLR camera's this is even more important since getting dust or dirt on your sensor can ruin all your pictures!

    Phil B

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Even if your digital camera had a self-timer, it is not always error free. Mine often focusses on the wrong thing when I use the self-timer. Some of the older SLRs used screw threads to mount lenses, rather than a quick release system. The screw thread system never became loose, but took longer to make a change. The quick release systems are faster to make changes, but can become loose. I once used a borrowed SLR that had discernible movement between the lens and the body of the camera. It was disconcerting.

    3 replies
    listomanPhil B

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    what does the focusing system have to do with changing the lenses? And yes, the quick mount thing is something to take into consideration. The camera i use was a Nikon FM10 which is a film camera from the 90s. I posted this cuz I spent the first 20 minutes of owning the camera trying to get a lens on! silly me!

    Phil Blistoman

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    You said you had to use one hand in your Instructable because you had to use the other hand to hold your camera to take the picture for the Instructable. You wished that your digital camera had a self-timer. I commented that the self-timer function is not a perfect solution because it leaves the camera's auto-focus to decide on what part of the picture it should focus. My experience is that the camera often focuses on something like the background when the foreground is the part of the picture I want to emphasize.

    landshrkPhil B

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    And that's precisely why (one of the myriad reasons, anyway) there's a 'manual focus' option. Get your scene set up, focus where you want it, and then you don't have to worry about the camera taking control away from you.

    This 'ible is a good idea, as many new owners of SLR cameras (be they film or digital) will probably have difficulty changing lenses (if they're too good to read the provided instructions... or if the camera were second-hand and didn't come with any... in which case you could look them up online... sorry, tangent), but the incompleteness and many inaccuracies here could end up being dangerous, especially if you own a DSLR.

    As knightsaber put it, keep your camera pointed down. Dust everything off. WORK QUICKLY!!! And try to eliminate moving air (turn off fans, move out of the wind, etc.). Doing all of this, and doing religiously, is still typically an exercise in futility, as dust gets everywhere. A lot of higher-end cameras have an ultra-sonic cleaner for the OLPF (optical low-pass filter, which sits directly in front of most digital sensors for many reasons, one of which is to keep dust off the sensor itself). But really, just practice a few times in a relatively safe area, until you get the hang of it.

    To be honest, I don't even turn my camera (Nikon D700) face down unles I'm in a particularly dangerous area. I'll release the lens on the body, and turn it just slightly (as to disengage it, but still have it sitting in the mount), remove the rear lens cap from the new lens, line up the index marks (roughly), turn the old lens (in my left hand, new lens in the right), and make it a REAL quick swap. Have had great success with that so far, even when I had a camera without a built-in sensor cleaner.

    Just remember, BE QUICK, and practice where it's not a big deal if you mess up, so that when you're at the beach, shooting in high wind, you'll have that muscle memory down pat and won't have to worry... too much.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Changing lenses on a DSLR differs from doing so on a SLR.
    DSLR's sensors are prone to contamination by dust particles that would not bother a SLR.

    Always try to keep your DSLR pointing down, NOT up.
    Before removing the camera's dust cap or the lens that is already on the camera blow and or dust all around the base of the lens.
    Do the same for the lens that you want to mount and then remove the rear lens cap.
    Face camera toward the floor and remove the lens.
    Align the new lens with the camera and mount it but don't let the camera angle upward beyond the vertical. Indeed, if you can always keep it pointing down by raising it over your head then do so.

    Dust on the sensor is annoying and will show up in your photos. It is a nuisance to remove from the sensor and some may require professional removal.

    Inevitably you will get dust spots which usually show up as shadows on your photo. Photoshop's Healing Brush will make removal quick and easy. On occasion you may have to resort to the Clone Stamp.



    9 years ago on Introduction

     Nice little 'ible!  Just a couple points of clarification, though:

    On the 'quick-release' mounts (also called bayonet mounts), there is almost always a set of index marks on both the camera body and the lens that tell you where to line them up.  Line up the index marks, make sure the mounting surfaces are flat against each other, and twist...done!  No need to use the aperture index as a rough guide.

    Also, regarding the index marks:  depending on your camera, you may have more than one.  For example, my Canon EOS 20D has two separate index marks, depending on which family of lenses I am using.  Canon has their standard lens set that ANY of their cameras can use, and they also have a small set of "S-series" lenses that were designed for some of their mid-grade cameras.  They are, however, color-coded, so you don't get them confused.

    Once again, nice 'ible!


    Phil B

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Wow! I would really be interested in an Instructable on what you did to your Olympus and how it worked out. Lenses for digital cameras have a much shorter focal length for a normal lens than do film cameras. Do you get a telephoto effect on your pictures? What else did you need to carry over from the digital camera to the Olympus to make it work? How did you fit it in? What are the advantages and disadvantages of the conversion? I want to devise a remote trigger for my digital camera that would release the shutter with a pause that allows the camera to fix its focus on something I place in the center of the frame, and then it would fire off a picture. I would use it most of the time when I am preparing an Instructable. It would eliminate the problem of one hand for the camera and one hand for holding something in the Instructable. I have not decided if it should be mechanical, like a squeeze bulb; or electrical, like an electric motor that turns a screw mechanism to put pressure on the shutter button.