Question about Nikon Coolpix 4300 Digital Camera

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Lens does not extend

I just dropped my camera..... and now the lens does not extend anymore when I want to take a picture.. I get a message that the lens cap is still on and then "system error". Any idea how to solve this?

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If you drop one of the Coolpix cameras, the case can get jammed up against the lens. The lens may not extend at all, and you are probably getting SYSTEM ERROR messages. The motor that extends the lens isn't powerful. By loosening the screws that hold the case together, you may be able to move the case slightly and get everything back into alignment. This task is for the mechanically inclined and who can be gentle and patient. Brute strength is NOT called for here. Also, if your camera is under warranty, do not do this!

Removing the case screws will require a jewelers phillips head screwdriver and a well-lit workspace that will prevent losing the screws (they are tiny). Not all the screws are exactly the same. You have to keep track of where they came from so that they go back into the same hole. Get a clean sheet of paper and draw a map of the camera body showing where the screws go. There are 11 screws all together two of which are under the battery cover.

Shut off the camera and remove the battery. As you remove the screws, place them on the corresponding spot on the map. When all the screws are removed, the case may not want to come apart. GENTLY move the two halves of the case apart at the bottom of the camera (For some reason, the camera wants to come apart at the base before the top). It probably isn't necessary to take the body apart. If the body does come apart, note that the OFF/ON dial is connected to the circuit board by a thin ribbon cable, so the halves cannot be separated completely in any case. DO not pull on this cable.

What you are trying to do is loosen the two halves of the case and give them a chance to get back into the original position. Note that the tripod mount is a separate piece and will shift slightly if you separate the case halves at the bottom.

If the case halves are loose and they have moved, you've may have fixed the problem. Replace the screws. You may need a pair of needle nosed pliers to get the screws back into the holes. Put the battery in and turn on the camera. If you moved the body correctly, then the lens should pop out. Don't be afraid to try a couple of times.

I may have been lucky in that this worked for me, but if your camera isn't working at all (mine wasn't), this may be worth a try. Just be extremely careful of those screws.

Posted on Apr 09, 2008

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