Last week the folks at Lensrentals had a chance to crack open a Nikon Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S lens to see what it has going on inside. According to Lensrentals founder Roger Cicala, he has been waiting to take apart this specific lens for a really long time.

“We assumed that things would be very different from previous Nikon lenses,” he writes in a blog post about the process. “But Nikon lenses have always been a bit ‘old fashioned’ and different from other SLR lenses, so we weren’t sure what to expect.”

Removing the lens bayonet
Removing the lens bayonet, which is held in place by the four screws. Even after removing the screws, it took a little force to pull it off, almost a suction-like effect. Lensrentals

It should go without saying that this isn’t something that you should try at home with your own lenses. The process of taking apart modern glass is time consuming and there are no guarantees that you will be able to put everything back where it belongs at the end of the day. And it seems that this piece of Nikon kit has some particularly complex inner workings.

“Forever, during Nikon tear-downs, I’ve made snarky comments about the old-fashioned look they have inside; soldered wires here and there, flexes wandering aimlessly, random secondary circuit boards,” Cicala writes. “Well, no more … neat flexes running directly where they’re heading placed in recessed channels in the barrel and thoroughly taped in place. Superb!”

You can head over to the Lensrentals blog to learn more about the process of tearing apart this lens and learning more about what is inside, but it seems that this was one of the more complicated lens teardowns that Cicala has taken on.

Tearing down lense
Tearing down lenses is a tedious process that requires immense attention to detail. We don’t recommend that you try this at home! Lensrentals

Typically for this kind of project, Cicala deconstructs the lens during the first half of the day, breaks for lunch, and then rebuilds after his lunch break. The teardown of the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 took the bulk of the day though. The bottom line is that Nikon’s Z lenses are a lot different than the lenses for the company’s DSLRs.

“They’re also different than what we’ve seen from other manufacturers,” Cicala writes. That suggests Nikon Z lenses, like Canon R lenses, are a completely new optomechanical design, probably done entirely in-house.”

Check out Lensrentals for a full report of when into this lens teardown.