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Ø1" Lens Tubes

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Ø1 Lens Tubes

Additional Lens Tube Sizes
Ø30 mm
Cross Section of SM-Series Lens Tube


  • Easily Construct Multi-Element Optical Systems
  • Wide Range of SM1-Compatible Optomechanical Components Available
  • Compatible with Our 30 mm Cage Systems
  • Directly Accepts Ø1" (25.4 mm) Optics

Lens tubes are ideal for creating compact optical subassemblies. The Ø1" lens tubes sold here can be used to house one or several optical elements. Optics are separated and secured by retaining rings that are positioned at the desired depth within the lens tube using a spanner wrench. Depending on the item purchased, one or two retaining rings will be included (see below for details). Additional retaining rings can be purchased separately. In addition to the Ø1" lens tubes featured on this page, Thorlabs also offers Ø1/2", Ø30 mm, Ø2", and Ø3" versions, each of which is equipped with an SM series thread standard that depends on the tube diameter.

Lens Tube Application Example
Lens Tube Compatible Products
Thread AdaptersTerminated Fiber AdaptersCollimation Package AdaptersLED and LD MountsAspheric Lens MountsIrises, Apertures, and ShuttersAlignment Tools

SM Series Threading Specifications

Thorlabs' lens tubes utilize a series of non-standard threadings. Threading specifications are given below for our SM threadings utilized in our lens tube and cage system components so that you can machine mating components to suit your application. For threading specifications other than what is listed here, please contact Tech Support.

SM05 Threading: Ø1/2" Lens Tubes, 16 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 0.535"-40.0, UNS-2AInternal Thread, 0.535"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter0.5340"Min Major Diameter0.5350"
Min Major Diameter0.5289"Min Pitch Diameter0.5188"
Max Pitch Diameter0.5178"Max Pitch Diameter0.5230"
Min Pitch Diameter0.5146"Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread)0.508"
Max Minor Diameter0.5069"Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread)0.514"
SM1 Threading: Ø1" Lens Tubes, 30 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 1.035"-40.0, UNS-2AInternal Thread, 1.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter1.0339"Min Major Diameter1.0350"
Min Major Diameter1.0288"Min Pitch Diameter1.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter1.0177"Max Pitch Diameter1.0234"
Min Pitch Diameter1.0142"Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread)1.008"
Max Minor Diameter1.0068"Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread)1.014"
SM30 Threading: Ø30 mm Lens Tubes
External Thread, M30.5x0.5Internal Thread, M30.5x0.5
Max Major Diameter30.480 mmMin Major Diameter30.500 mm
Min Major Diameter30.371 mmMin Pitch Diameter30.175 mm
Max Pitch Diameter30.155 mmMax Pitch Diameter30.302 mm
Min Pitch Diameter30.059 mmMin Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread)29.959 mm
Max Minor Diameter29.938 mmMax Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread)30.094 mm
SM2 Threading: Ø2" Lens Tubes, 60 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 2.035"-40.0, UNS-2AInternal Thread, 2.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter2.0338"Min Major Diameter2.0350"
Min Major Diameter2.0287"Min Pitch Diameter2.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter2.0176"Max Pitch Diameter2.0239"
Min Pitch Diameter2.0137"Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread)2.008"
Max Minor Diameter2.0067"Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread)2.014"
SM3 Threading: Ø3" Lens Tubes
External Thread, 3.035"-40.0, UNS-2AInternal Thread, 3.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter3.0337"Min Major Diameter3.0350"
Min Major Diameter3.0286"Min Pitch Diameter3.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter3.0175"Max Pitch Diameter3.0242"
Min Pitch Diameter3.0133"Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread)3.008"
Max Minor Diameter3.0066"Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread)3.014"
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Posted Comments:
Poster: u.eisenbarth
Posted Date: 2014-02-17 14:55:25.57
Dear Madam / Sir, We are regularly using the SM tube system and are quite happy with it. However since we also use many custom parts which we want to connect to the SM standard it would be desireable if you would offer a corresponding thread cutter (for both internal and external threads). While our workshop can produce this type of (non-standard) thread on their turning machines it would make life much easier. Regards, Udo Eisenbarth
Poster: cdaly
Posted Date: 2014-02-25 05:52:19.0
Response from Chris at Thorlabs: Thank you for your inquiry. We do have SM05 and SM1 taps to produce internal threads available at the linke below. At the moment, we do not offer these dies as standard items, but we can offer them as customs for the time being. Inquiries for these should be directed to techsupport@thorlabs.com We will contact you directly with this information. http://www.thorlabs.com/newgrouppage9.cfm?objectgroup_id=1189
Poster: sharrell
Posted Date: 2012-03-30 14:26:00.0
A response from Sean at Thorlabs: Thank you again for your feedback on our lens tube covers. Several of our engineers have had sucess cutting the SC1L24 covers with a band saw or a coping saw. We have added this information to the website as a suggestion to future customers. In addition, one of our engineers tried using a pipe cutter and unfortunately, the tube was crushed.
Poster: tcohen
Posted Date: 2012-03-29 14:14:00.0
Response from Tim at Thorlabs: One of our target specifications for this product was for it to be easy to cut. We are grateful to hear your feedback on this so we can improve the design. I am talking to our engineers to see if we can offer this with reduced thickness or if we can provide a tool for clean cutting. Thank you for your feedback!
Posted Date: 2012-03-29 10:58:43.0
The SC1L24 lens tube cover requires a power tool to cut, can you please consider adding a thin tube that could be cut more easily. Alternatively, provide some sort of jig that would allow the tube to be cut, i'm thinking a pipe cutter like gizmo. Thanks for listening, you guys are great!
Poster: bdada
Posted Date: 2011-06-24 11:41:00.0
Response from Buki at Thorlabs: Thank you for your feedback. We have listed more details about our SMx series threads on our website. Please use the link below and click on the "Threading Specs" tab. http://www.thorlabs.com/NewGroupPage9.cfmObjectGroup_ID=3307&pn=SM1L03#3388 If you have any questions, please contact TechSupport@thorlabs.com
Poster: jon.hackett
Posted Date: 2011-06-24 10:23:11.0
I see below that you have emailed the details of the SM1 thread form to others, can you please send me the details of this and the SM05, as I am designing parts to mate with them? Thanks. Customer Email: jon.hackett@ametek.co.uk This customer would like to be contacted.
Poster: jjurado
Posted Date: 2011-06-23 18:10:00.0
Response from Javier at Thorlabs to nkad: Thank you very much for contacting us. We offer a few SM1 couplers which consist of external SM1 threads throughout the entire length of the tube. However, keep in mind that the internal diameter of these couplers is 24.0 mm, as it is not possible to have a tube with both internal and external SM1 threads along the section of the tube. Please take a look at the following link for our SM1 couplers with external threads and our adjustable lens tubes: SM1 lens tube couplers with external threads: http://www.thorlabs.com/NewGroupPage9.cfm?ObjectGroup_ID=2704 Adjustable SM1 lens tubes: http://www.thorlabs.com/NewGroupPage9.cfm?ObjectGroup_ID=4109 I will contact you directly to get a better understanding of your application.
Poster: nkad
Posted Date: 2011-06-22 21:56:14.0
Do you have an SM1 tube with external threads along the whole length of the tube? This would permit infinite length adjustment for optics fixed at one end, especially when coupled with Lens Tubes Without External Threads. Customer Email: nkad@essex.ac.uk This customer would like to be contacted.
Poster: Greg
Posted Date: 2011-01-13 08:31:48.0
A response from Greg at Thorlabs to mr.keith: Thank you for contacting us! I have e-mailed you the specifications of our SM1 threading.
Poster: Thorlabs
Posted Date: 2010-09-02 13:52:28.0
Response from Javier at Thorlabs to driall: I will send you an e-mail with the complete specifications for the SM1 thread shortly.
Poster: driall
Posted Date: 2010-09-02 11:34:31.0
i have a question on the SM1 threads: 1.035" - 40 does not define thread class, tooth profile. What is the full thread callout? im designing a part to mate with one of these tubes, and id like more info. Thanks, Dan
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Ø1" Stackable Lens Tubes
  • Stackable Design Enables Multi-Element Optical Systems
  • SM1-Threaded (1.035"-40) Bore Accepts Ø1" (Ø25 mm) Optics
  • Directly Compatible with Our 30 mm Cage Systems

These stackable Ø1" lens tubes provide a fast and easy means for building compact optical assemblies. Their stackable design and direct interfacing with any SM1-threaded (1.035"-40) components provide flexibility for complex optomechanical assemblies. One SM1RR retaining ring is included with each lens tube.

SM1Lxx Lens Tube Diagram
Item #L1L2Thread Depth
SM1L03 0.45" 0.12" 0.3"
SM1L05 0.65" 0.12" 0.5"
SM1L10 1.15" 0.12" 1.0"
SM1L20 2.15" 0.12" 2.0"
SM1L30 3.15" 0.12" 3.0"
SM1L40 4.15" 0.12" 4.0"
Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø30 mm, Ø2", and Ø3" Stackable Lens Tubes Ø2" Lens Tube Extensions Ø2" Lens Tubes with Side Access Ports
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal/Imperial Price Available / Ships
SM1L03 Support Documentation
SM1L03 SM1 Lens Tube, 0.3" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
SM1L05 Support Documentation
SM1L05 SM1 Lens Tube, 0.5" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
SM1L10 Support Documentation
SM1L10 SM1 Lens Tube, 1" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
SM1L20 Support Documentation
SM1L20 SM1 Lens Tube, 2" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
SM1L30 Support Documentation
SM1L30 SM1 Lens Tube, 3" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
SM1L40 Support Documentation
SM1L40 SM1 Lens Tube, 4" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
Ø1" Lens Tubes Without External Threads
SM1Mxx Lens Tube Diagram
  • Unlike Stackable Lens Tubes, Optics can be Accessed from Both Ends
  • SM1-Threaded (1.035"-40) Bore Accepts Ø1" (25 mm) Optics
  • Use Lens Tube Couplers to Stack Multiple Lens Tubes
  • Allows Coupling of Two Externally SM1-Threaded Components

Unlike our Ø1" stackable lens tubes featured above, these internally threaded lens tubes do not feature a lip at one end nor do they have external SM1 threading. Therefore, optics housed inside can be accessed from both ends. To join these lens tubes end-to-end, use an SM1T2 Lens Tube Coupler. Two SM1RR retaining rings are included with each lens tube.

Alternatives Ø1/2" and Ø2" Lens Tubes Without External Threads
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Metric Price Available / Ships
SM1M05 Support Documentation
SM1M05 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Without External Threads, L = 1/2", Two Retaining Rings Included
SM1M10 Support Documentation
SM1M10 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Without External Threads, L = 1", Two Retaining Rings Included
SM1M20 Support Documentation
SM1M20 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Without External Threads, L = 2", Two Retaining Rings Included
SM1M30 Support Documentation
SM1M30 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Without External Threads, L = 3", Two Retaining Rings Included
Ø1" Lens Tube Spacers Without Internal Threads
SM1Sxx Lens Tube Diagram
  • Use as Spacers Between Lens Tubes
  • External SM1 Threading on Each End
  • 1", 2", and 3" Lengths Available

These Lens Tube Spacers are designed to connect two components with internal SM1 threads at a fixed distance. They are unthreaded and have a clear aperture of Ø0.95".

Please note that due to the fixed thread depth, the orientation of the attached components will be arbitrary. For full control over the component orientation, Thorlabs offers the SM1T2 externally threaded coupler with adjustable locking rings.

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal/Imperial Price Available / Ships
SM1S10 Support Documentation
SM1S10 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Spacer, L = 1"
SM1S20 Support Documentation
SM1S20 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Spacer, L = 2"
SM1S30 Support Documentation
SM1S30 Customer Inspired! SM1 Lens Tube Spacer, L = 3"
Ø1" Slotted Lens Tube
  Easy Access to Optics
  Rotatable Slip Shield Protects Optics
  Compatible with SM1-Threaded Components

This stackable Ø1" lens tube with side slots provides a fast and easy means for building complex optical assemblies and adjusting the optics without disassembling the setup. Several optics can be inserted into a single tube using multiple SM1RR retaining rings. Simply thread the first retaining ring to the desired depth, add the optic, and then use a second retaining ring to secure the optic. Optics can be manually adjusted via the side slots without the use of a spanner wrench. The rotatable slip shield included with the lens tube fits over the lens tube slots to prevent unwanted light from entering the system and to keep the optical setup free from debris. Two retaining rings and one black plastic dust cover are included with each lens tube.

Alternatives Ø1/2" and Ø2" Slotted Lens Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal/Imperial Price Available / Ships
SM1L30C Support Documentation
SM1L30C SM1 Slotted Lens Tube, 3" Thread Depth, 2 Retaining Rings Included
3-5 Days
SM1 Extension Tubes
SM1E60 Diagram

The SM1E60 6" Long Extension Tube is designed to enable longer distances between optical components in lens tube systems that utilize lenses with large focal lengths. These tubes feature thicker walls than our standard lens tubes, which leads to greater rigidity. In addition, the ends of these extension tubes are threaded to accept our SM1 series stackable lens tubes.

Alternatives Ø2" Extension Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal/Imperial Price Available / Ships
SM1E60 Support Documentation
SM1E60 6" Extension Tube for SM1 Lens Tube, One Retaining Ring Included
Ø1" Retaining Rings and Spanner Wrenches
  • SM1RR Retaining Rings Secure Ø1" Optics
  • SM1LTRR Retaining Rings Provide Stress-Free, Light-Tight Mounting of Ø1" Components
  • SM1PRR Plastic Retaining Rings are Stronger than Other Retaining Rings Due to Increased Thickness
  • Spanner Wrenches Provide One-Handed Adjustment of Retaining Rings
  • SPW801 Adjustable Spanner Wrench can Accommodate Diameters from 0.15" (3.8 mm) to 3.0" (75 mm)

Thorlabs offers three different kinds of SM1 retaining rings. The SM1RR is our standard retaining ring that ships with our Ø1" lens tubes as well as many other Thorlabs components. If desirable, the SM1RR can be swapped out for am SM1LTRR or an SM1PRR. The SM1LTRR is a stressless retaining ring that is equipped with a Buna-N O-ring to provide a light-tight seal around the optical component while the SM1PRR is a plastic retaining ring that provides increased strength due to its increased thickness [0.11" (2.8 mm) compared to 0.08" (2 mm) for our other Ø1" retaining rings]. Please keep in mind that due to the increased thickness of the SM1PRR retaining ring, the maximum optic thickness that can be housed inside our standard SM1-compatible mounts will be diminished in some cases. Thorlabs also offers two spanner wrench choices: the 1" long SP606 and the 3.87" long SPW602, which can be used with the SM1RR and SM1LTRR retaining rings, and the SPW801, which can be used with all three types of SM1 retaining rings.

Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø2", and Ø3" Fixed Diameter Spanner Wrenches Ø1/2", Ø2", and Ø3" Retaining Rings
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal/Imperial Price Available / Ships
SM1RR Support Documentation
SM1RR SM1 Retaining Ring for Ø1" Lens Tubes and Mounts
SM1LTRR Support Documentation
SM1LTRR SM1 Series Stress-Free Retaining Ring
SM1PRR Support Documentation
SM1PRR Customer Inspired! SM1 Plastic Retaining Ring for Ø1" Lens Tubes and Mounts
SPW606 Support Documentation
SPW606 Customer Inspired! SM1 Spanner Wrench, Length = 1"
SPW602 Support Documentation
SPW602 SM1 Spanner Wrench, Graduated, Length = 3.88"
SPW801 Support Documentation
SPW801 Adjustable Spanner Wrench
SPW102 Support Documentation
SPW102 Replacement Blade Set
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