I saw this thread browsing, so had to sign up to answer it. I have a novel angle on the problem because I've dealt with this on a Nikkormat. Firstly, switching through the shutter speed range on that Pentax will cause the needle to shift top to bottom, with no battery at all. And I highly doubt the meter cells are totally slap dead. The meter switch can be suspect, but I have a possible far out remedy. I once had a Nikkormat where I was SURE the hot wire at the battery was corroded and detached. But it wasn't. And the battery bay was pretty clean--no corrosion to speak of. Know what I finally found? The insulated battery wire has actually wicked corrosion over the years and was corroded in 2 at the OTHER END. I liked to lost my mind figuring this one out--wires are wicks like a candle wick for corrosion, and the OTHER END can be all green and crusty, and totally shot.