Posts Tagged ‘cameras’

Falling apart – Part 2

Monday, December 21st, 2009 by

First, my apologies for yet another long radio silence. I’ve been renovating my new home, so I haven’t been taking a lot of pictures, and haven’t been close to a computer either.

Second, the follow-up to the missing-lever-problem I described three weeks ago. Back then, I mailed Leica’s spare parts service1, and within a few days got a reply that if I supplied them with my postal address, they’d send me a replacement lever free of charge2.

The new lever promptly arrived a few days later, so I can now once more preview how a picture would look with a lens I haven’t got…

Tomorrow, I’ll finally post another picture.

  1. I also contacted Will van Manen, the Dutch Leica repair technician who serviced my camera before I bought it, who also replied promptly that he could supply and re-attach the part, even if the inner coupling had gotten dislodged. []
  2. Leicas may be expensive, but the service is great: Free parts on a second-hand, 54-year-old camera. []

Falling apart

Monday, November 30th, 2009 by

Well, this sucks.

Sometime last saturday, the screw keeping the frameline-preview lever of the M3 in place unscrewed itself. I found the screw again, luckily it fell out indoors, but I’m afraid the lever itself fell off later, outside, and I haven’t been able to find it again.

Luckily, this is the only control on the camera that isn’t needed for actual shooting, but it’s still annoying.

If anyone has suggestions on where to get a replacement, please let me know in the comments! I’ve looked at DAG but he currently only has the (fugly) M4-style levers in stock.

The camera

Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 by

Of course, to do the Leica Lessons project, I needed a Leica film rangefinder.

As I had no Leica camera, nor a rangefinder camera, I was completely free in my choice, so the first thing I did was dive into Wikipedia and find out what choices I had.

I then went over my requirements, and started scratching off options that didn’t fit:

Film
That leaves out the M8.
Leica rangefinder
No CL, which is not a Leica1 and no M1, which has no rangefinder.
Cheap
Scratch the M7, the MP, and possibly the M6
No meter
Anything from the M5 on is out.

That left the M3, M2 and M4.

After I then decided that my One Lens2 would be a 50mm, the choice became pretty easy. After all, only one camera had a perfect for 50mm 0.92x viewfinder magnification: The Leica M3.

To Ebay!


And here she3 is: Leica M3 number 1067131, made in Wetzlar, Germany in 1963, she’s nearly 20 years my senior.

The reasons I went for this one:

  • She had been CLA‘d just before sale.
  • She’s a bit beaten up (there’s a nice big dent next to the rewind knob, for example), which meant she was of no interest to collectors, keeping the price down4.
  • She’s one of the later models, with a single-stroke advance lever and the less fragile metal pressure plate. Both things I consider preferable in a camera bought for shooting, as opposed to antiquity value (made it cheaper again).
  • The seller was located in the Netherlands (like me), which prevented excess shipping costs and risks.
  1. If you’re using a Leica, you might as well behave like a Leica Man. []
  2. To rule them all. []
  3. All cameras are female of course: Expensive, incomprehensible and if you push the wrong buttons, things will look dark for you. []
  4. I don’t care, I have a tendency to damage my cameras just so I can stop worrying about damaging them. []