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Is this normal - 135mm Elmar LTM version

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I’m wondering if anybody else has encountered this issue and can offer an explanation/remedy. I own both Leica and other LTM camera bodies as well as an M2. Most of my lenses are LTM, screw mount, lenses which I also use on my M body via adapters. I own a Leica 135 Elmar in the bayonet mount and recently purchased a nice one in the screw mount, with the idea of having only one 135mm Leica lens to use on the various bodies (I also have a Canon screw mount 135 which work on both bodies which I planned to sell). I put the recently purchased one on my iif and checked its focusing against the rangefinder and everything was spot on. When I put it on my M body, with the adapter, the cam pusher of the lens only tightened to about 11:30 instead of 12:00, and it couldn’t properly focus. So I tried three other adapters with the same results. Then I tried the lens on my two other LTM bodies (a Canon P, and a Leotax f). It worked fine on the Canon, but was off on the Leotax. The puzzling thing is that all my other LTM lenses align properly on all camera bodies, LTM directly and the M with the adapters. So I am guessing that the problem isn’t with the adapters, but with the screw mounting on the body of the lens itself. There appear to be 3 screws 120 degrees apart which look like they hold the screw mounting in place. My guess is that if I loosen them and rotate the mount that it will properly work with the M body, but possibly throw the alignment off on the iif. Has anuybody else encountered this issue and is this common?

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I have a 135mm Elmar F/4 in screw mount which I bought used in '68 with my M3, its been used happily since then on the M3 with a leica screw to m adapter. Its also been ony Leica III without the adapter without any problems as far as I can remember although its a long time since I tried it.

Bit late now, I'll look it out tomorrow and see what happens

 

Gerry

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Let me know what you find Gerry. I think I may have solved the dilemma. All of my other LTM lenses (except the Canon 135) don't have a cam pusher like the 135, instead they have a round part of the helical, which presses against the focusing cam of the M2 so as long as they fit on the adapter, the round part of the helical will always press against the focusing cam. The 135 has a separate pusher inside the helical. I measured the Canon 135 and noticed that the pusher end was (circular) longer than the Elmar 135, so using the same adapter it was wide enough to properly sit on the focusing cam. That explains why all my other lenses work with their adapters on the M2 as well as the screwmount bodies. So, now I'm thinking the adapter, although it says 35-135, isn't properly cut for the Elmar 135.

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Intriguing question... I have an Elmar 135 f4 Screw Mount which, as far as I remember,did never use on M bodies... so have just made a trial with 3 adapters of mine :

 

1) Leitz original, (with cutout) marked "M2 21-35 M3 135" : works perfectly on my M240

2) Voigtlander (no cutout, white milled strip for coding, marked "50-75"): good to distances to 10 meters about, then becomes unreliable

3) Chinese (no cutout, milled holes for coding, unmarked, label "35-135" on box) : good to 4 meters about, then unusable.

 

The hereunder pictures show clearly the differences one to each other in the zone of RF cam (mounted on Elmar 135 - infinity focused)

 

 

 

Edited by luigi bertolotti

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(further test) ; same issue on Hektor 13,5 SM, Summicron 90 SM, Summarex 85; no problems with SM lenses with circular direct RF cam (Elmar 90, Hektor 7,3, Elmar 5 Summaron 3,5...)

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Maybe the non-Leica adapters are just a tad too thick so the semi-circular notch does not line up with the black dot on the lens? This happens with my CV 15 lens.

Edited by fotoism

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The problem is the indexing of the adapter thread is not carefully aligned with the bayonet position. This means the cam-follower (roller in the M body) contacts in a slightly different place. Not just a problem with lenses like the 135 with a cam-pusher, but many Leica lenses that have a slight cam profile slope ground on the lens cam (which adjusts for slight F.L. differences. It won't cause much error with these lenses, but some error will exist.

In machining, likely the internal (E39) thread is cut first along with the flanges, then the blank is threaded on a shouldered fixture and the bayonet tabs, cam recess, and locking slot are machined. If the blank doesn't seat properly on the fixture, or it isn't set up right, the indexing will be off.

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OK, my 'trials' are as follows, 135mm f/4 Elmar 'screw thread' mounted direct on my III, lines up perfectly (as seen by alignment of tripod mount with base of camera), and operates ok.

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Same lens mounted on my M3, via Leitz adapter, lines up a little past the vertical, but the cam follower is still in touch properly with the roller inside the camera, giving correct rangefinder operation.  This has always been the case, the adapter was on the lens when I bought it (in 1968) and has only very rarely been detached.  Trials with 3 Voigtlander adapters gave better results than the Leica one, i.e there was less 'offset' from the ideal, rangefnder still, of course, working correctly.

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On my lens there are two black screws in the 'leatherette' on the top, too far away from the mount I think to be holding the screw mount, I suspect they are to do with the sliding cam follower, and there are three black screws close to the mount in the 'leatherette at roughly 12 o'clock, 4 o'clock and 8 o'clock which may be holding the mount, they are hard to see against the leatherette in these photos!.  I wouldn't mess with them personally, focus and register are pretty critical at 135mm.  I suspect its a mismatch with adapters, there are differences in alignment with virtually every adater I have tried, just try some till you find one thats ok.  I presume that register with adapter is OK?  i.e you get sharp pictures at infinity for a start, even if you cant use the rangefinder to focus more closely.

If not I would get someone to check the lens out.

 

Gerry

Edited by gyoung

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Checking my lens M-mount 135mm 4.5 Hektor (Not Elmar but the same barrel), I find Gerry's assessment to be correct. There are three screws close to the mount which fasten the mount in place. (Difficult to see as Gerry noted. He missed the one at ~12 o'clock.) The two screws at the top farther forward fasten the focusing slide. I will add that I removed the tripod mounting plate and found it perfectly well machined to be flush on the bottom with no worries about it moving out of place or not indicating 6 o'clock.

 

 I'm curious if there is a LTM mount available part to replace the M-mount. Does anyone know?

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Checking my lens M-mount 135mm 4.5 Hektor (Not Elmar but the same barrel), I find Gerry's assessment to be correct. There are three screws close to the mount which fasten the mount in place. (Difficult to see as Gerry noted. He missed the one at ~12 o'clock.) The two screws at the top farther forward fasten the focusing slide. I will add that I removed the tripod mounting plate and found it perfectly well machined to be flush on the bottom with no worries about it moving out of place or not indicating 6 o'clock.

 

I'm curious if there is a LTM mount available part to replace the M-mount. Does anyone know?

I found the third at 12 o'clock after I posted, and edited!

 

Gerry

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The problem is the indexing of the adapter thread is not carefully aligned with the bayonet position. This means the cam-follower (roller in the M body) contacts in a slightly different place. Not just a problem with lenses like the 135 with a cam-pusher, but many Leica lenses that have a slight cam profile slope ground on the lens cam (which adjusts for slight F.L. differences. It won't cause much error with these lenses, but some error will exist.

In machining, likely the internal (E39) thread is cut first along with the flanges, then the blank is threaded on a shouldered fixture and the bayonet tabs, cam recess, and locking slot are machined. If the blank doesn't seat properly on the fixture, or it isn't set up right, the indexing will be off.

Agree completely with this diagnosis.

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Thank you all...I thought I had perhaps gone crazy. For the time being I'll just continue to use the lens on the LTM body, as I do have a Tele-Elmar I often use on the M body. If I come across a different adapter I'll tey it out. BTW my 3 adapters were of Asian manufacture, but they worked so well with my other LTM lenses, I couldn't quite get my hear around what was going on with the 135. You guys are great!

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A quick follow-up. I purchased a Leica adapter which resolved the problem.

Happy end

... I suppose that, mounted on your lens, it looks like my first picture in post #4 above.

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On 3/11/2017 at 4:04 PM, fotoism said:

Maybe the non-Leica adapters are just a tad too thick so the semi-circular notch does not line up with the black dot on the lens? This happens with my CV 15 lens.

Hi there, had the same problem with mine and found this link: http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14413

It's for the CV24/4 but worked wonders for my 15. Hope it helps.

Regards

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