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Soft-release button


Lucena

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I picked up a soft-release button for my M4-P years ago after it was recommended to me. Used it once and hated the damn thing. Leica got it right without an extra 'button-on-top-of-a-button' arrangement.

It's in the back of a drawer somewhere. As camera gadgets go, up there with some of my more pointless purchases.

Personal matter indeed, but that was not the answer to my question!

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Lucena,

 

            I disagree with the motion that soft-release buttons are not useful - on the contrary, I find them very useful, almost essential. Every M I have ever owned or own now has one, HOWEVER, please be warned that not all Loctite is equal. If you want to secure your soft-releasebutton to keep it from coming off, make sure you only use  a very small amount  of RED Loctite, ( I would siggest applying a tiny droplet with the tip of a toothpick ) which holds well, but not so well that you cannot dislodge the part you're tryiing to keep from loosening. BLUE Loctite would be totally inappropriate as it is extremely difficult to break loose once applied and the camera may have to go to Leica for repairs.

 

That is completely wrong. Blue is a mild, and adequate substance. Red is forever. Either can lead to disaster. You do not want any to seep into the works.

 

Finally, not all Leicas have the same shutter release threads. One, I forget which, is off specs, so neither soft releases nor cable releases are secure. Our late friend, Tom Abrahamsson made the correct models. Browse here for them: http://rapidwinder.com

Edited by pico
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I’ve used a soft touch on Leica’s for a long time and prefer them to a naked release. Yes blue is the correct color. Not a big fan of Leica brand soft release any more. Now I use beep by match technical, the have 2 sizes for the different cameras and a rubber washer for a snug fit. Some people like soft touches and some don’t, like the add-on thumb rests. Only problem with them is that if you use loctite they preclude the use of a cable release, but for that kind of work I tend to use my Nikon.

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Sorry if I'm not answering the original post but I'm curious as I have never tried a soft-release button before. And what are the obvious benefits of soft-release buttons......other than being "soft- release". Sorry for the daft question.

 

I use the tip of my index finger to regulate the shutter speed and the first joint of the finger to press down the release button. I wonder if a soft release-button get in the way of this?

Edited by Mr Fjeld
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... other than being "soft-release"?

That's the point. They aren't.

 

 

I use the tip of my index finger to regulate the shutter speed and the first joint of the finger to press down the release button.

That's the proper technique.

 

 

I wonder if a soft-release button get in the way of this?

It definitely does.

 

Those gadgets just feel soft to the inexperienced user. But in fact, they are ... umm, not useful.

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Sorry I dont understand exactly what you mean...

 

How could you? I did a poor job of explaining.

 

The area around the release button is a chromed 'well' or dish shape. Try placing your finger gently halfway over the rim, then roll your finger over the release. It is a smooth action, less disruptive than pushing a soft release. It is not for everyone but I've been doing it for (my gosh) fifty-two years.

 

Above I recommended Tom Abrhamsson's softie. I must add that he once wrote that he has them on all of his considerable number of Leicas - he knew how to engineer them.

 

Best of luck!

Edited by pico
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Lucena,

 

I've used Abrahamsson soft releases for many many years and have been fortunate to have never lost one.  I've never felt the need for adhesives or pipe-fitters Teflon tape (which is by far the better option by the way if you decide that the soft-release needs help staying where it is).  My technique is to simply screw the soft release in quite stoutly between thumb and forefinger and it doesn't loosen or disappear.

 

I operate the soft release with the fleshy middle section of my forefinger and I find it gives me much better control over the plunging action than using the end of my finger and my finger is much more relaxed.  Triggering the release without a soft release and rolling my fingertip over the edge slowly as described in an earlier post means that I never quite know when the shutter will fire and causes me to stab at the button at the appropriate moment, which can move the camera slightly.  This technique works for others so I have no problem but the soft release works better for me.

 

Having used Leica rangefinders for decades from screw mounts through to the M10 I would hardly refer to myself as inexperienced.

 

Pete.

 

Pete.

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Another vote for the no-softie-rolling-finger technique as described by Pico -together we have over 90 years of Leica experience ;)  -. As Pete says, it is an individual preference, but I find that I can hold the camera more steady this way

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Yep, mine was unscrewing. The reason why the thread is where is because of the shutter release cable and it should screw in and unscrew very easily. And dropping some tacky liquid in the thread which goes to the inner space of the camera is bad idea, IMO.  

 

IMO, with my many RF cameras experience, if you feel you need soft realize for something more than nice look reason, something is wrong with the camera. I never feel need in soft release in 100% functioning Leica cameras. But soviet Zorki-6 has sharp edges on the shutter release. It is made by and for poor masochists. Only soft realize could bring it back to normal. Well, it will not, actually. Zorki-6 is made like Soviet Tractor. You have to press it hard and softie is helping. But Leica is not the tractor...    

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Are you sure this is not the wrong way round? The Loctite website quoted above says use red for permanent locking, and blue where disassembly is required for servicing. I've never had trouble removing a thread from blue Loctite before. No need to use a lot of it though.

 

Yes Red needs heat to remove.   Blue if it is ever to come off.  Still a small drop.

Edited by tobey bilek
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I do not know for sure if Tom A was the originator of the "softie" soft release, but many, many years ago while at Photokina, Tom showed me his prototype for his soft release. I remember thinking, I am perfectly capable of proper release technique, as was pointed out above, by rolling your finger in the cup of the release button. Tom in his usual understated way explained that the proper way to use the softie was not to use the tip of your finger as you are used to. He suggested placing the first joint of your finger on top of the softie and releasing that way. After following Tom's suggestion, I was converted on the spot. Sort of like the scales coming off of Saul's eyes. I have been using them ever since, and Tom used to do a special edition for every LHSA meeting and Photokina. I have a load of them! They are all near and dear to me. Last Spring, while visiting the John Hancock in Chicago I lost my favorite one. It was the one Tom did for the intro of the M8, with the graphic of going from analog 35mm film to digital bits. Made my entire look for almost a half hour in the lobby and on the sidewalk to no avail - lost forever. That is the first time that ever happened.

 

Next week we have the LHSA Annual Meeting here in Chicago. It will be the first one without Tom in my memory. We will miss him!

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Another vote for the no-softie-rolling-finger technique as described by Pico -together we have over 90 years of Leica experience ;) -. As Pete says, it is an individual preference, but I find that I can hold the camera more steady this way

Can you edit the former post recommending Red Loctite? I’d hate for someone to stumble upon that post without reading the whole thread and screw up their kamera!

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