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Hi, i see this Leica in an auction, the actual bid is around 400$, i think it is fake or a bad repaint, what do you think about it? Thanks in advance

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Yes, a repaint of a chrome 1951 IIIf black dial.  They made over 40000 that year alone.

 

Thanks for your quick reply.I think is a rapaint too, but i am wondering why some part of it is brassed? it shouldn't if it was originaly chrome, no?

Edited by TALA2020
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At least… is a "honest" 3rd party repaint… it's clear that they don't intend to disguise it as an original black IIIf (tne "Swedish Army" series, which has also the dials, fittings, knobs… all in black). around the price you quote, can be a no bad aquisition : it's fine, in black, and given that it has surely been disassembled for repaint, probably also the mechanics has been checked/CLAed and is a good operative camera. 

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At least… is a "honest" 3rd party repaint… it's clear that they don't intend to disguise it as an original black IIIf (tne "Swedish Army" series, which has also the dials, fittings, knobs… all in black). around the price you quote, can be a no bad aquisition : it's fine, in black, and given that it has surely been disassembled for repaint, probably also the mechanics has been checked/CLAed and is a good operative camera. 

 

Thanks for your answer, it was very helpful.

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 but i am wondering why some part of it is brassed? it shouldn't if it was originaly chrome, no?

 

If it is a good repaint the chrome will have been removed first because paint doesn't stick well to chrome, and it looks better when it wears to brass. Removing chrome is an easy job that can be done at home with the correct chemicals.

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If it is a good repaint the chrome will have been removed first because paint doesn't stick well to chrome, and it looks better when it wears to brass. Removing chrome is an easy job that can be done at home with the correct chemicals.

 

Steve, 

 

I am just looking into removing chrome, as my 250FF reporter has a chromed wind on knob, probably from a later 250GG reporter and it clashes with all the other nickel fittings. After a fair bit of research, I have been told that removing chrome is easy, as cold dilute hydrochloric acid will do the job, which you can buy from your local pool supplies company or in France, the corner shop. Removing the underlying nickel is far more difficult, needs to be done by a specialist with nasty chemicals and very expertly, to avoid leaching away the underlying brass. As I want to keep the nickel on the wind on knob, this is not a problem for me but would be for someone wanting to repaint a chrome camera in grey/black/purple/pink etc. I believe the only way to do it "at home" is by friction i.e. wet and dry fine grade paper and a lot of elbow grease - unless of course, you can advise differently. 

 

Wilson

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Hi Wilson

 

The last time I bought a chrome stripping/plating kit it was from

 

http://www.gaterosplating.co.uk/index.php?route=common/home

 

and they can also do a nickel removal kit. Some of the chemicals can be toxic if ingested, but I'm pretty darn sure none of then use scary hydrochloric acid, it is just a reverse plating process. You get a bucket, an anode bar, a suitable chrome or nickel diode plate, wires from the bucket that go to a low voltage variable transformer (from memory this may be optional, I already had one), and the chemicals to dilute in distilled water. So you have a bucket and chemical kit to remove the chrome, and then need the chemical kit to remove the nickel using the same bucket. You solder the copper wire which dangles the component into the chemical solution to two or three points inside the top plate or base plate. The soldered joint can easily be cleaned up afterwards and would be covered by the matt black paint.

 

However, I think you know good a plating company, they may be able to do the chrome and nickel stripping for you. What should be stressed to them is the thinness of the brass and that it should be very carefully monitored minute by minute as their chemicals are far more potent. I have the experience of a top plate being returned from a plater who should have known better and not forgotten it was in the soup, not much was left. But a good plater could perhaps do a test by dull chrome plating some 10 thou brass sheet to start with, and then remove the plating again to see what the tolerances are. If in any doubt ask them to strip any old dodgy low value Leica dull chrome component first. But it strikes me removing and replating nickel is an easy job on brass compared to chroming, yes you can leach into the brass which was my bad experience with a 'professional' plater, but at home you just keep pulling it out the chemical solution until it has stripped the nickel, and they are the same chemicals that plate nickel onto brass that also strip it, just reverse the polarity.

Edited by 250swb
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Don't risk your eyes or health, it can be easily done by a plating shop.  Here are some top plates with chrome removed, and I have had several 50 Hektor lenses refinished in bright nickel with good results. After removing the nickle, I really had to polish them carefully, even the smallest defect will be obvious in the new plating.  The problem I ran into was that most shops now have a minimum order and do not like to do small jobs.

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[...] After removing the nickle, I really had to polish them carefully, even the smallest defect will be obvious in the new plating. [...]

This is the reason why I dislike most of the renickeling and even more so most of the rechroming jobs I see. If specimen preparation is not near perfection, the end result tends to look, for lack of better words, artificial, fakey or outright dodgy. Mint items rarely need replating, whereas submint items often raise the problem you have described.

 

Of course, dechroming and replating an unfitting rewind knob is a different matter.

 

Kind regards

Mathias

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This is the reason why I dislike most of the renickeling and even more so most of the rechroming jobs I see. If specimen preparation is not near perfection, the end result tends to look, for lack of better words, artificial, fakey or outright dodgy. Mint items rarely need replating, whereas submint items often raise the problem you have described.

 

Of course, dechroming and replating an unfitting rewind knob is a different matter.

 

Kind regards

Mathias

 

I am with you 100% on this. Some time ago I acquired a camera at auction where the nickel lens seems to have been redone. Subsequently, I acquired an example of the same camera and lens combination because of an engraving on the camera. The lens on that camera has some wear on it, but I much prefer it to the earlier 'perfect' example. I have never had a camera or lens repainted or re-chromed or re-nickled and I don't believe I ever will. I much prefer original condition to re-done cameras. 

 

This is all a matter of taste, of course.

 

William

Edited by willeica
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If someone wants to get close to an unattainable black Swedish IIIf, better buy a black IIIa syn, where Leitz/Leica built most of the IIIf in the 1950s into the slightly narrower body of a black III.

So you save yourself and all future collectors unnecessary fakes.

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