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Hi guys,

this is my first post, regarding my first Leica which I bought on Ebay.

It was listed as having an issue with 1sec shutter speed being way too fast, which I didn't care much because it is a shutter speed I don't think I am going to use at all. I received the camera, really good cosmetic condition btw, and I noticed that all slow shutter speeds, below 1/30sec were off, way too fast. After googling the problem, I found that that can happen after a long time without being used, and that firing the shutter several times throughout all the shutter speed range might work. So I did it and it worked, for all shutter speeds except 1/8 and 1/30. I compared it side by side with my Canon 7 and they were the same-ish by the naked eye. And now, I have just tried something and if I fire the shutter with the camera upside down, 1/8 sounds ok, halfway between 1/15 and 1/4. And I promise I haven't been drinking or anything 🤨

So, today, I have contacted by email 4 Leica repair shops in the UK. Two of them have replied, one that they cannot do it because they don't have spare parts, and the other that I should return the camera and ask for a refund. So I went to the only Leica repair shop that I know in London, which I am not going to say its name. So, I got there, the guy took the camera, he wasn't listening to what I was saying at first, started firing the shutter and making appreciative faces saying, yes, slow speeds are ok. Until I got him to listen to what I was saying, and then he saw the problem with 1/8 and 1/30. He told me the camera would need servicing (now the finder needed service too because it wasn't a clean view..., but also that they wouldn't probably need any spare parts), which is fine, normal price for a CLA for a Leica. But he also advised I returned the camera to the seller. So I don't really know what to do. The camera has that problem, it looks in good cosmetic condition, and, whatever they say, I been after one of these cameras for like a year, and I have never seen one in this cosmetic condition for less than a grand. And I bought this one for £750. I have asked the seller if they would refund me the cost of the repair, but they haven't said yes, just have asked me to check if I want and let them know.

So, what do you guys, as Leica users, think? Just a honest, and blunt if necessary, opinion.

Cheers

 

 

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Send it to Will van Manen (Kameraservice) in the Netherlands.

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4 minutes ago, jaapv said:

Send it to Will van Manen (Kameraservice) in the Netherlands.

thanks, Jaap.

There are good Leica specialist technicians in the UK, price and turnaround times are going to be better here, even if it is only because they are nearer. The average price is £250 for a CLA and turnaround time is less than one week, or so they say.

My question is more regarding if you guys have had similar problems, if the problem has been fixed easily, if you think it is worth it to fix it after what I have already paid, even if the seller agrees to pay for the repair or maybe I should better forget about it and return it to the seller.

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I would factor the cost of a CLA in with any analog camera I buy, unless it has a proven service record. As 750 GBP sounds quite reasonable for a camera in mint cosmetic condition I would bite the bullet , have it done and try to get the seller to contribute - but a no would not be a deal breaker.

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2 hours ago, Txiki said:

So, what do you guys, as Leica users, think? Just a honest, and blunt if necessary, opinion.

If you ask... Do what you've been advised, return the camera to the seller. Next time forget about cosmetics and look for a camera without defects :cool:.

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9 hours ago, lct said:

If you ask... Do what you've been advised, return the camera to the seller. Next time forget about cosmetics and look for a camera without defects :cool:.

thanks Ict 🙂

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11 hours ago, jaapv said:

I would factor the cost of a CLA in with any analog camera I buy, unless it has a proven service record. As 750 GBP sounds quite reasonable for a camera in mint cosmetic condition I would bite the bullet , have it done and try to get the seller to contribute - but a no would not be a deal breaker.

thanks Jaap. That's the thing. £750 for a MP-4 is good price, even paying for the CLA myself, is going to be around other M4-Ps offers I have seen, which might need a CLA too anyway.

and even with this 1/8 and 1/30 shutter speed problem, the camera is still usable and it doesn't sound bad. the other shutter speeds, when compared side by side with another camera, seem to be ok.

so, I am going to shoot a roll of film and take it today to the lab to have them developed by the end of the day. and see what I get. maybe that'll help me decide 🙂

thanks again.

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I think any vintage camera of this age should go to the CLA; you don’t know when it was serviced the last time or if ever. There is some precision mechanics involved. If your car needs an oil change and some other maintenance every 10k kilometers or every year, is it reasonable to expect that a camera that’s say 50 years old should just work work work?

I would keep the camera and send it to a UK-based checkup. It’s just part of the equation of buying an old piece of mechanical engineering. 

Just did the same with the nearly perfectly looking M5 I bought.

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Sending back is not a good idea. If you like it, it must be worth 250 or a little more. I don't think you will find a M4-P with CLA around 1000 so quickly.
I paid the same for my M4p too, but with complete Leica service in Wetzlar, it was definitely worth it!

Although I would have made a CLA myself with another (used M4-P). Just like it was necessary with all my screw leica or an M3.

The subject of spare parts is mostly covered by the mechanics. You rarely need parts!

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I'd be inclined to follow Jaap's advice. Ask the seller to contribute towards the cost of repair (they can only say no, or they can offer to take it back).

The price you paid is good if the camera is cosmetically as nice as you say. I'm surprised you've had such negativity from the repair guys you've spoken to, it sounds like bog standard CLA stuff to me. If you send it back you have not guarantee the next one will be any better, unless you buy in person or from a dealer who will deal with any issues under warranty.

The other shutter speeds are probably off, it's just not so easy to tell.

I bought my M2 for a great price from a seller on ebay (working order etc) and was upset when it arrived to find immediately that the shutter wasn't working properly. He knew a repair guy and asked me to send it them and he'd pay half the cost, so that's what I did and it's been fine ever since.

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Just to add, if my seller hadn't offered to help as he did I'd have still kept it and had it repaired as I got it for a good price and it was (is) also in nice condition. Plus you know with a fresh CLA it should be good for the next 25-50 years!

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21 hours ago, jaapv said:

I would factor the cost of a CLA in with any analog camera I buy, unless it has a proven service record. As 750 GBP sounds quite reasonable for a camera in mint cosmetic condition I would bite the bullet , have it done and try to get the seller to contribute - but a no would not be a deal breaker.

 

54 minutes ago, Nitnaros said:

I think any vintage camera of this age should go to the CLA; you don’t know when it was serviced the last time or if ever. There is some precision mechanics involved. If your car needs an oil change and some other maintenance every 10k kilometers or every year, is it reasonable to expect that a camera that’s say 50 years old should just work work work?

I would keep the camera and send it to a UK-based checkup. It’s just part of the equation of buying an old piece of mechanical engineering. 

Just did the same with the nearly perfectly looking M5 I bought.

 

20 minutes ago, Reini said:

Sending back is not a good idea. If you like it, it must be worth 250 or a little more. I don't think you will find a M4-P with CLA around 1000 so quickly.
I paid the same for my M4p too, but with complete Leica service in Wetzlar, it was definitely worth it!

Although I would have made a CLA myself with another (used M4-P). Just like it was necessary with all my screw leica or an M3.

The subject of spare parts is mostly covered by the mechanics. You rarely need parts!

 

3 minutes ago, earleygallery said:

I'd be inclined to follow Jaap's advice. Ask the seller to contribute towards the cost of repair (they can only say no, or they can offer to take it back).

The price you paid is good if the camera is cosmetically as nice as you say. I'm surprised you've had such negativity from the repair guys you've spoken to, it sounds like bog standard CLA stuff to me. If you send it back you have not guarantee the next one will be any better, unless you buy in person or from a dealer who will deal with any issues under warranty.

The other shutter speeds are probably off, it's just not so easy to tell.

I bought my M2 for a great price from a seller on ebay (working order etc) and was upset when it arrived to find immediately that the shutter wasn't working properly. He knew a repair guy and asked me to send it them and he'd pay half the cost, so that's what I did and it's been fine ever since.

Thank you guys for your comments and advise.

I went out today and shot a couple of rolls, I got the scans from one of them back from the lab, and the exposures are fine. I used from 1/125 to 1/1000th, which are actually my most used shutter speeds. And I shot like 10 with slow shutter speeds just to see if they were exposed correctly. The exposure was right on all of them except 1/8 and 1/30th. The camera sounds good too. And even got a compliment for the camera from a fellow photographer which happened to be taking photos in the same area 🙂

I have sent an email to the seller to inform him about what I have found out about the camera needing a full service/CLA to be back in proper working condition, and about the CLA prices in the UK. Waiting for his reply, if he accepts paying the whole, or at least half of the amount, I will keep it. If he doesn't, I will give it a second thought. Even if that means I will have to wait a couple of months before having it done, I think it is worth it. And I really like Camera Works in the UK from what I read their full service procedure consists of https://www.cameraworks-uk.com/price-list

Thank you again, guys. I will keep you posted 🙂

Have a nice week.

 

 

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This is not a serious issue at all... The camera shop claimed they need spare parts to fix this issue? I really doubt if they know anything about camera repair...

Long story short, this happens when the slow speed escapement lacks lubricant, or the lubricant  becomes sticky and stop the slow speed mechanism to engage into its proper position. You don't even need a full disassembly to fix this, only the removal of top plate will be sufficient.

You could ask for a partial refund actually, any decent camera technician should be able to handle this.

Search Pentax LX sticky mirror service on ebay, you'll find a £3 post, that's me. I service pentax camera in UK,  but this is too easy to be fixed on a leica...You can contact me on eBay if you need a hand.

Cheers

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7 hours ago, Zhe said:

This is not a serious issue at all... The camera shop claimed they need spare parts to fix this issue? I really doubt if they know anything about camera repair...

Long story short, this happens when the slow speed escapement lacks lubricant, or the lubricant  becomes sticky and stop the slow speed mechanism to engage into its proper position. You don't even need a full disassembly to fix this, only the removal of top plate will be sufficient.

You could ask for a partial refund actually, any decent camera technician should be able to handle this.

Search Pentax LX sticky mirror service on ebay, you'll find a £3 post, that's me. I service pentax camera in UK,  but this is too easy to be fixed on a leica...You can contact me on eBay if you need a hand.

Cheers

Thanks Zhe,

I’m sure he knows about repairing cameras, the ‘I don’t have spare parts’ sounded more like an excuse, tbh. Or maybe it is just that he doesn’t have spare parts in case the camera needs them. 

What I find a bit weird is after firing the shutter several times throughout all the speed shutter range, all of them started adjusting to normal, compared side by side with another camera, except 1/8, and maybe 1/30, which are still too fast. And that if shoot the camera upside down, the 1/8 shutter speed sounds normal say one of each 5 times 😳

The seller has offered to refund €50, which would only cover the VAT for the camera full service 😕 

As the camera works, i shot a couple of rolls last Sunday and exposures are ok using from 1/1000 to 1/125sec, I think I’ll keep the camera anyway and either take it to be serviced once my finances recover a little bit, or remove the top plate and just lubricate the mechanism myself, not touching anything else.

and I’ll also have a look at your eBay 🙂

the last 3 pictures on my IG feed are taken with this camera instagram.com/txikiguillen

Cheers

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Am 4.2.2020 um 01:41 schrieb Zhe:

You don't even need a full disassembly to fix this, only the removal of top plate will be sufficient.

This is misleading information. Not only special tools are needed to remove the top plate, it is necessary to dismount flash socket and remove rangefinder to get to escape mechanism. It has to be washed out to remove possible dirt and oiled very carefully with watchmaker oil. Then it needs to mounted, springs needs to be hooked on, mounting screw tensioned to certain degree only not to block the movement, etc etc. I do not believe any spare parts will be needed but repair is not that trivial as described.

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On 2/5/2020 at 5:46 AM, jerzy said:

This is misleading information. Not only special tools are needed to remove the top plate, it is necessary to dismount flash socket and remove rangefinder to get to escape mechanism. It has to be washed out to remove possible dirt and oiled very carefully with watchmaker oil. Then it needs to mounted, springs needs to be hooked on, mounting screw tensioned to certain degree only not to block the movement, etc etc. I do not believe any spare parts will be needed but repair is not that trivial as described.

Removal of top plate is not a 'full' disassembly. When I say full disassembly here, I mean take the core out. I've done dozens of these.

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