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Leicaflex SL2 Battery Question


Rbonn

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I have ordered a Leicaflex SL2 and it will arrive this week. The item was sold as meter working. Here is what I have purchased to put into the battery compartment for the meter. Can someone please tell me if this combination will work?

 

From Amazon:

 
 
From B&H:
 
Wein MRB675 1.35V Zinc-Air Battery
 
 
The wein cell has the proper voltage, but will it's voltage shift as it ages? I have read that they can leak, so should be changed out every 3 months or so.....is this accurate.
 
Is the battery adapter the correct one?
 
I"m excited to shoot with the SL2. Got back into film 2 years ago and have been using a Nikon FM. I felt it was time to treat myself to a Leica.
 
Any advice....or input is most appreciated.
 
 
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The Wein cells will work, but are an air-activated cell, so once exposed to air they slowly decay over some months, so changing periodically is needed. I'd keep a spare sealed in its packaging, and just change when the old one tests weak.

The "MR9" adapter you show isn't a true, voltage reducing MR9 - just a size adapter for a zinc-air hearing-aid battery. Look on eBay for a Kanto "voltage reducing" MR9. This can use a "386" silver cell 1.5V battery and work correctly in the SL2. I use these in my Leicaflex SL & Sl2, as well as other old cameras needing a PX13 or similar mercury cell.

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I am awaiting the Kanto reducing MR9 and have received some LR43 1.5v batteries. The SL2 I ordered has arrived and I do not see the metering "stick" in the viewfinder. I see the "box type" stick which moved with aperture or shutter speed change.

I put the LR43 battery in and also tried it with an MR9 adapter that I purchased from AMazon before realizing it was the not the right item. 

I"m wondering why I don't see the metering stick. Should it not be visible in the viewfinder, regardless of whether or not a battery is installed. Camera was sold as meter working and in the post you can see the metering stick in the viewfinder. I"m just wondering if there may have been damage in shipping.

 

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59 minutes ago, Rbonn said:

I"m wondering why I don't see the metering stick. Should it not be visible in the viewfinder, regardless of whether or not a battery is installed. Camera was sold as meter working and in the post you can see the metering stick in the viewfinder. I"m just wondering if there may have been damage in shipping.

That's probably not a problem. The meter needle responds only to the light level coming through the lens, the "box" responds to the shutter and aperture, so it moves without battery. The meter needle rests at the top right corner of the finder without power (no battery or OFF). On one of my SL2s the needle is visible then, but not on my other SL2, but with battery power they both work fine.

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vor 18 Stunden schrieb Rbonn:

I am awaiting the Kanto reducing MR9 and have received some LR43 1.5v batteries. The SL2 I ordered has arrived and I do not see the metering "stick" in the viewfinder. I see the "box type" stick which moved with aperture or shutter speed change.

I put the LR43 battery in and also tried it with an MR9 adapter that I purchased from AMazon before realizing it was the not the right item. 

I"m wondering why I don't see the metering stick. Should it not be visible in the viewfinder, regardless of whether or not a battery is installed. Camera was sold as meter working and in the post you can see the metering stick in the viewfinder. I"m just wondering if there may have been damage in shipping.

 

IMHO you cannot use a simple alkaline 1,5 V battery, since the volts changes over lifetime between 1,6 (new) down to 1,2 volts at the end, it is never constant.

From my point of view you‘ll need a silver oxide battery, a SR 43 with constant 1,55 volts.

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Here's a very good write-up of the mercury cell problem and its various solutions. You can download as a PDF file if desired.

https://buhla.de/Foto/batt-adapt-US.pdf

In my case, for a Leicaflex SL, I asked DAG Camera in USA to calibrate the meter for 1.5v alkaline cells. That allows me to either use very fresh alkaline cells for a short time, or silver oxide cells that will last a longer time at a constant discharge voltage. Both battery chemistries start almost equal (alkaline is 1.55v nominal, silver oxide is 1.60v nominal). See the discharge chart on p.3 of the write-up for a comparison of many battery types.

For your Leicaflex SL2, there are two batteries. One of them is for the internal light and doesn't need to be a mercury cell at exactly 1.35 volts. The bulb itself is incandescent and is soldered into the circuit inside the camera. It should be fine with an alkaline cell voltage. The other battery is for your meter, and that one needs to have the battery voltage match the meter calibration settings. The article will tell you how to pick the right battery situation. If the camera ever goes in for service, it will simplify things somewhat to ask for an alkaline cell (or silver oxide cell) meter calibration at the same time.

Carriers for batteries that are smaller than PX625 dimensions are readily available (search for "px625 battery carrier" on eBay or Amazon), or can be made from an existing PX625 battery by carefully taking it apart. If you take the latter approach, note the liquid inside the PX625 battery case is strongly basic. Eye and hand protection are advised.

Neal

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Posted (edited)

I would definitely stay away from a „calibration“ to alkaline voltage. The voltage varies not just over lifetime, but also between manufacturers.

From my point of view today‘s best solution would be buying an adapter that reduces the battery‘s voltage by 0.2 volts (using a built-in Schottky diode) and using silveroxide cells that have 1.55 volts. They provide a constant voltage until their end of life.

Hearing aid batteries would work as well, they don‘t require any voltage reduction (they come already with 1.4 v), however they have very short life time.

Both solutions do not require any change to the camera itself, that is besides the constant voltage a major benefit.

Edited by Helge
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Am 18.4.2024 um 13:24 schrieb Rbonn:

I"m wondering why I don't see the metering stick.

The meter won't work as long as the film advance lever is in its fully retracted position. You need to move that lever into the "ready for shooting position" and then you should see the meter work.

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Posted (edited)

I have quite a few cameras and meterss that originally ran a Mercury PX625 cell (1.35V). I have pretty much given up buying regulated MR9 adapters because a) they are expensive and b) the Schottky diode in them only seems to last 4 or 5 years. I now use a dumb PX625 replacer but then buy PR44 small zinc air cells, which are extremely cheap on Amazon at around £7 for a 40 pack. This is less than a single PX625 Wein cell and a single PR44 battery seems to last almost long as the Wein cell, given they are time rather than consumption limited in camera use. I use these in my Leicaflex SL2, M5 and various CdS Leicameters. The only camera I don't use them in is my film CL, as in a really stupid bit of design, the film back has to be removed to replace the battery, so can only be done at the end of a roll. I still use an MR9 in that. It is important to use a silver oxide SR44 battery in the MR9, as the voltage of the alkaline LR44 battery starts to sag almost from new, whereas the SR44 output voltage remains fairly constant right up until almost exhausted. Given the cost of film currently plus processing, I replace the SR44 with every roll of film. I tend to stick to Swiss Renata cells as being of known quality (Renata reference 357=SR44)

Wilson

Edited by wlaidlaw
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  • 1 month later...
On 4/15/2024 at 7:58 AM, Rbonn said:

I have ordered a Leicaflex SL2 and it will arrive this week. The item was sold as meter working. Here is what I have purchased to put into the battery compartment for the meter. Can someone please tell me if this combination will work?

 

From Amazon:

 
 
From B&H:
 
Wein MRB675 1.35V Zinc-Air Battery
 
 
The wein cell has the proper voltage, but will it's voltage shift as it ages? I have read that they can leak, so should be changed out every 3 months or so.....is this accurate.
 
Is the battery adapter the correct one?
 
I"m excited to shoot with the SL2. Got back into film 2 years ago and have been using a Nikon FM. I felt it was time to treat myself to a Leica.
 
Any advice....or input is most appreciated.
 
 

That adapter will allow an S76, D357, etc silver Oxide battery to 'fit' into a Leicaflex, but the voltage is incorrect. The SL2 requires a 1.35v Mercury battery (which is banned for sale in the US) The best adapters are the CRIS Cam MR-9 adapters. They have circuitry to compensate for the difference in battery voltage, and no ASA compensation is required. 

I'm not too fond of the Wein cells. Once opened, they don't last. You can use the PX625 Alkaline Battery, but (for example) is using ASA 100 film, adjust the meter down to ASA50 of so and you should be ok

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, bherman01545 said:

That adapter will allow an S76, D357, etc silver Oxide battery to 'fit' into a Leicaflex, but the voltage is incorrect. The SL2 requires a 1.35v Mercury battery (which is banned for sale in the US) The best adapters are the CRIS Cam MR-9 adapters. They have circuitry to compensate for the difference in battery voltage, and no ASA compensation is required. 

I'm not too fond of the Wein cells. Once opened, they don't last. You can use the PX625 Alkaline Battery, but (for example) is using ASA 100 film, adjust the meter down to ASA50 of so and you should be ok

A far cheaper route than the Wein cells is to use PR44 hearing aid batteries in a dumb 625 adapter. They are the correct 1.35V and even though tiny, seem to last just as long as the larger PX625 Wein cells. They are around £16 for 60 of these batteries. I use them in my Leicaflex SL2, M5 and in various CdS Leicameters. For the Leicaflex SL2, you can use the cheap alkaline PX625-A batteries for the screen illumination, as that is non-voltage critical. The only camera I don't use the PR44 cells is my film CL as in a less than epic bit of design, Leica put the battery inside the film compartment, so you cannot replace a battery mid film. There I use an SR44 cell in a MR-9 regulated adapter and put up with having to replace the adapter every 5 or 6 years as the Schottky diode dies. Now that I have a Minox ML camera, which uses a lithium 28L battery, I am using that rather than my CL as a pocket film camera. 

Wilson

Edited by wlaidlaw
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