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I finally bought a mechanical Leica, a camera that I always envied, for its simplicity and especially for its luminous and clear viewfinder. I already own a Leica M7 and a Leica M10, but, as you probably know already, the M7 isn’t exactly a mechanical Leica. I already shot a complete roll of Portra 400 and can hardly wait for the lab to send me the scans. I must confess I don’t master yet the Sunny16 rule (I am working on it) and therefore had to buy a separate lightmeter, which, when taking the shots, I am checking rather often with my iPhone App (myLightMeter) for accuracy (so far so good). I used both a 50mm and 35mm Summicron. Any recommendations on any other lenses to use with this beautiful camera would be appreciated.

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26 minutes ago, sorinlaz said:

 Any recommendations on any other lenses to use with this beautiful camera would be appreciated.

How about a 90mm? With the M3, you have the best viewfinder for the longer lenses, and it would complete the classic trio of focal lengths that will cover most subjects. You could start with a classic Elmar, or pay a bit more for an Elmarit. Even the recent Summarit and the older Summicrons are very reasonably priced - 90mm lenses are in general some of the best bargains in the Leica system.

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Posted (edited)

Nice move.

With your Summicron 35mm, how your framing can be acceptable.

35mm aux VF maybe ?

Next lens I'd try 90mm lens, I had for many years the Summicron trio for M3, 35/50/90.

...

edit

Anbaric was faster 😊

Edited by a.noctilux
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" Any recommendations on any other lenses to use with this beautiful camera would be appreciated."

Well, I'd reflect on your present usage of the M7 and M10 which you own and apparently have used for some time. What did you find you were missing with your 35 and 50? It won't be different with your M3. You don't say what you typically shoot, or what your favorite focal length lens you presently own ,so any realistic recommendation may not make sense. Personally I went for years with only a 35, added a 90 and after about 30 years a 50. Since then I've tried a 24 (didn't like it), a 15 (didn't like it), a 28 (the jury is still out), several 135s before settling on one, a 21, and a 400. You have an infinite number of options, but really need to decide what will expand or enhance your shooting pleasure, then people can offer reasonable options. Enjoy your M3!

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I’ve got an M3 and love it, although I don’t shoot it as often as I would like. I will share a tip, tho.

I use the cold shoe to mount a cutout from the box of the film I’ve loaded. That way, I always know what’s in the camera and hand write if it’s pushed or pulled. The other day I picked it up after a while on the shelf. I thought it was loaded w color but to my surprise it was loaded w TriX pushed one stop. My little trick paid off. Anyway, YMMV. Congrats on the acquisition as it’s a truly wonderful camera, esp mounted w a 50mm. 

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I have an M3 which I purchased a few years ago.  I haven’t put many rolls through it but im going back to the beginning to reignite my passion- which illness and loss has taken away.

I can occasionally can be unsteady and yesterday was such an occasion I was carrying 4 things I stumbled and I dropped my iPhone and my M3.

I came to it today and the view through the view finder contained outlines any a tiny bit in the middle.  
 

Is there an easy fix ( probably not ) or some in the UK who can fix the range finder

im attaching a mock up of what it looks like

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On 6/25/2024 at 4:44 PM, Coppereye said:

Is there an easy fix ( probably not ) or some in the UK who can fix the range finder

It's specialised work but at least one UK technician can normally restore the M3 rangefinder without replacing it altogether:

https://www.cameraworks-uk.com/rangefinder-work

https://www.cameraworks-uk.com/detailed-price-list

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When I first had the camera there was a shutter problem and I asked the guys in Red Dot who referred me to an engineer who sorted fixed it and serviced it but I think he doesn’t do it anymore so I’m going to package it up and send it to Wetzlar to get their take on it.

Trouble is I love the camera and like the fact that it’s older me and the main lens is even earlier, it goes back to a simpler time when once you put the film in you set dial on the back ( only a reminder) and then the dance between Aperture and Shutter speed helped with the occasional ND Filter : Less time pressing the shutter button and more time thinking.  

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On 6/28/2024 at 6:53 PM, Coppereye said:

When I first had the camera there was a shutter problem and I asked the guys in Red Dot who referred me to an engineer who sorted fixed it and serviced it but I think he doesn’t do it anymore so I’m going to package it up and send it to Wetzlar to get their take on it.

Rather than sending it to Wetzlar, you could get in touch with Cameraworks :

https://www.cameraworks-uk.com

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On 6/28/2024 at 10:53 PM, Coppereye said:

When I first had the camera there was a shutter problem and I asked the guys in Red Dot who referred me to an engineer who sorted fixed it and serviced it but I think he doesn’t do it anymore so I’m going to package it up and send it to Wetzlar to get their take on it.

If it were me, I'd send it to Cameraworks-UK (links above) rather than Wetzlar because Leica will probably be slower and more expensive, and it's possible they may want to replace the rangefinder with a modern one rather than restore the M3 rangefinder. Then you'd lose the unique features of the M3 rangefinder. The late Peter Grisaffi, who used to provide a similar restoration service to Cameraworks, wrote this about the service that Leica offered some years ago, when they were based at their previous factory in Solms:

'Leica in Solms, Germany will only fit the M6J rangefinder (which is similar to M6) and the internal chassis of the M3 has to be milled out slightly to take the new type unit. Their cost for fitting a new rangefinder is about £650, so having your original rangefinder re-silvered gives a great saving, at approximately one fifth of the cost , and you get to keep the original frames and 1:1 Viewfinder.'

Prices will presumably be higher now, however they do it, and if they are still replacing rather than restoring the M3 finder, you'll end up with a hybrid camera that isn't quite an M3 anymore.

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@sorinlaz, sorry for my dumb question, but is your issue the extra frame line in the middle or the rangefinder patch?  There are smaller frame lines for the 90mm and the rangefinder patch has a notch in it for a depth of field calculation for the 50mm lens (I’d have to look at the instructions, but I think it is an f/5.6 depth of field at some nominal distance.

Just curious exactly what the problem appears to be?

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On 6/25/2024 at 11:44 AM, Coppereye said:

I came to it today and the view through the view finder contained outlines any a tiny bit in the middle.  
 

@Anbaric, I based my response on what he said, not really the picture.

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