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Roger Hicks
09-18-2008, 01:56
Ten years ago, a chum of mine spent GBP 10,000 on Leica gear. His wife agreed on the basis that if his enthusiasm waned (as it has been known to do with other enthusiasms) Leica kit doesn't lose much value.

In order to 'preserve' its value, he always put it away in all its original packing, even down to the plastic bags BUT (and this is the tragic bit) without the silica gel packs.

As a result his Noctilux and 75 Summilux both have the faintest beginnings of mould. You can really only see it if you 'huff' on the lens, when you see a few speckles -- pinpoints -- that won't come off even with Opti-Clean.

It doesn't affect the picture-taking ability, so how much does it wipe off the value? On the plus side, you have all the boxes, passports, etc., and on the minus side, the mould. Any thoughts?

He also has an M6 (pre-ttl), again with the box and all the good stuff, and pristine EXCEPT that it's only been used once in those 10 years and the finder mask is stuck (doesn't shift with lens insertion or with the frame select lever). Would you recommend that he sells it 'as it', ot has it cleaned first? And what sort of money would it be worth?

I know this sound like one of those schoolgirl agony aunt questions, "My friend is pregnant, so what should I -- um, I mean she -- do?" but he's a very old friend. I don't buy and sell cameras any more so I don't know much about price/value/condition equations.

Cheers,

R.

kshapero
09-18-2008, 02:20
wow a quandary for sure. first don't throw away the silicon gel pack. Tough lesson. second Don't put your rig back in the plastic bags. I would think in the box is good enough. Third he might consider a CLA, at least for the M6 to fix the finder mask, etc. or at least just the repair, then sell it.
Off the subject, it seems the Zeiss Ikon body keeps its value used but the lenses don't as much. I suspect that CV lenses, due to their quality push the ZM lens price down.

Over and out.

maddoc
09-18-2008, 02:39
That is quite a bad surprise ... Leica (and also Zeiss) won't except any lens for repair / service when it is contaminated with fungus, don't know about mold on the outer surfaces. Ultra-pure Methanol and lots of sun-light might help as a first aid, though....

Personally, I would stay away from any lens having signs of mold. There might be also fungus, just not visible yet.

The M6 seems to need some service or usage to get it back to working condition. I wouldn't expect more than 900 $ for it.

Boxes etc. are valuable for collectors if the boxed item is in pristine condition only ...

kevin m
09-18-2008, 03:30
...and I will ship to him immediately fourteen pallets of premium grade Mars Bars.

LOL! :D

We really do live in a global economy. Wall Street plunges on Wednesday, and by Thursday, Australia's been reduced to a barter economy. ;):D

KoNickon
09-18-2008, 03:35
If the idea is to now sell the equipment, then I'd say certainly get the camera fixed before selling it -- otherwise he'd need to discount the price to account for the CLA. With the framelines stuck, the camera really isn't 100% functional, even though it can still take pictures.

As for the lenses, it sounds as though they're still eminently usable. As you said, it takes far worse deterioration of the optics for there to be any kind of effect on the images.

I may be in the minority here but I wouldn't even bother doing anything about it -- it sounds as though whatever it is is on the front surface, so anybody with a modicum of care should be able to take care of it, such as with hydrogen peroxide.

David Goldfarb
09-18-2008, 03:45
The beginnings of fungus are not a problem. The lens needs to be professionally cleaned. I had it done to my Tamron SP90/2.5 at the factory circa 1989 a few weeks after discovering it, and the lens is fine today--no coating damage visible.

The problem is if it's left untreated, the fungus will eventually damage the coatings and etch the glass. I have a lens in this condition that I bought cheaply and had cleaned, and it's still a pretty good lens, but it doesn't have much in the way of resale value.

MacDaddy
09-18-2008, 04:22
Roger:
Can you be more specific on which M6 model it is? KEH here in the States lists an Excellent grade M6ttl as being worth around $1350-1600 USD. I called their sales team and described your friends M6 (which is why I'm curious which model it is) and they said AS IS they'd rate its worth between $6-750 USD and no more than $1000 after a CLA! But that depends on the specific model, etc.
Having said that, I would DEFINITELY be interested in it, even as is,if you want to PM me with further information!

Matt(1pt4)
09-18-2008, 04:38
A buyer would taking a big risk on an expensive lens that might have permanent damage, so a substantial discount is in order. The box/papers are probably only relevant to collectors, who aren't going to be interested due to the damage. These sound like user lenses now. Maybe 30% off the going rate? That said, the going rate for both of these lenses is pretty high at the moment, so he might not lose too much.

astroman
09-18-2008, 05:05
( kshapero)Not sure I agree with this his statment about the ziess ikon.Ive seen a lot of these camera bodies in around the $800-900 range in mint condition.New there what $1400 Is that holding good value/

benkelley
09-18-2008, 05:15
I had a thin tele-elmarit that I kept in a leather bag for several years, as I didn't know anything about this kind of thing... Not high priced optics, and I used the lens plenty, but when not in use I stored it in that bag, thinking it would protect it from damage. And then it developed this mold or something, these streaks... I'm not exactly sure what it was, on the inside of the front element. (No, not on the back as the t-e is known to do). It looked awful, degraded the picture quality, and everyone I showed it to went 'uuuugh!'

So I sent it off to DAG, after someone had actually given me an extra front element pair to have him swap for the apparently ruined one in the lens. But he didn't need the new element–he just cleaned the old one and with a CLA added in to boot the lens is functioning PERFECTLY, and I was able to return the other element to its original owner. So, long story short, for that value of gear who doesn't he send it in to one of the more reputable repair people, and see if he or she can do anything?

Ben

besk
09-18-2008, 05:15
Just to set the record straight: Silica gel packets have a limited ability to absorb water. When they have absorbed their limit they won't absorb more. The packets found with new lens and other photographic gear are used for shipping purposes only.

You have to heat them up to drive the mositure back out in order to reuse them. I own several cannisters for that purpose.

I don't look at Leica's as investments. I have bought them, sold them and lost money almost everytime. However, they maintain their value better than most photography equipment.

MacDaddy
09-18-2008, 05:21
So I sent it off to DAG,
Ben

Ben:
Who is DAG and what does he do vis-a-vis Leica repairs?

Roger Hicks
09-18-2008, 05:24
Thanks for the advice -- please keep it coming!

I've just spoken to him on the 'phone and he's going to have the M6 repaired. It's a like-new 0.85, and once it's fixed, I think it'll be worth rather over the odds.

As for the devaluation of the lenses -- do others reckon that 30% sounds reasonable?

Finally, I'm told you can regenerate silica gel -- thanks for the reminder, Besk, to those who might not know -- by heating it in the microwave. Anyone tried this?

Cheers,

R.

Muggins
09-18-2008, 06:03
I've never microwaved silica gel, but a couple of hours (probably less for a small packet, actually) in a slow oven - while you are heating your chutney jars, for example - should do the trick. I believe that there is now claimed to be a health risk in doing this. As there are health risks in everything, just don't put your head in the oven while it is drying and I'm sure you'll be fine.

We used to have a lab glass dryer with a big beaker of silica gel in it, and just relied on regularly heating glassware in there to keep the gel dry.

Adrian

kshapero
09-18-2008, 06:03
( kshapero)Not sure I agree with this his statment about the ziess ikon.Ive seen a lot of these camera bodies in around the $800-900 range in mint condition.New there what $1400 Is that holding good value/
i follow this pretty closely. The cheapest I have seen is $950. remeber the retail price went up. I would say buying a new camera 2 years ago for $1035 and selling it for $995 is a pretty good value. Just my take.

Benjamin Marks
09-18-2008, 06:08
Roger:

I would try a warm toaster oven at 40C for a couple of hours or so, but it really depends how the silicon pellets are packaged. A small plastic pack may melt. Don't microwave. The photo houses used to sell metal canisters of silicon (about the size of a tin of sardines). The silicon pellets had a chemical in them which changed color when they had absorbed the maximum moisture that they were able to. You could put these in the oven at fairly high temperatures to "re-charge" them and use them indefintely.

It sounds like your friend has quite a lot of expensive gear. In terms of a sale, I really think there are only two ethical options. Sell with full disclosure and an agreed-upon discount, or eat the costs of a CLA and sell. The latter choice gives your friend a little more flexibility, I would think, because he can shop around for the best repair price. As far as the CLA, I would call Don Goldberg or Sherry Krauter for the M6 and John Van Stelten for the lenses and find out the actual price of the services they offer. If there has been coating damage to the lens it may have to be polished and recoated and this can get a little pricey. I don't think a reduction in cost measured as a percentage makes much rational sense, unless the price to bring the gear into spec happens to be 30% of its used price.

Part of the problem with mold is that the microscopic spores are pretty hardy and often will survive for years in a dry environment. Anyone who takes the lens to a damp climate can "re-activate" the spores. To address this, you really want someone who can take apart the whole lens, treat all surfaces with something nasty to kill the spores, polish and re-coat damaged elements as necessary and then put it all back together. John Van Stelten has done some amazing work for me with an e-bay Rollei-flex that had "coating marks, will not affect images" (read "gouges, hmm I'm not so sure about that").

Wish your friend luck.

Ben Marks

Roger Hicks
09-18-2008, 07:23
Really Roger.

Did you think this one up yourself, or is it a straight copy off ebay?

Dear Richard,

Eh?

If you're calling me a liar, I'd appreciate an apology. If not, I'd appreciate an explanation.

The story is as I told it. He wants to sell the stuff. I said I'd ask here as I'd probably get good advice. As indeed I have.

Your response does not fall into this category.

To those who have been helpful: thank you.

Roger

maddoc
09-18-2008, 07:48
Since I have read a little about the fungus problem a couple of month ago, I have banned all leather straps, lens cases etc. out of the cabinet where the lenses are stored. We have in summer time a humidity of roughly 70 % in Japan (even in the north) and the growth condition for fungus are 1) over 70 % humidity 2) temperature between 10 and 35 degrees Celsius and 3) darkness. Especially humidity above 70 % for a period of time over 3 days continuously let spores of fungus grow.

Optimal for storage is a wooden cabinet with sliding glass door and some opening to prevent continuous air flow. I use a closed transparent plastic box with a rechargeable silica-gel module ( can be recharged with its internal heater by plugging into the wall socket), Fuji's anti-fungus agent (maybe not available outside Japan) and a hygrometer to check humidity.

This all may sound over-cautious but one never knows ...

Roger Hicks
09-18-2008, 09:10
This all may sound over-cautious but one never knows ...
Dear Gabor,

I use a dry cabinet, humidity controlled, glass fronted, for the best kit (Alpa, Leica, Zeiss, Voigtländer, Schneider, Rodenstock...) and the rest takes its chances -- but most of the house is admirably dry. I've just found a bag of plaster that's been in my attic, unprotected, for 5 years and it's still dry. Quite encouraging!

Cheers,

R.

sepiareverb
09-18-2008, 09:18
...I use a dry cabinet, humidity controlled, glass fronted...

I've recently started looking into dry cabinets myself- a VERY humid summer got me worried about fungus here. Any particulars or recommendations you could give Roger? Anyone else?

Roger Hicks
09-18-2008, 09:30
I've recently started looking into dry cabinets myself- a VERY humid summer got me worried about fungus here. Any particulars or recommendations you could give Roger? Anyone else?

I use the Chinese 'Wonderful' brand and would buy another without hesitation.

Cheers,

R.

sanmich
09-18-2008, 10:18
I did some research about silicagel.
I ended buying 2 or 3 kg of the blue kind.
I stuff a sock with it and put the sock in my bag.
I replace the silicagel it when it turns pink (saturated with water).
I was amazed at what speed it saturates!!
A few weeks are enough to do it on a quite large quantity (much more than the regular small bags)
IMHO, there is no way that the tiny symbolic gel bags put there by manufacturers can be good after you open the box.
From time to time, I put all the pink stuff in my oven and reactivate it.
The colour thing is really helpfull. you know when it needs replacement, and you know when it is ready when you reactivate it.

Now about the leather thing... Can someone elaborate?
Should I ban eveready cases?? leather straps?

kxl
09-18-2008, 10:29
Since mold is organic, equal parts Hydrogen Pyroxide and ammonia, applied with cotton swabs is a possible remedy.

If it is fungus, the specks will soon develop into small concentric veins if left untreated. If this is the case, I think the only remedy is to send it to aprofessional who can take apart the lens. Whether the cost of doing that to get it prepped for sale is preferable to selling the lens as is would be up to your friend -- I don't really know what the cost/price difference would be.

I would also have suggested letting it sit out in the sun for a day, but given your part of the world, that would likely make it worse.

BTW, a good cheap source of silica gel can be found in any supermarket or pet store: a variety of kitty litter uses a base of silica gel.

I just buy a large jug, and pour a bit into a small bowl, and leave it in my closet where I store my gear, then change it every 3-4 months (the litter, not the gear... well, sometimes...)

Keith

willie_901
09-18-2008, 15:07
All the advice about silica gel needing to be recharged is spot on. While some types of silica gel can generate dust (which irritates the lungs), silica gel is a rather benign chemical. The blue-pink method as described above by sanmich is the way to go. This is what research chemists do when they must store chemicals and solvents in a low-humidity environment.

raid
09-18-2008, 15:23
Hey, I resemble that remark LOL!! Actually Florida is fine because everyone is addicted to air conditioning. The Northwest could be a problem.

24 hours/day A/C use, plus Silica gel containers resulted for me in not encountering a single case of fungus or mold in over twenty years and for all my [many] lenses.

Al Patterson
09-18-2008, 15:26
Dear Richard,

Eh?

If you're calling me a liar, I'd appreciate an apology. If not, I'd appreciate an explanation.

The story is as I told it. He wants to sell the stuff. I said I'd ask here as I'd probably get good advice. As indeed I have.

Your response does not fall into this category.

To those who have been helpful: thank you.

Roger

I think Richard was joking...

caperunner
09-18-2008, 15:33
Silica gel is also used as an airspace dryer for oil filled power transformers. The gel used has indicator included - blue for dry, pink for wet.
Can buy it in largish quantities (+/-10kg)from electrical suppliers. It's a lot of silica gel!
Drying in the microwave tends to shatter the gel nodules. Best method for me has been described above i.e. in a cooling oven. start at about 50 C leave it until the oven is quite cold. Variations of this theme no doubt abound.
I always check for colour change every fortnight. I live in a coastal situation and very mindful of the somewhat unfriendly conditions of the atmosphere there.
I found another source of Si gel sachets at the local footwear shop. small packets but plenty of them! Need to dry frequently but good for spot applications e.g. inside a camera body, lens case etc.

Silva Lining
09-19-2008, 15:27
This may sound like a stupid question, but is it possible for fungus to travel from lens to lens? Considering the life cycle of mold and fungus i know they reproduce and spread given the right conditions.

I guess what I am asking is has anyone had it happen to them - i.e. fungus has traveled from one lens to another - rather than developing on a range independently.

If you were to put a lens with fungus in storage with other lens, but in an environment that was un-conducive to fungus transfer would it effectively go into stasis of sorts??

** sorry to slighty skew your thread Roger, but the question is linked, sort of**

Beemermark
10-01-2008, 18:07
If you still have any gun stores in merry old England you can buy large packets of silica packets in cloth bags pretty cheap, $10~15. They turn pink when they have adsorbed all the moisture they can hold and then, per the directions, you throw them in the oven at about 160 deg F for a couple of hours until the color changes back. No health warnings on the packages so given our legal system I would assume they are pretty harmless.

Now Roger - where can I find a pair of front brake rotors for my R100RS?

shimo-kitasnap
10-01-2008, 18:32
sounds like a case for a shrink......

putting stuff back in their original packaging? That's like a kid I knew in high school who kept the protective film on the screen of his cell phone and got antsy anytime annyone tried to borrow it. He did the same thing with his wristwatch face.

rogerchristian
10-01-2008, 18:55
Roger:

Unless the boxes in which the equipment was stored were hermetically sealed, and the moisture was purged or driven off the packets before they were re-used, by being dried in a warm oven, there is little chance of avoiding the mold problem. Best bet is not to put your equipment in a damp basement, nor in any sort of a tightly sealed container, like plastic food containers, etc. My father in law stored 2 M3's and lenses in an old attache case with upholstery foam, and the chrome was corroded, lenses had some fungus and the bodies also needed service.

I think for most climates equipment should be stored protected but not sealed, in a well-ventilated closest, cabinet, etc.

Mold or fungus is a deal killer for resale, the acid exuded by the fungus acid-etches the coating and glass if sufficiently advanced. On the stuff I 'inherited', I had it cleaned, it was not too far gone, so it is now <very nice> user equipment, not collectible stuff.

Al Kaplan
10-01-2008, 19:50
Rather than packing your treasured Leica cameras and lenses in bags, camera cases, whatever, in the dark, just leave the stuff out in the light. Ignore what your wife might say. Cameras and lenses belong scattered helter skelter about the living room and dining room. Tell her that your Leicas are as German and as collectible as her Meissen figurines.

Bright light is the enemy of fungus! UV light is best. Free flowing fresh air helps. On the table next to me is my Leica CL and Bessa L with my 40 and 15mm lenses. Behind me are a trinity of M bodies and a Visoflex II-S along with an assortment of fungus free glass from 21mm to 400mm. The lenses are uncapped and there's a window overlooking the tables. Damn, this place is a mess! No wonder I'm single.

JohnTF
10-03-2008, 08:18
Several thoughts.

Some lenses are more prone to fungus, etc. I have been told it may have something to do with cements used, if any. Generally I am told it is better to have lenses without cements.

I had a 28mm Minolta M lens develop severe something growing inside, spots, my dealer thought it was not unusual for this lens, I sold it to someone who could clean it.

All these thoughts about using household products, well, I am a bit conservative about putting anything on lenses as I have several friends experienced in repair, and there was that lens I cleaned with pure alcohol labeled lens cleaner which removed the coating, well, some of it.

There is a lot of stuff sitting about the house I would hesitate to use anywhere near a camera or lens.

In terms of storage cabinets, the usual high standard is to use a small heating element in wood or metal cabinets. I believe one name used to be "Golden Rod" which was a low wattage unit which kept the temperature inside of the cabinet a bit more than the air outside, resulting in a dryer environment. Moves some air as well.

Silica packs, lots of sources, the military uses them, so you can sometimes find healthy size packs very robust and reasonable in cost. You can also find Ammo Boxes in several sizes, which if in good shape, will have a very good seal, so if something is inside, and it is dry, you should be good to go, (silica gel will dry the air, etc) look for people selling surplus if you are interested. They may have these items at gun shows. You sometimes find cameras.

Obviously you want those packs physically separated from the items you wish to protect, if the container is sealed, the gel should remove and hold the moisture in the air when it was sealed, until the box is opened.

My oven is largely decorative, and I have left rocks, silica gel, etc. inside on the rack using the heat of the pilot to dry stuff over a period of days, you will want to put some tape or a note to make sure you do not forget to remove them before putting that steak in the broiler and turning the heat on. There are a number of other ways of course to dry silica gel packs, but choose what will work for you. As this should be part of a routine, I am not in that much hurry to dry a bunch of packs, couple of days works for me.

The dealers I know from camera shows, always suspect any gear from the damper states, no offense, but I have been told almost every Florida lens seems to have some fungus problem.

They always use a small flash light from the back and loupes for examination of any high value lens. "User" status will drop a collectible at least 30-40% or more, some sellers use the term differently than others, dealers with significant reputation have higher standards than many others. I have experienced New York or Atlanta 9 condition ranked 7 by my friend who sells a lot world wide. Those folks are of course, dealing with a much larger volume.

I have purchased lenses with some minor fungus problems as part of a package, and have had good luck with professional cleaning. It should not be expensive really, as I am told most Leica lenses are well engineered to be serviced. It will either work or not.

If some damage remains, the lens is often a good "user" which if purchased cheaply enough will have virtue as one you certainly do not have to baby.

Re-coating a lens, I have always been given estimates more than the cost of another lens.

My old repair pal, (Al, I think 93) 40 years of working on SM Leicas, actually said to store cameras in Ohio, in shoe boxes, he claimed the box paper actually absorbs the moisture, seems a bit odd.

As to leather, my 28mm spotty lens was stored in an original Leica leather pouch.

As to air conditioning, great, except when you take it outside, especially if your equipment is colder than ambient temperatures, which, as I understand is the purpose of AC. My Nikon Zoom became an instant cloud chamber in Islamorada, but it did clear.

Roger, sorry to hear about this situation, if you would like specific recommendations as to particular service people, please PM me.

Regards, John

JohnTF
10-03-2008, 08:25
Rather than packing your treasured Leica cameras and lenses in bags, camera cases, whatever, in the dark, just leave the stuff out in the light. Ignore what your wife might say. Cameras and lenses belong scattered helter skelter about the living room and dining room. Tell her that your Leicas are as German and as collectible as her Meissen figurines.

Bright light is the enemy of fungus! UV light is best. Free flowing fresh air helps. On the table next to me is my Leica CL and Bessa L with my 40 and 15mm lenses. Behind me are a trinity of M bodies and a Visoflex II-S along with an assortment of fungus free glass from 21mm to 400mm. The lenses are uncapped and there's a window overlooking the tables. Damn, this place is a mess! No wonder I'm single.

I am with you Al, when I want a cleaner, neater, environment, I just go to Mexico and let them provide me with "assisted" living, house keeping even does the dishes. Home thermostat goes to 50F in the winter, or ambient in the summer. UV might fade the red spots though. ;-)

Uh, I am also single, and try not to trip on that good stuff.

John

tedwhite
11-14-2008, 18:59
The real problem with the owner of this stuff is that he/she treated the camera/lenses as if they were little treasures, something other than equipment that was made to be used and used often. Although I now live in a high, dry, desert, I have lived in such places as Illinois, Baton Rouge, San Francisco, London, etc. I have never had the problems this person has had, and I suspect it's primarily because I used my cameras and lenses almost daily. They were exposed to light, sunlight, incandescent light, fluorescent light, all kinds of light, and all the time.

Al Kaplan
11-14-2008, 19:10
The 28mm f/2.8 Minolta Rokkor CLE was notorious for getting those white spots. At one time they'd repair them for free, even well past the warranty period, but I don't know if Minolta still will. According to Modern Photography magazine's test reports it was as good as the 28 Elmarit at a fraction of the cost.

35mmdelux
11-14-2008, 19:53
30% devaluation is a bit steep IMO. I would argue 20-25% max, with 20% being operative. On a Nocti, 20% devaluation equates to about $1000 discount on a highly desirable lens. Or, better, have it looked at by Shelton.

BTW - None of this gear is collectible, nor an "investment."

Best - P.

Shac
11-14-2008, 21:09
Roger - I haven't read all the responses so excuse me if this is a repeat of previous suggestions -why doesn't your friend contact Don (DAG), Sherry or John (Focal point) about the lenses and see if they think it worthwhile sending them the lenses?
If it were me, besides kicking myself, that's what I'd do before considering taking a hit when selling.
Good luck

mh2000
11-14-2008, 21:16
if you can't really see it, he can do what everyone else does, just put the stuff up on ebay... as long as he doesn't claim they are mint he probably won't have a problem :(

George S.
11-15-2008, 06:28
The Minolta 28mm lens's spots were most definitely not fungus but this urban legend has survived for decades. It is probably due to failure of a coating or the cement of some kind. I owned two of those lenses about 20 years apart, and both had the same very small, white dots in a very regular, evenly spaced pattern only around the outer edge of the front element, all the way around. It was so regular and precise, it looked like a precision machine had made the dots, which is why I believe it was something that had to do with the lens production, which is probably why Minolta repaired them for many years free of charge.

That lens is indeed a very very good performer, spots or no spots.

The lens fungus I have seen in other lenses (not mine) are usually long, thin, ragged lines with no regular pattern.

jaapv
11-20-2008, 05:49
Roger, did you resolve the mould problem? You might contact Will van Manen, he once cleaned a lens of mine and got rid of the mould, albeit leaving the tracks of it, obviously. But it did stabilize the problem.

kevin m
11-20-2008, 06:03
The real problem with the owner of this stuff is that he/she treated the camera/lenses as if they were little treasures, something other than equipment that was made to be used and used often.

Too true. If the owner wanted to collect pretty things with no useful purpose, then Lladro figurines would have been a better choice. :p

Roger Hicks
11-20-2008, 14:05
Too true. If the owner wanted to collect pretty things with no useful purpose, then Lladro figurines would have been a better choice. :p
Dear Kevin,

Mmmmm... not sure about that. Even a mildewed lens looks better than a Lladro figurine....

But your basic premise is indeed entirely correct. His exaggerated and ill-directed concern for resale value was indeed some way from realistic.

I don't know the current state of play. Ultimately, it's his problem, not mine. I tried to help, but there's a limit to what you can do, even with the assistance of those better informed about Leica prices than I -- to whom I extend ny thanks. I've known the guy 35 years or so but not mainly through photography.

Cheers,

R.

Prosaic
11-22-2008, 13:17
Ten years ago, a chum of mine spent GBP 10,000 on Leica gear. His wife agreed on the basis that if his enthusiasm waned (as it has been known to do with other enthusiasms) Leica kit doesn't lose much value.

In order to 'preserve' its value, he always put it away in all its original packing, even down to the plastic bags BUT (and this is the tragic bit) without the silica gel packs.

You´re saying he bought equipment for 10k to actually never use it?

Roger Hicks
11-22-2008, 13:44
You´re saying he bought equipment for 10k to actually never use it?

No. He bought it to use, with the expectation that if his enthusiasm waned, or if he needed the money, he would see a good deal of his money back. For a number of complex reasons, several beyond his control, he used it even less than he expected.

Cheers,

Roger

Steve Bellayr
11-22-2008, 13:46
I was advised many years ago: "Never buy anyhting that you can't use." Even paintings or prints are useable as they hang on the wall. Roger Hicks said it best either repair the cameras and sell or sell with the condition knowned. If you are not going to use the items then any money is better than none. IMHO

JohnTF
12-15-2008, 07:32
The Minolta 28mm lens's spots were most definitely not fungus but this urban legend has survived for decades. It is probably due to failure of a coating or the cement of some kind. I owned two of those lenses about 20 years apart, and both had the same very small, white dots in a very regular, evenly spaced pattern only around the outer edge of the front element, all the way around. It was so regular and precise, it looked like a precision machine had made the dots, which is why I believe it was something that had to do with the lens production, which is probably why Minolta repaired them for many years free of charge.

That lens is indeed a very very good performer, spots or no spots.

The lens fungus I have seen in other lenses (not mine) are usually long, thin, ragged lines with no regular pattern.

Thanks, I had not been using it much, it brought up the wrong frames, and it sat, I thought I had stored it in the wrong drawer, and my dealer friend sold it off for me at a not so huge loss as I had gotten the lens by accident. It had been shipped in a Minolta 40mm box and charged to the store accordingly, that said, I do not have a 28mm M mount now. the pattern looked well spaced, now that I think of it, but it was all over the lens I think.

Story about the cement / fungus was from my dealer, who sold about one of them, to me.

Never thought to send it back, was a few years back.

Regards, John

David Hughes
01-14-2009, 03:35
Just a point: my wife worked for the local Govt. in a Lab. and says that there are two types of silica gel. In a nutshell, usable and re-usable. The re-usable stuff looks the same but is flecked with coloured granules. They change colour when exhausted and are best re-charged by heating until the old colour returns. A search should find instructions, safety precautions and a seller.

BTW, material, paper and leather don't like the dry but cameras and lenses do. So I store my 1930's ERC's and directions/instructions for the camera away from the hardware. But I worry about the silk used on the blinds and so only put the silica in for a few days now and then, and use transparent plastic boxes. Best course, imo, is to use cameras and not store them...

Regards, David