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Leica III black-and-nickel best of all?
Old 07-12-2018   #1
Erik van Straten
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Leica III black-and-nickel best of all?

When shooting a black-and-nickel Leica III I have the feeling that it is the best Leica of all, so smooth, so precise, so good ...

Not really expensive, mine cost me EUR 160.

Leica III black-and-nickel, Color Skopar 50mm f/2.5, 400-2TMY.

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Old 07-12-2018   #2
Erik van Straten
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These are the camera and the lens I did the pictures above with.


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Old 07-13-2018   #3
lynnb
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I think it's the prettiest of the Barnacks, Erik. To my mind, the prettiest camera, period.
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Old 07-13-2018   #4
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The black and nickel III model F is a very beautiful camera. Yet this is the lens which took those very nice photos not the camera.

And that lens is a modern Japanese computed shell not a vintage hand made German thing...
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Old 07-13-2018   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 61 View Post
This is the lens which took those very nice photos not the camera.

And that lens is a modern Japanese computed shell not a vintage hand made German thing.
Hmm, I tried to take pictures with only the lens, without the camera, but that did not work out.

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Old 07-13-2018   #6
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You may try to mount the lens on another camera and look for subtle differences on the pictures. Who knows.
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Old 07-13-2018   #7
Erik van Straten
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway 61 View Post
You may try to mount the lens on another camera and look for subtle differences on the pictures. Who knows.
I did, many differences. Compared to an M the Leica III has a slow running shutter. Gives a totally different effect when photographing moving subjects.

The rangefinder is very precise, it is in view enlarged 1,5 times so in fact better than an M2.

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Old 07-13-2018   #8
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Here's one from my 1933 III with a period-appropriate 1935 nickel Elmar 5cm/3.5 on it:

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Old 07-13-2018   #9
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My III and nickel lens.

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Old 07-13-2018   #10
Richard G
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I have a III with chrome fittings, 244420 from 1937. Very smooth. Smoother than my II and IIIf.
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Old 07-13-2018   #11
Erik van Straten
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Very nice shot with the Elmar, mcfingon. I have the same lens, nr. 244451. Have you ever cleaned the optical elements? Not much flare in this sunny shot. I cleaned mine recently, but have not tested it yet.


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Old 07-13-2018   #12
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Alas, I don't own a Black/Nickel Leica III,
Someone on here sold me one once a few years ago, but it 'disappeared in the mail'. Luckily it was insured
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Old 07-13-2018   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik van Straten View Post
Very nice shot with the Elmar, mcfingon. I have the same lens, nr. 244451. Have you ever cleaned the optical elements? Not much flare in this sunny shot. I cleaned mine recently, but have not tested it yet.


Erik.
My lens is 243166, Erik, so very close. I have cleaned inside the lens, but there was only a small amount of haze on the element just behind the aperture, and it was easily cleaned with alcohol on a cotton bud. I didn't have to worry about removing coatings, as there are none. When I did this photo I was standing in the shade, so that minimised flare. And now I have a lens hood and leave that on all the time.
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Old 07-13-2018   #14
Erik van Straten
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_Flibble View Post
Alas, I don't own a Black/Nickel Leica III,
Someone on here sold me one once a few years ago, but it 'disappeared in the mail'. Luckily it was insured
Boy, what a story.

The great features of the III are the strap lugs, the enlarged rangefinder image, the smoother shutter/film transport and the long speeds. The long speeds are generated in a breathtaking simple way. If clean, they work very well.

Somehow the camera has a more solid feel compared with the earlier models.

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Old 07-13-2018   #15
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It was about the same time a signed copy of "Shots of War" by Vaccaro I had bought disappeared in the mail too...

Once my Credit Card debt has been paid off this month I might decide to finally invest in one to overcame my trauma.

I confess I had been eyeing one over at MK Optics earlier this year, but it sold a few weeks back.
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Old 07-13-2018   #16
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I have a IIIc #494682 (1949-50) and IIIf #620503 (1952-53), both in chrome. I prefer the IIIc; it seems smoother. Currently suffering Elmar-GAS, but very happy with the lenses I have.
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Old 07-13-2018   #17
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Having owned a IIIc, and then a II, I sold the IIIc. I didn't use slow speeds and the II just runs so much smoother. Mine was a early post war IIIc, so it could have been a hurry-up "loose build".

I have yet to fall for a BP. I'm a child of the '50's so I must love chrome.
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Old 07-13-2018   #18
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The other black/nickel III earlier in this thread is a relative late one (I could not determine in wich year the last black/nickel III's were made) but this is a relative early one. This one has no click stops on the long times and the layout of the top deck is a bit different: on the later ones D.R.P. is written between "Leica" and "Ernst Leitz" and on the earler ones D.R.P. is below "Wetzlar".

This shot I've made with ths camera and with this lens.

Erik.

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Old 07-13-2018   #19
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After this many decades, sample variation will count more than anything else. The smoothest Leica I ever had was a black M3 -- but for me, a 35mm user, its smoothness was more than offset by the fact that it was an M3.

For me, IIs and original Leicas are even prettier than IIIs.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 07-13-2018   #20
helenhill
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What is the Difference
between a Blk/ nickel II and blk/nickel III ??
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Old 07-13-2018   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by helenhill View Post
What is the Difference
between a Blk/ nickel II and blk/nickel III ??
Dear Helen,

Slow speeds on the III. You set the top dial to 1-20 and the slow speed dial can then be set at 1/20 to 1 second.

Cheers,

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Old 07-13-2018   #22
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My first Leica and my favourite though the lugs are getting a bit thin. Note the date, only serviced once since then. The II is also beautifully simple but I think the rangefinder magnification of a III is a real bonus.

IMG_2477 by dralowid, on Flickr
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Old 07-13-2018   #23
Erik van Straten
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dralowid View Post
My first Leica and my favourite though the lugs are getting a bit thin.
A good repairman can make steel inserts in the lugs.

In 1965 the camera was already 30 years old.

Erik.
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Old 07-13-2018   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik van Straten View Post

In 1965 the camera was already 30 years old.

Erik.
...and I think roughly the same price (as in s not 'value') as it would have been when new.

(could be wrong about this but it is too late in the evening to go hunting for my old catalogues)
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Old 07-13-2018   #25
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1938 British Journal Leitz ad. (p. 605) shows the III in chrome, inc. Elmar at L31-16-0.
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Old 07-13-2018   #26
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Again from memory, those flashy new fangled chrome models were more expensive than black...
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Old 07-14-2018   #27
Erik van Straten
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Leica III, Elmar 35mm f/3.5 nickel, 400-2TMY.

Erik.

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Old 07-14-2018   #28
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In the latter half of 2017 I spent too much time dithering over whether to buy a black paint Leica iii from eBay when prices were quite reasonable. When I finally decided to bite the bullet and buy a Barnack the black paint models seemed to dry up so I ended up with a chrome iiia. I've had a look since then and haven't seen any black paint models anywhere near as cheap which is a shame.

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Old 07-14-2018   #29
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Dutch members: there's one on Marktplaats for 325, nickel Elmar included. Same seller also lists a chrome III serial 85xxx (black to chrome factory conversion!) for 275, again Elmar included. And has a chrome Standard 1938 but oddly enough no strap lugs. Asking for 225 there.

I don't know this seller but I do know the contents of my wallet (zilch) so I'm not getting them.
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Old 07-14-2018   #30
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The first Leica I ever used was my girlfriend's black 2, factory converted from an original: serial number 23010. She paid 20 for it in 1969 or 1970: about 250-300 inflation adjusted for today.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 07-14-2018   #31
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There is a BP II with lens for sale at the Leica San Francisco store. From the numbers it is from the first batch of II's in 1932. $850.
https://www.leicastoresf.com/357584
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Old 07-14-2018   #32
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Another favourite of mine shot with the III and nickel Elmar 5cm.

John Mc
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Old 07-18-2018   #33
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this thread is making me very excited at the arrival of my black and nickel III
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Old 07-18-2018   #34
Erik van Straten
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Leica III, Elmar 50mm f/3.5 uncoated, 400-2TMY

Erik.






Leica III, Elmar 35mm f/3.5 uncoated, 400-2TMY.

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Old 07-18-2018   #35
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Last month I bought a black II/nickel with 50/3.5 nickel from a US store for US$540 from eBay. Also first batch of the II (1932)



Quote:
Originally Posted by davidnewtonguitars View Post
There is a BP II with lens for sale at the Leica San Francisco store. From the numbers it is from the first batch of II's in 1932. $850.
https://www.leicastoresf.com/357584
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Old 07-18-2018   #36
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What does Dxomark whatever rate it ?

Bout 103.2 I reckon and at that low low get it done good price lol

Gee thanks Erik that is all I need to be thinking about right now...a Leica
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Old 07-18-2018   #37
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No black and nickel, but a black and chrome sharkskin. Postwar conversion. Very nice IMO. Now on eBay. (No connection to the seller.)

Erik.




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Old 07-20-2018   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik van Straten View Post
No black and nickel, but a black and chrome sharkskin. Postwar conversion. Very nice IMO. Now on eBay. (No connection to the seller.)

Erik.
That's very nice indeed
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Old 07-20-2018   #39
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unnamed 1934 Leica iii black/nickel
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Old 07-20-2018   #40
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unnamed, on Flickr 1934 iii
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