Near mint 1932 BLACK LEITZ LEICA III, Freshly Serviced CLA'd!
Cleaned, Lubricated & Adjusted. Ready for immediate use!
There are times when camera collecting is incredibly difficult. It comes at moments when you’re asked simple questions like “What’s the best camera…?” or “Which is the most significant camera ever?” The brain starts working, the heart beats nicely and the mouth moves but if an answer appears at all… it’s a long and complicated one, full of design details, historical moments and personal rationalizations.
Fortunately answers come quicker when we are asked to feel more and think less…. Matters of the heart are easier to answer and to agree on. The eye and the heart have a directness and honesty that the brain lacks as it struggles to retain, comprehend and balance all the many details.
So here’s a simple question for the heart. What is the most enjoyable camera of the 20th century…? I don’t know about you, but I see the answer almost immediately. I can also feel it between my hands. And it’s a surprising answer because it runs counter to my technology oriented brain. What I see is not the most expensive, the rarest or even the most sophisticated. That evidently doesn’t impress my heart… which is why the heart and the mind are such a good match. They need each other for balance. The brain tells us what we think we need and the heart tells us what we want.
The most enjoyable camera ever….? I thought it would be a Pentax Spotmatic but it’s not. The winner is a black screw mount Leica. It’s honest, it’s significant and above all it’s great fun to be with. The Leica is like the perfect partner that some of us search our entire lives for. It has that unique mix of something for the heart, something for the eye and something for the head. It’s that perplexing mix that insures we never tire of being close. It’s the perfect mate to be marooned with on a deserted island. And when you cradle it in your hands, you’re not simply picking up a camera… it’s more like being reunited with an old friend. A friend with rich sparkling stories of adventure and history, life and death, valor and treachery, lives and passion… And like a faithful friend it will go on and on recording our adventures, our children’s adventures and possibly be still there for our grandchildren to enjoy and to remind them of our life, excursions and adventures.
This camera’s own life is long and colorful. I can’t tell you the stories of where it’s been but I can tell you this Leica started its long journey of many roads and many years in 1932. Its serial number indicates that it was originally a Leica standard, but it’s clear that it was returned to the factory a couple of years later and received a full upgrade with a rangefinder, slow shutter speed capabilities, adjustable diopter and camera strap lugs. Based on the work, I’d estimate that the upgrade was done in approximately 1933-1934 because the nickel plated shutter speed dial matches the other nickel fittings on this camera.
Ninety years later this Leica still works stunningly well. To insure that it will continue to do so for many years to come, it’s been carefully cleaned, lubricated and adjusted. The shutter curtains are smooth and light tight. The coupled rangefinder image is bright, easy to see and works smoothly & accurately. The view finder is also clean and bright. The camera feels very smooth and precise in all of its operations and definitely supports the idea that the more a Leica is used, the smoother it becomes. All shutter speeds (B & 1/30- 1/500th) are appropriate
Cosmetically the camera is probably as close to mint as you’ll find. It’s certainly much nicer than most! It’s a real beauty.
It comes complete with Leitz film spool
All in all a very fine Leica. The perfect company on your own search for that perfect picture, that perfect moment, when you discover that perfection isn’t about being perfect… it’s about being comfortable about yourself, your choices and following your heart.