Superb! 1938 Leitz Leica I, CLA'd, Freshly Serviced!
Cleaned, Lubricated & Adjusted, Ready for immediate use!
Forget the socks… What he really wants in his present is a Leica.
There are times when camera collecting is incredibly difficult. It comes as 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 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. 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 grand children 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 camera started its long journey of many roads and many years in 1938. It was built in a time and a place when the world looked very different than it does today.
This exceptionally fine Leica I has been carefully cleaned, lubricated and adjusted. Everything works as it should. It works very smoothly and lends credence to the idea that the more a Leica is used, the smoother it works. The shutter curtains run very smoothly and are completely light tight. The focusing works smoothly & accurately. The view finder is clean and bright. All shutter speeds, 1/20th thru 1/500th are appropriate. In case you’re wondering, it uses regular 35mm film.
It comes complete with a lens and a Leitz film take-up spool.
This camera accepts interchangeable lenses. A Leitz elmar 50mm lens is included. It’s serial number is 394955 which indicates it was produced in 1944. The glass is clean with only some very faint cleaning marks (but you’ll need a magnifier to see them). There are no separated elements, crystallization, or other problems and it’s capable of producing lovely photos with modern color and B&W films.
All in all, this is a wonderful collectable 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.