Leicas Made in Germany?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by chip j, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. chip j

    chip j Subscriber

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    How can new Leicas claim to be made in Germany when the body, and, I presume, shutter, are made in Portugal?
     
  2. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

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    The same was as VW cars can claim German prestige when they are actually assembled in Mexico and other latin-American countries. It's just a glossed-over name, not a badge of prestige.
     
  3. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    No, labeling has to be real. a certain percentage of the camera has to be made/assembled in Germany to allow it to be labeled as such. The factory in Portugal makes the body housings and so forth, but I believe the finer assembly and maybe the rangefinder units and so forth are made/installed in Germany. At one point Leica had a video on its web site showing the final assembly of an M7, I think it was, with the rangefinder, top plate, outer leather and other things being put together in Germany.

    The 24mm 2.8 elmarit R lens has a similar history -- it was made by Minolta but German took delivery of a huge pile of them, weeded out the inferior ones and then altered the ones they accepted so much that they could qualify for "made in germany" designation.

    further discussion: http://leica.nemeng.com/013c.shtml
     
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  4. Dr Croubie

    Dr Croubie Member

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    I buy food at my supermarket, and I read the packet.
    "Packaged in Australia from local and imported ingredients".
    So, uh, yeah, it's grown on the panet earth then?

    My 2c is that "made in" is possibly the most redundant thing to a) write on a product, and b) care about.
    Everything's made everywhere from bits mined and produced and added-to and shipped all around the globe, whether we like it or not...
     
  5. chip j

    chip j Subscriber

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    I saw the M7 video, and they sure made no mention of either making or putting a shutter in. And the "MP" stands for "Mechanical Perfection"? Leica makes a BIG thing out of "Made in Germany". I can quite accept my Contax G system being produced w/Zeiss test machinery and supervised by Zeiss people, but it says "Made in Japan"!
     
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  6. miha

    miha Member

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    The Elmarit-R 24mm was always at least assebled in Germany from a design by Minolta. The glass was also from Minolta but was later replaced and the lens reformulated to accomodate newer glasses by Leica (Schott?). The performace stayed the same.
    500 f/8 (Minolta), Vario Elmar 80-200 f/4.5 (Minolta), 75-200 f/4.5 (Minolta), 70-210 f/4 (Minolta) 80-200 f/4 (Kyocera) 35-70 f/3.5 (Minolta), 28-70 f/3.5-4.5 (Sigma) were made in Japan and labeled as such.
     
  7. AgX

    AgX Member

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    No.
    There is no legislation of general application for the designation "made in". Nationally there may be such concerning consumer rights or concerning customs.


    At the moment EU-Regulations on this matter are getting more strict. German industry is protesting by argueing that the design, manufacturing quality etc. of those goods manufactured abroad is made in/controlled from Germany.
     
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  8. gsgary

    gsgary Member

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    My M4-2 and 70 year anniversary M4-p are both stamped made in Canada, the M4-2 saved the M series cameras

    Sent from my GT-I9100P using Tapatalk 2
     
  9. AgX

    AgX Member

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    But, does anyone really cares, concerning quality?
    I mean relating to the example given by the OP: does anyone expect workmanship in Portugal be different from that in Germany?
    It all depends on the training of the personnel and the applied quality standard. As such this is a matter of management, not of location.


    Agfa, Fuji and Kodak, each company manufactured films in various parts of the world. So far I have not heard someone rejecting a certain batch of film due to ist origin.
    I only come across this discussion concerning cameras.
     
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  10. MDR

    MDR Member

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    It's the somewhat wrong believe that german engineering is the best in the world. Don't ask me about the new Mercedes cars and their quality same goes for BMW and other German car manufacturers. Even at the height of German engineering the products were often overengineered to a point that hindered the product in the long run Zeiss Ikon cameras are a good example great as long as they work but boy can they get complicated when you want to repair them all those interlocks etc...
     
  11. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    You should check out how labeling works. I deal a lot with the ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) and its Buy American provisions, and also the Buy American act.

    For anything to be called 'Made in the USA' there is a certain percentage of the materials of the product needing to be sourced on American soil, and then final assembly of 'most significant' transformation has to take place in the US. Sub-assemblies can be made elsewhere, particularly in countries with which the US has a trade agreement.

    I can't imagine any of this would be less complicated in Germany... :smile: That's a slightly facetious comment, because the US is the master of bureaucracy. But it's probably complicated in most countries, is what I'm saying.
     
  12. MDR

    MDR Member

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    In Germany and Austria the added value is what matters if the higher value is added in Germany by say adding a red dot then you have the right to call it made in Germany or Austria. 99% of the Assembly can be done outside Germany or Austria and you can still call it made in DE or A because the value was added there. I belive Leica at least does some serious amount of assembling in Germany.
     
  13. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

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    In the Modern World there are no places, only supply chains. Leica manages to still make "Made in..." work, but it costs a lot and gives them fits at times (e.g. APO 50 Summi.) Buy what you want and move on.
     
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  15. jovo

    jovo Membership Council Council

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    I owned a 1993 Audi 90 CS. It was, along with a 1966 VW bug, one of the worst cars I've ever known. I will NEVER again buy a car made in Germany. What nonsense this 'best engineering in the world' crap is.
     
  16. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I owned a nice Leica thread-mount camera that made awesome photos. Later I found out it was a Russian knock-off. The photos all sucked after that.
     
  17. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    +1

    Jeff
     
  18. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    That's quite a statement to make based on a sample size of... two.
     
  19. hdeyong

    hdeyong Subscriber

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    I can add two more.
    My wife and I did a house sit in South Carolina, and the owners had a Mercedes 500 series and a Cadillac, both mid-seventies, bought new about six months apart, the Mercedes cost almost three times as much as the Caddy. They both had about 155,000 miles on them when we were there, and the Caddy was on the go regularly, because the Mercedes was always broke down. if it wasn't the transmission, it was the electrics, and then the timing chain broke, and that cost another $1800. Meanwhile, the Caddy had had nothing but routine maintenance, and was still going strong. Mercedes and the like are really good, for about six or seven years, and then look out.
    Thanks, I'll take a Ford or a Chevy and an Olympus or a Canon any day.
     
  20. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    I found the Cadillac v8-6-4 cars particularly amusing. http://content.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1658545_1658533_1658524,00.html

    And let's not foget the GM Diesel of roughly the same era.By the way, what were the maintenance histories of those two cars?

    A friend has as a regular driver a 1963 Mercedes 220 Sb, something like 160,000 miles on the engine I rebuilt in 1995 at 280-something thousand. Beyond regular maintenance he has had no problems with it. :smile:
     
  21. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    Go to Detroit to see the american engineering and Tokyo to count radiation from mighty japanese engineering.
     
  22. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    Not doubt there's some good American-made cars and some crappy German ones but my 1981 VW Scirocco GTI was one awesome car back in the day. My more recent 1996 BMW 325i and now-owned 2009 BMW 328i Sport were/are absolute dreams to drive and I've had no problems. My god BMW's handle well.
     
  23. Salem

    Salem Member

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    When you buy a Leica you're buying the assurance that this camera meets Leica's standards regardless of where it's made. The same thing when you buy Apple's iPad; you're buying the assurance that this chinese tablet meets the high standards of Apple.
     
  24. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    :laugh::laugh::laugh:
     
  25. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    You are better off looking at Boeing if you want the best of American engineering.
     
  26. Ulrich Drolshagen

    Ulrich Drolshagen Subscriber

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    The label "made in germany" had been created in midth 19th century to help the british people to tell mediocre german industrial products from superior british made. As everyone knows, it did didn't serve its intended purpose right from the beginning and it does not in its changed interpretation now. Besides machine building and some other heavy industries I do not know of any significant industrial production which can claim to be really made in germany. Over all, supply chains are global nowadays. AFAIK Volkswagen labels its cars and any parts "made by Volkswagen", as do other automobile manufacturers as well.