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  1. #1

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    Leica M3 viewfinder framelines

    Recently I acquired an M3 in fine working order. The viewfinder is big and clear, something like 0.92 enlargement, very comfortable in use. There are three frames to be seen in the finder depending on the lens I put on : the standard 50mm, the 90mm and a small rectangle for the 135mm (which I don't have and probably won't want). However, I have a 75mm lens which I often use but there is no frame for that focal
    Now my question: does anybody know if it's possible to have a 75mm focal lens frame built into the M3? I've heard various other changes can be made to older Leicas to put them up to date but don't know about the viewfinder
    Any help would be much appreciated, Peter

  2. #2

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    I would not be surprised if one of the better Leica technicians could do this, perhaps Don Goldberg (DAG) or someone like that. Maybe give him a try.

  3. #3

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    Yes, this can be done. Since you're in Luxembourg, you may want to try Leica in Germany first. Or perhaps CRR Luton in England.

    Jim B.

  4. #4
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    You may also want to see if an auxiliary viewfinder can be had for the flash shoe. If Leica made a 75 mm lens, they must have made a finder for it.

  5. #5

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    thanks for good suggestions. I'll contact Leica in Germany to see if they do it and how much it costs...
    And, Artonpaper, there are some offers around on the net for external 75mm viewfinders, the best apparently is Voigtlander at a reasonable price.
    I'll keep you posted....
    Peter

  6. #6

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    You can also use the 50 finder - which is always there - and interpolate. That's not a wonderful solution but it's free and it will get you by until a better one comes along.

  7. #7

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    Hello Peter,
    I don't want to disappoint you, but the rangefinder of the M 3 is completely different (and much more complicated) from all later models, beginning with the M 2. This means that the complete rangefinder would have to be changed against a new one. In the newer models it was easier to change only the frame masks against a M 6 set. Many years ago Leitz offered this service but all factory modifications by Leitz or the Leica Customer Service are extremely expensive. I'm not sure whether they offer these modifications any longer. Some technicians refuse to work on a M 3 rangefinder since there could be a risk of separation of the prisms. The first Leica with a frame for 75 mm was the M 4 P. Maybe a used M 4 P or M 6 could be more economic than a Leica modification. The other possibility would be an external viewfinder, perhaps from Cosina/Bessa/Voigtlaender. Even today some people say that the M 3 with 0.92 x magnification was the best of all. Only the rangefinder of the MP had a similar flare free view as the M 3.

  8. #8

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    for once I was fast! yesterday a Voigtländer 75mm Brightline external viewfinder was up for last bids on ebay - got it for 31£.
    Now seeing Jochen's comments I feel convinced it was a good decision to buy it. I want to keep the M3 because I have an MP and my idea was to use theM3 for the 50-75-90 range nd the Mp for the 28-35-50. I've recently reduced my film ammunition to Fuji Neopen 400 (80%) and Delta100 (20%) I may go completely to Neopan and then the two Leicas will be my only 35mm equipmt.
    Peter



 

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