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  1. #1
    cliveh's Avatar
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    Most difficult 35mm camera to load

    What do APUGers think is the most difficult camera to load? Although I hate to admit it, the old Leica’s must be near the top of the list. Even an M2 is not the sort of camera you could reload while running across a battle field.

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  2. #2

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    For me, Leica IIIf, I found it a real pain in the a**. Leica M3 was very simple by comparison. I'm not normally that fussy about how hard a camera is to load, but it's not enjoyable at all, I can load a 4x5 film holder both sides faster.

  3. #3
    heterolysis's Avatar
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    I hate loading my Nikkormat FTN. The film never catches! I took to taping the leader to the take-up spool years ago...

  4. #4
    Eric Rose's Avatar
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    While some might feel the M3 is ok to load, for me it's a major pita. I've lost some good shots due to it's fiddlyness. Just couldn't get the darn film to catch - grrrr. OTH my M5 is a dream. Funny I never had a problem with my Nikkormat Ftn, loved that camera.
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  5. #5
    darkosaric's Avatar
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    Leica screw mount and Soviet copies - I tried to load old Zenit C (got it because it is one of the smallest 35mm SLR ever) - after 3 films with 0 successful frames - I sold the camera. And yes, I tried with bulb option, I trimmed the film as explained ... it is pain. M3 and M6 are super easy - almost easy as nikon F3.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by heterolysis View Post
    I hate loading my Nikkormat FTN. The film never catches! I took to taping the leader to the take-up spool years ago...
    Is the spool damaged? I can load mine in a hurry by holding the roll in my left palm, thumbing the leader into the slot, giving the spool a half turn with said thumb, sliding the roll into position, closing the back with my right thumb and voila!

  7. #7

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    I guess the old Leica is difficult to load but I never used one so I don't know. Funny I have a hard time loading the autoload camera like my Nikon F5. Many times the film wouldn't lay flat for me to close the cover correct for the film to load.

  8. #8
    heterolysis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh View Post
    Is the spool damaged? I can load mine in a hurry by holding the roll in my left palm, thumbing the leader into the slot, giving the spool a half turn with said thumb, sliding the roll into position, closing the back with my right thumb and voila!
    So I'm alone? I guess that's a good thing. It's been this way for 15+ years... The leader doesn't really go into the slot. Not enough for the one little tooth to catch. Will play around with it, there's still hope!

    EDIT!

    With all my might I jammed the lead of some Tri-X in and it went. I am amazed. Something must have been lodged in there---I almost lost some fingers one winter trying to load it!

  9. #9

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    Yes, the bottom loader Leicas, Canons, Zorkis and FEDs win the prize here, no question. The Ms are a darn sight better, but still a chore compared with cameras with swing-open backs and fixed spools.

  10. #10
    John_Nikon_F's Avatar
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    Nikon bodies are easy to load. Even the F with its non-hinged removable back. Just loaded up the FT3 with a roll of Velvia. Took all of 10 seconds from start to finish.

    The early Leicas and other copies are kind of a pain...

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