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  1. #21

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    Wise move or not depends on the price. If it is inexpensive (>$50) then no problem, however, with the low cost of an F3 these days ($150), an F3 is probably a better choice.
    Frank made an excellent point.. I have both, and while I love the EL2 with drive, if I had to decide between it or my F3HP w/MD4...I'd have to go with the F3. I had no idea the F3's had got so cheap on Ebay.

    Mike

  2. #22
    John_Nikon_F's Avatar
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    Yep, and KEH usually has F3HP's in BGN grade going for $99.00.

    -J
    APUG: F4, F3P, F2ASx2, F
    DPUG: D200
    Nikkors: 18-70/3.5-4.5G AF-S DX (f/D200), 24/2.8 AI, 50/1.4 AI, 50/2 H, 85/1.8 K, 105/4 Micro AIS, 180/2.8 ED AIS, 300/4.5 ED AI

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  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neanderman View Post
    I love mine. It's the only camera I've ever extensively used with a winder and neither have ever given me a problem. The meter is good and the EL2 uses AI lenses (it was the first, new AI model, in fact.)

    Can't say I've noticed the battery issue, though. I've had mine for 20+ years and if I've replaced the battery a half dozen times, I'd be surprised. The key is, don't leave it on. I turn mine off pretty much each time between shots unless I'm shooting more than a few frames a minute.
    I need to pop the deck on my camera. The on-off switch doesn't seem to work, and that's probably contributing to the quick battery drain.

  4. #24

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    I appreciate the commentary here.

    John: are you saying that lithium AA bateries are lighter than alkaline AAs? Weight is not an issue for me, but I just thought I would ask.

    With regard to the conditon of a camera body, I go with KEH and EX+ only (no higher, no lower). KEH's EX grade is usually better than that of the "mint" or "like new" of eBay. I like nice cameras. I also think that the cosmetic condition of a camera is usually a fairly good indicator of the type of treatment (and perhaps the amount of use) a camera has seen.
    Last edited by FilmOnly; 03-09-2010 at 04:12 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo

  5. #25
    John_Nikon_F's Avatar
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    Yes, the lithium AA's are about half the weight of the alkalines.

    With respect to cosmetic condition, I've had a couple F3's where they were very nice cosmetically, but had mechanical/electrical issues. Both were bought locally (tend to prefer that, since I can then test stuff out before I make a purchase). One had an exposure compensation dial that wouldn't lock at "0", the other had a battery drain. Would kill off a CR 1/3N within two weeks, and, if a MD-4 was attached, would run the AA's down to the point where only one LED would light on the battery check in the same amount of time. Returned both cameras. The two ugliest F3's I've owned were both the most reliable. One was my first F3, which was the P version. Had major brassing going on, but worked like new. The other was an F3 eyelevel with the same amount of brassing, a dent on the prism, and a cracked frame counter window. Again, it functioned like new. I now have a cosmetically nicer F3P than my original, but, it needs work. If I could find out where my original body wound up, I'd buy it back in a heartbeat.

    The same experience has applied with most of the other Nikon bodies I've owned. The uglier the body, usually the better it works. There have been a couple exceptions for sure. My two ugliest FM2n's both had meter issues. One had a very twitchy meter display, the other had a nice and smooth meter, but was off by a stop or so. Bought a parts body for the first one, so it could be overhauled, then with the other one, had the shop recalibrate it.
    APUG: F4, F3P, F2ASx2, F
    DPUG: D200
    Nikkors: 18-70/3.5-4.5G AF-S DX (f/D200), 24/2.8 AI, 50/1.4 AI, 50/2 H, 85/1.8 K, 105/4 Micro AIS, 180/2.8 ED AIS, 300/4.5 ED AI

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  6. #26

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    Over the past several years, I have bought about thirty EX+ (or better) bodies, and only one had a problem. The problem was probably repairable, but I chose to exchange it.

  7. #27

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    I have a Nikon EL-2 and AW-1 Winder and like the camera very much. I owned a Nikkormat EL about 15 years ago and unwisely sold it. The battery seems to last about 6 to 9 months, with the 4SR44 silver oxide type (6.2V); I just bought a replacement and it cost 1200JPY. I have also used the cheaper, 6V alkaline type but the battery life was considerably shorter. I suspect that the EL2 needs something close to 6V for the meter/shutter to work. The 'exhausted' battery from my EL2 will still power my Pentax ES or Mamiya RB67 Meter Prism. The AW-1 winder is slow and only operates when finger pressure is removed from the shutter. These older Nikons F, F2, EL2 and Nikkormats FT & EL series were very nicely made and well-cared-for examples are still a pleasure to own and use today. Most things seem to be repairable with the rights skills and know-how and good repairmen always seem to have boxes of scrap cameras from which spares can be taken. The results from my Nikon are first-rate and the exposure meter gives beautifully exposed negatives and transparencies.

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