How to modify a 40mm Summicron-C (with photos)

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by monkey, Jun 21, 2005.

  1. I recently modified my 40mm Summicron-C to bring up the 35mm framelines on my M6(i.e. I took a file to it).
    There are a few posts on about this, but I never found any photos of the final result. So here are a few shots of mine.
    For details of how to do the modification go to this previous post:
    N.B. Watch out for filings, I suspect they could get into places you don't want them! I stuffed lint free rags into anywhere I wanted to protect. You might want to slip a piece of card under the 'flange' to protect the metalwork from scratches.
    I've found the 35mm framelines to be much closer to the actual 40mm than the 50mm framelines - which are brought up prior to modification. A lot of people on will advise against this mod, however, this really is a simple process - nowhere as confusing as I've made it seem!
    (This process may devalue your lens, so consider it carefully).
  2. Just to clarify; that's only one flange being filed down. Don't file any of the others...
  3. Thanks, Monkey. I'm going to save this! Sure beats describing it about once a month to some new Summicron/Rokkor -C owner who wants to use it on an M body! I've done a few of them and with a bit of care the filings aren't really a problem. The lens is SUPERB!
  4. I don't want to play the devil's lawyer but wouldn't it be preferable to let the C-40 bring the M6 50mm frame up ? A configuration I've used on a friend's M6 once.

    Thus you shoot with a lens which takes a picture matching a virtually wider frame than the one you see in the viewfinder - quite easy to be back to your original composition under the enlarger then.

    On the contrary, bringing up a wider frameline than the frame the lens will shoot could be a little bit annoying just because you might be left with something you saw in the VF while composing and which is finally missing on the actual picture.
  5. BTW, I notice your 'cron is wearing that nice vented 40.5mm metal hood by "heavystar" - I erroniously bought one for a Canon 1.5 just to find out that the Canon uses the very uncommon 40mm thread...:-(( So, I'm left with one I would like to find a better home for - preferably along with the similarly as new 40.5mm to 46mm step up ring for 46mm filters on said 'cron. Both of these together, shipped worldwide, I'm offering for USD 30, Paypal. Cheers.
  6. Yes, that's the Heavystar hood - very nice indeed, especially at the price. BUT, mine's the 39mm version for the Leitz lens.
  7. OCULUS New York

    OCULUS New York Still shooting, but posting less here.

    Lutz, I want that hood if you still have it. Have emailed you.

    Ray Hull
  8. You have taken off way more metal than needs to be removed. You don't need to take off a big corner of metal - just a few strokes with a small needle file on the shoulder of the flange will do the job. As for using the 50 frames - well the 50frames on an M6 only show about 2/3rds the film area with a 50 lens so with a 40 lens you are probably framing less then 1/2 the film area - using the 35 frames alows near perfect framing and maximum use of the film area.
  9. Congratulations, Monkey, now your 40 mm lens won't bring up the correct frameline on any camera at all!

    For a M camera, I would prefer the Summicron 35 type III or IV, that has a very similar fingerprint. Some even prefer the bokeh of the 35!

    If you really prefer the C-40/2.0, buy a CL, eventually as a second camera. This combo is wonderful for travelling and street shooting, however now probably surpassed by the CM with its excellent 40/2.4 lens.
  10. When I use the 40mm, I just toggle the frame lever a little so that the viewfinder displays *both* the 50mm and the 35mm lines. Any reason I shouldn't be doing that ?

    As an inveterate fumble-fingers I cringe at the thought of taking a file to anything more valuable than a fingernail ... and for that of course I use clippers.
  11. Congratulations, Monkey, now your 40 mm lens won't bring up the correct frameline on any camera at all!
    Actually, it brings up the 35mm frame perfectly. Not sure why you think otherwise.
    I filed a small bit off at a time until it did so.
  12. My understanding is that even the filed-down 40mm will continue to actuate the 40mm lines on the CL/CLE bodies by default, no ?

    (Don't have a CL/CLE so I can't verify this myself.)
  13. For a M camera, I would prefer the Summicron 35 type III or IV, that has a very similar fingerprint. Some even prefer the bokeh of the 35!
    I remember some recent sales on eBay, prices seemed to be 3 times more for the 35mm 4th generation "King of Bokeh".
    Of course, I'm clearly no expert : )
  14. Well, me too, I'm no Leica expert either, but I certainly do use the frame lever a lot. For my 2/40, I measured the distances where the 50mm frame is "preciser", and where -- basically for the majority of distances -- the 35mm frame is "better". I often think that many of us here don't use the frame lever very much, or, even at all.
  15. OCULUS New York

    OCULUS New York Still shooting, but posting less here.

    Monkey et al.
    I am interested in Lutz's metal Heavystar hood, but we suspect that it is the wrong size for my Wetzlar S'cron Ser. 5.5 lens (#2591xxxx).

    Can anyone confirm what size Ser. 5.5 is? I thought 39.5mm (My thread actually measures about 38.3 iniside diameter). And the push-on original cap is marked 35.5...

    Lutz's sounds like a larger version?? We're both unsure.


    Ray Hull
  16. <If you really prefer the C-40/2.0, buy a CL,...>

    Then we'll have Frank II !
  17. Monkey et al. I am interested in Lutz's metal Heavystar hood, but we suspect that it is the wrong size for my Wetzlar S'cron Ser. 5.5 lens (#2591xxxx).
    I think you're right - I'd used an old 39mm Hoya filter with the glass removed, which 'bit' ok, as a hood for some time. I simply screwed the 39mm Heavystar hood onto the Hoya filter (glassless) - solid as a rock.
    I'm fairly sure that the Wetzlar lenses are 39mm, BUT with a different thread pitch. Where's Huw when you need him?!!?
    If you don't mind a little butchery, and I mean a little, 39mm seems to fit ok. Your mileage may vary. (YMMV?)
    Oh, for fox sake, I sound like a gearhead!!!
  18. OCULUS New York

    OCULUS New York Still shooting, but posting less here.

    Well, Monkey, the CL manual emphatically says that the Leica E39 filters etc. will NOT fit.

    However, checking Kisselbach's book, he says the screw thread on the CL lens is M39x.0.75, but, that it does not correspond to Leica filters E 39. He also says Ser 5.5=36mm--that's the drop-in filter that is held in place by the hood.

    So, I guess the Heavystar 39 is what I need, but that appears to be different from Lutz's.

    Since both of my lenses (40 and 90) have original runner hoods intact, I am not in a hurry to bung up threads. Anyone with first- hand comparison is welcome!

    Thx Monkey.

    Ray Hull
  19. Ray, the threads on my 'Cron are certainly a little shinier than they were, i.e. there has been some paint removed. However, they still hold the filter ring and hood combination on securely. I suppose it depends on whether you want to 'get by' or 'get the real thing'.<p>Personally, I don't care too much. I've always played rough with my toys, my best loved ones are pretty ugly. (Apologies for the oxymoron).
  20. In other words; the Heavystar 39mm filter will cut your 40mm Summicron, but it will only be a fleshwound...
  21. I've just checked my heavystar 39mm on the Summicron C and it actually
    seems to fit perfectly, doesn't feel like it's cross threaded. Not a huge
    difference wrt how it fits on the 35mm Summicron. I still like the collapsible
    hood, though. <p>
    Michael E, you might be right re the M2, M3 and M4, but the 40mm is a pretty
    good fit for M6 35mm framelines. Is the V4 35/2 Summicron really 4 times as
    good as the Summicron C?? And the Summi C doesn't have the mechanical
    'issues' that occasionally afflict the V4 35/2.
  22. Michael S, thats not quite correct. The CL has its 40mm framelines always visible but on the CLE its 28mm framelines are the ones constantly visible. This modification makes the lens useless on a CLE.

    Monkey I think you too too much metal off as well. You have filed the corner off diagonally when it only requires slight filing at the flat face 90 degrees out and maintain that angle the whole time. To get the 50mm framelines to appear the way you have done it requires considerably more metal to be removed that required. The flange is almost gone! I bet rear lens caps will never clip on with the flange like this either. Hopefully the other 3 will hold the rear cap on. Sorry but although this way would work its not the best way to do it. I wouldnt be saving these photos Al.
  23. Karen Nakamura has the answer re:filter thread in one of her very informative Leica CL pages:
    "The one caveat is that while the 40mm Summicron-C uses a 39mm filter thread, it's 39mm x 0.75mm. Standard Leica filters use a 39mm x 0.5mm. It's unclear why Leica chose to use a non-standard thread on this lens."
    Apart from this, there is another heap of info to be found in this thread, amongst which:
    "Victor Mayes , may 25, 2005; 08:20 p.m. The Summicron C will accept 39mm-the M-Rokkor will need 40.5mm."
  24. OCULUS New York

    OCULUS New York Still shooting, but posting less here.

    Thanks all! Since my collapsable rubber hoods are both in solid (if kinda wrinkled) condition, I think I'll stick with them, and avoid bunging up those threads.

    One last thought: anybody got any rubber lube suggestions for my wrinkled hoods? (OK, please avoid the sexual innuendo replies too) Don't know what glycerine would do, but that used to be considered some sort of balm for rubber. Then, who knows if these are real natural or synthetic or even silicone rubber??

    Ray Hull
  25. I have a hood on my CL made from the original hood's metal part epoxied inside a Series VI hood where the Series VI filter would fit. Trim the remaining rubber down until it's a good tight fit in the hood then glue it in place.
  26. Another hood option for the 40c is to cut the rubber hood away from the retaining ring and then fit a plastic rectangular hood for a 35 cron on to it.
    The 35 hood is rigid and smaller than a heavystar (which I really like, especially the price) and still allows the use of a 5.5 filter.
  27. A useful (I hope) addition to an old thread: on my M6, I also vastly prefer using the 35 framelines, but I didn't want to permanently change the way my Rokkor-M worked. So I borrowed another idea I've found on the Web (can't remember where now, or I'd credit the author--it's definitely not original with me).
    Take the lid off a plastic film container--I've found the Ilford ones work best, and if you use a black one, it will not be so visible on your camera--and cut a small pie-shaped piece out of it. If you slip the pointy end under the frame selector lever, you can brace the rounded end against the lens mount ring, and it will hold the frame preview lever in the 35 position.
    It won't damage the camera, as it's simply doing what you do when you manually toggle the preview lever over to see what things look like through the 35 framelines, and obviates the need to modify the lens. Cheap, simple and non-destructive--the ideal DIY fix!

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