Summicron 35 version 3 edge separation?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by jonas_wikstrom, Nov 1, 2011.

  1. I have just examined a version 3 three Summicron, which I maybe will buy. It was very nice except that it has something I suspect is element separation. It extends (worst parts) 1mm out from the edge on the rear element, but only on maybe a third of the circumference. In this region it looks like the glass is broken, a zigzag pattern, visible only from certain angles.
    My questions are; will this spread further out on the surface? How will this relatively small portion of separation degrade the performance? Price? Is this version prone to separate? If you could, please post something that is a typical edge separation.
    Otherwise a very clean lens, just serviced at Kamera Service Center in Stockholm, receipt for $380.

    Thanks very much for any input.
  2. Don't buy it, seriously.
  3. I have a 35mm Summicron version 2 with a very similar edge separation problem. It hasn't changed since I bought it used eight years ago. Lens sharpness has always been good but it suffers from flare. My advice is to pass on it and find a better lens.
  4. SCL


    Walk away from it.
  5. Even with a tag of $850?
  6. It may be functional but the value is much less than the asking price. A version 2 or 3 in much better condition can be a good buy. They are between the version 1 with the desired classic look, and the vaunted version 4 and ASPH models which gather the big popularity. Keep the money in your pocket. A good one is worth waiting for. Btw, that one looks identical to mine.
  7. I would not purchase the lens. The progression of separation is impossible to predict. In my opinion, the lens was not worth the $380 price of cleaning it.
  8. OK, I get it. I'm just eager... GAS-attack you know. You can see how small the string of separation is in the last picture. It's the silverish border in the upper part.
  9. Looking at the diagram in Erwin Puts Leica Lens Compendium it looks like the rear element of the 35mm Summicron, version III does not have a cemented doublet for a rear element, though it does appear that other interior elements may be cemented. If you are sure the anomaly only affects the edge of the rear element, the flaw may be something other than separation. The edge of the element may have been scraped during disassembly or assembly for cleaning. If this is the case, the edge of the rear element might benefit from a coating of black lacquer. Can you have the lens inspected by a repair person before you decide to buy?
  10. OK, I just assumed that it was the rear element but it could have been further in. What else could it be?
  11. I'm not sure what "Just serviced" means. Did they only clean and replace the helicoid thread lubricant?.
    If a lens of mine had edge separation or any other fault for that matter, after being "just serviced", I'd be looking for a refund!
    When something goes in for a "service", be it a car or camera or anything else, I expect it to come back right. I don't expect partial results.
  12. I agree totally. I talked to the service man yesterday, he said that it wasn't an actual separation but balsam crystals and that it was of no importance. Most of the lenses that were glued with balsam have this more or less. His words.
    He cleaned and lubed the helicoid thread, cleaned the aperture blades, removed dust etc.
    I will have another look at it today, maybe take a picture with a macro lens.
  13. I thought only the canadian balsam crystalized - as you
    frequently see along the edges of m2 and m3 finders.
    Never saw it on a m4 (contemporary with the v3
    summicron) and thought they stopped using this balsam
    type in the last half of the 60's?
    Does the modern matrial really crystalize?
  14. Who serviced it and are they reputable?
  15. He must have been working with Sherry Krauter back in the 70's at Brandt Optik in Stockholm.
    I passed it.
  16. John van Stelton repaired a lens of mine that had a slight separation for about $250 some years ago. I
    am guessing that with time he may be charging a bit more (like $350).

    But then, you didn't purchase it. That's fine. Keep the name in the back of your mind in case you get
    another lens offer. His business is called "Focal Point" and he works in Colorado, USA.

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