Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/09/20

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Subject: RE: [Leica] Lens Cleaning
From: "Fantoni, Ernesto" <Fantoni@PHIBRED.COM>
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 1998 08:21:24 -0500


I copy you a message that, on April 98, Don Mc Clure posted to the list
about the topic you are interested in.I never tried it,though.




I don't know about Summarits, but I did dismantle and clean my "free" 
Summar last week. It had big chunks of black paint floating around in it

between the two main lens groups.

1.   Remove the tiny screw near the rear end of the lens tube. Promptly 
lose it by dropping it in your computer keyboard. I did. Or you can work

over a tray (white, so you can see parts) at about shoulder level. Then 
you can get close and be able to see what you are doing. Set your 
adjustable chair down real low. You will need a very small screwdriver, 
available from Sears. Well, not really. Screwdrivers this small aren't 
too common, you may need to file one down to fit.

2.   Unscrew the bayonet part of the collapsible mount. Wear gloves, the

bayonets will shred your fingertips.

3.   Unscrew the rear lens group with a spanner wrench. I got mine from There are lots of other goodies there too, including 
the proper screwdriver.

4.   Blow out paint chips between the two lens groups with compressed 
air--non-ozone depleting aerosol, if you believe that stuff.

5.   If there is haze on the inner surfaces of the two groups, clean
lens tissue. Mine was clean. This Summar (No. 407xxx from about 1937) 
must not have spent much time on the Left Coast. Be careful, because the

iris is right there, ready to get snagged with your lens tissue. It is 
quite complex, a real marvel. Mine must have 20 leaves in it. They don't

make 'em like that anymore.

6.   Carefully replace the missing paint on the edge of the rear group 
with Testors flat black model paint and a small brush. Actually, I
do this. It is a Summar, after all, and it is going to flare anyway. I 
just brushed off the remaining paint. Maybe I will open it up again 
sometime and do it right. 

7.   As the cheap car manuals say, reverse the above to reassemble. The 
hard part is getting the tiny screw back in. Ed Romney has a special
of tweezers to assist with this. My Summar is as good (or bad or 
interesting) as new, ready for another 60 years of photography. It will 
outlast me.

I guess Summars aren't worth much. Mine was free (Thanks again, DC!). It

didn't hurt to experiment with it. But a Summarit is worth much more...

Don McClure
Leica Cheapskate (by necessity)
Abingdon, MD

- -----Original Message-----
From: Gary Elshaw []
Sent: domenica 20 settembre 1998 14.51
Subject: [Leica] Lens Cleaning