Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1999/08/02

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Subject: Re: [Leica] outsourcing components
From: "Harold Gess" <>
Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 18:17:18 +0200


Now what I wonder is this: If I buy ready made film, expose it using my
Leica, and then send it to the pro lab for someone else to process using
third party chemicals and, when necessary, print using third party paper and
chemicals, does this preclude me from being a photographer or should I be
making my own camera from raw materials, making my own film from same and
doing all the process work etc in like way?

I think not. I viewed the scene, decided on angle of view, time of day,
f-stop and speed to provide the appropriate photograph. I made a choice of
film and how I would like it processed. The fact that I outsource the
materials to others to supply and the processing work to others who I trust
to follow my instructions does not lessen the fact that it is my creative

Likewise, Leica creates a camera and lenses, and I don't give a tinker's
cuss how that creation comes into being so long as it does according to
their specifications and requirements. Hell, why do we have to decide about
what is manufactured and what is assembled and what the big difference
between the two is?

Leica creates/designs the goods, we like how they work and what they can do
so we buy them and use them. If you want to ensure that the camera you use
it "manufactured" by appropriate companies why not grow your own tree, melt
your own sand, mine and process your own ore and set to work building your
own from scratch!

Best of light


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- -----Original Message-----
From: <>
To: <>
Date: 02 August, 1999 4:14 PM
Subject: Re: [Leica] outsourcing components

>In a message dated 8/1/99 9:15:13 PM Central Daylight Time,
> writes:
><< Are you suggesting that all Apple does is assemble the iMac computer?
> that all they do?   Who designed it?  Who determines the specifications of
> all of the component parts that go into the iMac?  Who costs out the
> manufacturing process?   Who manufacturers it?  Apple does.
>  >>
>What you stated is not my view.  "Manufacture" is defined in Websters as "
>to make into a product suitable for use 2a : to make from raw materials by
>hand or by machinery b: to produce according to an organized plan and with
>division of labor" while "assemble" is defined as "the fitting together of
>manufactured parts into a complete machine, structure, or unit of a
>  If I read Mr. Puts post correctly, Solms does its best to farm out the
>manufacture of parts and Solms then assembles the parts into a complete
>camera.  Thus, Solms would be an assembler rather than manufacturer.  In
>event, if Mr. Puts is correct, the many of the parts that Solms assembles
>into cameras stamped Leica are not necessarily manufactured by Solms but
>purchased from manufacturing concerns.
>If there is some percentage of parts farmed out and parts produced
>maybe Mr. Puts would be so kind to provide a list of parts of the M-6 that
>are produced in-house by Solms and those that are produced by others than
>Solms.  Then we might have an agreed upon basis for determining whether
>is a manufacturer of the M-6.
>One post suggested the present quality is superior to that of E. Leitz
>E. Leitz used "wooden hammers" to make parts fit snugly.  I would prefer
>parts that are of such close tolerances that they had to be hand fitted
>rather than produced to such sloppy tolerances that they will work
>of how they are assembled.
>There was also the suggestion the E. Leitz cameras had numerous provisions
>for adjusting the various camera mechanisms while the Solms cameras do not.
>I have noticed a number of posts that complain the Solms cameras are
>difficult if not impossible to adjust for the very reason Solms has gone to
>less expensive components that do not allow for adjustment.
>As far as Apple is concerned, I would not define a person who drafts a list
>of specifications, shops the list where components are sold, and assembles
>the purchased components into a computer as a manufacturer of computers.
>Again, I wish to thank Mr. Puts for further enlightening us regarding who
>really making the Solms cameras.