Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2005/04/21

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Subject: [Leica] End of an Era, Tak of Mac Camera Retires
From: s.dimitrov at (Slobodan Dimitrov)
Date: Thu Apr 21 10:33:00 2005
References: <>

It's the disposal after use that concerns the city.
We need to have a paper trail showing what is done with the chemistry.
The city engineer assigned to look into this does not have a formal 
background with photo industry practices.
S. Dimitrov

On Apr 21, 2005, at 9:25 AM, GREG LORENZO wrote:

> Slobodan, Patterson (I believe) makes environmently friendly dark room 
> chemicals. Have you looked into this?
> Regards,
> Greg
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Slobodan Dimitrov <>
> Date: Thursday, April 21, 2005 9:09 am
> Subject: Re: [Leica] End of an Era, Tak of Mac Camera Retires
>> Once B/W hits $15 to $20 a roll, for quality film, that will be
>> just
>> about enough for the amateur at play.
>> I'm already having permit and disposal problems with the City of
>> Los
>> Angeles over the photo center at Angels Gate Culture Center.
>> I'm currently looking for a white knight like Waste Management,
>> etc.,
>> who can take over that problem as write-off with a non-profit.
>> I suspect that in the not too far off future home processing for
>> the
>> amateur will become a felony offense because of hazardous waste.
>> Although in Los Angeles County each household is allowed 150lbs of
>> haz-mat materials per year. That's more than enough for the
>> average
>> home printer.
>> S. Dimitrov
>> On Apr 20, 2005, at 12:37 PM, wrote:
>>>  It is obvious that the midrange collectibles are losing value
>>> quickly. In
>>> Tokyo the "mint" M3's and M4's are now at a price level that a
>> couple
>>> of years
>>> ago would have got you a user version of the same camera. My
>> feeling
>>> is that we
>>> are looking at an "adjustment" as the stock brokers call it.
>>> Remember the classic car bubble in the 90's. Cars that sold for
>> $10
>>> million+
>>> are now lingering at the specialist stores for 20-30% of that
>> price
>>> with no
>>> takers even at that discount!
>>>  There are only so many collectors out there and most of them
>> have all
>>> the
>>> rare stuff already. The big market was the collector/user market
>> and
>>> that is
>>> changing as we speak. I am fairly typical of that market segment
>> and
>>> albeit I am
>>> willing to pay fair value for a M2/M3 or Nikon SP I now have
>> more than
>>> I can
>>> comfortably use (and justify). When I go to stores in Tokyo or
>> to swap
>>> meet
>>> here in Vancouver I am no longer looking for cameras, I look for
>>> lenses,
>>> accessories and "gadgets" instead.
>>>  The one camera that I am buying at the moment is the Nikon F - my
>>> justification is that I need several bodies for my experimental
>>> Rapidwinder F (extremely
>>> limited production of 6-7 of them) but truth be told - I just
>> like that
>>> camera. It is one of the most brilliant designs in 35mm camera.
>> You
>>> can add motors,
>>> meter prisms, special finders, etc. or you can strip it down to
>> a
>>> basic box.
>>> Lenses are plentiful and cheap (and good!). Oh, it is noisy and
>> not
>>> very
>>> sophisticated but that is the charm of that camera. It is the
>> SLR
>>> equivalent of the
>>> Leica M2 or Nikon S2. Unfortunately other people have realised
>> that
>>> too and
>>> prices are creeping up. "Beater" bodies used to be $ 50-75 and
>> are now
>>> almost
>>> double that. On the other hand I can buy 8-10 of them for what a
>> user
>>> M3 or M2
>>> would be! At the latest swap here in Vancouver I got a Nikon F
>> with a
>>> Prism
>>> finder (dented and scratched but clear prism) and an early
>> 28/3,5 for
>>> $120!
>>>  Karen's hope for a clean Nikon SP for US$ 1500 is quite
>> feasible. In
>>> the
>>> last year prices in Tokyo have dropped by almost 40% and will
>> probably
>>> drop
>>> further after the introduction of the Limited Edition black
>> paint
>>> Nikon SP. It is a
>>> gorgeous camera and I would dearly love one, but at $7000+ I can
>>> resist it
>>> (now the lens is an other matter - a modern 35/1,8 could be
>>> interesting and most
>>> likely a bit more flare resistant than my old one).
>>>  As for the slow decline in black and white film availability -
>> I
>>> suspect
>>> that in the future we will have to seek out speciality stores
>> for our
>>> needs.
>>> Kodak claims that they will continue to make films like Tri-X
>> for the
>>> foreseeable
>>> future (however, they did not define "foreseeable"). It could be
>> that> black/white film and chemicals will be more of an "artist"
>> supply than
>>> an "imaging
>>> store" supply.
>>>  The biggest problem is going to be chemicals - Kodak is getting
>> out
>>> of it
>>> and even basic stuff like Metol, Hydroquinone, and Phenodine is
>>> getting
>>> difficult to find and the prepackaged stuff - D76, Microdol-X
>> etc. in
>>> the stores now
>>> is more often than not old stock. Well, pick up a copy of Steve
>>> Anchells'
>>> "Darkroom Cookbook" and make your own. The Photographers
>> Formulary
>>> stocks most of
>>> everything you need and as a bonus - it is considerably cheaper
>> than
>>> buying
>>> "ready-mix". We should remember that the idea of packaged
>> developer is
>>> fairly
>>> recent. As late as the 50's it was quite common to mix your own
>> from
>>> scratch
>>> (with the added benefit of adjusting formulas to your own
>> shooting
>>> style).
>>>  As for film, try the Chinese "Lucky" - its 400 ASA film is
>> quite
>>> good. The
>>> base is different from Tri-X but the sharpness and grain is good
>>> (grain is
>>> finer than Tri-X). You can develop it as if it is Tri-X in D-76
>> but in
>>> Xtol it
>>> does not work very well (almost two stops off!) At $ 1,69/roll
>> it is a
>>> bargain
>>> and as I buy film in quantity (600-1200 rolls at a time) a $2
>> saving
>>> per roll
>>> makes a big difference. The difference pays for a couple of
>>> interesting lenses
>>> or more camera bodies - or even more important - airline tickets
>> to
>>> places I
>>> haven't been to yet!
>>>  There seems to be enough interest among camera users to ensure
>> that
>>> the old
>>> mechanical cameras will survive and the black/white devotees
>> among us
>>> might
>>> have to change some of our ways, but for the foreseeable future
>> I
>>> think we are
>>> safe. Maybe if enough of us ask Epson or HP for a dedicated
>>> black/white printer
>>> they will make it. I would use it for proofing but for final
>> prints -
>>> nothing
>>> beats fiber base in a darkroom - at least in my opinion.
>>> Tom A
>>> ---------------------
>>> Tom Abrahamsson
>>> Vancouver, BC
>>> Canada
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Leica Users Group.
>>> See for more information
>> Slobodan Dimitrov
>> _______________________________________________
>> Leica Users Group.
>> See for more information
> _______________________________________________
> Leica Users Group.
> See for more information
Slobodan Dimitrov

Replies: Reply from dorysrus at (Don Dory) ([Leica] End of an Era, Tak of Mac Camera Retires)
In reply to: Message from gregj.lorenzo at (GREG LORENZO) ([Leica] End of an Era, Tak of Mac Camera Retires)