Once again my neighbor has loaned me a camera, in this case a Leicaflex SL that he bought second-hand in the 90’s for about 200 EUR and subsequently used for several years. In loaning me this camera, Alvar has given me the opportunity to try it as well as writing a new article for 35mmc, and for that I am really appreciative.
The Leicaflex SL is in good condition with only a slight bump on the top cover and a scrape on the Summicron-R f:2 / 50mm lens. Everything works even the light meter that still has the battery from the 90s works fine.
Holding it in my hands I remembered the Leica IIIf and the Leica M3 that I had in my younger years. I even took the liberty of gently touching the textile curtain with a finger. My ecstasy came when I looked through the viewfinder though, it was amazing – I had never seen such a clear and large image, not even my Pentax ME could overshadow it.
I’m not going to do a review, instead I decided I was just going to shoot with Miss Leicaflex SL, see what happens, and share some of the photos and experiences.
First I loaded it with a color film (Kodak Plus 200) and went for a walk with my wife taking pictures of my neighborhood in Barcelona. The last stop of the morning was at FotoJoma where I opened the camera and handed over the film for its processing. It was Friday and on Monday I already received the photos by Wetransfer. The photos were almost perfect – almost as detailed in fact as photos shot with advanced digital camera (forgive the insult). You can see some of them below.
Some days later, I loaded the Leicaflex SL with a roll of expired Kodak 400X that Alvar had given me, and we went out again to walk Miss Leicaflex SL through Barcelona. Within a few days I received the files, here are some of them:
It has been a nice few days, I have not had to repair anything on the Leicaflex SL (a strange experience for me) and everything has turned out perfect. But, I feel I have to criticize something. I alway do, whatever happens.
I have found two subjective defects in the Leicaflex SL. Though taking into account its age and that the cameras are not made to be perfect for the individual user, I feel they can be classified as very slight.
- The photometer is activated by opening the frame advance lever. So, if you use, like me, the left eye, you close the lever with your forehead and it is no longer activated. I just used my right eye.
- The camera is heavy. This is in keeping with cameras of this ilk and era. Although it is not my custom, I hung it on its strap,
I already returned the camera to Alvar. It crossed my mind to steal it (just kidding) – I still have two cameras of his property that you will see in future articles, one of them may have been the camera that gave me the greater satisfaction making an article.
As for the walks, Miss Leicaflex SL, my wife and I have had a great time – but now she (the camera) will rest for a few more years.
Thanks for reading my article, I hope you liked it.