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Leica repairs, maintenance, cleaning and customer service

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Die Möglichkeiten einer Leica Reparatur sind zunehmend "begrenzt". Nur wenige verbleibende Fachwerkstätten bieten qualifizierten Service neben dem werkseigenen Kundendienst "Leica Customer Care".

Wir bieten Reparatur und Wartung für alle analogen Leica M Kameras und Objektive.

The maintenance and repair of a Leica camera or a Leica lens via the manufacturer's own customer service "Leica Customer Care" in Wetzlar is certainly the best option for an excellent result.

Indeed Leica repairs are only offered and carried out "holistically", i.e. always combined with a general review and overall coordination. This ensures optimum quality, but also increases effort and costs in accordance with the scope of every Leica maintenance listed below.

Maintenance by "Leica Customer Care" is always recommended. Nevertheless, it is a question of consideration as to the "measure" that is used here as a criterion. For example, do you give your "Mercedes Classic" exclusively to the "Mercedes Classic Center"? Surely you would only do this with extraordinary models or great love and budget.

Scope of services for a Leica camera overhaul
  • Cleaning and overhauling the shutter mechanism
  • Cleaning and repairing the multifunction wheel
  • Cleaning the main switch and time wheel
  • Adjusting the bottom cover lock
  • Repairing the engravings
  • Renewing the bottom cover foil
  • Repairing the viewfinder displays


Reparatur einer Leica M6

In addition to Leica Camera AG in Wetzlar (Leica Customer Care), there are various Leica-authorized companies that can repair almost any Leica camera. However, due to the availability of spare parts, repairing a classic screw thread model is much more difficult than with the later Leica M cameras. An early Leica IIIa or IIIb can therefore be completely uneconomical to buy or maintain when repairs are due. In contrast, a Leica M3 and M2 can still be easily repaired, and repair shops can still access spare parts from Leica Camera AG, some of which are as good as new. The prices for this are high, however.

Figure on the right: New leather covering on a Leica M3 - original spare parts from Leica

In addition to the repair shops authorized by the manufacturer, there are specialized workshops that can repair and maintain Leica cameras. Thanks to the technical overhaul, a very beautiful and well-preserved Leica is in a perfect overall condition.

Leica cameras are certainly among the most stable and reliable cameras that have ever been manufactured. They are built as everyday objects that should work for years. And so some Leica M3s still work reliably today - after more than 50 years - “as on the first day”. Certainly also because regular maintenance of their equipment was a matter of course for Leica photographers.

A well-cared for Leica will function perfectly for a long time and this condition can be maintained by a Leica customer service or a specialized repair shop. And thus also the value of a classic Leica camera, for which high prices are still paid today when buying and selling.

Typical abnormalities with Leica cameras

Misaligned rangefinder / rangefinder

The distance setting via the cross-sectional image in the rangefinder of the camera shows a perfectly congruent subject, but the images are not “on point” . While with a mirror reflex camera the subject is reflected through the lens into the viewfinder and thus the actual sharpness can be determined, the impression of sharpness with the rangefinder can deviate from the actual result. The image visible in the viewfinder does not correspond to the view through the lens. Deviations are possible that can only be detected afterwards during film development and enlargement - or in the case of digital Leica cameras with rangefinder on the camera display. Since the preview on the camera display is quite small, the viewer usually only notices blurring when editing on the computer.

screws, screw heads

The screw heads of used Leica cameras should be checked. Overzealous users sometimes try to repair their Leica.
Mostly it stays with the attempt, because a Leica is a precision instrument and overwhelms some ambitious hobbyists.
Past repairs are made In any case, Leica or authorized workshops do not leave any destroyed screw heads behind.


Closure sequence

Will be used at With a mechanical Leica camera, if the shutter speed is set to 1/15 second and released, the shutter process must be clearly audible and distinguishable:

  • First the first roller blind runs from left to right over the picture window up to approx. 2mm behind the left edge.
  • Before the 1st roller blind reaches its end position, the 2nd blind runs "behind", the distance between the two processes is regulated by the inhibitor iert.
  • As soon as the braking effect of the inhibiting mechanism for the 2nd shutter roller blind has ended, the roller blind moves over the picture window. The kinetic energy of the 2nd roller blind sets a gear train in motion and generates a typical noise. In its end position, the 2nd roller blind then slightly overlaps the 1st roller blind.
  • After the two blinds have run down, the retarding mechanism is returned to its original state by a spring ("tensioned"), a typical "residual noise" becomes audible.

  • In addition, the closing sequence of both shutter blinds
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    Leather lining

    Strictly speaking, a Leica M3 housing has no leather lining, but a coating made of so-called vulcanite. & nbsp; The material often becomes brittle and crumbles over a long period of use and storage
    Even for Leica cameras such as a Leica M3 from the 1950s, replacement leathers are still available from the manufacturer. In addition, there are tailor-made replacement leather coverings in many colors and in perfect quality from other manufacturers. In this case, leather or artificial leather is actually used and not vulcanite.

    Leica M lens coding

    Older Leica M lenses can now be optimized for digital photography. The lenses are retrofitted with 6-bit coding including new markings on the bayonet ring. Digital Leica M cameras use these markings to identify the type of lens and optimize the image quality using the software. Older M lenses with their characteristic imaging performance can also be used for contemporary digital photography. If this subsequent 6-bit coding is carried out at Leica Customer Care, the lens is always adjusted, which is helpful for digital cameras, since the tolerances for the focal plane are considerably lower than for analog photography with film.

    Lens adjustment
    During manufacture, all Leica M lenses are intensively tested for their focusing accuracy. After years of use, there may be minor inaccuracies in the focusing mechanism, which in most cases are within a range of less than 0.002 mm. These inaccuracies are not relevant in analog photography, but they are relevant in digital photography. Thanks to the brilliant imaging performance and the high resolution of the Leica M sensor, the images are rich in contrast and the images show even the smallest details. In this way, any inaccuracies in focusing can also be identified. Because of the shallow depth of field, long focal lengths and open apertures are particularly susceptible to such inaccuracies. A special adjustment service enables Leica M lenses to be adapted to the high demands of modern digital photography.


    Sensor cleaning on digital Leica

    Over time, dust inevitably accumulates on the sensor of digital cameras.

    Blurry dark spots can be seen in the pictures, especially when using small aperture values. The camera sensor is dedusted and cleaned with a professional sensor cleaning service.

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    Online-Reparaturanfrage stellen
    Hier können Sie einen Reparaturauftrag herunterladen
    und eine Reparatur beauftragen.

    E02 error with Leica Minilux


    Some Leica Minilux cameras show a "typical E02 error" that appears in the display after switching on the camera appears (error message E02 in the display).
    The problem is known with many similar cameras with a retractable lens (including others Manufacturer). The control and data transfer takes place via a cable harness (electronics) inside the camera, which is bent and kinked under the load of the constant retraction and extension of the lens (e.g. when switching on and off or when focusing and zooming movements) and ultimately breaks.

    If you have a defective Leica Minilux with E02 error have not yet "lost" the camera in the display, further information can be found  here .

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