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Best place for Leica CLA in 2018?
Old 09-05-2018   #1
mmartin09
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Best place for Leica CLA in 2018?

I've been a little out of touch with the leica scene for a couple of years. Last time I looked into it, the three big names for Leica CLA were DAG Camera, Sherry Krauter, and Youxin Ye. Are these still the go to names? Who would you recommend now? I have an M4 that i picked up and have no idea if/when it was last CLAd. I'm looking for good quality work. I don't need super quick turn around, but I don't want it to take months either.
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Old 09-05-2018   #2
ktmrider
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All three are still around. I have used both Youxin Ye and Sherry Krauter and have been very pleased with both. Ye has the quickest turn around time and responds quickly to emails but currently my favorite film camera is an M5 and Sherry is the Queen for M5's.
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Old 09-05-2018   #3
samuelphoto
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DAG is the best. He’ll do wonders with your M4. Don’t let anyone else touch your lenses unless you send them to Leica in NJ which costs a fortune and takes forever.
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Old 10-27-2018   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmartin09 View Post
I've been a little out of touch with the leica scene for a couple of years. Last time I looked into it, the three big names for Leica CLA were DAG Camera, Sherry Krauter, and Youxin Ye. Are these still the go to names? Who would you recommend now? I have an M4 that i picked up and have no idea if/when it was last CLAd. I'm looking for good quality work. I don't need super quick turn around, but I don't want it to take months either.
These are the big three; all three have their disciples.

I have always had very good results with Sherry Krauter. The only hitch is that she is exclusively film M oriented when it comes to repairs/CLA/overhauls of camera bodies. That's the way I have always heard about Sherry's services. She also works on M lenses, I believe.

Not sure if she works on Leica R cameras, but I think she does.
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Old 10-27-2018   #5
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Originally Posted by samuelphoto View Post
DAG is the best. He’ll do wonders with your M4. Don’t let anyone else touch your lenses unless you send them to Leica in NJ which costs a fortune and takes forever.
i'd have to agree with the comment made on lenses. DAG is the only independent tech i trust 100% to do a lens overhaul.
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Old 10-27-2018   #6
bhop73
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My experience with Youxin on Leica cla was less than stellar.. I sent my M6 in for shutter capping. It was sent back three times with the same issue. I gave up the last time, it's still doing it at 1/1000 even though he claims it's good... my photos would say otherwise. I just use it at 1/500 max and only shoot 1/1000 if I really need it.

That said.. I did send him my Summicron that I bought recently. It had a stiff focus and a hair inside of it. It's perfect now. Local shop (steve's camera) wanted $400 to cla the lens. Youxin did it for $80.

I have an M2 that I bought from Sherry that she CLA'd a few months before she sold it to me. It's perfection.
I'd probably be more bummed about the M6 if I didn't like using my M2 more.
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Old 10-27-2018   #7
bhop73
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Originally Posted by bayernfan View Post
i'd have to agree with the comment made on lenses. DAG is the only independent tech i trust 100% to do a lens overhaul.
That seems weird to me. Lenses are way less complicated than camera bodies..
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Old 10-27-2018   #8
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Did you try out your M4? If it ain't broken don't fix it...
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Old 10-28-2018   #9
Larry Cloetta
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Originally Posted by santino View Post
Did you try out your M4? If it ain't broken don't fix it...
http://leicaphilia.com/the-myth-of-t...ary-leica-cla/
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Old 10-28-2018   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhop73 View Post
My experience with Youxin on Leica cla was less than stellar.. I sent my M6 in for shutter capping. It was sent back three times with the same issue. I gave up the last time, it's still doing it at 1/1000 even though he claims it's good... my photos would say otherwise. I just use it at 1/500 max and only shoot 1/1000 if I really need it.
Sadly, I have exactly the reverse story with Sherry in the middle of playing out. I'm local to her so she is (or was) my preferred tech. Dropped my M4 off with her -- she had it for well over six months and only finished it because I ended up calling her about half a dozen times. Despite the cost and wait, the result wasn't 100% either. The 1/1000th speed was off (completely blank frames) and after every frame at that speed the curtains would get nearly jammed (film advance was VERY hard). If I switched speeds to something lower, then it was good. This camera is currently on its way back from a super-fast speed adjustment by Youxin. Time will tell whether he's fixed it I suppose -- though he at least only charged $20 plus postage for the speed adjustment, so I'm not out much if it's still doing it.

EDIT: I should add that Sherry is very personable and tells wonderful stories about Leica and life in general, both on the phone and in person. I enjoyed our leisurely conversations every time I interacted with her. When I picked my cameras and lenses up, I even got to wander through her workshop at her house and marvel at the original prints she's been given over the years by famous photographer-clients.
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Old 10-28-2018   #11
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Don Goldberg DAG does terrific work!
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Old 10-28-2018   #12
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Reading threads like this one and others around here I've come to understand that there are basically only three outfits (or in this case three individuals) that a majority of RFF members are confident enough in to use themselves as well as to recommend to others.

This leads me to ask a few questions for future reference.

- Is anyone aware of the ages of the three main players involved? (This might seem somewhat insensitive, but I'm curious as to how much longer they might realistically still be capable of carrying out this work.)

- Are there any other individuals out there who are capable of performing this work, but who aren't very well known?

- Is there any detailed documentation in existence on servicing Leica M film cameras available for purchase?

Thanks all.
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Old 10-28-2018   #13
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These are good questions. But I doubt that these three are really the only ones, even in the US, able to work on Leicas, in the end these cameras are not so dramatically different from other mechanical cameras. Sure, experience is invaluable, but if the need arises, other repair people will step up. Should all camera repairers disappear for some reason, watch makers, instrument makers or gunsmiths or anyone else with fine-mechanical skill could learn to work on Leicas in little time and fill the void. Sure there might be a couple difficult months and prices could go up...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guth View Post
Reading threads like this one and others around here I've come to understand that there are basically only three outfits (or in this case three individuals) that a majority of RFF members are confident enough in to use themselves as well as to recommend to others.

This leads me to ask a few questions for future reference.

- Is anyone aware of the ages of the three main players involved? (This might seem somewhat insensitive, but I'm curious as to how much longer they might realistically still be capable of carrying out this work.)

- Are there any other individuals out there who are capable of performing this work, but who aren't very well known?

- Is there any detailed documentation in existence on servicing Leica M film cameras available for purchase?

Thanks all.
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Old 10-28-2018   #14
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One day, we may not have access to such amazing camera repair people. Use them now, if needed.
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Old 10-28-2018   #15
Doug
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Until he retired, I had a local tech in a fairly small market in Central Washington state who did a CLA on my M2 quickly and professionally. He was very experienced with mechanical cameras, not interested in working on the modern electronic wonders. Prior to meeting him I had used a shop in Seattle to service the M2's RF. The message I pick up here is that a mechanical Leica is a pretty standard repair item and it might be useful to make the acquaintance of your local tech.
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