OT: camera damage from "the best" foam

Paul Anderson useddec at gmail.com
Sun Nov 30 16:55:49 CST 2014

Are there any Leitz microscope collectors on the list?  I wasn't planning
on putting this here but about a month or so ago I got a call from a friend
of a friend and picked up a nice collection of Leitz (and some very old
options), Olympus, Nikon, Reichert, and Zeiss microscopes and options. I
hang on to the Zeiss. There was a Leitz micro photography kit with book in
leather case. All looked unused and I'm guessing were from around 1900 or
so. No copyright in the book.

I'm always interested in hearing about Zeiss items.

I'm sorry about the loss of your friend.

On Sun, Nov 30, 2014 at 3:57 PM, Fred Cisin <cisin at xenosoft.com> wrote:

> > > When my best friend was alive, he stored his camera stuff in airtight
> > > cases in foam.
> > > After his death, I went through what was left of his stuff.
> > > One case had a Visoflex, bellows, and a Leitz Tele-Elmarit 180mm M
> > > Visoflex mount lens.  250 of those were made.  One in decent shape goes
> > > for $2K.  His was brand-new, quite possibly the last, and only one in
> > > perfect shape.  The foam ATE into the barrel of the lens, destroying
> all
> > > collector value.
> >
> > You really know how to hurt a person, don't you?  I use both film and
> digital Leica M's, including the Visoflex
> > bellows and lenses, so this is a seriously painful story.  That is one
> of the rarest Leica lenses around.
> After Chris had a heart attack and died in my kitchen, the loss of his
> camera gear was anti-climactic.
> In addition to the foam damage, the main body of his camera stuff was
> missing!  (stolen by the county agents who "secured" his house?)
> A week before his death, we were taking some snapshots at Point Lobos, and
> he promised to dig out and loan me [permanently!] a 35mm summicron, and my
> choice of rigid or collapsible 50mm summicrons.
> I was also listed for the cameras in his most recent will, although the
> house is slated for somebody else.
> But, when we got access to the house, there were some gaps on some of the
> shelves.
> I would have kept one M body, and the summicrons, and sold off whatever
> else duplicated what I already have.  How many bellows and how many 90mm
> Elmars can one want?
> On Sun, 30 Nov 2014, tony duell wrote:
> > Ouch indeed. I have a small amount of Leica M stuff (M2 and M4 bodies,
> > visoflex, 4 lenses, nothing rare). It's beautiful, although I must say
> > that I prefer a Nikon F to the Leica M+visoflex.
> So do I.  I would have kept my old visoflex and bellows, and sold off the
> Tele-elmarit and some of the rest.
> I sold the 180 Viso-M Tele-Elmarit to KEH.  They've [probably PAINTED it
> and] listed it for $1272  in "bargain (damaged) condition".
> > Fred, was this lens still usable after that. The barrel was pitted, I
> > guess, but did the focussing mount still work and was the optics OK. I
> > use my cameras, I don't collect them, so cosmetic damage is not so
> > significant (I picked up a Nikkor 180mm for a very good price because
> > somebody had scratched an inventory number on the barrel. Optically
> > perfect, so still an excellent lens)
> The glass came through OK!  There might be some very minor damage to the
> front coating.  The focusing still works, but not as smoothly, and has
> one rough spot.  The lens barrel was a lot worse than a simple asset
> marking; it looks like a kid was playing with an engraver, and then
> stored it in a puddle.
> Frankly, anybody needing something in the 180mm range has a lot of [in my
> opinion] better options in newer gear.  For example, my rangefinder
> coupled 200mm Komura or ANY SLR with a 200mm lens is WAY more convenient
> and easier to use than visoflex plus 180mm tele-elmarit - THAT is an
> extraordinary amount of weight and bulk.  Therefore, the primary value of
> that lens would have been to a collector who wants the RARE aspect, and
> they want it to look good.  Cosmetic damage is significant in THAT market.
> One of Chris' other friends really wanted the 2-1/4 x 3-1/4 Graflex with
> lenses, so I let him have it, but I kept the 47mm Super-Angulon which
> might even cover 4x5!  I am now making adapters to put it on a tilt/swivel
> bellows for playing with movements on medium format, 35mm, and digital.
> Not very difficult - it's on a Compur 00?, which seems to be the same
> threads as what Schneider used for some enlarging lenses.
> When I first opened the case, everything felt WET.  I thought that I was
> dealing with water damage.  But, a few hours later, the foam had further
> metamorphed into a dry crumbly powder.
> Chris was doing his laundry at my house (last load was in my dryer).
> Does anybody here want a whole bunch of size XXL/2XL Cabela's shirts?
> How many BIG guys are there here?
> I've mentioned, on this list his PBM1000 computers (made by Wordstar
> corp, while it was still Micropro).  But those, his books from the 1980s
> and 1990s, and his Sperry PCs got dumpstered before I got a chance to
> rescue them.
> --
> Grumpy Ol' Fred                 cisin at xenosoft.com

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