M2 shutter release working intermittently

G

Guest

I recently bought an M2 privately in Jakarta. It was cosmetically a bit scruffy (scuff marks on the chrome surface in places) but seemed optically and mechanically OK, i.e. a good "user".

Recently, however, the shutter release has started to operate intermittently. When I advance the film, I can press the shutter release as usual but the shutter sometimes doesn't fire. It can take several attempts before the shutter actually releases. It does this no matter what shutter speed is selected. The travel of the release button seems normal. I think it may just be a lubrication problem.

Does anyone have experience of a similar problem with an M camera? Is this something I could try to fix myself?

(This may seem like a silly question but, since I live in Jakarta, Indonesia, there are no local Leica technicians. Sending a camera for repair overseas from here is neither straightforward not cheap, especially when the camera arrives back in the country and has to go through customs.)
 
G

Guest

Dear Ray,

It is definitely something you cannot fix yourself, and opening the camera will considerably reduce the value.

I would not buy a second hand camera without having it serviced at Solms immediately. It is also not as costly as people imagine. I recently had my M2 CLA and M4 flash plugs fitted for about US$350.00.

If you need the address let me know.

Kind regards,

Justin
 
G

Guest

One other thing: After playing around with it some more, I've discovered that this failure to release only happens when the baseplate is attached. If it does happen and I then remove the baseplate, the shutter is immediately freed up and can be released normally. It's as though the baseplate were pressing on something, preventing the shutter from being released. I've examined the baseplate carefully and it doesn't appear to be bent or buckled in any way.

I should also add that, although I said earlier that the travel of the release button seems normal, the release point occurs near the bottom of its travel, i.e. it has to be pushed in a long way to release the shutter: release occurs less than 1mm from the bottom of the release button's travel.
 
G

Guest

Ray I've had the same problem on an M3 You are right the release is at the bottem of the travel. If you take off the base plate you will notice a plate attached to the camera by four screws. If there is any dust or forgien matterial between this plate and the base plate the shutter will not fire properly. Also for an M2 at this point in time you might want to consider a good CLA as there is probably dirt or hardend lubricant under thie internal plate also]
 
G

Guest

Thanks very much for the responses!

I've inspected the inside of the baseplate and the internal plate showing the loading instructions, to see if there is any foreign material or deformation of either plate that could cause unwanted pressure. I could find nothing wrong.

This is an intermittent problem and seems to occur randomly. I'm guessing that it's probably due to old lubricant drying, and causing things to stick occasionally. Having neither the necessary skills or experience to t&er with a camera, I'd better leave it alone until I can get it to a qualified Leica technician.
 
G

Guest

Dear All,

The problem of my M2 shutter got worse, to the point where it was jamming almost every shot. Removing the base-plate always freed it up so I examined it more carefully and noticed that when I pressed the shutter button, it was putting pressure on the cover (the one with the film loading diagram), to the extent that the cover was bulging visibly. With the base-plate attached, it couldn't bulge and so the shutter button couldn't be pressed fully home.

Anyway, I decided to remove the cover, being careful not to dislodge the bracket against which the main base-plate catch locks. Inside, I found a loose fragment of metal, about 3mm long, 2mm wide and 1mm thick, resting on the pivoting lever that is part of the shutter release mechanism. When I pressed the shutter button, the fragment of metal fell out. I tested the shutter fully and it worked fine, so I replaced the cover.

The camera now works perfectly - thank goodness I had a look inside! I have no idea where that metal fragment came from: perhaps it's been in there ever since the camera was built, and finally found its way to a position where it became a problem?
 
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