Week 52 – Leica M6

As week 52 marks the end of my first year of 52 Cameras, I decided to close the loop with my other Leica.

14 - 1
George is on vacation, but Beth’s hardworking Octan truck driver was happy to stand in on his coffee break.
Introduced in 1984, the M6 was an evolutionary step in the rangefinder line which began with the M3 in 1954. Primary differences are a rewind crank instead of a knob, a quick-loading film system, a slightly larger viewfinder (with lesser magnification,) and most importantly a light meter. It also features a hot shoe for the flash.

M6 production ran into 1997. It was replaced by the M6/TTL which simply added Through-the-Lens flash metering to the M6 chassis. Production continued until 2003. Who else makes anything for 19 years in the modern world?

The M6 and M6/TTL hold the distinction of being the last mechanical Leicas. Although a battery is required for the light meter, the shutter continues to function without it. The later M7 introduced aperture priority automation and an electronic shutter.

The serial number of my chrome M6 body dates it to July of 1997, shortly before the upgrade to TTL flash. It is both the newest Leica and most newly acquired Leica in my collection. I’ve fitted my 1960 vintage Summilux 50mm f1.4 and loaded a roll of Ilford FP4 for the week.



Manual from Mike Butkus

Serial number guides for M-cameras and lenses

Want one of your own? I would suggest a dealer like KEH Camera or Adorama, or you could try your luck on eBay.

Rest assured 52 Cameras will continue. I have something special planned to kick off year #2, and the collection continues to grow.