The most hardcore Leica collectors would be curious to know what makes this Leica M6 special.
Now that we’ve already settled why we’re all suckers for the Leica M6, it’s time for us to share our latest Leica find from the vintage wonderlands of ebay. Today, the spotlight is on an intriguing and very rare Leica M6 simply dubbed “Leica Post M6”, one of which is listed for a dollar shy of $10,000.
While it may not be as expensive as the Leica M6A/Leica M7 prototype and the Leica M6 Platinum 150 Jahre Optik limited edition cameras, the Leica Post M6 comes with a pretty interesting story of its own. According to information supplied by Cape Town-based seller opticxchange, this curious-looking version is one of eight M6’s ordered in 1992 – 1993 by TELKOM, South Africa’s Post Office, for conversion as “Post” cameras. It has a fixed aperture of f/4 and a fixed focus SUMMICRON-M f2 35mm lens at 70 cm (approximately 0.7 m). It’s in very good cosmetic and working condition, with accurate shutter speeds and perfectly calibrated light meter. The camera body’s serial number is #2006408 and the lens’ serial number is #3062725.
As the seller notes, there’s no information online about this edition, but he found an article published in the October 2000 issue of the Leica Historical Society newsletter that tells more of its story. The Leica Post M6 cameras weren’t modified in the factory, but by local Leica service agency OPVITRONICS. A “post plate” holds together the tube fitting for the lens and the camera body to ensure fixed focus and aperture. This plate also obscures a portion of the viewfinder, which somehow discouraged “normal” use.
We know what you’re thinking — If you buy it, will you be able to have it reverted into a normal Leica M6? Well, the article says it “would only involve replacement of the frame selector lever, the rim surrounding the lens release button, and the top portion of the release button itself.” However, replacing the lens with a normal Summicron or even to re-convert the “post” lens itself proved too expensive to attempt for one of the post office technicians who bought one of these in hopes of re-converting it for normal use.
Nevertheless, this Leica Post M6 would be an interesting piece to include in a Leica collection. Should you want to add it to yours, head to the ebay listing to find out more and buy it now or make your best offer.
All images from the ebay listing by opticxchange