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Thread: Blacking Out an M9

  1. #1
    Adam Marelli
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    Blacking Out an M9

    I heard that the M9 is open to "a la carte" options, but Leica just has not advertised this yet.

    Has anyone ever tried asking Leica to black out the white lettering on a black M9 or switch the red dot for a black one?

    Just as an alternative to the electrical tape option.

    Best-Adam

    http://www.adammarelliphoto.com

  2. #2
    Senior Member Per Ofverbeck's Avatar
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Marelli View Post
    ...Has anyone ever tried asking Leica to black out the white lettering on a black M9 or switch the red dot for a black one?

    Just as an alternative to the electrical tape option.
    ...
    While I donīt believe much in the theory that hiding the Leica symbols will make much of a difference in īstealthī potential, Iīve actually removed that white īM 9ī text on the front, and I donīt miss it much.

    All you need is a wooden toothpick; the white is soft enough to come off in rather large pieces. Underneath is the same black paint as on the rest of the top plate, and it wonīt get scratched by the toothpick. I wouldnīt have done it if part of the īMī hadnīt fallen off spontaneously, but it didnīt look good that way, and it was easier to remove the rest of it than to find white paint to fill in the gaps....

    As for that red dot: believe me, the only people who know what it stands for are those enthusiasts that would recognize a Leica 200 meters away even without any markings... If it did bother me, Iīd just cover it with some black enamel paint, but I can live with it as it is

  3. #3
    01af
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Marelli View Post
    I heard that the M9 is open to "ā la carte" options, but Leica just has not advertised this yet.
    Yes indeed. Moreover, you can always order a black M9 in the fine-textured leatherette that usually comes with the steel-grey version, and vice versa, at no additional cost (but possibly at the expense of a longer wait).


    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Marelli View Post
    Has anyone ever tried asking Leica to [...] switch the red dot for a black one?
    They don't.

  4. #4
    Super Duper
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    The white is easy to remove, as stated above. And it's fairly easy to replace, using a white paint stick available from Micro Tools. About $2.

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Monza - Would this same white stick work with engraved lenses? Or are the engravings too shallow and the white would flake off too easily? I've got some other (non-Leica) lenses that could benefit from some "detailing"

  6. #6
    Super Duper
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Yes, in general, depending on the depth. I have spiffed up a few lenses this way. The paint stick is fairly soft but will dry in a day or two. Apply, wipe off excess, and let dry. The deeper/narrower the engraving, the easier it is. A wide engraving like "M9" is more difficult, because when the excess is cleared off, sometimes it pulls paint out of the engravings. Takes a little time to get the right technique.

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    I have no interest in blacking out the M9 This is for some other non-M lenses. I just ordered a set. For $20, it's worth a shot.

  8. #8
    Super Duper
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Just was saying that the wider engravings are bit more of a challenge. Good luck!

  9. #9
    Adam Marelli
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Thanks Per,

    A toothpick, who would have thought. You are absolutely right about spotting a Leica from 200 yards away. I can usually tell just by the way someone holds a camera if its a Leica.

    Though recently I had a guy, who did not appear to be an enthusiast, in Egypt tell say "Nice Leica, Red Dot." Funny huh?

  10. #10
    2x2
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    You can order a Black Dot from DAG. Doing the switcheroo yourself is easy.

  11. #11
    Adam Marelli
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Hey 2x2,

    I have been checking DAG periodically for a while now, and its still listed as out of stock. Thanks-Adam
    http://www.adammarelliphoto.com

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    as for the red dot part -- i decided if you can't beat them, join them.

    i now have a bright red leather A&A strap and a Match Technical red lady bug BIP... the lady bug is all anybody talks about (the strap only occasionally and then, with lust) -- to the extent they don't even pay much attention to what camera i have...

    talk about ultimate stealth

  13. #13
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    i now have a bright red leather A&A strap and a Match Technical red lady bug BIP...
    Cam - we would expect nothing less of you
    Really glad you're enjoying your new M9 though

    all the best

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    LOL!

    i am refusing to treat it as "precious" even if it is... and, considering the relatively boring subjects i've been shooting to get used to it, i am just stunned stunned stunned!

    when i was checking out dioptres the other day, i focused wide open on a guy in the shop... turns out is was David Beckham and i didn't even notice

    (Kevin thinks i'm hopeless... but i do get in a zone...)

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    LOL!

    i am refusing to treat it as "precious" even if it is... and, considering the relatively boring subjects i've been shooting to get used to it, i am just stunned stunned stunned!

    when i was checking out dioptres the other day, i focused wide open on a guy in the shop... turns out is was David Beckham and i didn't even notice

    Did he notice? Was he buying one himself (or was it an S2)? Did you get the shot?

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    (Kevin thinks i'm hopeless... but i do get in a zone...)
    Yes, I get 'in a zone' sometimes as well . . .. it's a function of great artistic talent and proper concentration

    Just this guy you know

  16. #16
    Registred Users MoJo's Avatar
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    i like the "great artistic talent" part!

    -Josef
    My photoblog: http://josefskye.tumblr.com
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by MoJo View Post
    i like the "great artistic talent" part!
    so do i


    Jono,

    got the shot... i'm afraid, though, it looked like the man was buying something Oly (maybe) and Panasonic... *that* was OOF... will put up the shot when i land -- if i survive the arctic cold (wouldn't you know it's a gorgeous day here?)... maybe i'll get lucky and some of the flight attendants will be wearing skirts

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    so do i
    It was a kind of compliment you know - I hear they can be terribly effective, but never could get the hang of them myself.


    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    Jono,

    got the shot... i'm afraid, though, it looked like the man was buying something Oly (maybe) and Panasonic... *that* was OOF... will put up the shot when i land -- if i survive the arctic cold (wouldn't you know it's a gorgeous day here?)... maybe i'll get lucky and some of the flight attendants will be wearing skirts
    Now Now - don't get arrested!
    have a good trip.

    Just this guy you know

  19. #19
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Marelli View Post

    Has anyone ever tried asking Leica to black out the white lettering on a black M9 or switch the red dot for a black one?

    Just as an alternative to the electrical tape option.

    Best-Adam
    Hi Adam
    I would have thought that the thieves of this world had long since forgotten about Leica . . . . but all of them must know that a camera with electrical tape on it MUST be worth money.
    And anyway, anyone who knows that Leica is valuable and can't recognise the shape of a Leica M must be a very odd person.

    Why not just enjoy it as it is?

    Just this guy you know

  20. #20
    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    I enjoy and use my M9 extensively, but i love the look of the MP, I haven't chipped out the white M9 paint but I did swap to a black dot, much prettier imo

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by 01af View Post
    Yes indeed. Moreover, you can always order a black M9 in the fine-textured leatherette that usually comes with the steel-grey version, and vice versa, at no additional cost (but possibly at the expense of a longer wait).



    They don't.
    Thank you for the info. Is it possible to order an m9 without 75 and 135 frame lines (in a mp3 style)?

    Yevgeny

  22. #22
    Adam Marelli
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Hey Jono,

    The more I look at m6's that have the paint chipped out, the more I am thinking to just leave it be. The MP and the MP3 have a great look. Maybe I was just trying to put the aesthetic of one camera on the other.

    Probably best to just let them be. I would however be willing to swap for a black dot. Ever since the anniversary M6's I have loved that black dot on a black body.

    I like your sub thread about "great artistic talent." Got a kick out of that.

    Best-Adam

  23. #23
    Adam Marelli
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Daniel,

    Did you paint your dot black or buy an aftermarket one?

  24. #24
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Marelli View Post
    Hey Jono,

    The more I look at m6's that have the paint chipped out, the more I am thinking to just leave it be. The MP and the MP3 have a great look. Maybe I was just trying to put the aesthetic of one camera on the other.

    Probably best to just let them be. I would however be willing to swap for a black dot. Ever since the anniversary M6's I have loved that black dot on a black body.

    I like your sub thread about "great artistic talent." Got a kick out of that.

    Best-Adam
    HI Adam
    Thank you.

    I'm right up for black dots rather than red - different style / colour of leather, red straps; whatever - I'm no purists, just an anti-mutilationist!

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    I've chipped out the white on the M9 letters and I initially painted the red dot. It wasn't painted perfectly but it served me well while I was on DAG's wait list for the black dots. I wrote Don about the black dots while they were listed out of stock. I eventually heard back from him when he had some available. I replaced the one painted I painted and it looks great being all-black.

    I had to send my M9 for a cracked sensor repair so I had to put the painted dot back in. I've read that Leica replaces black dots with red ones so I had to save the one I had. I haven't gotten back my M9 even if the sensor has already been repaired. Apparently the vulcanite is out of stock in NJ. I only hope they send it back before the holidays even if it comes back with a red dot.

  26. #26
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    Re: Blacking Out an M9

    OK, the next problem: How do you grey-out a steel grey M9?

    On my black M9 I'd replaced the red dot with black, & was pleased to read above about chipping out the white M9 paint with a toothpick. It came out in little chunks, as if it were'nt really paint, but a kind of plastic.

    My other camera body is steel grey & wears a black dot, so I tried to do the same thing to the black M9 paint with a toothpick – but stopped before succeeding. It seems to be a different kind of paint than the white, & doesn't pop up in chips or chunks. I have a couple of tiny scratches where I can see what looks like a black undercoat on the body (though there must be brass underneath), & I was afraid of simply scraping from one layer of black into another.

    Has anyone successfully removed the black M9 paint from a steel grey one, with toothpick or otherwise?

    Kirk

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