Faces Of Your Cameras – Leica M3D Customised Film Rangefinder

Leica M3D Customised Film Rangefinder

Faces Of Your Cameras

This piece will ride with me until the end of time

Faces Of Your Cameras – Leica M3D Customised Film Rangefinder

leica-M3D-rangefinder-film-camera-m3-modification-dream-David-Douglas-Duncan-135-35mm-summilux-black-paint-customised-custom-story-faces-of-your-cameras-hennessy-lieu-5
Leica M3D modified by Hennessy Lieu

4 years ago I discovered a very unique Leica MP and its Leica M3D, a special edition made for Mr. David Douglas Duncan hence that’s why it is called M3D (D.D.D). Despite only 4 units ever made for him and a special reproduction edition M3D M-A edition only 16 units were made back in 2014. M3D is one of the most unique looking MP, with early polish shutter speed, polish M2 frame counter, and unique focusing tab design for him.

I adore his M3D and I really really want to use it, so I did one-of-a-kind recreation 1 to 1, this project took me 4 years to complete and I can proudly share the end result. I and my local technicians work together for this project so if you even ask my local technician he will never do this again. My custom M3D-11, the reason 11 is that the original 1 – 4 belongs to Mr. David Douglas Duncan, to respect his original M3D, I added another 1 next which means it is made for me and also stands for the next generation, 1 pass to another 1, if put into roman numeral it could call M3D II (Second).

To make this happen, it requires a lot of time scouting parts and donor parts, this requires me 2 M2 donor parts and 1 M3 as the main part. Leicavit IIIG to custom made MP Leicavit. A Summilux 50 V1 mod focusing tab took 2 years to get everything together, roughly another year of modification, and the final year repainted the original Black Paint and final adjustment. This piece will ride with me until the end of time.

Instagram @leitzstreet

 
leica-M3D-rangefinder-film-camera-m3-modification-dream-David-Douglas-Duncan-135-35mm-summilux-black-paint-customised-custom-story-faces-of-your-cameras-hennessy-lieu-4
Hennessy with his Leica M3D

Thank you, Hennessy, for sharing your story and allowing me to feature you in the “Faces of Your Cameras” post. I’ve come across this DDD online before and also when Leica announced a limited M3D black paint camera back in 2014. The camera, a meticulous replica of the historic M3D, was limited to just 16 pieces, each with serial numbers ranging from 5 to 20. Leitz originally crafted the M3D (numbered 1 to 4) for DDD in 1955. This version of the M3 was unique; it included a Leicavit rapidwinder, which set it apart from the standard models. This tailor-made camera later inspired the creation of the Leica MP, a model produced in limited quantities starting in 1956 and designed with the professional photojournalist in mind.

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