Here we have a fully restored , LM bayonet converted, 0.7m MFD modded and repainted Canon 50mm f/0.95 lens for Leica rangefinder cameras.
The lens has undergone an extensive overhaul. All parts of the lens were fully disassembled, then ultrasonically cleaned to remove all the old greases and impurities. This is the only process known to prevent these lenses from re-hazing again in future, as the original greases that Canon had used are known outgassing offenders.
Once the optics and metalwork is completely decontaminated, the mechanics undergo a series of CNC modifications near the helicoid to ‘unlock’ a new closer minimum focus distance of 0.7m (as opposed to 1m stock).
The internal lens bearing system is also completely rebuilt during this time.
The M bayonet is very carefully installed onto the lens, verifying its optical centering using a Mitutoyo style Dial Indicator capable of 10 micron precision. This ensure the optical axis of the lens formula and the M bayonet are concentric with one another.
In addition to a full cleaning of the optics within out ISO 6 clean room/ laminar flow environment, the optical formula undergoes a re-centering procedure. This re-centering procedure is where we further unlock performance on these lenses, as we re-orientate the optics to ensure a homogenous distribution of aberrations and sharpness across the four sides of the image plane.
The end result is a lens that is optically centered and adjusted to perform at its theoretical maximum yield available to the formula. We have found that most vintage lenses that have undergone our re-centering procedure, have improved in sharpness and homogenous aberration distribution, as opposed to when we first receive them. Sometimes the improvements are groundbreaking, and on this particular copy, we’ve been able to use the lens wide open at f/0.95 for even landscape shots on the 60mp Leica M11. All sample shots with the lens in the gallery are on a Leica M11, shot wide open at f/0.95
The exterior mechanics are then painted gloss black, with white fonts. Red font work is used on the Imperial distance scale. The M bayonet is 6-bit coded.
Lenses aperture system was also rebuilt, using synthetic non-outgassing lubricants imported from Japan.
The lens body and helicoid is then reassembled. The lens now has the ability to focus down to 0.7m while retaining full RF coupling. This closer focusing ability below 1m, does heighten the optical formulas aberrations, and thus a small focus shift is induced when going below the 1m distance. Fortunately, this focus shift is the reverse (inward direction type), and can be canceled out by stopping the lens down just a tad.
Optically, the lens is near mint. With the naked eye, the optical cavity appears perfectly clear. There are no front or rear element scratches. The aperture blades were all cleaned and degreased.
Mechanically, there is some very minor brassing/ wear to the gloss paint work. The paint is the same type used on the gloss black Leica M cameras (of which a black paint M240 can be seen in some photos, not included in this sale).
The lens has a vintage 72mm Canon UV filter, and comes with two front caps and one rear cap.
The original Canon push on cap was also repainted with the lens. However, the cap was dented/ damaged when the lens first arrived to us from years of usage. We attempted to reshape the lens cap prior to repaint. As such, we include the original cap in the lens sale as a compliment, but it is not in perfect shape/ finish condition. We are also providing an aftermarket Canon labeled 72mm plastic front cap also, for usage on the lens. Do please be aware the original metal cap has this issue.
A metal rear M cap in black also is provided, along with our service certificate of work done to the lens.
Should it be desired to examine any of the gallery sample photos of the lens at full resolution, please do email us. They are about 20-25 MB each as they are from the 60mp M11 camera system.
There is a 1 year warranty on all the mechanical and conversion service work done to the lens. The paint work is sold as-is/ as seen, over time it will gradually wear as gloss black lacquer is known to do.