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DIY M3 Servicing Restoration Window Removal


New Member
Hope someone can help me as it is my first time servicing / restoring my M3.
Following closely to the service manual, I was able to take the top plate off the body but then discovered that the glass windows at the front (RF, VF & frame) have what appears to have brownish glue at the edges - it's dried up. The normal glass clip is also there but I don't want to force it off and accidentally break the glass.

Should I soak the top plate in a solvent and hope it disolve? I will need to do that anyway to remove the old paint lodged inside the script and texts.

As you might have guessed, I'm painting this sucker either black or hammertone blue...

Many thanks in advance...
leave it to the trained expert, home made repairman, like you, usually screw up things rather than fixing them, I have seen too many failed attempt to fix M3 by amateur repairman armed with so called repair guide. believe you, you need to attend the Leica training course in order to fully understand how M3 work.
Can someone tell me about the repair service provided by Leica at Solm in Germany.

I sent my M3 to Leica for repair and restoration. For three weeks they have not sent me a quote. I phoned them and we have problems in communication. I e-mail them so far no reply yet. I fax them but their fax machine is not able to receive fax. It might not be wise to send them an M3 when they are in financial crisis.
I have sent two M3s to Leica at Solms. They returned one of them in 6 weeks. I must say I am very impressed by their repair work. This M3 was used rarely, but the winder was jammed,front glass of rangefinder came off. It also had a few dots in the viewfinder. After repair the rangefinder becomes crystal clear. Though they suggested me to change the rangefinder to M6J 0.85, I insisted on keeping the original viewfinder. The two images overlap neatly together. The winder becomes a lot smoother. I paid slightly less than 300 Euro for this but it is well worth it.

On the other hand, the repair work done in Hong Kong is absolutely substandard. My new MP had a shutter problem, it was repaired in the local shop in Hong Kong but they left me with problems in the rangefinder. The rangefinder misread the distance and also the two images does not overlap very well, the secondary image is slightly higher than the primary one. It reduces the accuracy of focusing a lot.

My conclusion is that we have to be careful with whom we choose for the repair, otherwise send all the Ms to Solm.
When the "factory" is willing to work on a camera they haven't made for 40 years, there is no other place to send it. IMHO
I heard there are other places in the states and UK where it could be restored in a proper way.

Germany is certainly a good place. They just have the patience and expertices to do this. In Hong Kong, people rarely has any patience.