Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

Started Feb 2, 2010 | Discussions
walter marshall Contributing Member • Posts: 921
Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

I have a volume of UK magazine Camera covering 1935/36, here are some prices, the contax big price is a surprise to me, and look a cheap Leica model 1. The Leica prices are from Wallace Heaton adverts, anybody remember the Wallace Heaton Blue Book?

Barrie

Leica model 111 f2 Summar £39.10.0
Leica model 111 f3.5 Elmar £30.10.0
Leica model 11 f3.5 Elmar £26.10.0
Leica model 111a f2 Summar £43.0.0

USED Leica model 1 f3.5 Elmar £8.8.0

Contax Rangefinder f1.5 Sonnar £56.5.0

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arinel
arinel Regular Member • Posts: 315
comparing 1936 prices to 2010 ones

This is of interest if you compare the 1936 prices to the actual ones together with a comparison of the cost of living in 1936 and in 2010. Very difficult since cost of living indices have been created in the 50s. Maybe a comparison to the average hourly earning of an average worker could be useful. Or the evolution of the price of gold. Anyway we need a 3rd element in the comparison over time.

BRJR Forum Pro • Posts: 13,641
Re: ".. comparison to the average hourly earning of an average worker .. 3rd element"

Would be good to know whether this made any more sense in those days, as compared to now (for example, competitors to Leica); as, I just don't see people in this group, for the most part, currently purchasing Leicas and Leica lenses, as compared to far more cheaper offerings from Kodak, Olympus, Sony, Panasonic, Canon, Nikon and other such camera manufacturers.

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BRJR ....(LOL, some of us are quite satisfied as Hobbyists ..)

arinel wrote:

This is of interest if you compare the 1936 prices to the actual ones together with a comparison of the cost of living in 1936 and in 2010. Very difficult since cost of living indices have been created in the 50s. Maybe a comparison to the average hourly earning of an average worker could be useful. Or the evolution of the price of gold. Anyway we need a 3rd element in the comparison over time.

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arinel
arinel Regular Member • Posts: 315
Re: Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

I had a brief look (through google) at cost of living figures for 1936. I got US figures. After several translations, it shows that on average the prices you indicate (around 40 pounds) correspond to half the average monthly earning (but no indication if it is the average for the whole society including revenues, etc). However whatever the approximations we are not so far from the 1936 prices: it might be the double or half the actual figure, but the actual cost is not much, much different from what it was long time ago. But obviously a more thorough and precise analysis should be made.

Mark Smith Veteran Member • Posts: 6,336
Re: Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

Interesting post

just for the record I paid £275 pounds for a IIIC with Elmar F3,5 in 1986 which for me then was about two weeks wages.

My grandfather told me in the 30's he earned about £10 or so a week (as a young farm worker), which would make the Leica about 2-3 weeks wages for a working class man...

mikedunk New Member • Posts: 11
Re: Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

I own a mint Wallace Heaton Blue Book from 1967/1968 price 3s 6d [17.5pence]

The new Leica UK prices in 1967 were:-

M2 body £125.17s.10d
M3 body £143.10s. 3d
M4 body £150.14s.8d

28mm f2.8 Elmarit £69.8s.7d
35mm f2 Summicron £77.17s.1d
50mm f1.4 Summilux £113.19s.9d

This was the gear for a young man to aspire to. I am so glad to have joined the Leica M 8 club albeit 42 years later!

Have fun with your calculators tonight.

Mike

Cadder Senior Member • Posts: 1,827
Re: Leica/Zeiss prices from 1936!

mikedunk wrote:

I own a mint Wallace Heaton Blue Book from 1967/1968 price 3s 6d [17.5pence]

The new Leica UK prices in 1967 were:-

M2 body £125.17s.10d
M3 body £143.10s. 3d
M4 body £150.14s.8d

28mm f2.8 Elmarit £69.8s.7d
35mm f2 Summicron £77.17s.1d
50mm f1.4 Summilux £113.19s.9d

This was the gear for a young man to aspire to. I am so glad to have joined the Leica M 8 club albeit 42 years later!

Have fun with your calculators tonight.

In 1968 I bought a new Morgan 4/4 which cost 1,400 pounds.
The equivalent car today is around 40,000 pounds

This is a factor of about 28. That would put a Leica M film body at about 4,200 pounds. Do you know what they are now, and what is the M9?

Regards,

Cadder

Mike

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sunhorse Senior Member • Posts: 1,800
Re: comparing 1936 prices to 2010 ones

arinel wrote:

This is of interest if you compare the 1936 prices to the actual ones together with a comparison of the cost of living in 1936 and in 2010. Very difficult since cost of living indices have been created in the 50s. Maybe a comparison to the average hourly earning of an average worker could be useful. Or the evolution of the price of gold. Anyway we need a 3rd element in the comparison over time.

Googling around found UK minimum wages in 1936 for agricultural laborers to be about £1/12/0. Then we need some more prices to compare with: basic food staples, lodging/rent, etc.

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Ramesh

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NickBlackburn New Member • Posts: 3
Re: comparing 1936 prices to 2010 ones

I came upon this thread while researching a similar topic - a Mondrian painting (B262) which was on sale in 1936 for £40 sold in 2002 for $5.3M.
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Nick B

OP walter marshall Contributing Member • Posts: 921
Leica prices from 1935-36 and some ads

When I saw this thread it promted me to dig out my 1935-36 Camera Magazine Annual and post some stuff

London Camera Exchange (used?)

Leitz Pocket Camera, latest pattern model 11, coupled distance rangefinder, standard f 3.5 Elmar lens, interchangeable mount, focal plane speeded shutter and Ever-ready leather case, (as listed, £27 17s. 0d) unsoiled. £20 0s 0d.

City Sale and Exchange (new)

Leitz Leica Camera, Interchangeable lens model, f3.5 Elmar anastigmat, focal planr shutter complete with rangefinder and case. £9 17s 6d

Sands Hunter & Co Ltd (used)

Model 11 Leica, chromium model, f3.5 anastigmat lens, ever-ready case. In new condition. List price £28 16s 0d for….£23 10s 0d

Wallace Heaton
New…
Leica 111 £39 10s 0d
Leica 11 £30 10s 0d
Leica 111a £43 0s 0d
Used…
Elmar 10.5 f6.3 lens £7 7s 0d
Leica Model 111 chromium, f2 Summitar lens £35 10s 0d
Leica model 11 black f3.5 Elmar. £20 13s 0d

Some Leica adverts

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NickBlackburn New Member • Posts: 3
Re: comparing 1936 prices to 2010 ones

Here's a link to my summary:
http://www.snap-dragon.com/PM1930b.html#B262
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Nick B

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