I’ve been using my M9 without any half case for awhile since I am never a big fan of the smooth textured original skin that’s used on both M9 steel grey and MP. I ordered two pieces of leather from Cameraleather.com earlier but the after payment service from them has been huge disappointment!!! No timeline or response after you’ve made payment to them. The shop has simply stopped responding to any enquiry in regards to delivery date!!! I was basically at the mercy of the shop and it’s up to them as and when they feel like it’s time to deliver the leather. Many folks online has commented on long waiting time stretching as long as a year. I find it simply disgusted that such service still exist in this time and age! Anyway, to put the long story short, I’ve managed to get my money back and cancelled the order.
Was looking around for alternatives, and I found this guy, Aloysius from Hong Kong Leica forum (www.hklfc.com) who has started making leather skins for our M bodies. I’ve contacted him (email : Aloysius Ng <firstname.lastname@example.org>) and received my two skins within 3 wks period. A blue snake skins for my steel grey M9 and a black snake skins for my buddy’s chrome M9P.
In fact, I’ve just finished releathered my M9 with mixed result…
A word of warning!!! Don’t try to releather when you’re tired and can’t see well. I did this at 4 am in the morning. Big mistake!!!
First of all, my initial impression on the leathers. Very nicely made and seems to have a good fit around the body. The hardest part I’ve found myself facing when putting on the new leather is the area around the lens release button and the frame selection lever. I find that it’s easier to cut off a bit of the leather when slotting it into those tight spots.
A friend of mine recommended using wet method when putting on the new leather. Meaning spraying water on the adhesive so that it’s easier to re-adjust the leather. I should have listened to that and would have avoided a major mistake on the leather. Oh well…
Here’s some photos taken during the change.
Before the change…
Original skin easily peeled off…
Time to clean off those residue adhesive using nail polish remover.
Ok, this is when I made the mistake!!! The adhesive is pretty strong but you can still lift it up to readjust the position of the leather. However, while trying to get a perfect fit on the right side of the body where the frame lever is, I’ve lifted the leather too hard and managed to tear it into half. You can see the result on this photo.
I guess it’s beginner’s mistake. Oh well, I can always order another leather next time to replace this one. For the time being, I got a feeling I will be enjoying this new leather for awhile. I prefer the slightly better grip on this over the original skin.