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Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by MFstooges, Nov 10, 2015.
I've used my Nikon FM3a for hours in the cold (<0F). This was using 10 min - hour long exposures, sitting on a tripod for many hours. Sometimes letting the light meter guess the exposure. Usually, just using the bulb feature. Of course, after too much time in the cold, the batteries would fail, so no aperture priority or light meter reading. Otherwise it never missed a beat. I've also used a Nikon FE2 in the cold, but the batteries would eventually fail. I now own three Nikon FM3a's because they are a wonder to use. The FM3a is brilliant.
My FE, FM , and FE-2 have performed brilliantly in the cold with the small lithium batteries. And, the FE will deliver very long and accurate exposures in the “aperture priority “ mode.
I was told the Nikon FM was used by the Finnish police because it coped well in cold weather. Could very easily be total bollocks though.
I'm off to Finnish Lapland in a couple of weeks where I've been told, very helpfully, that it will be "between 0c and minus 40c". I'm taking a Kiev 4a and a Box Tengor 54. No helical lube to freeze in the Kiev. And surely the Tengor is basic enough to stay alive in the cold...
I know its not Nikon and YMMV and all.
But i live in Finland and use my Leica R9 outdoors in winter all the time, last weekend it was -25 + Windchill and the camera had no problems, on my 19mm i could notice the focus was a bit stiffer then normal but my 50mm was fine.
The focussing helicoid is part of the Kiev body. Unless it has been recently cleaned and relubricated with "arctic" lubricants, it's very likely to be useless in the cold, not due to the helicoid, but the design of the shutter.