Made in 1969, this black paint Leica M4 camera was hardly used at all. In the early 1970s, Leica began to use their newly developed “black chrome” finish, which was more durable than black enamel (paint). This new black chrome finish didn’t wear away so quickly to expose the brass underneath and became the black finish of most cameras after about 1971. Today, brassed-up cameras are quite popular, so much so that Leica has made new camera pre-brassed for that old-school look without all the effort and trouble of putting your own patina on the camera. But nothing beats discovering a 45-year-old Leica M4, in this kind of condition, in the back of a closet tucked away in an old shoebox and wrapped in a dingy hand towel — a happy day for me.