As I have been waiting for my Leica M3 to return from its total tear-down and subsequent re-build, I’ve been thinking that perhaps a new neck strap for it would be in order; something more befitting a 60 year old camera than the stock Leica nylon/rubber strap that I have been using for all of my rangefinders over the last few years.
(In the past, I’ve tried products from all over the world from all the various well-known strap manufacturers — and I mean all of the well-known ones — and for one reason or other I have always found them lacking.)
Recently, however, I stumbled upon the website of Mr. Harry Benz.
“Yet another hand-made strap purporting to be different than the competition“, I thought.
I was prepared to discard Mr. Benz completely because, frankly, I had never heard of him before. Yet as I read through the description of how Harry makes his straps, I realized that he was indeed creating something unique. He even uses a different leather — not cowhide (I’ll let you discover for yourself on his site what it is).
Given the level of craftsmanship and passion for detail, I expected to find Harry located in some venerable city known for its artisanal leather industry. Imagine my surprise when I instead discovered he was living in my very own city of Toronto, Canada.
After a few emails back and forth I had placed a custom order specifying the colour, design, and length of my strap. We also arranged to meet in person for pick-up and payment once the strap was ready.
Well today I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Benz, and I wasn’t disappointed in either the man or his product. Although I don’t yet know how well my new neck strap will endure over time, I have a sense it will outlast me.
In the meantime, I can marvel at the beauty of it.
All photos above taken with an iPhone and © Prosophos.
4 thoughts on “Harry Benz Hand-Crafted Straps.”
Im glad you finally tried him. Ive found mine superb. H
Sent from my iPad
I’m very impressed, and I never thought that I’d be impressed by a mere camera strap! I love it when people obsess over the details – this is partly why so many people love Steve Jobs, and Apple in general. The design philosophy of these straps is very ‘holistic’, if it is proper to use that word. Solutions are not tacked on, they are innate.
I hate to admit it but for me, any old strap will do – the simpler, the better. Actually I rarely use one. But I can appreciate a good strap, just the same.
Congratulation Sir! What a quality of the strap and sure it will get a nice patina over the years…and hey, when the light is ok the IP images are awesome like here your third one..I discover myself to take the most photos by IP 7 and as a M9-lover I am sometimes quiet impressed by this smartphone-images…By the way, what happened to your M3?
The only problem with the most straps that they destroy camera earring. Few years ago I’ve seen different, non-ring, lock, that way more delicate, even still not perfect. This lock looks like straight pin that inserts in something like reverted «U». Unfortunately, I cant find them anymore.