First of all - never dis the all-important two letters in nikon world: P and M ...
I started off in SLR land with a complete Pentax kit, Spotmatic II, SMC lenses and all the trimmings (including bellows). So, right off the bat, I was used to a very stable, reliable system. However, recent production from Pentax on the camera side of things left me with a bad taste in my mouth even though my friend had the newest Pentax lenses on the Panaflex cameras he was using in the states.
So, I went out and bought a Nikon F60. I then set it aside for about 6 months before picking it up and going full blown with the F60 and my 28-80 zoom. Over the course of time I realized that its meter was not quite as good as I expected it to be. Nor was I ever thrilled with the plastic build (even though it's internal construction was of magnesium).
While I was with my pentax, I had the oppertunity to try Canon EOS's, 'blads, Mamiyas, Yashicas, Minoltas, and Nikons.
I had previously used Canon A-1's on two occasions. Both suffered from Canon's well known "squeaking shutter" syndrome.
The first time I tried a Nikon, it was actually an F4. After 3 weeks with a borrowed one, I hated it. My second was with an F90X - which I didn't like - too square and didn't sit well in my hands. I dreamed of a camera that had Nikon build quality, with Canon's ergos...
Finally when the F60 came out, it was the first Nikon I enjoyed using. So, after learning every possible shortcoming and piculiarity (including having to replace the whole camera once because the coating on the view-screen began to peel and haze), I stepped up to purchase a more roadworthy camera.
I bought an SB-28 to increase my flash capabilities and then an sc-17 and Stroboframe to hook it all together.
Then I finished University, started working full time and the fun started.
I wanted a camera, that would be built tough, yet easy for an amateur like me to get out and "just do it" rather than fiddling like all my friends do with their Canons. I had a field day when my friend told me he had to spend 4 hours traing the "eye control focus" on his cannon EOS3 before he could even make it work at all.
The F100 was the best thing I could find. I didn't like the F5 from the get go, because I found its controls a little more cumbersome and slow to operate. I almost bought an F70 and then an F80, but those cameras lacked the substantial build of the cheaper F60.
The F100 is so well built, that I didn't really have to read the manual and was able to set up my favourite custom settings in about a minute. I was taking pics at a local trade-show within half an hour of un-boxing the camera body.
I use TWO lenses. A 28-80 3.5-4.5 zoom. and a 70-210 4.5-5.6 barrel zoom. The 28-80 is plastic, cheap and light - works better than any cannon or pentax lense of similar price and is deadly fast at focusing on the f100.