Canon Canonet QL17 … some history.

The first (original) QL17 was made in 1965 … one of a long line of Canonets.

The QL stands for quick loading. This is refering to film loading, as it has a system to clamp down on the film leader and automatically capture the end to attach it to the pickup spool (no fiddling with a narrow slot and slippage).

The 17 refers to the max aperture … and yes, it is f/1.7 (with a 45mm focal length).

This is the great great grandfather of the G-III, and it same as the S but with the quick load mechanism. Commonly when the web refers to the QL17 they are most likely referring to the G-III model … which everyone thinks is the best one … probably because of its smaller size … but all models have been praised about the image quality.

Now as you expect, I have a broken one … yeah, I’m not surprised either. This one came to me with a broken shutter, more specifically the shutter was not releasing. Since this is a mechanical shutter, it probably is either gummed up or the release locking mechanism is stuck.

Of course the first thing I did was play around with the controls … then of course, I took some things apart (well actually many things) … then I read the manual.

It appears that there are some things about this camera that may cause some distress if you did not RTFM … like a safety lock on lower shutter speeds, or properly setting the self timer.

Remember boys and girls … RTFM before thinking it’s broken. Also, from many discussions on the web, it is common that the lens wobbles.

In this camera’s case … it was actually broken (sorta).


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