Canonet QL17 Question

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by bobwysiwyg, May 20, 2009.

  1. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Not long ago I was given a QL17. It appears to be in very good shape.. mostly. Lens is clean, shutter speeds nearly spot on with the exception of 1/500. I'm in the process of replacing the light seals. Removing the old gunk was, let's just say tedious. :smile:

    My real question is in regards to the battery contacts. I noticed I can't get a batt. check reading. Examining the battery chamber I notice the negative contact looks to be some sort of brass spherical nub. I tried cleaning it up, but it seems so recessed, I'm wondering if it is even contacting the battery surface. Is this contact spring loaded or anything and is just stuck in a recessed position?
     
  2. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    OK, I guess I will chat with myself. :smile:

    Lacking any documentation for the QL17 I'm guessing it is just the check light that is not working. The meter appears to be, but I guess running a roll of film through it would be the best test. However, I seem to recall another model wherein the battery check involved pressing the check button and looking at the needle in viewfinder. If the needle moved to a 'blue area' in the mid-section of the exposure scale it was OK. Now the QL17 I have does this, that is the needle moves to the middle of the exposure scale (though there is no blue area), but the external check light does not illuminate. So I guess now my question is, is the check still valid going by the meter scale even though this model has different means of checking?
     
  3. Iwagoshi

    Iwagoshi Subscriber

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    Patience bob.
    I just checked, my nub is not spring loaded and it protrudes enough to make contact with negative anode. When I push the red "check" button the blue light goes on. Double check and put a volt-meter on the battery. I hope this helps.
     
  4. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Didn't mean to come across as impatient, just the results of my continued fiddling. The batt. checks out at 1.2v. I have a couple of new replacements on the way. Not sure if that voltage is too low to light the check light, but the meter does function so I'm assuming it is making contact after all.
     
  5. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    ******
    The battery is definitely low voltage. Bet that is the problem.
     
  6. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Thanks, I will recheck with the new batts and see what's what then.
     
  7. mgb74

    mgb74 Subscriber

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    I have a couple of QL17s that work fine except for the battery check. It's been my understanding that the battery check light often will fail in spite of all else working correctly.
     
  8. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Perhaps this one fits in this category as well. I can live with it.
     
  9. AgX

    AgX Member

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    But how can that indicator light fail? To my experience with such small bulbs they are very sturdy, and only fail after long lighting. Something which should not happen with such an indicator lamp.
     
  10. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Perhaps it's a circuit issue rather than the bulb itself. :confused:
     
  11. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    That was the problem. Aparently, 1.2v will move the needle, but not trigger the check light. A fresh battery did the trick. Now to run some film through it.
     
  12. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    *****
    Make sure you have a 1.35--1.4 battery; check the auto reading against a known-accurate meter; and tweak your ASA setting if necessary to give proper readout in the camera.
     
  13. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    I was planning to check it against my Sekonic to see how close/far off it might be. The battery is a 1.35v Wein. I may go for one of those adapters that will allow me to use a cheaper more available substitute batt.
     
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  15. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    MR-9 Mercury Battery Adapter for Canonet - Boo Hiss

    Put a new Wein cell in the QL17, measures 1.35v as it should, meter and check light work fine. I know they don't last long, are hard to get and a bit pricey so I thought I would try one of those adapters. Bought one from CRIS which "claims" to reduce the voltage. Not true. In the adapter still measures 1.5+v. :mad:
     
  16. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

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    Go to a Home Depot or similar and buy a #9 Rubber O-ring. It will cost less than half a dollar. Pop it in the battery chamber, and from then on, you are good to go with #375 zinc-air hearing aid batteries. They wear out as quickly as the Wein cells, but they cost about 1/10th as much. And here's a secret: A Wein cell is just a #375 zinc-air hearing aid battery with a metal outer shell spacer that serves the same purpose as the aforementioned rubber O-ring washer.
     
  17. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    [bit pricey so I thought I would try one of those adapters. Bought one from CRIS which "claims" to reduce the voltage. Not true. In the adapter still measures 1.5+v. :mad:[/QUOTE]

    ******
    Very interesting. Looks like I need to find some Nr. 9 rubber o rings.
     
  18. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

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    You only need one. It stays permanently in the battery chamber, until you desire to remove it, just pull it out with a pin or a tweezer.

    I've used this O-ring fix to adapt with 375 hearing aid batteries in Konica Auto S-2, Canonet QL17, Canon FTb-n, Minolta SRTs, Nikkormat FTn, Olympus OM-1n, among other cameras. Basically, if it used a single 625 Mercury cell, this is the best fix - short of having the camera re-calibrated for Silver Oxide cells. Much superior to the CRIS adapter or Wein cells.
     
  19. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Thanks for the tip. Off to find said O-ring before the next Wein cell is needed.

    Not sure I understand the permanency though. The batt. goes in the Canonet sideways, it seems like the O-ring is but a spacer around the circumference of the batt. for a snug fit?? If so, won't it have to go in/out with each batt. change?
     
  20. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

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    You're right, I was confusing it with the battery chambers that have screw-in lids, where the battery drops into the chamber, such as on most SLRs.
     
  21. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    It sure would be nice to know something about the design-team that came up with the Canonet G-111. I was fiddling with mine just earlier this evening and I just marvel at all the design features crammed into that little package. Quite astounding, really. Some folks complain of the limitation of the max ASA and have, perhaps, a point. And I shall never forgive Canon for that 48mm filter size. These failings notwithstanding, it is quite a gem for an inexpensive RF camera. About the only thing more "clever" among it's contemporaries, methinks, is the Yashica 35 GSN's using the battery check bulb to illuminate the frame number dial.
     
  22. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    My QL17 GIII works perfectly... except for the battery check light.
     
  23. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    The 48mm filter size is easily solved with a 48mm < 49mm adapter ring.
     
  24. Anscojohn

    Anscojohn Subscriber

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    Yup. And a solution which should be unnecesary.
     
  25. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    I agree it should be unnecessary. I also think the QL17 would have been greatly improved with TTL metering with shutter release activation.
     
  26. AgX

    AgX Member

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    -) Wein cells have fewer (and seemingly smaller holes)
    -) Wein cells have a different chemistry thus producing only 1.36V nominal.

    Source: Popular Photography, March 1995