Hi Stone,
Now you know in what model to cut your finger nails ;-)
But seriously. I think Canon made this too complicated. If you don't have the manual (or didn't read it in time) there is no way to figure out this combination. How many people threw away that "plastic hotshoe fill-up thing", thinking it had no use? Or thus breaking open/off the battery door, not knowing the right tool was right in front of them all the time? Or even unscrewing the motorwind disk in the bottom, without finding any battery?
I call it a wrong solution for correcting a "design flaw". Not the best example of Japanese engineering .....

Well: I got me a new battery today and will load the camera with a test film to see what it is up to. Will it perform better than my old Nikon EL2? We'll see.

BTW: the manual for the Canon AE-1 can be downloaded here: http://www.butkus.org/chinon/canon/c...canon_ae-1.htm

BTW2: Nikon was also good in hiding the battery in those days. You'll find it in my EL2 behind the mirror (take off lens, flip up mirror, open small door inside the body).