So far I love this camera. This series (L's and V's from the mid to late 50's) was Canon's break from the "Leica Look-alike" era where nearly every reputable manufacturer started out with a Leica copy. These cameras are solid, well built and stylish. Built in 1957, smooth winding film advance, a shutter speed you can set wound or not, a flush mounted pop-up rewind knob and a hinged film back plate are just some of it's features. It does have the M39, LTM, Leica Thread mount that was fairly standard at this point in time.
I got it from a fellow in Japan. I'm assuming there weren't many, if any, of these sold new in the US. A quick Google search brings up a handful of fan sites and blogs, all in Japan. I've seen many on eBay with the <EP> stamp from being sold in the "Exchange Post" on Military posts in Japan.
I removed the top plate and cleaned the rangefinder optics. This was a bit more challenging than I'm used to but wasn't really dificult. The main optics are actually a set of prisms. The front glass you see on the viewfinder is the front of the prism. There are a set of parallax viewfinders in 50mm, 35mm, and a magnified RF setting for easy focus. It was cleaned by removing the rear eyepiece and rotating the drum as you clean each magnification. I have a Set on Flickr of this cleaning.
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