The Canonet QL17 G-III is the third generation (G-III) Canonet from 1972 that was made following a long line of Canonets starting in 1961 with the Canonet. This model features shutter priority Auto and Manual shutter modes. It also features a quick load (QL) film loading system that works quite remarkably.

I've wanted one of these for quite some time but they fetch a pretty penny online as they have quite cult following. You'd be lucky to find a good one under $80. Maybe a broken one but you'd have to dig deep into the lens or deeper to repair the wires. I got this one for under $35, it was listed as "Broken for Parts or Repair" but reading the description it said "Auto and Manual shutter works, Rangefinder and Aperture and focus work, it's missing some plastic in the battery compartment and it needs light seals" I can fix that I said, so I bought it.

It has a great 6 element 40mm 1:1.7 lens, hence the 17 in QL17. It's a bit larger camera than my Olympus 35DC but not much, it is however the exact same size of my Canonet 28 It's built like a tank, all metal parts except eyepiece/battery check frame, frame counter, thumb piece on the film advance lever and the little knob on the rewind crank. I'm looking forward to using it as it has a great viewfinder with parallax correction that moves in the view as you focus. It hag a great yellow focus patch the seems easy to see even in low light.


I had to do an unorthodox repair on the battery compartment. A piece had broken off and was missing. I saw that by cutting away the remainder of what was left of the plastic and sliding in a cut section of self-stick foam sheet, the same as I use on the light seals, it made a great bed for the battery contact and the Zinc-Air battery that is a bit thinner than the original Mercury battery fits nice and snug.

I also took off the top plate and cleaned the rangefinder optics. This was an easy fix as there are no flash wires soldered to the top. instead it has contacts between the top plate and the frame so it just lifts right off. I have a set of photos documenting the repairs on Flickr of the Battery repair and the Rangefinder cleaning.

MANUAL: Canonet QL17 G-III Manual

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