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The Canon FT QL

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:34 p.m.

I bought the FTQL (Quick Load) at a local auction, mainly because it had an f1.2 lens, and a nice ever ready case.
The camera and lens were dirty but in good shape after a thorough clean and a bit of lubrication here and there.
It's a very solid feeling, heavy, fully mechanical piece of kit. The metering is stop down, activated by moving the lever on the front towards the lens. Moving the lever the other way starts the self timer, whilst the lower lever on the same shaft lock the lens in the stopped down position.
The lever on the other side of the lens is for locking up the mirror

Canon FTQL with F1.2 Lens


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John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:37 p.m.

The top of the camera is pretty conventional, the lever around the rewind handle is the battery check. The lens mount is FL, the predecessor of FD, but the breech lock fitting is the same so it can be used on FD cameras.
It can operate as an automatic lens, or in preset mode by turning the second ring to stop down the aperture to the value preset on the first ring. I read somewhere that the f1.2 lenses were made for the Canon Pellix, which needed a high aperture lens to brighten up the viewfinder and make up for the light lost by the half silvered fixed mirror.

The Top of the FT

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:39 p.m.

The Quick loading system is excellent but was probably expensive to make.
I've never really been sure the best way of engaging 35mm film with normal take up spools, they all seem to be different - the QL system gets rid of all that

Back and QL System

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:42 p.m.

Now a few B&W shots. I first a 1.5v battery and it seemed to give good exposures at home, but when I started to use it in the field the exposures were all over the place so I used a separate meter. Later I fitted the correct 1.35V battery and that seemed to be OK.


John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:44 p.m.

Another one.

Building - and Bike

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:47 p.m.

Bullrushes. Most shots were done around F8/11, I did a few at f1.2 but nothing seemed sharp in them.


John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:48 p.m.

Another one - Town Hall Square fountain

The Fountain

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:50 p.m.

In Leicester Market:

In the Market

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 03:52 p.m.

Last one for now - a shop front at Uttoxeter - thanks for looking.

Shop Window

John Seaman , May 21, 2012; 04:00 p.m.

One more thing - the lens has an eight bladed iris, which works perfectly, quite a feat of engineering for such a large aperture lens in my opinion. The out of focus areas are nice and smooth, as in the flowers shot, but I regret I didn't exploit this feature more.


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