Chris's camera pages
Canons first 35mm SLR camera, made in 1959, was the original Canonflex. The Canonflex has an interchangeable finder, an instant-return mirror, and a cloth focal-plane shutter with speeds from 1 to 1/1000 second.
This was quickly followed in 1960 by the Canonflex R2000, very much the same camera except that it has a top shutter speed of 1/2000 second, and the Canonflex RP with a fixed prism finder and a top shutter speed of 1/1000 second.The Canonflex RM followed in 1962. This model has a built-in selenium exposure meter instead of the cumbersome clip-on style used with the earlier models.
Unlike the earlier Canonflex cameras, which have the film advance lever mounted midway along the camera baseplate, the Canonflex RM has a top-mounted advance lever just where you'd expect to find one.
The Canonflex cameras have the same breech-mount as the later Canon SLRs like the FT, FX and so forth, but had a very different mechanism for actuating the automatic diaphragm of the lenses, with the consequence that while later lenses will mount on the Canonflex, the aperture does not stop down when the shutter is fired.
The Super-Canomatic lenses all have two aperture setting rings, a click-stopped ring to set the aperture to which the lens will automatically be stopped down during exposure, and a second ring without click-stops, which allows you to check depth-of-field prior to taking a photo.