Canon AE-1 Shutter Squeak

AE-1, AE-1 Program, A-1, AV-1, and AT-1 can all develop a “squeak” when the shutter has been released. This is caused by lack of lubrication on the mirror escapement mechanism.

The repair can be done in less than 15 minutes. There are only a few steps between you and a quite camera.

In most instances the squeak does not affect the pictures the Canon AE-1 is able to take. If the noise is very loud, there could be enough friction to slow the shutter speed of the camera down.

Here is a video by Fix Old Cameras that goes over the repair. The required tools and oil need are not specified in the video, but they are covered in the next section.

Canon AE-1 Lens Mount

A Philips screwdriver can easily strip the screws.

No repair parts should be required to do this repair on a Canon AE-1.

If parts are required from a repair, they will have to be purchsed used. That is because original parts are no longer available.

Instead, repair parts must be harvested from other cameras. This can make parts expensive and difficult to find. Searching eBay is your best choice for finding parts.

  1. Remove the 4 screw in the lens mount cover name plate. They are all the same length.
  2. With the camera facing you, remove the upper left hand screw from the lens mount.
  3. Slide the tip of a curved needle point oiler down into the screw hole towards the bottom of the camera.
  4. Squeeze a single drop of oil. The oil will migrate onto the post of the mirrow escapement mechanism.
  5. Replace the screw in the lens mount.
  6. Put the mount cover name plate back on.

An alternative method is to remove the bottom cover. The mechanism can be reached by marking a needle oiler so that it can be inserted to a depth of 34mm.

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