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Old Calculator Web Museum Advertising Archive
Canon Canola 167


Advertisement for Canon Canola 167, circa February, 1968.

The Canon Canola 167 was the pinnacle of the early electronic calculators made by Canon with their unique side-lighted electro-optical display elements. It offered automatic square root (not available on other early Canon calculators), multiple memory registers, special modes for summation of products and quotients, double-precision results (with results up to 30 digits in length), and many other advanced features. For examples of other early Canon calculators that use this display technology, see the Old Calculator Web Museum exhibits on the Canon 161 and the Canon 130S

The really special thing about the Canola 167 is that it is one of very few electronic calculators ever made that utilized a small magnetic drum as its main register storage. Most other calculators of the time used magnetostrictive delay lines, magnetic core memory, or electronic multi-stage shift registers or ring-counters for storing the working registers of the calculator. The only other known calculator to use a magnetic drum was the Wyle Laboratories WS-01 calculator (which was quickly superceded by the Model WS-02, which replaced the unreliable magnetic drum with a magnetostrictive delay line). Because of the fact that a magnetic drum relied on a rotating assembly (the drum), and very close tolerances for the read/write heads on the drum, these type of machines were prone to damage by shock, e.g., if the machine was moved while the drum was spinning, or if the machine was shocked when the drum was not running. Once the drum was damaged, the only way to make the machine functional again was to replace the drum, which, at the time the machine was supported, proved expensive, and later in time, very difficult, as the drums simply were no longer manufactured.

If you happen to have a surviving Canon Canola 167, working or not, I'd love to hear from you. Please click the EMail button at the top of this page and send me a message.

Note that there is a later Canon calculator with the 167 model number called the Canon 167P, but this machine utilizes much later technology, and has no relation technologically to the Canola 167 other than it was made by Canon.