I've diagnosed the problem. I managed to remove the top cover off my Canonet.
Other repair newbies out there look here
to learn how to remove the top cover. Just 3 screws, one removed rewind lever, and friction driver for film advance lever.
I do have the Canonet Repair manual which can be found free on the web here
but I can't figure out what spring I am missing.
I have determined that my counter claw is not being forced against the counter gear due to a missing spring I believe. What spring is missing I can't figure out even from the exploded view assembly drawing in the repair manual. Or perhaps a spring is there but not hooked on to the counter claw properly.
See attached photos for an explanation. Anybody care to share a similar photo from a working frame counter Canonet?
Edit: Success! Read post below. You little ******* Canonet I got you!