No on is hammering you.
The 'Guelphic' crown is only seen on Canadian badges from the 1895-1905 era. It has been seen on Canadian Cavalry helmet plates with both the VRI and EviiR cyphers (see below).
You say the Guelphic crown "is commonly found on early Victorian ciphers". Her reign was 1837 - 1901, so I would say that 'early Victorian' would describe 1837-1860 or so. This pre-dates the RCR by almost 25 years so, again, I say that the RCR badge with Guelphic crown "is more evidence that it is not 'early' Victorian".
The Regimental Rogue site quotes Militia General Order 35 of May 1894, as: "A silver eight-pointed star, with a raised gilt circle same as for centre of the helmet plate, but in proportion, the Royal and Imperial cypher (V.R.I.) in frosted gilt, surmounted by the Imperial Crown, dimensions of the star, 2 inches." This MGO clearly states the 'the Royal and Imperial' cipher. So for whatever reason; misplaced patriotism or trying to be more British than the British, somebody believed that the 'Empress' title should be included. The fact that the same was done for the RCD indicates that this was a decision most likely taken at Militia headquarters.
Why the simplified use of the VRI may never be known and we can suggest an evening in the officer's mess with a nib and napkin but the argument could just as easily be a staff officer in Ottawa chairing a committee. We may never find evidence of either scenario.
From my research there was little heraldic expertise in Militia & Defence and it was only with Col Duguid, official historian of M&D and an acknowledge expert in heraldry, that some order was brought into the department in the post-First World War era.
RCD badge with Guelphic crown and VRI cypher (This badge cannot pre-date 1893)
RCD badge with Guelphic crown and EviiR cypher (Edward's reign was from 1901 to 1910)
Manitoba Dragoons with Guelphic Crown (The Manitoba Dragoons were raised in 1903)