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Cleaning the lens

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  • #1704
    clouddancer
    Participant

    I’m still stuck with my P&S camera, so I can’t just throw it away, and I’d like to keep taking pictures. However, every now and then it seems that I get these spots on the lens. I have some Q-tips and alcohol, plus there’s Windex and all that. My first thought is alcohol since it dries quickly and usually does not leave spots. However, I’ve tried that already and it made everything fuzzy, and so far I haven’t been able to get the fuzz to go away. It’s really a small opening for the lens (maybe an inch square at most), but I’ve managed to shut off the camera and keep the lens out and open so I can clean it plus dry it and not worry.

    Short of taking it apart, what would you recommend to remove said spots? They’re bound to happen, I do have a 3-year-old after all, and I’m not the only one to use the camera (hubby will ask for it on occasion).

    If I were to take it apart, would there be a chance of f’ing it up any further, or would I have a chance to put it back together?

    Thanks.

    #24647
    clouddancer
    Participant

    The outer part appears clean, but the underside of that now appears that it has some condensation or something underneath. Blah. I don’t even have the money for a new P&S should this not be able to be fixed.

    #24648
    nobigdeal
    Participant

    I never put anything on my lens except my breath and a microfiber lens cloth.
    Especially not alcohol! I hope you didn’t damage any coating on the outer lens.

    Keeping fingers crossed for you.

    #24649
    clouddancer
    Participant

    The idea was to keep moisture out of it (hence not using the breath) and it was just a dab of alcohol to dry quickly. I did it once before and it’s been clean until now, and those spots only showed up last night or today. It was the rubbing alcohol, 91% that hubby uses for electronics cleaning. Have used the cloth too, the one I use for my glasses.

    It’s almost like I got condensation inside the outer glass. I remember when I got inner condensation in my car…never did get rid of it.

    I might just have to retire picture taking until I can get a new camera if it doesn’t work. Live and learn. If I can’t fix it (and neither can hubby or friend) then we may as well take it apart and see what we can do, won’t be losing anything anyway.

    #24650
    Kestrana
    Participant

    According to a friend of mine who is more of a professional than I, you can sometimes remove condensation from a camera lens by putting it in a ziplock bag and then somewhere warm and dry. If it is really condensation, the moisture in the lens will transfer to the bag in an attempt to diffuse to the dry environment.

    #24651
    clouddancer
    Participant

    I decided to give up on it and leave it alone. I put my lens cloth (which I also use on my glasses) plus the camera on Hubby’s desk for him to look at when he got home. I called my Dad and chatted for a bit (he’s good to talk to) and then just for kicks I went to look at it and it’s fine. Images are clear as day again.

    I will try the Ziplock bag trick if I think there’s water in it next time. Hubby’s a computer techie and he mentioned on a couple of occasions that if a hard drive is going they’ll put it in a plastic bag, vacuum sealed if possible and then in the freezer. Something about the freezer makes it okay for one more use out of it (it’s a last ditch effort), but not any more than once will it work. I actually put the camera in our freezer because I thought if there was water in there our freezer might help. It’s one of those not condensing ones where there’s no frost/ice on the sides and where if you leave ice in it the ice will evaporate eventually.

    I think perhaps in all of this, I may have reacted too quickly or something or let my imagination get the best of me, etc. I tend to go a little overboard sometimes.

    In any case, I’ve been futzing around all day long fidgeting with that dratted thing and my line count’s practically nonexistent. I’ll try for a couple of shots with the flag and music that I want to see if they come out okay, but if not I’ll go ahead and use the flag shots I’ve already set aside. It lives for another day (miraculously). Thank you for the advice. I shall try that next time I find spots on my lens.

    #24652
    linguine
    Participant

    If you have an independent camera shop near you I’d take it there and see if they’ll look at it quickly, I’ve gotten my camera cleaned twice for free in about 5 minutes from a small camera shop near me rather than paying to ship it away for 2 weeks like ritz wants to.

    #24653
    nobigdeal
    Participant

    Glad to hear it worked out. Sometimes you need to walk away and things work themselves out.

    #24654
    Kestrana
    Participant

    I actually put the camera in our freezer because I thought if there was water in there our freezer might help. It’s one of those not condensing ones where there’s no frost/ice on the sides and where if you leave ice in it the ice will evaporate eventually.

    Its good its a non-condensing freezer but I would be cautious about doing that much. Condensation usually forms on a camera lens when taking between extremes of temperature. When I lived in the Nevada desert I would see condensation on a camera lens (and my glasses and other things of that nature) going from the 90 degree dry heat to an air-conditioned building. Like yours however, usually letting it sit for awhile straightened out the problem.

    #24655
    stupido
    Participant

    If I know ahead of time I will be moving between environmental extremes, I carry a zip lock bag with me. Typically around here, you get condensation moving from cold to warm. So if I am out in the winter taking pics, I put my camera in a zip-lock bag before returning indoors. Wait until its acclimated to the warm temperature before removing it from the bag.

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