Saturday, December 20, 2014

Camera Cleaning Day!

Sooner or later, that sensor inside your camera is going to need a little cleaning. Yes, you CAN take on this task by yourself, but, having it done by a professional is preferable.

via Digital Camera World
If you have a camera shop nearby that offers camera cleaning, ask if they would be willing to have someone attend your meeting and do cleanings for the members. While some may turn you down, you can bet there are other ones out there who would be happy to come and do camera cleanings at a discount, or maybe even free! If they are unwilling to come to one of your meetings, ask if they would be willing to donate a few gift certificates for free cleanings that you could offer to your members, perhaps as prizes for a photo competition.

If that doesn't work for you, ask your members if any of them feel they have enough experience in camera cleaning to demonstrate it to the group. As always, your "expert" in something doesn't have to be a professional in the field, just someone who has more knowledge on a subject than the average person. If you have members that dutifully clean their camera sensors every six months all by themselves, they are more than qualified to provide a demonstration on how to clean a camera.

Also, there are a BUNCH of YouTube videos out there that show how to clean a camera sensor. You could show a couple of these videos to your club, and then have a discussion afterwards. Make sure everyone knows both the benefits (cheaper, quicker, plus spend less time Photoshopping out dust spots) and hazards of cleaning their own camera (being a sad panda because you MISALIGNED or SCRATCHED your sensor, and now instead of a small, almost imperceptible piece of dust, you have a huge scratch in every one of your images, that are always a little out of focus because of the sensor not being where it should be.) Once the mystery is gone, people are more likely to take the task in hand.

Some important things to consider when cleaning your own sensor.

NO compressed air.. it's too powerful and may mis-align your mirror or sensor. If you are crazy enough to hold the can upside down, you also spray chemicals into your open camera body. I prefer the Giottos Rocket Air Blaster.

NEVER reuse sensor swabs. They are designed for ONE use only. if you need to get back in there and clean some more, use a new swab.

Don't do cleaning with a weak battery. Your camera will need to hold the mirror up for a few minutes while you are cleaning. If your battery dies during the process, your mirror may come down, it may damage the mirror, or create debris on your sensor.

And here is a decent video of the proper way to clean a sensor.

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