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Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!

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ali jafri
Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 9, 2008 at 4:28:12 am

I'm not sure if this topic belongs to this forum but I couldn't find anywhere else to post this:

I shot for several hours at the beach and now when I look at the lens (from the outside - not through the viewfinder) I can see little specks of sand/moisture/salt everywhere. I tried cleaning the lens glass with a supersoft brush but it only managed to smudge the dirt! What do I do now?

I don't have access to any specialist lens cleaning material. Is there any way I can get the smudged dirt and salt moisture out using everyday household materials before they become permanent fixtures on my lens!?


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jon agnew
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 9, 2008 at 5:05:27 pm

There really isn't any household or commonly found items that should be used for cleaning your lens. The coating on the glass is VERY delicate and will scratch very easily, even by common bathroom tissue. Once it's scratched, it's done for. Both lens cloths and lens tissue are very affordable and highly necessary. Another necessity is a clear filter for your lens. It's cheap, put it on the camera and NEVER take it off. That way, when something like this happens, you don't risk your precious (and expensive) lens.

The salt mist on your lens is only one of your worries here. Salt air is highly corrosive, and though you can only see it on your lens, it's currently eating the electrical components inside your camera. For beach shoots, I always take care to protect the camera, even if that means wrapping the body in a trash bag.



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Todd Terry
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 9, 2008 at 5:16:29 pm

I've never personally tried this, but am just passing it along...

[jon agnew] "There really isn't any household or commonly found items that should be used for cleaning your lens."

Pretty much true, but with one notable exception, at least from what I hear....

I know several DPs (one of them ASC) that swear by plain ol' ordinary Glass Plus widow cleaner, the stuff you can get right at the grocery store.

But, they say, use only only only Glass Plus, and no other brand or type of home window cleaner. Apparently it has no amonia, abrasives, or other chemicals that can harm lenses or their coatings. One of these guys uses it on his set of Cookes that probably cost more than my house.

And yes, of course, never use bath tissue or anything like that on your lenses (if you value their coatings). Scraps of well-laundered 100% cotton cloth work well (now you know what to do with those ancient tee-shirts).


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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jon agnew
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 10, 2008 at 4:15:46 pm

Glass Plus, eh? I'll try that on my friend's camera. HaHa!



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Ali Jafri
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 9, 2008 at 5:43:19 pm

Thanks for your reply jon. I'll try and find some lens cloth and tissue from a professional photographer i know. So even when i do get the cloth, what's the best way to clean salt air mist out? I don't want to damage anything.

--------------------------------------------
Some people see things that are and ask, Why?
Some people dream of things that never were and ask, Why not?
Some people have to go to work and don't have time for all that.


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Steve Wargo
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 10, 2008 at 3:59:11 pm

Take your camera to a camera repair center at a camera shop. They will show you how to care for your lens and how to clean it properly. However, never use a lens tissue. We use a certified lens cloth. You can buy them in 18% grey and then use it for white balance. When we arrive at a shoot and get the camera out, the first thing we do is blow the lens off with compressed air, wet the glass with professional lens cleaner and then wipe it with a lens cloth. Then, we use the cloth to white balance. We recommend that you do not white balance with actual white cards. It's a long story but the camera shop guys can explain it to you.

Always carry a can of air and a good lens kit. And get a lens filter on there.

That salt water air will destroy everything.






Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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ali jafri
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 11, 2008 at 2:19:43 am

Thanks Steve, I'll try going to a camera repair center although I doubt we have any here, or that they know anything about anything. My best bet is a number of professional photographers that might have cleaning material that they've gotten from abroad. I'm also seriously considering making a protective cover for the camera for future beach shots, but not sure where or how I can get a clear lens cover to protect from grime and dust.

--------------------------------------------
Some people see things that are and ask, Why?
Some people dream of things that never were and ask, Why not?
Some people have to go to work and don't have time for all that.


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John Cummings
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 12, 2008 at 1:45:02 pm

Go to your local eyeglass shop and get a spray bottle of "Ultra Clarity" lens cleaner. Then go to your local camera shop and get a couple packs of Kodak lens tissue. Moisten the tissue thoroughly and gently wet wipe lens several times. Then carefully (without pressure)wipe the lens with a dry Kodak tissue. If that doesn't remove the schmutz, then you need to send it in. Never dry wipe a lens that has anything on it as it will scratch the coating.

J Cummings
DP/Chicago
http://www.cameralogic.tv


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John Cummings
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 12, 2008 at 1:52:23 pm

"I know several DPs (one of them ASC) that swear by plain ol' ordinary Glass Plus widow cleaner, the stuff you can get right at the grocery store."

Maybe for uncoated glass filters, but for a coated lens?
Todd, be very sure you know what you're saying before you put something like that out here!

J Cummings
DP/Chicago
http://www.cameralogic.tv


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Todd Terry
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 12, 2008 at 3:12:25 pm

[John Cummings] "Todd, be very sure you know what you're saying"

Umm.... thanks, but yes, I do know what I'm saying.

I said I know several DPs who use Glass Plus.

They use it. And I know them. True statement.

I never said I had used it myself before, and I never said it worked or gave it a recommendation. Three DPs I personally know use it and swear by it. And one is ASC. And all have expensive lenses (yes, coated... can you even get an uncoated lens now?).

As I said, it's not a recommendation... just the passing on of info of what some others do. The reader may take it, test it, ignore it, do as they wish. I wouldn't use it myself without testing it on an old coated lens that I don't care about, but I wouldn't discount it.


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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Ali Jafri
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 15, 2008 at 3:08:44 am

An expert here told me that for specks and stains that don't come off its safe to use very thin leather fabric, the kind that come with designer eyeglass lenses. He says that some liquids, even professional grade ones, tend to smear the grime rather than lift it off the camera lens, particularly the kind of grime that we get at the beaches here. Is there any truth to this statement? I did go out and get me a leather cloth yesterday. I tested it out by pressing my finger on a mirror surface and wiping the fingerprint off with the leather, it came clean off! I used the same technique with microfibre cloth and it only managed to smear the print!

--------------------------------------------
Some people see things that are and ask, Why?
Some people dream of things that never were and ask, Why not?
Some people have to go to work and don't have time for all that.


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Richard Herd
Re: Help! Smudged dirt on lens glass!
on Jul 13, 2008 at 1:47:18 am

Cow article request: "White balancing on 18% gray"
Thanks



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