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11-03-2014, 08:17 PM   #1
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Got sand in my lens what to do what to do

Well I stumbled (literally) into my first lens casualty recently... I was at the beach with fam a couple weeks ago shooting a Japanese American kite festival... I switched out lenses and put my Tamron 18-250 zoom into my lens pouch that I had attached to my sling strap... 99% of the time, I would have put the back lens cap on before putting it into the lens pouch, but I was in a hurry and didn't do it and only put the front lens cap on...

Shortly after this lens swap I was squatted underneath a large octopus kite to take a (fisheye) shot when the kite suddenly started to descend upon me. I scrambled so it wouldn't land on me, and stumbled awkwardly a bit in the process as sand gave way beneath me... In the process of trying to gain balance and not land in the sand with all my gear, I badly hyper-extended my knee (heard/felt a nice loud snap/pop) and went down into the sand anyway...

The rest of the gear (Spotmatic+Tak55 and K-5+DA10-17) I was carrying was all spared any problems... (My knee is healing fine too thankfully...) Had I not been in excruciating pain, I would have thought to immediately take the Tamron zoom out of the lens pouch and make sure no sand got into it and put the cap on... Instead, I was in excruciating pain while stranded far out in the sand, sun and heat. I was unable to even walk and ultimately didn't get around to investigating the pouch and lens until a few days after when I was getting back to being able to get around... Sure enough, the lens was in the lens pouch that whole time without a back cap attached and the pouch itself had quite a bit of sand in it, consequently the lens now has quite a bit of sand in it....

From the best that I can tell/guess, the sand is all in the front part of the lens. I don't know if it got into the lens from the front/sides, through the sleeves of the zoom part, or from the back due to not having the back cap on, or both. Any opinions on this?

I can provide pictures if anybody is interested and thinks it will help the investigation. It doesn't seem like any sand is in the back part of the lens at all, so I am more suspecting it got in through the side zoom sleeve part, or whatever that part of the lens is called...

I am not sure it's worth trying to get this sand removed. Any opinions on where to turn for this and how much it might cost? I know a local guy (who CLA'd my TLR) and I might take it to him for an opinion...The sand is mostly kind of sticking along some inner ring barrel edges in a couple places that are visible by shining light through the front lens. I don't think this sand would have any impact on images unless it got loose and stuck to the lens at some point... There is only one speck that I can see that is stuck on the inside of one of the front glass pieces that is in the light path. I can't get it to move, but doubt that speck would have any impact on images either...

I basically would be comfortable continuing to use the lens if I was sure that no sand would somehow get out the back of the lens into my camera. Any opinions here? If all the sand is in the front part of the lens, is there any way for it to work its way out through the back? Do you think I would be crazy to keep using this lens without getting it cleaned?

Thanks

11-03-2014, 08:24 PM - 1 Like   #2
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It may be best to have it cleaned first. For the sake of the camera and the mechanical gears of the zoom lens.

I'm sorry about that knee.
11-03-2014, 08:26 PM - 1 Like   #3
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I've done the SDM DIY repair and the only frustrating/scary part is losing springs (I had to sacrifice two other lenses to scavenge springs). If I had a pair of dexterous hands nearby, I would feel comfortable taking apart the lens to get any sand out with a lens pen. If you don't want to do that, the local guy is a good bet.

Last edited by lithedreamer; 11-03-2014 at 08:45 PM.
11-03-2014, 08:30 PM - 1 Like   #4
Zav
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Get it cleaned, the sand might get into the focusing mechanism of your lens. Also if it's beach sand, the salt would do no good.

11-03-2014, 08:32 PM   #5
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Aha all good points thanks... I do not trust myself whatsoever to attempt DIY... I might try it though if the local guy wants too much...
11-03-2014, 09:00 PM   #6
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sorry to hear that...

no worries about lens, lens can get a new one, but glad knee was OK, knee is more important to continue taking pics....

If it makes you feel better, on my last trip, my DA*16-50 SDM failed and I slipped and my 67II now take a beating on its head (luckily camera was OK)....
11-03-2014, 09:19 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by LFLee Quote
sorry to hear that...

no worries about lens, lens can get a new one, but glad knee was OK, knee is more important to continue taking pics....

If it makes you feel better, on my last trip, my DA*16-50 SDM failed and I slipped and my 67II now take a beating on its head (luckily camera was OK)....
Yes.. I was very pleasantly surprised to have my knee heal this quickly.

Too many stories of the 16-50 failures... Boo! But glad you and the rest of your gear are ok
11-03-2014, 09:47 PM - 1 Like   #8
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Clean it and don't use it at all until it's done. A single grain of sand in the wrong place can pretty much destroy even pretty hardy mechanical parts.

11-04-2014, 01:23 AM   #9
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photo with octopus is very good, sorry that it happened but I would not risk it -DIY.
Sand can also get in your camera, then the repair costs significantly increased with!
11-04-2014, 05:47 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by VisualDarkness Quote
Clean it and don't use it at all until it's done. A single grain of sand in the wrong place can pretty much destroy even pretty hardy mechanical parts.
I agree, I take apart prime lenses all the time, most are fairly easy to clean up but zoom lenses are very complex inside, you don't want any foreign bodies in them.
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