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03-26-2011, 05:20 AM   #1
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Lots of dust, but where?

If I look through the viewfinder (eyecup) I see many specs of dust and tiny hair. These do not show up on the picture, so the sensor is clean. I can easily clean the mirror and focusing screen by wiping with camel hair brush, but these things do not even move around. So where can these reside and how to clean these out. It has become pretty annoying to focus.

03-26-2011, 05:58 AM   #2
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if they are on the focusing screen, be carefull ! It's easy to scratch focusing screens. use some item that can blow some air, to try to push away those little devils
03-26-2011, 06:32 AM   #3
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Well it seems to be somewhere where the air or any other device does not reach. I have compressed air can I used, but these speck do not even move around. So these may be behind the focusing screen. How do they get there is another mystery.
03-26-2011, 09:54 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by vanakaru Quote
Well it seems to be somewhere where the air or any other device does not reach. I have compressed air can I used, but these speck do not even move around. So these may be behind the focusing screen. How do they get there is another mystery.
If you take your camera out of a dust free clean room, you are going to get dust into it.

03-26-2011, 10:35 AM   #5
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Are they in the VF itself? Did you try removing it and cleaning it and in the camera behind it? I would use a bulb blower instead of compressed air, though.
03-26-2011, 12:30 PM   #6
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It seems to be between the viewfinder lens and focus screen. It gets there seemingly easy but how to get it out is beyond still.
03-26-2011, 12:38 PM   #7
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If you follow the instructions for changing the focus screen, but don't remove it - just let it swing down, then you can use your bulb blower to clean the upper surface of the screen, and the lower surface of viewfinder prism. I had the same problem, and was able to blow out the offending dust and hair quite easily this way.

Here's a link to instructions on changing the focus screen. You can use any small flat tool (e.g. a small screwdriver) to do the initial unlocking action.

--Pentax K5/K7/K10D/K20D/ISTD Focusing Screen Installation Instruction--
03-26-2011, 01:32 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bjdavey Quote
If you follow the instructions for changing the focus screen, but don't remove it - just let it swing down, then you can use your bulb blower to clean the upper surface of the screen, and the lower surface of viewfinder prism. I had the same problem, and was able to blow out the offending dust and hair quite easily this way.

Here's a link to instructions on changing the focus screen. You can use any small flat tool (e.g. a small screwdriver) to do the initial unlocking action.

--Pentax K5/K7/K10D/K20D/ISTD Focusing Screen Installation Instruction--
I had to do this once, too, except that I did have to remove the screen and use the bulb blower really close to the screen to have enough force to blow off the stubborn dust. Hopefully, you won't have to resort to that.

03-26-2011, 04:19 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by DogLover Quote
I had to do this once, too, except that I did have to remove the screen and use the bulb blower really close to the screen to have enough force to blow off the stubborn dust. Hopefully, you won't have to resort to that.
Yeah, in my 3+ years of owning a K20D, I have had to do that a couple of times. It's true, it won't affect the images one bit, but those little fibers and dust specks in the viewfinder are ANNOYING!



It's pretty easy to take out and replace the focusing screen (I understand the process for the K-5 is basically the same as it is on my K20D). I did it about 20 times while shimming the focus screen for accurate manual focus, so now I can practically do it in my sleep.

But it ABSOLUTELY IS easy to scratch the focusing screen, or to get fingerprints on it. I was able to get fingerprints off with isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol and a cotton swab, but after the swab you may need to use a lint-free cloth to get the cotton fibers off that you just added!
03-26-2011, 04:26 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by vanakaru Quote
If I look through the viewfinder (eyecup) I see many specs of dust and tiny hair. These do not show up on the picture, so the sensor is clean. I can easily clean the mirror and focusing screen by wiping with camel hair brush, but these things do not even move around. So where can these reside and how to clean these out. It has become pretty annoying to focus.
QuoteOriginally posted by vanakaru Quote
Well it seems to be somewhere where the air or any other device does not reach. I have compressed air can I used, but these speck do not even move around. So these may be behind the focusing screen. How do they get there is another mystery.
its a mystery no longer...you put any form of bristles inside the camera body..you will leave behind some ..no question of it, Id get shot of that camel brush if I where you..
03-26-2011, 10:39 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tommot1965 Quote
its a mystery no longer...you put any form of bristles inside the camera body..you will leave behind some ..no question of it, Id get shot of that camel brush if I where you..
No, the dust got there before I tried my lens cleaning blower/brush thingy.
03-27-2011, 12:39 AM   #12
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Depends on the camera.

Possibilities are:
focusing screen(cleanable)
PentaPrism/Mirror(don't bother).

If its the focusing screen, you can easily take it out to clean at home(with a careful process).
However if its the Prism or PentaMirror, I would not recommend against trying to clean it. Your best bet(at that point) would be to send it in to Pentax for a cleaning.

PS. to check/confirm dust on focusing screen, take your camera in the washroom after running a shower for a few mins. to help reduce dust levels(don't do it in steam!). Throw on a new pair of latex gloves(sealed), grab a small flashlight(mag light etc) and examine the screen in the mirror box with the camera upside down(to see better). You should be able to see dust and debris when shining the light upon it. - DO NOT PLACE THE LIGHT IN THE MIRROR BOX!

If you plan on rmoving the screen, I'd recommend getting the special tweezers on eBay. made to grab the tab on the screen for removal. Alot of people try taking out screen with regular tweezers or their fingers(ouch) and make a mess of things in the process.

Hope this helps
03-27-2011, 06:37 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by vanakaru Quote
Well it seems to be somewhere where the air or any other device does not reach. I have compressed air can I used, but these speck do not even move around. So these may be behind the focusing screen. How do they get there is another mystery.
I would suggest not using canned compressed air inside the camera. It can contain propellant which can leave an oily residue which can really gum things up.
03-27-2011, 07:39 AM   #14
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No canned air.

QuoteOriginally posted by jrforman Quote
I would suggest not using canned compressed air inside the camera. It can contain propellant which can leave an oily residue which can really gum things up.
The dirt is on your focus screen or prism glass just less than 1mm above the screen. I would never touch the screen with that brush! The only company I know that makes products to clean the area is Visible Dust . I had the same problem some years ago. Using canned air pushed the dust up to a place I could not clean. Never ever use canned air in your lens or camera. I pushed dust up behind the front element of a lens doing this! I have learned the hard way!!! I have a kit that clean just the focus screen, above it (prism) and the mirror. I can even wet clean the focus screen. There is not even one little spot of dust in my OVF after over two years and 40,000 pics with my K20D. Trust me its expensive but only Visible Dust has all the stuff to keep me happy and educated on whats what and how to deal with problems. Its been enough time now that I will share a letter from Dr. Dagen of visible dust on your very problem.


I have no ties what so ever with this company. However I strongly suggest you go to there site and just read the material on dust and contamination. BTW I would bet money what you see is glued to the top side of the focus screen and it needs a wet cleaning or prism above the focus screen (you can wet clean).


Hi James,
Thanks for the e-mail

The brush can be washed every 10-15 times of sensor cleaning or if accidental contamination occurs such as finger contamination or oil residue

To Clean VisibleDust Sensor Brush filaments:
1- Sensor Brush Wash™ tablets. Very safe for the special fibers, they are buffered at specific pH to help protect filaments. Need to dissolve tablets in distilled water and rinse filaments in solution. Let the brush air dry (do not spin to reduce fanning).
2- Rubbing Alcohol Isopropyl Alcohol (Isopropanol) 70 or 90% or Ethanol (DO NOT USE METHANOL TO WASH SENSOR BRUSH!) Dip the Sensor Brush filaments into a small volume of rubbing alcohol, stir in the brush for few seconds and let the brush air dry (do not spin to reduce fanning).


As for the mirror and focusing screen if you have the Arctic Butterfly 724, you can purchase a separate brush accessory that uses the Motorized base of 724, the accessory called Mirror Brush, this is a better alternative to use a clean brush just for this area

As for OVF: you use the Mirror brush and if there is a stain, then use Focus Screen Swabs along with Sensor Clean liquid to remove. Sensor Clean offers anti static, prolongs the cleaning process

Should you have more questions please give us a call at 1-877-999-9404

Dr.Degan

Last edited by jamesm007; 03-27-2011 at 07:47 AM.
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