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03-01-2010, 11:31 PM   #1
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WR Flash Design???

Not sure if this is the right place to put it, but I've been thinking about how a WR flash could be designed. I would say that about 95% of the design is pretty straight forward (seals, weatherproofed switches and displays, etc.) The one thing that bother me though is the flash foot. Looking at my K7 & K20D, I've noticed that there are a series of grooves in the foot that allow for the pins to slide into the contacts. I don't think that these can be easily weatherproofed. So, would that mean that a weatherproofed flash would need a body with a new foot design? Perhaps a stronger foot design and a better locking mechanism would be in order too? If a new camera body is needed, then it should include an adapter so that older flashes like the AF540 and the AF360 can still be used. Your thoughts?

The other worry that I'd have is that flashes have some pretty intense voltages in them from the capacitors. I would think that here would be too much of the bad kind of excitement from a water induced short. The question is if it is even a good idea to build a weather proof flash? I know that Canon's 580 EX II is supposed to be weather resistant. Has anyone heard of any "incidents" involving the failure of that weather resistance?


Last edited by HawaiianOnline; 03-01-2010 at 11:31 PM. Reason: Edited a few errors I noticed.
03-02-2010, 12:19 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by HawaiianOnline Quote
Not sure if this is the right place to put it, but I've been thinking about how a WR flash could be designed. I would say that about 95% of the design is pretty straight forward (seals, weatherproofed switches and displays, etc.) The one thing that bother me though is the flash foot. Looking at my K7 & K20D, I've noticed that there are a series of grooves in the foot that allow for the pins to slide into the contacts. I don't think that these can be easily weatherproofed. So, would that mean that a weatherproofed flash would need a body with a new foot design? Perhaps a stronger foot design and a better locking mechanism would be in order too? If a new camera body is needed, then it should include an adapter so that older flashes like the AF540 and the AF360 can still be used. Your thoughts?

The other worry that I'd have is that flashes have some pretty intense voltages in them from the capacitors. I would think that here would be too much of the bad kind of excitement from a water induced short. The question is if it is even a good idea to build a weather proof flash? I know that Canon's 580 EX II is supposed to be weather resistant. Has anyone heard of any "incidents" involving the failure of that weather resistance?
They will never redesign the foot. Minolta tried that and they've been locked into a proprietary foot ever since.

As for the capacitor, if water gets inside, it's going to find a way to short out, whether or not it gets to the capacitor.

If I know that I'll be outside with my flash in inclement weather, a 1 gallon ziplock bag works great, and is cheap. It might work, you'd have to have a way to seal both the swivel and tilt mechanisms. For the foot, you could have a soft rubber boot that rolls down over the shoe to keep splashing water off.
03-02-2010, 04:05 AM   #3
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I dont think that it'd be too hard to weather proof a flash yourself, seeing as there isnt too many moving parts or buttons needed. As for your hotshoe problem i reckon just a large bit of rubber that applies a decent amount of pressure onto the actual camera would easily stop water from getting in as it would just run straight over it.
You might need worry about the heat from the flash though, as if the whole thing was weather proofed it might insulate it as well, frying some components or the sealing if too many shots were fired in a short amount of time
03-02-2010, 05:06 PM   #4
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Not sure what the benefit of using a flash in rain would be.
All it will do is reflect from droplets in front of the lens, just wondering?
Weather resistant for use in a dripping jungle could be handy how ever.

Cheers, Mike.

03-02-2010, 09:05 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
Not sure what the benefit of using a flash in rain would be.
All it will do is reflect from droplets in front of the lens, just wondering?
Weather resistant for use in a dripping jungle could be handy how ever.

Cheers, Mike.
There have been several times when I was up at Haleakala National park, photographing birds when there'd be a sudden squall and I'd wonder about when Pentax would come out with a weather sealed super-tele and flash.

Then I'd throw my spare poncho over my rig - problem solved, for then at least. I always made sure that I'd have a spare something to put over that rig even if it was an otherwise sunny day. That's when I started to think about weather proofed flashes.

A new WR super tele would be nice too... (This is aimed at you Sigma with your 5 new lenses, where's the damn 300-800 f5.6?)
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