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09-27-2014, 03:23 PM   #1
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Dead battery charger, maybe?

Yesterday, a drunk woman sitting next to me on an airplane dumped her vodka cocktail on me and my partially open camera bag. My Pentax D-BC109 charger got wet. I tried charging my K-30's battery this morning and the green LED light will not turn on. It seems like the charger is dead.

First question : is there any hope that the charger is charging the battery without illuminating the LED? I don't know what the circuit is but I would imagine that the LED is in series with some line to the battery. No current in the line, no LED illumination, and no charging. Just asking here to make sure ..

I removed the single screw from the back in the hopes of opening it up and seeing what damage the spilled drink did. The two halves of the charger seem to snapped together too. There must be internal tabs. What's the secret twist to open up the charger? Is there one? Or do I just have to dremel it open?

Of all things that could have been liquid damaged I'm glad it's only my battery. I had my Spotmatic ES, a D FA 50mm f/2.8 lens, DA 35mm f/2.4 lens, a DA 40mm f/2.8 XS lens, and my Q 01 prime in the bag. Thankfully each lens was triple wrapped in plastic shopping bags.

09-27-2014, 04:07 PM   #2
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Ooh... But lucky you bagged up the lenses, I just leave mine loose in the pack.

The wet charger might have failed when you tried it.
Last year I had to wipe my smartphone with a wet paper towel and that was the end of it.

If you can get Charger open about all you can do is wash the electronics in water with a little detergent, then rinse and dry completely at about 45 Celsius, befor powering it
I put such stuff on top of the UPS to dry.

Is there an off brand charger available?
09-27-2014, 04:28 PM   #3
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I can get a new charger for the D-LI109 battery for about $10 on Amazon. However, in order to get free shipping and get more value out of the order I need the total to add up to $35. I know I can easily find another $25 of stuff to buy and it's not about the money. My battery is going to run out soon and I have no way to charge it. So if there's a way I can open up this charger then I can at least look it over. Maybe some sugar or salt dried between two pins and is shorting something out, preventing it from turning on? I might get lucky rising with some distilled water if I can get inside.

Once my battery is drained I'll have to resort to Eneloops in an AA battery adapter while I would wait for my order to arrive.
09-27-2014, 05:09 PM   #4
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Rubbing alcohol, q-tips and electronic contact cleaner (cleaned out some salt in a scroll wheel I had) have become my go-to tools for cleaning these kind of messes.

09-27-2014, 05:14 PM   #5
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The Olympus charger here has tamper-proof screws with projecting pins in the heads.
The K-01 charger has no visible screws but I think there is one under the adhesive label.
These days, I think most ac powered consumer appliances are tamper proof for liability reasons.

You could go ahead and get the Amazon one, making up the difference with your favorite film.
However I found that sometimes making up the minimum amount still does not get free shipping on all items.
09-27-2014, 08:15 PM   #6
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I managed to crack the charger open. The long sides were fused shut. Maybe they were glued? That's why the charger didn't open up when I simply removed the screws. Sure enough, the insides were a sticky yucky mess of dried syrup and vodka remnants. I dried off what I could with some sustained air blasts and let the rest air dry. Alas, even though the LED illuminates the battery does not charge. It's time for an Amazon order of a charger, lens cleaning solution, and film.
09-27-2014, 11:39 PM   #7
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Normally with any electrics if you dry them with out applying power you are ok it's when you apply power and they are still damp they fry.
That's why phones and cameras that are off often survive a dunking but don't if they were on when it happens.
09-28-2014, 10:30 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
It's time for an Amazon order of a charger
I would suggest a genuine Pentax charger. The aftermarket units are generally "quick" charge and will not regulate. They are OK, but the Pentax is better. You can tell the difference by the number of contacts on the charger.


Steve

09-28-2014, 11:29 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
The long sides were fused shut. Maybe they were glued?
Probably RF welded. Just about every power supply is welded shut these days. It might sound like not a good idea but you could try soaking it distilled water for a bit, then air blast drying it as much as possible. Then put in a sealed container with some silica gel packs. Uncooked rice will work too. Just put the rice in an old sock and tie the end off. Or put the charger in a couple old socks and bury it in uncooked rice. Let it dry out for a week or so. You want it completely dry before applying power again. Most likely it is fried at this point but you never know.
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