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01-23-2010, 10:06 PM   #1
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Liquid on lens outer ring

Whenever I take my helios lens out after keeping it in the bag for a week or two, there is a liquid substance on the lens focussing ring. Is this oil leak? If yes, how can I prevent it. Will this affect the lens in the long run? I live in a place where the climate is very humid. Can this be moisture?

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01-23-2010, 10:31 PM   #2
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I don't think oil leak is the right term. That would imply the lens is supposed to contain oil. I think it very well could be lubricant from the focusing mechanism migrating out of the lens and onto the barrel. This may eventually stop... or not. I hope that the lens is designed so that it doesn't allow the lube to creep into the lens and on the elements.
01-24-2010, 08:36 AM   #3
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I have a couple of silica gels within the bag. Are they causing the lubricant leaking?
01-24-2010, 11:54 AM   #4
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They shouldn't be causing it. The gel absorbs moisture (water) and shouldn't have an effect on the lube. All oil-based lubricants creep, though some creep considerably less and some considerably more. Think about an oil spot on concrete. One very small drop will eventually spread and could be a couple inches across. I've seen this creep on a pair of binoculars I had that oculars that extended from the body when focused. I also had it happen to a telephoto zoom lens I had in my film days a long time ago. I just cleaned it off as I noticed it and it never did actually get ON the lenses.

About the only thing that I can think of to prevent creep is storing your lens in a cool dry place. That's good practice to avoid fungus from growing in and on the lens, anyway. And thinking back on my binoculars and the zoom, the problem was worse when the closet I stored them in got warm in the summer.

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