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05-28-2008, 03:15 AM   #1
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sensor cleaning

My sensor is absolutely filthy. The question is, should i:
a. buy the needed gear and clean it myself
b. take it pentax service
c. take it any old camera store

I would like to do it myself but i have to admit that i am scared of messing it up.

cheers
mike

05-28-2008, 03:43 AM   #2
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Then go for B. It's the safest and most competent way to do it.

Option A could lead to a busted sensor
Option C could do the same, but you also PAY to have your sensor busted.
05-28-2008, 03:49 AM   #3
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Hi Mike,

Welcome to the forums. I was just like you and then I found this site: Cleaning Digital Cameras - Introduction
After reading the whole thing I decided to DIY. It's not hard, I don't bother to make my own swabs or anything, but I do buy methyl alcohol instead of "Eclipse Fluid" It's the same thing and if you can find Methanol (another name for methyl alcohol) it's a lot cheaper. The site mentioned above talks about all the different types of sensor cleaning, how to do each one, and gives their recommendations. I'd first just try using a rocket blower or some such (stay away from canned air) and then see if you need to do anything more.

NaCl(if anything the site above errs on the side of caution)H2O
05-28-2008, 08:19 AM   #4
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Here's a WAY easier way...

QuoteOriginally posted by schmik Quote
My sensor is absolutely filthy. The question is, should i:
a. buy the needed gear and clean it myself
b. take it pentax service
c. take it any old camera store

I would like to do it myself but i have to admit that i am scared of messing it up.

cheers
mike
QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
Then go for B. It's the safest and most competent way to do it.

Option A could lead to a busted sensor
Option C could do the same, but you also PAY to have your sensor busted.
QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Hi Mike,

Welcome to the forums. I was just like you and then I found this site: Cleaning Digital Cameras - Introduction
After reading the whole thing I decided to DIY. It's not hard, I don't bother to make my own swabs or anything, but I do buy methyl alcohol instead of "Eclipse Fluid" It's the same thing and if you can find Methanol (another name for methyl alcohol) it's a lot cheaper. The site mentioned above talks about all the different types of sensor cleaning, how to do each one, and gives their recommendations. I'd first just try using a rocket blower or some such (stay away from canned air) and then see if you need to do anything more.

NaCl(if anything the site above errs on the side of caution)H2O

http://www.lenspen.com/?cPath=&products_id=SK-1&tpid=146

http://www.lenspen.com/403/377/

Works great - Canon Canada uses them when you send your camera in for the $100.00+ cleaning job.

$18.95 - Cdn - or a whole kit with cloth, blower, and 3 extra replacement tips for about $50.00.

I even used my lens pen on my sensor for a while - that worked great, and I found out that some major manufacturers (Canon) were doing that, also. Now they, and I, use the Sensor Klear.

Or you can spend $100.00 and be without your camera for a week or more. Next time you change your lens, it could be dirty again.

Cheers,
Cameron

05-28-2008, 08:46 AM   #5
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I was faced with your dilemma a couple of weeks ago - the sensor on my ist DS needed cleaning badly (3 years of use!!). I went here Micro-Tools, Camera & Watch Repair Tools - Home after reading some tips on cleaning sensors - see the link from NaClH2O - and ordered the Eclipse fluid and PEC Pads, made my own "wand" out of an old, thin rubber spatula and had at it - CAREFULLY.

Worked great - got most of the dust the first time - and got it all the second time. It really is fairly easy to do, you just have to be careful.

If you do decide to do it yourself, make sure you have fresh batteries. Good luck.
05-28-2008, 09:46 AM   #6
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I have used the Pentax Cleaning Kit (O-ICK1) a few times with great success on both of my K10D bodies. But it helps to also have some sort of illuminated magnifier. I use the Visible Dust Sensor Loupe. The bright LED's really light up the sensor, making it easy to see the dust.

Richard
05-28-2008, 10:14 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Old Timer 56 Quote
I have used the Pentax Cleaning Kit (O-ICK1) a few times with great success on both of my K10D bodies. But it helps to also have some sort of illuminated magnifier. I use the Visible Dust Sensor Loupe. The bright LED's really light up the sensor, making it easy to see the dust.
I got the O-ICK1 kit and it didn't get the persistent speck of dust that's in the middle of my K10D's sensor. So, I'm gonna ship it off to Pentax for cleaning. I wanted to have them check the autofocus alignment anyway, so, might as well.
05-28-2008, 02:54 PM   #8
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Original Poster
Thanks guys. The link from NaClH2O is great. I will do it myself. I must learn these things as it will pay off in the long run. I often shoot kite sports (kitesurfing, buggying, landboarding) so change lenses in the great outdoors while it is windy. Now i've started doing some HDR stuff and have shot at high apertures.... i looked at the results (in particular the sky) and was shocked at how filthy the sensor was. Part of getting a k100d was the low cost. If i mess this up then i have killed a relatively cheap camera. I spoke to a mate last night who is a 'pro'. He only ever uses a blower and takes his camera to Canon if the blower won't fix it. He is in a different league though..... add a zero to the end of k100d price tag and that is what his camera is worth (canon D1, or is it 1D....whatever).

cheers
mike

05-28-2008, 03:14 PM   #9
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Get a Giottos Rocketblower. I've never had to do a wet cleaning on any sensor yet (*ist DL, then K100D, then K10D and now K20D). Just blast some air from the Rocketblower and you should be good to go. If not, then you can resort to more invasive methods. Always try the simplest method first, though.
05-28-2008, 03:38 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by rfortson Quote
Always try the simplest method first, though.
Advice to live by!
05-29-2008, 09:33 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by rfortson Quote
Get a Giottos Rocketblower. I've never had to do a wet cleaning on any sensor yet (*ist DL, then K100D, then K10D and now K20D). Just blast some air from the Rocketblower and you should be good to go. If not, then you can resort to more invasive methods. Always try the simplest method first, though.
The rocket blower is quite nice, and I've also heard it is a good preventative measure. Also I try to keep my body face down when I switch lenses but who knows if that actually helps.

I also did a wet clean with Eclipse E2 and it worked great!
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