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03-25-2007, 08:57 PM   #1
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what do you use to clean your lens?

I feel kind of dumb asking this, but when it comes to keeping my things in perfect conditon, I am seeking opinions.

how do you clean your lens other then using a blower?
do you use a lens cleaner and microcloth, or do you use those very thin papers that come with eye glass cleaners?
what type of cleaner?

l never really thought about it in the past as I never really had this much money invested in camera equipment

thanks

randy

03-25-2007, 09:29 PM   #2
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usually start off by blowing off excess dust with the Giotto



then a few drops of Kodak Lens Cleaner solution



then wipe it off w/ pec pads



then finish it off w/ ilford anti-static microfiber cloth




you kinda reminded me, i need to clean off some lenses, and buy another set for the 2nd bag...
03-25-2007, 09:36 PM   #3
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Oh, you know; the usual...

Brillo pads and BonAmi cleanser. Steel Bar-B-Que grill brush for the stuck on gunk. A little spit and the cleaner of the sleeves of whatever shirt I'm wearing.

I doubt that I've needed more than a blower or a lint free brush in more than thirty years. I keep skylight or UV filters on the front side and take great care to not change them when I'm feeling clumsy. The brush(es) come from Kinetronics: StaticWisk at Calumet Photo. And other sources. Never touch the business end of the brush!

Any of the safe for camera lens/filter solutions and wipes would probably do the trick--but be very, very sparing in how much liquid you put onto the glass--you run the risk of having some leak into the inside---bad news!
03-25-2007, 09:39 PM   #4
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Funny thought occurred to me: How come my original K and M lenses are still fully coated and un-scratched after 30 years of use when I only ever used pieces of well worn and well washed cotton terry towel to clean them?? (with the very occasional drop of proprietary lens cleaning fluid to shift the really gooey stuff)
We didn't have all that high tech stuff in them there days.

03-25-2007, 10:08 PM   #5
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forgot to add that, having a UV filter in between the dirt and the actual lens is really really helpful.
03-26-2007, 01:16 AM   #6
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Damp (w/water) Microfibre Cloth

QuoteOriginally posted by slipchuck Quote
how do you clean your lens other then using a blower?
Damp (w/water) microfibre cloth. I spray the cloth, never the lens. smc coatings on Pentax lenses require nothing more. Chemicals are a waste of money. I did for a while use a Hoya polarizer without coatings and it DID require chemicals. My B+W Kaessmann does not. Only wash your microfibre cloths with dish or hand soap and air dry, never use fabric softener. I dedicate a microfibre cloth to cleaning lenses. I would never degrade a lens with a filter (except for rarely using a circular polarizer) but always use a lens hood. You wanted opinions? There's mine!
03-26-2007, 12:23 PM   #7
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same here, microfiber cloth with a drop or two of lens cleaning solution put on the cloth.

I'm still using the same bottle of lens cleaner that I bought probably 12 yrs ago when I still lived in Pittsburgh. (hence the Penguin avatar)

-Dan
03-26-2007, 02:36 PM   #8
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Randy;
Lens cleaning is not about what you've got, but how you use it. Here's some tips I got from working on telescope optics.
1. Never clean in the field. Wait until you are at home, in a controlled area.
2. Cleaning does not require a lot of force.
3. Compressed air can do a lot on its own. Mouth Blowing on a lens is not good.
4. Disposible lens tissues are best, but clean lint free cloth is OK. You pick.
5. Cleaning fluid always goes on tissue, never on lens. Use small amount.
6. Use fresh tissue to apply fluid, starting at center and working to edge.
7. Use another fresh tissue to remove fluid, starting at center and working to edge. If it dries before done, start over.
8. Toss all used tissues or clean any towels.
9 Lay everything out ahead of time. Set up a routine.
10. A UV filter is worth the cost. It's quickly removed if it gets smudged and it will. UV filters get cleaned the same way.
11. The most effective lens cleaning device is a lens cap.
Some optics look like they were handeled by somebody after eating a peanutbutter and jelly sandwitch.
Dave...

03-26-2007, 03:09 PM   #9
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Thank you all for responding.... great tips and technics for me to use

thanks again,

cheers


randy
03-27-2007, 11:56 AM   #10
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My co-worker gave me some of her late husband's canon cleaning accessories. Came w/ lens tissues (never use 'em), some liquid w/ a little sponge applicator, a blower, and some orange looking cloth that i don't use. I use my microfiber cloth instead.
Works well. I cleaned up some of my bf's dad's ooooooold M42 lenses w/ the kit and they came out sparkling.

Last edited by skydragoness; 03-27-2007 at 12:44 PM.
03-27-2007, 12:15 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by slipchuck Quote

how do you clean your lens other then using a blower?
do you use a lens cleaner and microcloth, or do you use those very thin papers that come with eye glass cleaners?
what type of cleaner?
I've used many different things over the years. What works best for me now for lenses and filters is the following:

1. Use the blower (Giotto Rocket) for loose dust.

2. If the blower doesn't clean the glass, then I gently clean with a micro-fiber cloth. Be sure to keep the cloth clean and lint free. Hand wash the cloth with just a small of dish soap, rinse well, and hang to dry.

3. If the micro-fiber cloth doesn't clean the glass after a couple of passes with light pressure, then I put a small amount of eyeglass cleaner on one corner of the cloth. One or two passes with the "wet" corner, and then one or two passes with the dry cloth, and the glass is clean. It has never failed to clean the glass and it has never damaged the glass or the coatings.

I have a big bottle of some eyeglass cleaner labeled "Optix" which is from the optometry department of Southern California Kaiser Permanente. Be sure to test any cleaner on a multi-coated filter before risking a valuable lens.

Last edited by GaryML; 03-31-2007 at 11:04 AM.
03-30-2007, 10:28 PM   #12
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I just exhale onto the glass (to fog it up) and then wipe with a microfiber or soft cotton cloth. For really dirty lenses I moisten the microfiber with Everclear 190 proof alcohol and then wipe the glass down. Never had any problems (or needed anything more)
03-30-2007, 10:36 PM   #13
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I tried the cleaning fluid with a micro fiber cloth and tissue but it didn't work out well for me, user error perhaps but now I use the lens pen. First I blow off all the dust with the rocket blower, then I use a brush very lightly to clean away any other stubborn or sticky dust and then I use the lens pen. It's simple, no fuss no muss and works like a charm every time.
03-30-2007, 11:38 PM   #14
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Hey Randy, I got a one of those Henrys branded SPUDz 6x6 cloth.



Heres a sample image from a UK retailer. (Just the fastest image I could find off Google)

Its really handy because of the spud shaped container + a small clip. Its clipped onto my neck strap so, whenever, I leave a big juicy fingerprint on my lens by accident, the cloth is there ready to go. (I just have the really BAD habit of blowing on the lens first haha.)

I also use a blower bulb too.
04-03-2007, 08:08 PM   #15
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One word... and it's not "plastic"

QuoteOriginally posted by slipchuck Quote
how do you clean your lens other then using a blower?
do you use a lens cleaner and microcloth, or do you use those very thin papers that come with eye glass cleaners?
what type of cleaner?
randy
Randy,

I have regular lens cloths/microcloths. I find they still leave dust behind after I clean a lens. So the best advice I can give you in one word... 3M.

Get thee to a Canadian Tire. Buy a 3M electrostatic cleaning cloth. They are square and about 30x30cm. They come in various & bright colors. I saw some in a chez Tire at the checkout counter. They are an incredible value... I paid less than $10 each for mine.

Oh those clever people at Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing! They are electrostatic so they pick up dust easily. They are soft so they don't scratch. The colors don't run or stain. They are machine washable. I put mine in the dryer (mild setting) after a machine wash so that any lint/dust left on the cloth gets sent to the lint trap.

They double as body or lens wraps if I have to go to dusty areas, since they will attract dust. If my camera or lens sits around, I'll just throw one of these cloths over it to so the cloth picks up dust. They are also useful for cleaning eyeglasses, wiping up car dashboards & cockpits, general cleaning around the house.

We bought 10 of these a number of years ago, my smarter & better half uses a couple for general house cleaning and I've confiscated the rest to use for my camera gear.

For cleaning the optical elements, I put a dab of lens cleaner on the 3M cloth and then apply the cloth to the lens. Or I'll just use my warm breath on the glass and gently wipe using the 3M cloth.

You can't go wrong with this. Trust me.

Last edited by tranq78; 04-03-2007 at 08:49 PM.
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