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Thread: Waterproofing MF bodies

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    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Waterproofing MF bodies

    After getting my 645D soaked taking lightning shots, I am looking at devices/materials for covering the camera when shooting in tough conditions. I don't think there is an underwater housing, but there must be plenty of glorified pastic bags on sale.

    Does anyone have any recommendations?

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    It sounds funny, but the best piece of rain gear that I've found is a hotel shower cap. They pack really light and small, and the elastic band is just strong enough to hold the cap over the camera or back to protect from light moisture.

    Is it better than "real" rain gear? Of course not. But Murphy's Law also dictates that it will get wet only if you don't pack all that space-sucking camera rain gear. I've got some rain gear, but always found it a pita to take everywhere. These shower caps measure only 4x5" and are as thin as an envelope to pack.

    ken
    Last edited by kdphotography; 22nd February 2013 at 08:57.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Well, I try to be practical about these things and like Ken I'll carry a shower cap (although they're rarer in hotels these days) and a basic rain cover. However, in the field more often than not I'll just use a hand towel.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Designed for another application but plenty roomy for a MF setup.

    Hydrophobia 70-200 Rain Cover - Think Tank

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    Senior Member yaya's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    One of these might work. Kata used to make one that was specifically for medium format...that was ages ago, we actually lent them a camera with a Valeo back for the product shots...
    Yair Shahar | Product Manager | Phase One | Mamiya Leaf
    e: [email protected] | m: +44(0)77 8992 8199 | yaya's blog

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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Here in the States, a common "house brand" of accessories many photo stores sell is the Promaster brand. They sell a $10.00 drawstring rain over, I believe in a few sizes that fits over the body and lens. Made essentially of a similar material as a shower cap, it is thicker and more durable and for most camera lens bodies/attached lenses it works quite well. Can"t beat the price. One end is own for the photographer to have access to the back of the camera and top if they so desire and the other end had the drawstring that tightens the cover around the front of the lens. The other option is simply to spend $4990.00 more and buy a Pentax weather sealed lens....LOL!

    Dave (D&A)

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    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Thanks guys - I will look into this!

    By the way Dave, the reason for my question is that after taking lightning shots a few days ago, my camera was rather wet (not very much so) and it developed a fault that stayed with me for two days. This suggests to me that water got in somewhere and luckily the problem stopped once it was fully dry. Could have been a coincidence of course, and the rain may have had nothing to do with it, but somehow I doubt that.

    Just shows that weather sealing of bodies has its limits...

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Ed,

    The rain cover I use with the DF is the 18in Op Tech rainsleeve.
    OP/TECH USA 18" Rainsleeve (Set of 2) 9001132 B&H Photo

    Basically free. Pretty nasty to use but it'll save you in a deluge. That said, where I live it rains a lot and often and so you learn good rain/weather care techniques. The key thing is not to let any water wick it's way inside your lenses/body and that's best done my dabbing it off with the hi-tech solution - a couple of hand towels in the bag. Like Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, I don't go anywhere without at least one.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    Ed,

    The rain cover I use with the DF is the 18in Op Tech rainsleeve.
    OP/TECH USA 18" Rainsleeve (Set of 2) 9001132 B&H Photo

    Basically free. Pretty nasty to use but it'll save you in a deluge. That said, where I live it rains a lot and often and so you learn good rain/weather care techniques. The key thing is not to let any water wick it's way inside your lenses/body and that's best done my dabbing it off with the hi-tech solution - a couple of hand towels in the bag. Like Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, I don't go anywhere without at least one.
    Graham....that's the one!! I was mistaken of the brand when in my post above recommended a "better than nothing" drawstring rain cover. I said it was the house brand "Promaster"...but after seeing your the pic of the Optitech packaging, that's the one I was referring to. What do you mean "nasty"...hey if is the difference between a ruined $10,000 piece of equipment and one that's saved...I'd say it was as good as gold...LOL!

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed HUrst View Post
    Thanks guys - I will look into this!

    By the way Dave, the reason for my question is that after taking lightning shots a few days ago, my camera was rather wet (not very much so) and it developed a fault that stayed with me for two days. This suggests to me that water got in somewhere and luckily the problem stopped once it was fully dry. Could have been a coincidence of course, and the rain may have had nothing to do with it, but somehow I doubt that.

    Just shows that weather sealing of bodies has its limits...
    Ed, if I may ask, what was the "fault" that the 645D developed after getting soaked? Just curious. Is it possible that water egressed into the lens mount by capilary action, since the body is water resistant but not the lens you were using....unless it was the new 55mm. I don't recall the lens in use.

    I also thought maybe the camera ws struct by one of those lightening bolts...but then I doubt you'd be taking any additional shots afterwards with that body...refering to the 645D body!...LOL!

    Dave (D&A)

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    What do you mean "nasty"...hey if is the difference between a ruined $10,000 piece of equipment and one that's saved...I'd say it was as good as gold...LOL!

    Dave (D&A)
    I just find all of the plastic camera condoms nasty - nothing specific to the Op Tech USA one. That said, I always have one of these in the bag, along with a hotel laundry plastic bag and a black refuse sack. They sit in the rear pocket of my camera rucksack.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    2 gallon Zip lock bag. Did a full day shooting in a major storm here and worked great. Cheap too
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    I bought a Kata 702PL yesterday for use with a D800.B&H listing

    Having seen this thread, I've just tried my 645DF in it with a 45mm lens and whilst it fits inside, it's far from ideal. The big velcro strap at the front is quite rigid and more suited to DSLR zooms.

    Typically I use an outdoor camping style towel draped over the camera in 'moist' conditions. It won't be any good for steady/heavy rain.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Waterproofing MF bodies

    Quote Originally Posted by baxter View Post
    Typically I use an outdoor camping style towel draped over the camera in 'moist' conditions. It won't be any good for steady/heavy rain.
    This is my experience over many years of shooting in the rain. I'm not convinced that the rain coats are the best approach at all unless perhaps you're anchored in one location shooting in pouring rain (i.e. sports shooting on the sidelines etc).

    I find the hand towel is really the most effective approach and just have a couple of them in your bag (courtesy of the hotel btw).

    You can be paranoid about this stuff and often the practical approach is to just use plastic bags with holes in them vs the fancy impractical devices that the tool vendors want to sell.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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