July 19, 2018, 05:54:33 AM

Author Topic: Dry box for humid climates.  (Read 2583 times)

CanonFanBoy

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Dry box for humid climates.
« on: March 11, 2018, 11:27:34 PM »
I've just relocated from the Nevada desert to the Dallas / Fort Worth area. I've never had to worry about high humidity before now (fungus?). Though I am from the deep south my hobby began out in the dry west. I'm wondering how many of you use a humidity controlled dry box to ward off the effects of high humidity on your lenses. This is what I'm talking about here:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJFXET2/ref=dra_a_rv_lb_hn_xx_P1400_1000?tag=dradisplay-20&ascsubtag=2cf948d19e07e3a057925e6572d0c559_S

I Know I could just get a box and throw in some silica gel packets, replenishing them now and then. This just seems like a good idea. I am familiar with Hakuto's equipment from the printed circuit board industry and consider their stuff to be high quality. It looks as though there are several companies branding the same boxes though.

What do you think? Are any of you doing this?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 12:14:51 AM by CanonFanBoy »
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Dry box for humid climates.
« on: March 11, 2018, 11:27:34 PM »

YuengLinger

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2018, 01:06:56 AM »
You don't have AC? 

CanonFanBoy

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2018, 02:36:31 AM »
You don't have AC?

Yes, but the humidity can still get quite high. I can remember getting out of the shower in the summer and not being able to dry. :) Surface humidity and RH are different, not to mention dew points. I think the biggest fear is condensation inside the lens. Fungus can actually etch the glass. I don't know.

I see you are from the southeast. Have you ever had problems with fogging? I just didn't have to think about this in Nevada. My biggest concern was adding humidity for my guitars and piano (40%). Just taking a shower would raise the humidity in my little apartment to about 65% for a few hours.

You are right about AC helping as we used to control clean room RH with AC and steam, but that is a clean room where nothing is cooked, no showers being taken, etc... We're in a two bedroom apt. with 5 people bathing and cooking daily (I live with my daughter due to my cognitive deficits).

I don't know. Maybe this would be a waste of money. I see vintage lenses have a problem with fungus sometimes.

« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 02:52:41 AM by CanonFanBoy »
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J.R.

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2018, 02:56:31 AM »
I have 2 electronic dry cabinets where I store all my lenses. I used to live in an area which had over 80-90% humidity continuously for at least 4 months in a year. The fungus accumulation on household items like fabric, shoes, etc. was beyond belief so I wasn't taking any chances.

I was recommended the silica gel method but it was way to cumbersome for me and since I'm lazy, there was always the possibility of a delay in replacement.

While I have air-conditioning (not central), I switch it off when I am out of the house so this option was also ruled out for me. If you have 24x7 AC in the room where you store your lenses, fungus is out of question.
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CanonFanBoy

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2018, 02:59:59 AM »
I have 2 electronic dry cabinets where I store all my lenses. I used to live in an area which had over 80-90% humidity continuously for at least 4 months in a year. The fungus accumulation on household items like fabric, shoes, etc. was beyond belief so I wasn't taking any chances.

I was recommended the silica gel method but it was way to cumbersome for me and since I'm lazy, there was always the possibility of a delay in replacement.

While I have air-conditioning (not central), I switch it off when I am out of the house so this option was also ruled out for me. If you have 24x7 AC in the room where you store your lenses, fungus is out of question.

Thank you JR. I think I need to break out my hygrometer when I find it. I need to monitor RH for my instruments in high humidity too. You two guys are probably right. Nothing to worry about.
5D Mark III, Canon EF 24-70 F/2.8L II, 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, 35 f/1.4L II, 135 f/2L, Streaklight 360ws, Flashpoint XPLOR 600PRO, 36x m42 screw mount lenses adapted to my DSLR. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II, Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro

YuengLinger

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2018, 10:52:35 PM »
Yes, I live in the southeast.  Generally very high humidity outdoors in the summer, but most homes built after the late 1960's in this region were designed with central air.  I've also lived in a fishing cottage near Tallahassee (one year) and a one bedroom apartment (four years) with L lenses since 2006. 

I've lived in Miami in a studio apartment with a wheezy old window-unit, back in the days of film.  Never had an issue with camera gear or computers at all.  In that apartment, the closet had no door and was adjacent to the tiny bathroom.  We had the old jalousie windows which did little to keep the AC in or the humid air out, but it was probably that "natural" ventilation that prevented mildew from forming anywhere except the bathroom, and then only if I went weeks without cleaning the shower/tub.

I do belong to a camera club with about 40 members.  As far as I know, only one member ever had an issue with mold, and I believe it was in a 70-200mm f/4.  But she had gotten it wet in rain, stuffed it in a case without drying, then kept it in her cracker house with no AC at all for weeks before noticing the issue.  This was obvious neglect, but she still lives without AC and has had no other problems.  Keep in mind, though, that cracker houses were designed before AC, and they are actually pretty comfortable with the higher ceilings, ceiling fans, and being up off the ground.  They have windows higher up too for proper air-flow.

In our current house, a couple years ago, my wife noticed that in the master bathroom the mildew just kept coming back on the tile in the shower stall, no matter how often we sprayed and cleaned.  Turned out the shower pan had broken, leaking water into drywall and studs.  Expensive getting that all fixed, but the point is, even with that going on in a part of the house, no other area was affected--thanks to a pretty good central AC system.

Unless Dallas is significantly more humid than swampy areas of the southeast, I can't see a big problem in a house or apartment that has a properly functioning AC which cools and dehumidifies.

As far as fogging, we don't usually keep our temps below 76 deg F in our house, closer to 80 when out during the day.  If I get out early in the morning, no issue at all.  Of course if I go straight out into high 80's to mid 90's, I'll get fogging, but I usually put my gear out in the garage ahead of time, early in the morning, to give it time to warm up.  Or I put it in the car with the windows open as I'm driving, keeping the AC off for a while.

Silica packs?  Don't they quickly get saturated and then lose effectiveness?  How would you keep up all the changing or drying?  I guess if I got a lens wet enough to worry, I'd try sticking it in rice.  Fingers crossed, been lucky so far!

Finally, the one thing I do my best to avoid is leaving camera gear in a car during the summer.  I just think the heat does things to barrels, gaskets, and plastic parts that are bound to affect the optics.  And if the weather is humid, I'd think the heat just makes things worse.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 10:57:26 PM by YuengLinger »

martti

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2018, 06:40:40 AM »
My neighbor lost his set of Nikon lenses to mold.
The solution I am using is a Pelican case with silica batteries.
It looks very cool with a carved name tag on and basically it is airline approved.
I live 200 meters from the Indian Ocean. Salt mist here rusts everything and rots the books left outside of the cabinet.

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2018, 06:40:40 AM »

YuengLinger

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2018, 08:53:17 AM »
My neighbor lost his set of Nikon lenses to mold.
The solution I am using is a Pelican case with silica batteries.
It looks very cool with a carved name tag on and basically it is airline approved.
I live 200 meters from the Indian Ocean. Salt mist here rusts everything and rots the books left outside of the cabinet.

Do you have central AC?

NancyP

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2018, 10:41:43 AM »
I have not had problems (yet) in St. Louis MO, with sub-standard window air-conditioning. Lenses are stored in ambient in non-air-tight zippered nylon fishing reel case. Some specialty microscope lenses are stored in sealed box with dry packs. I don't know anyone else in town who has gotten fungus with ambient storage of lenses. That being said - DFW might be more constantly humid than St. Louis, which has a winter. I would buy an electric dry box, and keep a bunch of Pelican water-absorbing "bricks" ready in a zip-lock bag, if I were concerned.

cayenne

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2018, 11:06:26 AM »
I've just relocated from the Nevada desert to the Dallas / Fort Worth area. I've never had to worry about high humidity before now (fungus?). Though I am from the deep south my hobby began out in the dry west. I'm wondering how many of you use a humidity controlled dry box to ward off the effects of high humidity on your lenses. This is what I'm talking about here:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HJFXET2/ref=dra_a_rv_lb_hn_xx_P1400_1000?tag=dradisplay-20&ascsubtag=2cf948d19e07e3a057925e6572d0c559_S

I Know I could just get a box and throw in some silica gel packets, replenishing them now and then. This just seems like a good idea. I am familiar with Hakuto's equipment from the printed circuit board industry and consider their stuff to be high quality. It looks as though there are several companies branding the same boxes though.

What do you think? Are any of you doing this?

I live in New Orleans.  The land where the state bird is the mosquito,and you begin to perspire before you can dry off from taking a shower.

I've never given a second thought to needing any sort of special "dry" area for my camera gear.

I just have it piled in the office like anything else I own...never have had any sort of problem, and if there were a place to worry about it, it would be here.

Dallas is downright arid compared to living here and some places in FL.
;)

HTH,

cayenne

tolusina

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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2018, 03:06:40 PM »
If you're interested in DIY-ing vacuum storage, I've some ideas.
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Re: Dry box for humid climates.
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2018, 03:06:40 PM »