September 02, 2014, 03:36:01 PM

Author Topic: Backup body for dangerous areas  (Read 5745 times)

dirtcastle

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #30 on: April 02, 2012, 02:02:27 PM »
This is one of those "If you have to ask..." questions.

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #30 on: April 02, 2012, 02:02:27 PM »

kirispupis

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #31 on: April 02, 2012, 02:02:53 PM »
This really depends on what you term "dangerous areas".  Last year I travelled with my full gear (5D3, 7D, several L lenses, tripod) to Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.  Never once did I feel unsafe.  I have also been to Turkey, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Oman, UAE, Mexico, and China in the last few years and never had an issue with my gear.  The only time I felt a bit nervous was in Peru - but even then only in Lima.

While I was travelling in Uzbekistan, I ran across two guys with had taken their SLRs on motorcycle trips throughout Asia and Europe.  One guy had been to every single country in Europe and was on his way from Germany to China and another guy had biked in numerous countries in Africa and was on his way from Bulgaria to somewhere in Siberia.

So when you use the term "dangerous", do you mean somewhere truly dangerous or somewhere you simply perceive as dangerous?  Southern Iraq, parts of Afghanistan, bad neighborhoods in Brazil, and large parts of Somalia are truly dangerous.  If you are going to those places, the safety of your DSLR will be the least of your concerns.  If you are travelling there, you will have someone who is managing your personal safety.

Assuming that your travel destination is not truly dangerous, but you are just perceiving it as such, your real issue has to do with the way you are travelling.  By backpacking you put your equipment in numerous situations where it may be stolen.  It really doesn't matter whether you are travelling with an XTi + kit lens or a 1Dx + L lens.  Thieves rarely know the difference between different models.  They just see a DSLR that may be an easy target.  In terms of camera equipment, therefore, my recommendation is to bring the best you can.  You likely will not be visiting these places again any time soon.

In terms of making sure whatever you bring is not stolen, the following are my recommendations.

- Learn the local language, especially if you will spend a lot of time in one place.  This shows respect to your hosts and you are less of a target when you show respect.
- Learn the customs of your area and obey them.  If local customs frown on photographing women, do not do it.
- Safeguard whatever is on you at all times.  When you sit down, wrap the straps of your backpack around your leg or chair.  Never leave anything of value unattended - even for a second.
- Be gracious with questions on your gear.  Do not shy away from questions on how much your gear costs.  People are just curious.  Be friendly, but of course never hand your camera over if they want to see it.
- Consult with locals on where it is OK to go and where it is not OK.
- If you can afford it, stay in better hotels.  In most better hotels you can leave your gear in your room and no one will take it.  Of course, this by definition is not backpacking. :)
- Trust the companions you happen across as much as you trust strangers with your gear.  You are more likely to have your gear stolen by a fellow traveller than by a local.
- Make sure you bag is not easy to open from the back and that it is well strapped to you.
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aldvan

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #32 on: April 02, 2012, 02:11:25 PM »
A gun in unskilled hands is a further target for robbery. Bad people know very well how difficult is pulling the trigger for regular people. In the best case you can find yourself robbed of your camera AND of your gun, by a bad guy who, a that point could be really enraged by your naive menace. But this is just academic, since, if you are passinf a border, in every part of the world, nobody will allow you to pass carrying a weapon.

Camera conditions, make or model don't represent a deterrent. Any camera (or watch, cell etc) is a target, in some areas.

I don't know, as other before me stated, what you intend for dangerous areas, so it is difficult to say if is a good idea to travel there or not. Very very dangerous places apart (let me say, where kidnapping or slaughtering are common practices), I never restrain myself to go everywhere. I travelled in many very dangerous area, I twice I stopped people trying to bag or pocket snatching me (Once in Sao Paulo, once in Hong Kong). The only advice that I can give is acting grayer you can. Low profile, no flashy clothes, avoid both the macho than the fearful attitude. Don't forget that, as many others said before me, people in poor areas usually don't like being photographed, even less if they have bad intentions, but a kind and respectful approach, asking for permission, is an effective strategy, not only correct but also getting you a good cooperation , pass by the subject. If they say no, skip over...

CanineCandidsByL

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #33 on: April 02, 2012, 06:45:51 PM »
Did anyone seriously suggest a gun?  I didn't see it.

Physicx, I don't think you have commented since the first post.  Where are you going that you think will be dangerous?

Tcapp

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #34 on: April 02, 2012, 07:59:21 PM »
Put a Sony badge on it. No one will waste their time.

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pdirestajr

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #35 on: April 02, 2012, 10:29:34 PM »
This really depends on what you term "dangerous areas".  Last year I travelled with my full gear (5D3, 7D, several L lenses, tripod) to Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.  Never once did I feel unsafe.  I have also been to Turkey, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Oman, UAE, Mexico, and China in the last few years and never had an issue with my gear.  The only time I felt a bit nervous was in Peru - but even then only in Lima.

While I was travelling in Uzbekistan, I ran across two guys with had taken their SLRs on motorcycle trips throughout Asia and Europe.  One guy had been to every single country in Europe and was on his way from Germany to China and another guy had biked in numerous countries in Africa and was on his way from Bulgaria to somewhere in Siberia.

So when you use the term "dangerous", do you mean somewhere truly dangerous or somewhere you simply perceive as dangerous?  Southern Iraq, parts of Afghanistan, bad neighborhoods in Brazil, and large parts of Somalia are truly dangerous.  If you are going to those places, the safety of your DSLR will be the least of your concerns.  If you are travelling there, you will have someone who is managing your personal safety.

Assuming that your travel destination is not truly dangerous, but you are just perceiving it as such, your real issue has to do with the way you are travelling.  By backpacking you put your equipment in numerous situations where it may be stolen.  It really doesn't matter whether you are travelling with an XTi + kit lens or a 1Dx + L lens.  Thieves rarely know the difference between different models.  They just see a DSLR that may be an easy target.  In terms of camera equipment, therefore, my recommendation is to bring the best you can.  You likely will not be visiting these places again any time soon.

In terms of making sure whatever you bring is not stolen, the following are my recommendations.

- Learn the local language, especially if you will spend a lot of time in one place.  This shows respect to your hosts and you are less of a target when you show respect.
- Learn the customs of your area and obey them.  If local customs frown on photographing women, do not do it.
- Safeguard whatever is on you at all times.  When you sit down, wrap the straps of your backpack around your leg or chair.  Never leave anything of value unattended - even for a second.
- Be gracious with questions on your gear.  Do not shy away from questions on how much your gear costs.  People are just curious.  Be friendly, but of course never hand your camera over if they want to see it.
- Consult with locals on where it is OK to go and where it is not OK.
- If you can afford it, stay in better hotels.  In most better hotels you can leave your gear in your room and no one will take it.  Of course, this by definition is not backpacking. :)
- Trust the companions you happen across as much as you trust strangers with your gear.  You are more likely to have your gear stolen by a fellow traveller than by a local.
- Make sure you bag is not easy to open from the back and that it is well strapped to you.

You had a 5D3 last year?

I suggest a point & shoot like a S95, S100 or a Lumix LX5
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chrysek

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #36 on: April 02, 2012, 11:11:57 PM »
Maybe just grab GO PRO :)

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #36 on: April 02, 2012, 11:11:57 PM »

Marsu42

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #37 on: April 03, 2012, 12:31:37 AM »
Put a Sony badge on it. No one will waste their time.

But then the people from Sony rumors will come after you, and they are dangerous because their sensor tech is in alliance with Nikon :-p

Did anyone seriously suggest a gun?  I didn't see it.
...
Second. If you were in the US and in a state where constitutional rights are still intact (i.e., concealed carry is allowed), and your buddy it licensed to do so... then I'd say do so. 

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #38 on: April 03, 2012, 12:43:13 AM »
Ok, a couple points...  If you are in a 'dangerous area', you might want to review your shots LATER, like at the hotel :)   Might want to consider a S95 - S100 as it shoots RAW and when not shooting, put it in your pocket.   Also there are camera bags that don't look like camera bags :)

Re the Hotel.  I recently traveled with a dance group and after the show, left most of the gear in the hotel room and took a single body.  How you ask?  First insurance AND I brought Pelican cases.  I secured them with bicycle heavy cables and large lock to the metal sink drain in the bathroom.  They were also secured in the vehicle the same way, allowing leaving the gear briefly in an unattended to rest stop breaks.  Might have lost a window, butu not the gear.

7enderbender

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #39 on: April 03, 2012, 09:34:05 AM »
A smith and Wesson would make good back up body for muggers

I was just about to suggest the Walther PPS 9mm...
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7enderbender

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #40 on: April 03, 2012, 09:35:18 AM »
I just bought a 50D as a backup for my 7D.  One thought for the backup is to carry the 50D with no grip, a black lens, and an unbranded strap to be a little less obvious.  I have a friend who used to put black electrical tape over the "Nikon" brand on his camera.

Or you could just put a Nikon strap on the 7D...;-)

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Re: Backup body for dangerous areas
« Reply #40 on: April 03, 2012, 09:35:18 AM »