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Author Topic: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?  (Read 7389 times)

mStevens

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Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« on: June 12, 2012, 10:20:30 PM »
I am going on beach vacation in a couple of weeks and want to shoot pictures with my new camera  :). I know not to change lenses while outside to avoid dust inside my camera. However, I am paranoid about using my camera on the beach. Do you advise against taking my camera to the beach or do you have tips on how I can keep my camera clean?
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Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« on: June 12, 2012, 10:20:30 PM »

RLPhoto

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2012, 10:22:59 PM »
Yep, Just dont drop in the sand or water and you should be Ok. 8)
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wickidwombat

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2012, 10:25:30 PM »
shouldnt be a problem
though its a pain in the arse as sand gets into everything

I usually give all my gear a good clean down after
a good dust down with a soft bristle brush (i use a fat make up brush they are cheap and soft)
alcohol wipes over everything you know the type you buy for cleaning computer screens? they work pretty good
and use UV filters on your lenses or a polariser if you want that effect

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rickystern

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2012, 10:39:29 PM »
I spend half my waking hour shooting engagement sessions and weddings on the beach (miami) - change lenses all the time, no problem.

Bombsight

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2012, 10:59:24 PM »
If you are that paranoid, for whatever reason, dont do it.
... otherwise, just keep in mind you bought it to use it everywhere ... not just some places.

That crazy stunt man who tried to jump the Snake River Canyon said; "If $$$ was meant to be held on to, it would have a handle on it".
Think about it. ???

When changing a lens, always keep the front of the camera body facing down.

pwp

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2012, 11:08:01 PM »
Just use common sense. I've never worried about shooting at the beach. I keep an old 30D for occasional extreme conditions such as very strong salt spray you can get at the beach in a big wind, or when shooting out on the water from a Zodiac in choppy water. It's had appalling things happen to it and it still works fine. If it's very salty after a shoot I wipe it down with a slightly damp cloth. Weather sealed lenses get the same wipedown.

But if you're in nice vacation weather conditions, just keep it out of the sand & water and you'll be perfectly fine. The biggest issue shooting at the beach is likely to involve local laws. Just don't look too professional, and respect other peoples privacy.

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TAF

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2012, 11:55:16 PM »
I've done it for years without any difficulties.

I'll echo the folks who recommend wiping everything down with a damp cloth afterwards.

If you're really worried (and if I was taking my 5D3 I might be), you might consider an Aquapac (about $140).  They work remarkably well.

Or for the frugal among us, perhaps just a 1 gallon baggies with the lens sticking out.


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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2012, 11:55:16 PM »

rubidium

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2012, 01:27:26 AM »

FunPhotons

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2012, 06:48:24 AM »
I wouldn't make a generic blanket statement here as others have. I shoot a lot at the ocean; the real answer is it depends on your equipment.

I have a 50mm/1.4 which I killed at the beach. I was careful too, keeping it under wraps, but there was a breeze and just a few grains of sand got into the lens. Non weather sealed right? No lens filter is going to help with that big gap they have in the front. I still haven't gotten it fixed.

Likewise I have a gitzo tripod which got sand into it. Never again on that one! I'm looking for a beach tripod, I understand gitzo has a line of (probably overpriced) ocean pods.

But in general if you have a 5D or especially 1D body and weather sealed L lenses with filters you should be good. You will have to clean the filters though, and make sure you clean the body off afterwards. In the manual Canon recommends wiping down with a well wrung out cloth after being at the ocean, you'd be surprised how much salt spray makes it into the air.

And don't change lenses unless you're really careful! Don't do what I saw which is one woman who just stood there with her open camera body and L lens hanging in the breeze as she poked around for the new lens. Surprised me ....

ltwimberly

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2012, 08:50:20 AM »
I often put my DSLR on a tripod and carry it down to the beach like that. I don't like having to open my camera bag where sand may get into it and don't really like sitting the bag (or certainly the camera) in the sand at all. Make sure you're comfortable getting sand on the tripod feet - might want to use a relatively cheap tripod or you could put baggies over the feet.

You can get a huge ziplock bag - like XXL - and put it over the whole camera on-tripod in case of rain or spray.

Another use for the bag - and important practice: If your room is air-conditioned but it's hot and humid outside, the camera and lens will fog badly when you first take them out there. The best way to prevent this is to put your camera, or even your entire camera bag, inside an airtight bag like the large ziplock and leave the whole thing outside long enough to adjust to the temperature. Probably at least an hour.

If your camera or lens fogs, it'll take 30-60 minutes to go away. Just let the camera warm up - but it's far better to prevent this from happening.

Some bags of dessicant or Damp-Rid in your camera bag will help protect your gear from the humidity also.

Lastly, a polarizing filter will improve your beach shots.

canon816

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2012, 09:21:19 AM »
I insure all of my camera equipment on a personal articles policy.  There are many out there like mine that offer replacement coverage with no questions asked for very affordable rates. I think I pay $1.25 for every $100 of coverage.

I have had the coverage for years and never had to make a claim, but that one time I drop something expensive or someone smashes my window and steals my stuff... im covered.

I take exceptional care of my equipment, but with my insurance policy, I never worry about going into the "field" to get that shot Im looking for. 

Have fun,

bornshooter

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2012, 10:10:40 AM »
yeah just be careful and beware of the salty seawater spray

bp

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2012, 11:00:58 AM »
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just don't do ^that
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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2012, 11:00:58 AM »

dawgfanjeff

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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2012, 12:42:05 PM »
I probably don't take the best care of my gear as some of you, but probably better than most.  I think gear is meant to be used.  A great lens sitting the the condo is not going to get me a single great shot.
What's more, I bought an SLR *because* I can switch lenses, not so that I'd have a machine so delicate that I couldn't use it half the time.
Of course, I am not going to switch lenses in blowing sand, and I do take care to keep things as clean as possible. Just like insuring your gear, I think it's a good idea to mentally set aside the cash to get the stuff cleaned thoroughly every now and again. Once you've embraced that, its pretty liberating.
+1 on filters, too.  Guess how long it took me to buy a UV filter to protect my 10-22 after I took this shot:) :

Untitled by dawgfanjeff, on Flickr

It threw dirt all over the inside of my camera bag, too.  Lesson learned-close the bag!
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Re: Is it safe to shoot my DSLR at the beach?
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2012, 12:42:05 PM »