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DPChallenge Forums >> Tips, Tricks, and Q&A >> Sensor dust
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10/11/2011 09:05:19 PM · #1
My images look like someone threw sand in my camera. I owned my camera for about 2 years now and bought it used without ever cleaning the sensor to date. Should I try this on my own or pay the $40- $60 it seems to cost to get shop to do it? How sensitive is the process. I feel I can take on the task and save some money but this is my only DSLR and I don't want to risk messing it up. I've youtubed some methods that look easy enough but it seems there is more than one way to skin a cat.
10/11/2011 09:14:40 PM · #2
Louis...I bought my cleaning kit a couple of years ago...I clean my sensor at least every 3 months (or more)...for me it was easy to do the math on how much I've been able to save....I love the system that I purchased because of the light that comes with it...

this is the system I have...works very well...Delkin Cleaning Kit
10/11/2011 09:35:33 PM · #3
i use q-tips. far from perfect, but cheaper than most alternatives. then again, most of what i shoot is at f/2.8 ;-)

bottom line, it's really not that big a deal to use your camera's menu option for sensor cleaning to expose that baby and clean it off. if you only need to do it every few years, then it might be worth it to pay someone. as for me, i'm switching glass so often i need to clean mine at least once a month; i'm not going to pay someone that often and i don't have time to send them off. i did try a kit, but was totally unimpressed. ended up going back to my tried and true cotton swabs...
10/11/2011 09:42:47 PM · #4
if you search the forums, including hardware etc, for sensor cleaning, you will find a nice variety. One I am about to try, recommended by Dr. Achoo - not guaranteed but hopefully sneezeproof, is using scotch brand (3 M) Magic (matte) Tape. Can't find the thread at the moment but it's there.
10/11/2011 10:58:40 PM · #5
I use the small eyeshadow applicators you can find in the makeup department. They look like cotton swabs, but are ultra-fine sponge-like material, that will not leave any fibers on the sensor or in the chamber. They leave no residue, don't make any mark. I've used them for several years, no problem, they work great. Be gentle.
10/12/2011 01:15:33 AM · #6
I use a small kitchen spatula wrapped in a Pec Pad with a drop of Eclipse solution. In accordance with the Copperhill method before they used to sell specialty products. Other than the $1.25 kitchen spatula which I cut down to fit my sensor exactly, I already owned all the needed materials.
Make sure your batteries are fully charged, flip up the mirror, and wipe one way, wipe the other, change pads, add another drop of eclipse and repeat. Done.
10/12/2011 07:38:08 AM · #7
Originally posted by BrennanOB:

I use a small kitchen spatula wrapped in a Pec Pad with a drop of Eclipse solution. In accordance with the Copperhill method before they used to sell specialty products.


Yep, copper hill is a great resource... & it's pretty much a three step process.

First blow with a rocket blower

If that fails, second, use a dry method (eg. the copper hill sensor sweep).

Last, if you've got some real sticky dust that doesn't dislodge, go for the wet method (eclipse solution with pec pads).

Most of the time all you need is the air blower method. But then again, if you're deadly concerned about dust, you might want to ramp it up.

If you want instant feedback, you can invest in a sensor loupe (not totally necessary, but definitely handy)...

Message edited by author 2011-10-12 07:38:51.
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