Courage And A Cold Chisel

on June 04, 2022
Why, that's all you need to get nearly anything off a digital camera's sensor. Barnacles, welding slag, dried egg yolk...just anything. You can also turn your hand to removal of bony overgrowths in the palate. Must keep busy... Or not, if we are to believe the repair technicians at Camera Electronic. They seem to take a dim view of this much force on the part of camera users. Perhaps they are right - given that the merest scratch will spoil the delicate glass surface and coating of the sensor. The era of wild enthusiasms and strange mechanisms seems to have largely passed. Sensors still get dusty and dirty, but people are more cautious. The answers to keeping your sanity, and a clean sensor are manifold: a. Never open your camera to the air. This approach works for the fixed-lens models like the Fujifilm X-100 series. I owned one for years and never had to dust spot the images. b. Never open your camera outside. This reduces the collection. c. Clean the outside of the camera thoroughly before you open it. Not an option when you are working fast and furiously in the normal world. d. Hold the camera down when you open it. Not much help when static attraction sucks the dust up to the sensor but it stops magpies dropping gum nuts in there on you. e. Get the thing cleaned regularly by the repair department at CE. I do every year, because the gunge builds up. Clean sensor and no scratches. f. Venture upon it yourself. I used to shy away from this in horror after hearing sad tales from Ernest and Daniel about what people had done with their own cleaning. But I have had dust motes drop in on me when I knew I couldn't get to the experts to remove them. I screwed up my courage and decided to tackle the worst of them. First I looked at the images to see where I could expect the culprits to be. The computer screen image is upside down and reversed when you look in the front of the camera. Fortunately mine is a mirror-less type that cannot slam a mirror down on me if the battery runs flat - still, I keep it charged. Once found, I tried puffs of dry air from a blower - and some things lifted out. Then a very soft, small paint brush - of which I have many - lifted out the rest. When I once got a dirty streak inside I used a proprietary swab and liquid kit from Camera Electronic to wash the screen. Following directions implicitly...I was able to clean it back to pristine. So you can rescue yourself in times of trouble. Pick up the appropriate kit from CE, keep it on hand, and don't overdo anything. BTW: You can use the wonderful Lens Cleanse system to keep the rest of the optics perfect, but don't use them on the sensors. Not the appropriate solution for the job.