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Nauticam vacuum leak system defective?


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#1 Architeuthis

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 07:23 AM

I am here in Croatia for diving holidays and have a problem with the vacuum leak system.

 

This morning, before submerging, the alarm LED became red and started to blink. As far as I know, this means that moisture was detected (electrical shortcut of the two wire endings of the sensor). I abandoned the dive and after disassembling I fortunately could not detect any water inside the housing. I have cleaned the two contacts and the open housing was dried now for hours in the wind. The problem persists: when I switch on the vacuum detection system the LED quickly changes from blue to red and blinks (when I apply vacuum and let it drop off, the LED still changes to continuous red and alarm,  indicating that the vacuum drop off is still detected correctly - just the moisture sensor makes problems).

 

Probably I will have to send the housing (NA-EM5II) in for repair, but maybe someone has encountered a similar behaviour and knows a simple solution that will save the last two diving days (I will not take the housing with defective vacuum system with me).

 

Thanks for advice, Wolfgang :(



#2 makar0n

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 09:01 AM

Hmm condensation perhaps? Try to stuff one of these leak-sure packets into the housing and see if this help...

Does it go to red right after you switch it on? I.e. before even closing the housing?

Had similar problem with my old Nauticam GH2 housing alarm (non vacuum one) - it would activate underwater even though there was not a drop of water in the housing....at the end just took out the battery as it was driving me nuts :P but yeah, in the long run a repair (guess a new leak alarm!) might be needed....

 

Do a try dive - take housing without camera but filled with tissues/toilet paper....you should be able to see straight away if there are any leaks.

And check/change o-rings...perhaps there is a bit of sand/hair or some crap stuck and might be leaking tiny tiney water mist...

 

good luck and enjoy the trip :)



#3 Fofo

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 09:56 AM

I had the very same issue happen to my Nauticam housing during a trip.

The vacuum system would create a vacuum and the housing would hold the vacuum.

But the moisture sensor alarm would go off even when the housing was open and I could see that the sensor wires were dry.

What solved it was to push a little bit further out the sensor wires. For some reason in my housing if the sensor wires are pushed in further into the housing the alarm goes off, even though I couldn't tell that there was anything closing the circuit (no water or loose conductive metal).

Pushing the detector wires a little bit further out on their holder stopped the alarm. But if I touched with with a moist finger the alarm would still go off.

Since the vacuum system was showing that the vacuum was holding that was good enough for me and I was able to finish my diving vacation normally.

#4 Architeuthis

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 11:36 PM

Thank you for the valuable comments. Seems that this problem is not so uncommon...

 

Yes, the alarm starts rigth when I switch on the system (maybe one or two blue blinks and then red blinking plus sound beeping...). The house is completely dry. Playing around with the sensor ends (pulling out/in a little, squeezing) does not help either. At home I can measure the electrical resistance between the ends (should be close to infinity?) to see whether it is just a shortcut between the two endings (bad soldering/insulination?), or whether I have to send it in...

 

I am almost sure I could dive with the housing without problems, but I will not challenge that. Have made enough fotos already, it is the end of a 3 week stay and the weather is currently very bad (thunderstorms, wind), only one dive more today and another tomorrow...

 

Thank you for the valuable tips and comments, Wolfgang :)



#5 kc_moses

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 05:41 AM

Did you put a fresh battery in for the sensor? I believe the LED will be red if the battery is low even though it's vacuum.



#6 Architeuthis

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:27 AM

Hi folks,

 

I also dried a fresh battery, but this did not help.

 

Finally I could solve the problem, it was as Fofo suspected: the build quality of the leak sensor by Nauticam, which is just two open end wires (a shame they cannot even produce such a sensor in a good way). I again squeezed the two endings apart, this time with more force (and separated the two yellow wires), and all over sudden the system works again (see foto for squeezed sensor)!

At home I will solder the sensor in a better way, without shortcut possibility, so the problem will not reappear again, but for the remaining time here it will suffice...

 

Again thanks to all, Wolfgang :bye:

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#7 Architeuthis

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Posted 07 May 2018 - 02:40 AM

Just an update on the Nauticam moisture sensor, in case someone is interested:

 

I had the problem fixed by a friend, who is a professional electronic ingineer (just clean soldering of the contacts to the wires).

 

The moisture sensor functioned without problems for many shoredivings in Austria and Egypt since September 2017. Recently I undertook a Boat Safari to Daedalus Reef (no other boat divings since September 2017). Already when I assembled the camera in the boat cabin, located in the ship's hold, still in Port Galib, the sensor light turned red again, presumably from high humidity condensing on the metal contacts. Next day, when we were out (and humidity presumably lower), same problem...

 

I only could solve the problem by clipping the metal contacts away and leaving the blank wire ending. They also should indicate water in the housing - I think I will leave the moisture detection in this stage now (In addition I have vacuum)...

 

I wonder if someone else had a similar problem and how he/she solved it...

 

Wolfgang



#8 Etc

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Posted 10 September 2018 - 03:12 AM

Did you put a fresh battery in for the sensor? I believe the LED will be red if the battery is low even though it's vacuum.

 

THANKS SO MUCH!!!!

It was driving me crazy!!. http://wetpixel.com/...=62807&p=399226

The low batt was the problem!!!!



#9 davephdv

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Posted 10 September 2018 - 07:31 PM

Thanks
Dave Burroughs, Nikon D300, D2X, Subal housing, DS160 strobes

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