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So totally Green and new to Underwater..... help!


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#1 TomUK

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Posted 06 December 2013 - 02:51 AM

I am a keen and established photographer above water and have taken the leap and bought my first underwater setup. I dive a couple of times a year and thought it would be fun. I decided that buying a housing for my main cameras bodies (Nikon D3S's) was far to expensive so I went with the following setup:

 

Nikon D7000
Sigma 10-20 f4

Ikelite housing 

2 Ikelite d160 strobes

8" lens port

 

I have ordered some grease, and some silica gel.

 

For the moment, until the weather improves I am hoping to use the setup in a swimming pool, playing with portraits and under/over photos. When it gets a little warmer I will be venturing into the sea.

 

Please can you list your top tip, or links to them, I have looked at the site and read lots, but want to be 100% sure all will be good, and I don't get "Flooded" on my first trip out.


Edited by TomUK, 06 December 2013 - 03:35 AM.

Profesional Photographer on land........ gibbering wreck underwater.


#2 NWDiver

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Posted 06 December 2013 - 06:40 AM

These are aimed at beginners but you may find something useful.

 

http://www.opticaloc...-uw-photos.html



#3 divengolf

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Posted 06 December 2013 - 02:19 PM

Consider installing a vacuum system to double check the integrity of your kit before you get it wet. I installed one from Vivid Housings and am quite satisfied with it.

 

Also consider adding your camera, lenses and UW equipment to an insurance policy that covers "all risk". Generally you can get one as an addendum to your homeowners policy. If you're eligible for USAA, they have an excellent Valuable Personal Property policy that provides this coverage.

 

Get a copy of The Underwater Photographer by Martin Edge. I believe that the 4th edition is the latest. Many UW photogs consider this to be the bible.

 

Look at Underwater Photo Guide and Dive Photo Guide web sites. Loads of info there.

 

Consider adding a Nikkor 60 mm AF-S lens for close-up. You may need to get another port for it. I'm not familiar with Ikelite housing and ports.

 

When you use your kit in the pool, make sure that you soak and rinse everything thoroughly. Chlorine is very rough on seal, etc.



#4 TomUK

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Posted 06 December 2013 - 10:03 PM

Thanks for the replies guys. Vacuum seals seem to be the way to go, reading a lot about them on here, and the advantages are clear.

They seem a no brainer really, and as most of the time, certainly to start with the kit won't be going much deeper than 3m, this would add a huge amount of protection protection.

Insurance wise, good call. I spoke with my camera specific insurers, they do my photography kit and liability and they were fine with it. Now just waiting for it all to arrive so I can buy a pelicase to put it all in 

Super excited!
 


Edited by TomUK, 07 December 2013 - 08:30 AM.

Profesional Photographer on land........ gibbering wreck underwater.


#5 twinner

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 10:52 AM

I would suggest taking some lessons from a good instructor. If you don't have someone in your area you can do skype or FaceTime lessons. Personally I think hands on tranning on how to properly setup, use and maintain your gear would be a better investment to start with over a vacuum system.
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#6 diverdad

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 04:29 AM

Hello Tom, I am in the UK and have a similar setup to yours. PM me where you are and if we are close we can hook up.

 

Regards

 

Lee


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#7 TomUK

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 11:51 AM

Twinner,

 

I think your right, will make enquiries at my local dive shop, they run "Underwater" photography courses, but they mention point and shoots a lot in the description, so might not be aimed at maintenance and bigger kit setup, but will give them a call and see.

 

Hello Tom, I am in the UK and have a similar setup to yours. PM me where you are and if we are close we can hook up.

 

Regards

 

Lee

Thanks Lee, don't think we are very close, intact, don't think we could get that much further apart ;)

 


Profesional Photographer on land........ gibbering wreck underwater.


#8 Glasseye Snapper

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 05:46 PM

Please can you list your top tip, or links to them, I have looked at the site and read lots, but want to be 100% sure all will be good, and I don't get "Flooded" on my first trip out.

 

The best way not to flood your camera on your first trip out is to not bring your camera on your first trip out  :laugh:

 

It's not just a joke. I, and I think many others, always make my first dive (or if necessary dives) without camera to get into the rythm of diving and familiar with the boat and diving conditions.

 

Bart


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Sea&Sea 110a, iTorch, GoPro3 BE

#9 TomUK

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 06:47 AM

 

The best way not to flood your camera on your first trip out is to not bring your camera on your first trip out  :laugh:

 

It's not just a joke. I, and I think many others, always make my first dive (or if necessary dives) without camera to get into the rythm of diving and familiar with the boat and diving conditions.

 

Bart

 

Thanks Bart,

The equipment has all arrived so i am going to take it to the pool tonight, and will be leaving the camera at home!

I am also going to wait until my peli case has arrived, so i can work out a routine and stick it into the lid, as a bit of a checklist. That way my first "dive" (or dip, into the pool with the camera) should be uneventful. I have ordered the martin edge book, so hopefully that arrives soon.


Profesional Photographer on land........ gibbering wreck underwater.


#10 divengolf

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 05:08 AM

Glad to see that you've ordered Martin Edge's book. There is an immense amount of info in there for both the beginner and intermediate photog. Again, I strongly recommend installing a vacuum system to verify that everything is watertight. I prefer the Leak Sentinel from Vivid Housing as it provides a constant visual indication that the vacuum is intact. Others prefer a purely mechanical system. Personal preference I guess.

 

One final piece of advice. If you're rushed to get your kit together, then don't take it down. This happens most frequently on a liveaboard where you're changing chips or batteries after dives. That's why I use a vacuum system to verify that everything is together.

 

Plus NEVER, NEVER allow your kit to set in the rinse tank unattended. When you finish a dive, hand it up to the crew and instruct them to put it on the deck or on the camera table, somewhere out of the way. Never allow them to put it into the rinse tank. When you get on deck, then rinse your kit yourself and put it on the camera table. Don't leave it in the rinse tank. Rinse tank collisions with other rigs are a major cause of floods.

 

Never jump in or back roll holding your rig. This might work for small P&S, but not for larger SLR rigs. The impact with the water can dislodge ports, etc.

 

Finally, try to find a photo instructor to help you get started. One who is willing to spend time teaching you the basics of caring for your rig and taking photos. The Edge book will help a lot.

 

BTW Martin Edge is based in the UK, near London I believe. Once you get a little experience, a session with him would be great. He has a web site somewhere.