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Hi everyone,

 

I'm about to embark on several back to back trips and as I was prep'ing/checking out my rig, I got to thinking about what to bring along for emergency repairs and maintenance of my camera and housing while traveling. I've seen several "save a dive" type lists, but nothing tailored to photographers, so I figured I throw it out there. Here's a start:

 

Spare O rings and lube

alcohol and q-tips (for cleaning)

duct tape and zip ties (should always have these anyway)

spare sync cord

tools: screw drivers, allan wrenches and a small adjustable crescent wrench

mechanics' "towels" (no stray fibers)

 

What other suggestions do you have? What did you wish you had when things went bad or what did you have that saved the day?

 

Thanks,

 

Phil

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I spare everything electronic - sync cord, bulkhead connector, hot shoe adapter, batteries, chargers, etc. If any of this stuff gets wet it's probably history in the long run, even if you temporarily get it working again. Also a complete housing rebuild kit which includes ALL o-rings, not just the main one. Spare o-rings for everything else in the system. Kimwipes (lint free toweletes), lens cleaner, senor cleaning kit, silicone grease & required tools. Thats most of my stuff. Do you have a backup camera body?

Edited by jcclink

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A back-up body would be nice, esp. if the 50D body is exactly the same as the 40D as advertised!

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Spare O rings and lube

alcohol and q-tips (for cleaning)

duct tape and zip ties (should always have these anyway)

spare sync cord

tools: screw drivers, allan wrenches and a small adjustable crescent wrench

mechanics' "towels" (no stray fibers)

 

What other suggestions do you have? What did you wish you had when things went bad or what did you have that saved the day?

I see you are using dual DS-125s.

 

* How about a spare strobe battery

* More than 1 charger for the strobes

* A set of mini jewelers screw drivers.

* Backup dive computer. (I have a Suunto Mosquito dive watch for this purpose.)

* Spare batteries for dive computers, watches, camera.

* I carry short velco strips to secure sync cords, hoses, etc.

 

Not quite part of the save-dive-kit, but definately can save a trip:

* Macro lens & port in camera carry-on in case checked back with dome port is lost.

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Circlips should definitively also be in the kit. I almost lost out on a week at Brothers in the Red Sea due to a broken circlips securing a push rod. Luckily, a friend of mine had the exact same problem some months earlier, was in Egypt, and managed to send me a couple of spares over night. So now a bunch of circlips is always in my spare kit.

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These clips should be included in a factory rebuild kit. At least Nexus includes them along with all the o-rings & rubber tips for the button controls. If anything fails, buy 2 the next time - 1 for the repair & 1 for the spare kit. Just in case it happens again.

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Not sure my solution would be a 'spare' vs. "RTFM, dumbass" (said to myself), but I did recently blow up a AA recharger that was 110/220 capable, but with a SWITCH. And frankly, having 2 AA rechargers would've been nicer anyway for the recharge capacity. (Although if I'd had 2 of the same kind, since they didn't blow up the second they were plugged in but a few minutes later, I suspect I'd just have had two carbonized hunks of stinky plastic instead of one. :lol: )

Edited by rtrski

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Guitar picks are handy for plucking o-rings out of the grooves on port bodies and in strobe battery packs.

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Ok, then it is time for me to add to the long list.

 

Camera Gear ( what is missing so far):

Toothbrush: for cleaning the O-ring Nuts.

Dual-strobe setup: since it gives you a minimum Redundance. 1 of my strobes died on me last year in Kunkungan.

International Wallplag and a Socket multiplier, for all them chargers etc etc.

 

Dive Gear:

Spare Dive Computer. Death of a Dive computer has happened to both me and my wife (no water leakage)

Spare Reg set if on a Liveaboard without rental gears.

 

Well, I assume that if you pack everything suggested. Then you will not be able to bring it on to that plane without a lot of luck and a Sherpa.

 

I also assume that you tend to have redundancy for the issues that you have had a problem with in the past.

 

 

/Erik

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All this stuff really doesn't take up that much space or weight. A spare reg is probably the heavy item. Spare dive computer - dive it (as in dive both computers all the time). If one fails you don't loose dive time since #2 has logged all your dives & you can just keep going. Otherwise you'd most likely loose a dive day off gassing to get back to zero. Also spare computer batteries if you can change them.

Edited by jcclink

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I would give a big NO vote to Q-tips. Don't see how anyone can be anal about lint free rags and then stick Q-tips into housing crevices. And, I'm a bit sqeamish about the alcohol as well. I'd check to make sure whatever squishy parts you're near can withstand that particular solvent. Instead of Q-tips, run out to your local drugstore and get the little foam makeup applicators. MUCH better! I get the little "matchbooks" of them at Target when they go on clearance. In general, I take spare batteries for everything, at least two of each kind of charger I'll need and an extra strobe. Backup camera body as well. Extra O-rings for everything, set of metric and US allen keys, jewelers screwdrivers, a few extra stainless steel bolts in the sizes I need, an extra strobe arm piece or two and at least one extra clamp. Also useful-- spare bulbs for spotting lamp, spare fiber optic strobe cable, O-ring removal tools, O-ring grease, sensor cleaner (though since I got the 40Ds with their internal sensor cleaning, I wonder if this is still necessary), waterproof pens for marking stuff (including failed equipment so you don't accidentally use it again), strap wrenches for getting stuck ports and extension rings apart, extra flash cards, flash card reader, etc. I have managed to remove one item from my list. I used to bring a small soldering iron, but now that I've gone to fiber optic strobe connections, there is nothing left to solder. Truth be told, I only used that thing on other peoples' gear but I felt the need to have it along just in case. No longer. I do still bring a small multimeter but I have no clue what I might use it for anymore (that came in handy for a few other people as well!).

 

That's what I thought of just sitting here for a couple minutes, at least regarding camera gear.

 

Mike

Edited by MikeO

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Hey Phil,

Mike's great list reminded me of the short piece of solder I always take along. I spent three days combing Grand Cayman years ago for some solder to repair a stobe connector. Never had any luck. If your headed out to the boonies you might want to throw a piece in the box.

Steve

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Instead of Q-tips, run out to your local drugstore and get the little foam makeup applicators. MUCH better!

 

I couldn't agree more on the foam makeup applicators. They are effective, inexpensive and, most importantly, don't leave traces of lint.

 

I'm surprised no one has mentioned a small magnifying glass. I have a small plastic one that has a small screwdriver in the handle that I picked up at an eyeglass store. I use it to check for hair or bits of sand on the o-rings. When I was shooting with my Nik V in the olden days, I used a Bob Warkentin (of Southern Niikonos fame) trick of taking the Nikonos 35mm lens and using it as a magnifier to check the o-ring. Now that I don't travel wtih that lens anymore, I've taken to using a small magnifying glass which accomplishes the same thing. Anything that I can do to reduce the chance of flooding that doesn't take too much time is on my "to do" list of tasks before a dive with my camera.

 

Ellen

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I have managed to remove one item from my list. I used to bring a small soldering iron, but now that I've gone to fiber optic strobe connections, there is nothing left to solder. Truth be told, I only used that thing on other peoples' gear but I felt the need to have it along just in case. No longer.

 

Damn Mike, We advertise you as the one that can resurrect strobe functions on an Ike housing

that was flooded and the TTL gizmo in it is too soggy to work.

 

You worked a miracle for Mitch 2 years ago with your soldering iron, rewiring his Ikelite housing for

manual strobe function saved his cookies for the week of diving in Lembeh after our Charter on Ondina

.

CitySeahorse or DebF will pay the overweight luggage charge for your soldering iron if you continue to bring it with you on our trips. ;)

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Hi everyone,

 

I'm about to embark on several back to back trips and as I was prep'ing/checking out my rig, I got to thinking about what to bring along for emergency repairs and maintenance of my camera and housing while traveling. I've seen several "save a dive" type lists, but nothing tailored to photographers, so I figured I throw it out there. Here's a start:

 

Spare O rings and lube

alcohol and q-tips (for cleaning)

duct tape and zip ties (should always have these anyway)

spare sync cord

tools: screw drivers, allan wrenches and a small adjustable crescent wrench

mechanics' "towels" (no stray fibers)

 

What other suggestions do you have? What did you wish you had when things went bad or what did you have that saved the day?

 

Thanks,

 

Phil

 

 

Hi Phil,

DebF says that she will have her antique hair dryer on the May 2009 Halmahera trip in case

it is needed to reduce the moisture on or in a piece of camera or housing equipment.

 

This hair dryer has been traveling with us for the last 10 years and has never been used on hair

but has been used on many pieces of photographic equipment by many people.

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Hi Phil,

DebF says that she will have her antique hair dryer on the May 2009 Halmahera trip in case

it is needed to reduce the moisture on or in a piece of camera or housing equipment.

 

This hair dryer has been traveling with us for the last 10 years and has never been used on hair

but has been used on many pieces of photographic equipment by many people.

 

Aha, I knew I forgot something. Bring some dessicant packets. In case you get a bit of moisture in your camera, sometime sealing it in a plastic bag wit a bunch of dessicant packets will dry it out. Sometimes blowing hot air on it will get even more of the item a little wet inside. WE had a woman on our last trip who partially flooded her 5D housing. NO spare camera body. Camera wasn't "flooded" per se but it was acting up like it might have taken on a drop or two. No one had dessicant, but she got some rice from the kitchen girls and sealed the camera in with the rice. Seemed to do the trick, but dessicant would be better!

 

Mike

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What, no duct tape? Here's something for your pearly whites and useful to attach stuff: dental floss, waterproof and very strong. Also, a synthetic chamois for drying and cleaning. I have been using poly sponges on a stick from Raido Shack for cleaning and applying lube. RS no longer stocks this item, so the facial sponges could be a welcomed replacement. Cotton swabs can leave fibers; I would NOT use them on o-rings.

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Dental floss is the best thread for making repairs to clothing, wetsuits etc, it is extremely strong. If you need some sutures in the field it can also be used for that, not self dissolving though.

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Zip ties.

 

Rubber bands.

 

Extra synch socket.

 

Extra hot shoe.

 

Two usable ports.

 

Two usable lenses.

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Rubber bands.

 

Extra synch socket.

 

Extra hot shoe.

OK Dave I'll bite, What do you use the rubber bands for? Why the extra hot shoe? Do you mean the hot shoe connector from the housing?

Dumb but trying to learn, Steve

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I find that rubber bands don't work very well for long in seawater. They disintegrate pretty quickly. I find that the elastic thingies women use to tie their hair back work better. Of course, it depends on what you're trying to use them for . . .

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Rubber bands are good for holding things together when clamps, clips, etc. are busted or don't work. You have to carry a bag of them as they do go bad after awhile. Just find them useful along with zip ties and duct tape.

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I use something like these instead of rubber bands. They hold quite well (use them to fix my strobe sync cables to the arms), are reusable, and don't seem to deteriorate in sea water and sunlight the way rubber bands would. They don't take cutting off like zip-ties do.

 

I didn't buy from the link below; found a roll of like 100 or something at my local big-box hardware store for like $4 or something, and haven't bought more since.

 

http://cableorganizer.com/wire-wrap/

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