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Old Sep 22, 2003, 7:56 PM   #1
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Default FYI- If your DigiCam goes for a swim...

Went backpacking last weekend and capped off the trip with a swim in a lake. So did my Canon Powershot S45...

The camera was powered off and was in a case when it rolled into the water. It was pretty well soaked when I got to it... as I pulled it out of the case a good bit of water poured out of the camera's openings. While I examined the body my girlfriend opened the shutter, which caused it to power up. Of course it didn't work properly, and I immediately removed the battery and memory card. Upon returning home I disassembled the case and set everything out to dry for two days. I was certain that it had short-circuited during the short time that it was turned on after being immersed, and would be junk!

However I reassembled the dried parts today and much to my surprise the camera lives! It powered up without problem and is taking beautiful pictures. I couldn't be more pleased!

Lessons learned?

-don't bring a digital camera swimming
-buy a water-tight case
-if the camera drops into the water, don't turn it on and immediately remove the battery from the camera after rescue (if the camera is on when dropped into water, you may be out of luck)
-disassemble the camera and let the chassis thoroughly dry before trying to power up the camera again.

Tom Reiner is offline   Reply With Quote
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Old Sep 22, 2003, 8:32 PM   #2
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Good to hear the camera survived, survival weekend in the water.
Drying time should be short as possible. Use a hairdryer or oven on lucke warm temparature in case your enviroment is too humid, cold.
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Old Sep 23, 2003, 11:07 PM   #3
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Hey, Tom!

Heckuva story!

I think I got though...

Cold water wash, gentle rinse, air dry.


The force is definitely with you!!!
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Old Sep 24, 2003, 1:19 AM   #4
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I'm glad to hear that water didn't find its way into the lens system. I don't think you'd be singing such a sweet tune if that were the case.

I'm glad to hear that the camera is in good condition, though!
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Old Sep 24, 2003, 4:45 AM   #5
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Tom -You'll have to keep an eye on potential intermittencies for the future. Cameras are usually full of connectors, ribbon cables switches etc and sadly few are gold plated. These contacts may suffer corrosion and poor contact. Some current tracks are very high resistance. Over time, any contamination due to conductive salts combined with dc voltage sets up a battery effect and things may eventually stop working.

When dismantled, a good rinse of the non lens parts in alcohol/de-ionised water, followed by a thorough air dry should have cleaned out any contaminants which might have been in the lake water.

Keep your fingers crossed! (PS If there is another opportunity, some macro pics of the innards with another camera could be of interest to other owners)
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Old Sep 24, 2003, 5:52 AM   #6
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I'm glad your cam still works.
I'm really glad nothing really happened to the cam.
As Lauren said:
If the water would have found its way to the lense system... :?

But I'm happy for you that your cam survived. You see, a cam and its owner go trough a lot. It's like a marriage
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Old Sep 24, 2003, 5:05 PM   #7
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In a camera the size of an S45, a plain old ziplock bag is the best insurance you can buy for use while backpacking or hiking. It will keep everything clean and dry....just make sure it's completely dry before you put it in the bag. Even a little bit of moisture will find some way to haunt you.
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