Sensor cleaning

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by iCris, Nov 19, 2008.

  1. iCris macrumors member

    Jan 18, 2008
    hi guys,im new in the DSLR world and i dont clean my D80 sensor before,that they use to clean the sensor? friends tell me about eclipse and pecpads any know or use that?.
    Thx in advance
  2. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    If you need to actually clean it, that's the way. Most times a good blow out with a Rocket Blower works as a first step.
  3. iCris thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 18, 2008
  4. -hh macrumors 68020


    Jul 17, 2001
    NJ Highlands, Earth
    I've been evolving (and spending money) on cleaning stuff for awhile.

    System 1:
    I started out with Eclipse (chemically, it is methanol) and a Pecpad wrapped around a rubber 'tupperware' spoon. While this is the cheapest cleaning brush, it is a bit of work and can be a nuisance.

    System 2:
    Spent the money for the special prefabricated brushes; stuck with Eclipse. Less laborious, but these disposable brushes aren't cheap.

    System 3:
    Mucked around with various dry brushes. Went back to #2.

    Found out that Eclipse solution can't be mail-ordered ... or technically taken on Commercial Airline flights ... because methanol is a "no-no" substance (carry-on or checked baggage). As such, started to look at what to do for wet cleaning when on the road...debated on if to simply ignore the travel ban and carry Eclipse in checked baggage.

    System 4:
    Bought the cheaper (single AAA) "Arctic Butterfly" electrostatic brush...found that it works very, very well.

    System 5:
    Also bought some of Arctic Butterfly's own mixes of small bottles of airline-friendly cleaning solution (and matching brushes), but haven't tried this yet. Apparently, these are ammonia-based instead of methanol.

    Intermission #2:

    You'll also need to have some sort of small light to illuminate the sensor, to see if it needs to be cleaned, and if your cleaning attempt worked.

    My Conclusions:

    1. I'm going to keep using Eclipse and PecPads around, since these were originally intended for cleaning lenses, so I should have this stuff around anyway.

    2. I'm going to keep buying the expensive disposable cleaning brushes for wet cleanings. They're just a much lower hassle...ends the worry of getting some PecPad 'hair' stuck on the sides of the camera.

    3. I'm glad that I bought the Butterfly. The Butterfly is fast/easy and saves me from wet cleanings, so it will pay for itself through reducing the number of those expensive disposable brushes I'll go through.

    3. You'll need to decide what you're going to do for cleaning fluids on the road. You might want to debate if small eye-dropper bottles will reliably hold Eclipse and, that due to methanol's volatility, if double-wrapping with absorbent material (such as used Pecpads?) is adequate or not.

    4. You will need some form of sensor illumination light. I found that a small AAA flashlight with a 90 degree bend plastic rod tip works fairly well, as does also the fancy illuminated loupe that Arctic Butterfly sells. The loupe's power switch seems a bit cheap until you figure out that it is a slide and a push: to use, slide it from off to on, then depress.

    5. You'll also need to decide how you're going to package/carry all this stuff, to keep it from becoming a disorganized mess.

  5. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    That's what she said. /runs

    Actually, I generally only use the Rocket Blower. I mean, if there are tough dust bunnies then I'll swab it, but otherwise, the Rocket Blower seems to work quite well.
  6. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    Everclear is reported to work well, I just can't seem to get to the cleaning part *hic*...
  7. zebbz macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2008
    sorry if it sounds dumb lol but i kind of a rocket blower thing, where do i fire to remove stuff in the lens or in the camera bit after taking off the lens?

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