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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 30 Dec 2014 (Tuesday) 17:57
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Outdoor usage tips when temp is right around freezing and need to remove gear from bag frequently

 
s2kdriver80
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Post edited over 4 years ago by s2kdriver80.
     
Dec 30, 2014 17:57 |  #1

I'll be shooting all day with my Canons (outdoors only) in the city tomorrow where the temps should range from 27F - 34F throughout the day, in other words, a few degrees either way from freezing. When entering a warm house from a freezing environment, it's not a bad idea to seal gear in giant Ziploc bags that are cold as well before entering to prevent condensation inside the equipment.

I'll be removing my cameras in and out of my camera shoulder bag very frequently while walking around the city. If the outside temp is say 30F and the inside of the bag is a couple of degrees north of freezing, is this something to worry about? Obviously, ziploc'ing all gear before re-entry into the bag every few minutes is impractical and the Ziploc bags would also need to be out of the camera bag in freezing temps as well to be effective.

A non-issue? Thanks!


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Archibald
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Dec 30, 2014 18:15 |  #2

s2kdriver80 wrote in post #17358077 (external link)
I'll be shooting all day with my Canons (outdoors only) in the city tomorrow where the temps should range from 27F - 34F throughout the day, in other words, a few degrees either way from freezing. When entering a warm house from a freezing environment, it's not a bad idea to seal gear in giant Ziploc bags that are cold as well before entering to prevent condensation inside the equipment.

I'll be removing my cameras in and out of my camera shoulder bag very frequently while walking around the city. If the outside temp is say 30F and the inside of the bag is a couple of degrees north of freezing, is this something to worry about? Obviously, ziploc'ing all gear before re-entry into the bag every few minutes is impractical and the Ziploc bags would also need to be out of the camera bag in freezing temps as well to be effective.

A non-issue? Thanks!

It has to do with the dew point of the air, and little to do with whether it is "freezing", or the temperature of the bag.

But more simply, as long as the camera is slightly warmer than the air it's in, water won't condense on it.

Just observe. If it gets wet like a glass of cool beer on a summer day, you have a problem. If it stays dry, you are OK.


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RodS57
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Dec 30, 2014 18:22 |  #3

s2kdriver80 wrote in post #17358077 (external link)
I'll be shooting all day with my Canons (outdoors only) in the city tomorrow where the temps should range from 27F - 34F throughout the day, in other words, a few degrees either way from freezing. When entering a warm house from a freezing environment, it's not a bad idea to seal gear in giant Ziploc bags that are cold as well before entering to prevent condensation inside the equipment.

I'll be removing my cameras in and out of my camera shoulder bag very frequently while walking around the city. If the outside temp is say 30F and the inside of the bag is a couple of degrees north of freezing, is this something to worry about? Obviously, ziploc'ing all gear before re-entry into the bag every few minutes is impractical and the Ziploc bags would also need to be out of the camera bag in freezing temps as well to be effective.

A non-issue? Thanks!

I think more than the temperature is involved here. If it is sunny and your camera bag is black or another dark color then it will stay warm inside the bag. I've been out for hours when temps are around 0F; take out the camera to shoot then put it back in the bag. As the camera is warmer than the surrounding air there is no condensation. I don't use any special precautions (ie no plastic bags). When I get home I leave the camera in the bag until things warm up. Haven't seen any condensation as a result.

Of course the above applies to a cold sunny day. Snow/rain, not sure. I wouldn't think locking a wet camera inside a plastic bag would be a good idea. How can it dry out?

Rod


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JeffreyG
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Dec 30, 2014 18:25 |  #4

Yeah, Archibald covered it.

Cold air is dry air. So if you take a hot camera into the cold, no worries. And working with a cold camera in cold air....no problem if you want to take it in and out of a cold bag. That's a big nothing from the viewpoint of the camera.

The only thing your camera does not like is when it is cold, and then brought into a warm environment. Because warm air is wet air, even with moderate relative humidity. So your iceberg of a camera will soon have water sweating out on it, just like a cold glass of icewater on a summer day.

That's why your generally want to bring your cold gear inside in a bag and leave it there, with the cold, dry air trapped in the bag with the camera. Everything can warm up surrounded by that dry air, and then you are all set.


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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Post edited over 4 years ago by Left Handed Brisket. (2 edits in all)
     
Dec 30, 2014 18:29 |  #5

s2kdriver80 wrote in post #17358077 (external link)
If the outside temp is say 30F and the inside of the bag is a couple of degrees north of freezing, is this something to worry about?

no.

I just checked the weather for a shoot this coming sunday morning. It is supposed to be cold and rainy. Low of 30 that night. I will either put my gear (minus batteries) in the truck for the evening, or get up a couple of hours early and put them out there to get to ambient temps. Once on site all gear will be in and out of the bag and truck for the next 6 hours or so, not a problem.

fwiw, i dont' use plastic bags either. Just keep the camera bag zipped up for a couple of hours after getting back home to keep warm moist air from circulating around it.


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Archibald
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Dec 30, 2014 18:38 |  #6

Left Handed Brisket wrote in post #17358116 (external link)
no.

I just checked the weather for a shoot this coming sunday morning. It is supposed to be cold and rainy. Low of 30 that night. I will either put my gear (minus batteries) in the truck for the evening, or get up a couple of hours early and put them out there to get to ambient temps. Once on site all gear will be in and out of the bag and truck for the next 6 hours or so, not a problem.

fwiw, i dont' use plastic bags either. Just keep the camera bag zipped up for a couple of hours to keep warm moist air from circulating around it.

It's not a good idea to leave your gear outside overnight. Depending on what exactly happens to the temperatures and humidity, water could get on and in the camera. Plus, there is no advantage to having a cool camera in cool weather. (OK, unless you are doing astrophotography, but that is another topic.)

Just always keep the camera slightly warmer than the dew point. If it is warmer than the surrounding air, then it is above the dew point. (It is also possible for it to be cooler than the surrounding air and still be above the dew point.)

If you can't keep the camera above the dew point, then that's when you put it into a plastic bag to keep the wet air away from it until the gear has warmed up.


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gjl711
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Dec 30, 2014 19:10 |  #7

Warm to cold is never the problem and once cold, you can stay out all day without issue other than your batteries loose a bit of their potential to deliver current when cold so a spare kept close to your body to keep it warm is a good idea. Once cold you need not do anything special to the camera and lenses. The problem as mentioned is coming in from the cold to a warm moist room. Water will condense and once condensed, it takes quite some time to dry out.

I have found that Ziploc bags are wonderful to combat the condensation as it keeps the moist air off the gear when coming inside. Allow the camera to warm up a bit, at least to above the dew point before removing and no condensation. Another thing I have done and it works great at the zoo in the winter where you are in and out of warm moist buildings all day long is to place one of those chemical hand warmers into the Ziploc. Instead of taking 20~30 minutes to warm up, the camera warms up in less than 5 minutes.


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Outdoor usage tips when temp is right around freezing and need to remove gear from bag frequently
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