View Poll Results: Silica Gel; Thirsty Hippo; DryCabinet, Which ONE??

Voters
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  • Silica gel

    192 27.16%
  • Thirsty Hippo (but apparently there's talk that its TOO dry)

    101 14.29%
  • Electric Drybox/Cabinet

    444 62.80%
  • Dehumidifier Lamp in a cupboard (DIYers)

    23 3.25%
  • Others! (wow there's a 5th option? post it here!)

    27 3.82%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

  1. #41

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by serene_e
    I use a dry box with silica gel. Just read the previous post about using a hydrometer to verify humidity level. Now why didn't I think of that... So where can I get a hydrometer and what's the approximate cost?
    Try those electronic ones at those modern DIY stores for under $50.00.

  2. #42

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    I can tell you that. Strangely no one every posted about separate Hygrometer in this forums. There are various, I searched around and found these options:



    1.Digital Hygro - avail at a few shops at Sim Lim Tower basement near staircase, cost $25 (Very small (~2 X 1.5 inch)can measure max and min humidity also) - Try the one shop selling only meters at the corner;you cant miss it.

    2. Digital Hydro - same as the one installed in Digicabi dry cabinets. The agent can sell it separately for $25.

    3. Digital Hydro - Dedicated and professional looking but a bit big in size, all Home DIY outlets sell a few models, cost from $40 onwards.

    4. Analog Hydro - Meant as a car accessories, comes with both temp and humidity meter. Cheapest model cost $6, ...$11... $15....$23. Available at most Home DIY outlets. I bought my $11 model from IMM branch.


    I used the $11 model with good success. I place it in my dry cabinet and both of the Hydro had the same readings meaning it should be fairly reliable.

    How to check for a good unit when you buy? - Simple, just look at ALL the units on display, check their readings and buy the one that has the most realistic and similar reading among the whole lot.



    Quote Originally Posted by serene_e
    I use a dry box with silica gel. Just read the previous post about using a hydrometer to verify humidity level. Now why didn't I think of that... So where can I get a hydrometer and what's the approximate cost?
    Last edited by melcheong72; 11th May 2006 at 11:12 PM.

  3. #43

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by melcheong72
    I can tell you that. Strangely no one every posted about separate Hygrometer in this forums. There are various, I searched around and found these options:



    1.Digital Hygro - avail at a few shops at Sim Lim Tower basement, cost $25 (can measure max and min humidity also) - Try the one shop selling only meters at the corner;you cant miss it.

    2. Digital Hydro - same as the one installed in Digicabi dry cabinets. The agent can sell it separately for $25.

    3. Digital Hydro - Dedicated and professional looking, all Home DIY outlets sell a few models, cost from $40 onwards.

    4. Analog Hydro - Meant as a car accessories, comes with both temp and humidity meter. Cheapest model cost $6, ...$11... $15....$23. Available at most Home DIY outlets. I bought my $11 model from IMM branch.


    I used the $11 model with good success. I place it in my dry cabinet and both of the Hydro had the same readings meaning it should be fairly reliable.

    How to check for a good unit when you buy? - Simple, just look at ALL the units on display, check their readings and buy the one that has the most realistic and similar reading among the whole lot.

    Excellent idea, I did the same with the Temp n Hydrometer for my cabinet. My dry cabinet is actually an ordinary cabinet that I hide all the chargers with the many IT insturment and the heat generated maintain a good temp and humidity for storage of my camera and lens. It is big enough since it a common cabinet. No need for extra elements and running cost :P

  4. #44

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by melcheong72
    I can tell you that. Strangely no one every posted about separate Hygrometer in this forums. There are various, I searched around and found these options:



    1.Digital Hygro - avail at a few shops at Sim Lim Tower basement near staircase, cost $25 (Very small (~2 X 1.5 inch)can measure max and min humidity also) - Try the one shop selling only meters at the corner;you cant miss it.

    2. Digital Hydro - same as the one installed in Digicabi dry cabinets. The agent can sell it separately for $25.

    3. Digital Hydro - Dedicated and professional looking but a bit big in size, all Home DIY outlets sell a few models, cost from $40 onwards.

    4. Analog Hydro - Meant as a car accessories, comes with both temp and humidity meter. Cheapest model cost $6, ...$11... $15....$23. Available at most Home DIY outlets. I bought my $11 model from IMM branch.


    I used the $11 model with good success. I place it in my dry cabinet and both of the Hydro had the same readings meaning it should be fairly reliable.

    How to check for a good unit when you buy? - Simple, just look at ALL the units on display, check their readings and buy the one that has the most realistic and similar reading among the whole lot.
    UPzz for great info on that car accessory option.
    got ppl post abt separate hygro also lah.. good as backup (how do u know if ur hygrometer is spoilt?) there was even a failed MO for the digital hygro(poor response)

  5. #45
    Member smtan24's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    My dad said that I spent so much on my camera gear might as well buy a dry cabi. I got the 40 liter one. I use it for my camera lens and my DVD &CDs. My wife has her tapes in it also. Anyway the digtal hydro meter to me would more likely fail than analouge ones.

  6. #46

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    haha i think my thread has the best longevity..still getting replies now..

    i rem someone saying that its best that your protection equipment is ard 10-20% of ur gear. it makes no sense to overspend on this. I think the analog one would spoil easier cos of moving parts leh..

  7. #47
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Hi all,

    My personal pref and opinion is a dry cabinet. I think silica gel in a drybox is good but if storing items too long w/o opening the box may be detrimental to the leather and oiled parts as the former will harden and crack and oiled parts will dry (eg. lens). Normal silica gel in the lab i am working at can bring RH levels to 16% (last observed). Dry cabinets have better control over the recommended RH.

    So my personal recommendation is to get a dry box with minimal silica gel (dun overload it) for your camera, but as your gear increases over time, its better to get a dry cabinet. Rather economical too. No spike in my power bills so far after a few months. I think an analogue one is more than enough. Its at least unlikely to spoil than electronic ones, and the digital ones cost much more than analogue ones.

    Normally, you will need digital ones if you need critical equipment or stuff that need to go down to desired RH levels in an hour or so.

    I think that a dry cabinet will not cost much for expensive gear that you may own. :P a basic small dry cabinet can't cost as much as two B+W 77mm filters. That said, it still better to look at your needs and see what you want better, dry box or cabinet

    Just an opinion,

    Cheers,
    Regards,
    Herman

  8. #48
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by xiaolanku View Post
    Hi,
    may i ask a question, i'll be going europe so wanna bring along something that will keep my cam dry, how do i use silica gel . I saw some shops selling in small bottles of 500g. how to pack them and put in my camera bag? does it mean tt i always have to change the gel everyday? since it is exposed to atmosphere wherever i take the cam bag along with me?
    Make yourself familiar with the climate at your destination before you go there. Unless you have money and time and want to go for shopping winter clothes in Moscow or Alaska somewhere in February Secondly, check the manual of your cam (chapter "Environmental conditions") and compare against the climate conditions in your destination. You'll notice that outside of tropical climate zone there is no need for additional dry equipment. Trust your camera, it can stand more than what you believe. Enjoy the trip.

  9. #49

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Hi, i was wondering, will the RH lvl be affected if i place a Thirsty Hippo inside the Dry Cabinet and even if it finished up?
    Canon EOS 30D , EF 17-40mm F4L USM , EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS

  10. #50
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by eosdigital View Post
    Hi, i was wondering, will the RH lvl be affected if i place a Thirsty Hippo inside the Dry Cabinet and even if it finished up?
    What do you hope to achieve by that? Definitely a TH will affect RH level, but it will also be depending on size if the dry cabinet. Resulting RH level will be too low putting your cam at risk. Cameras don't need "as dry as possible" but rather a stable RH of about 40-50% for storing. Once TH is finished RH will slowly adjust back to what is set by the dry cabinet dial. Use a dry cabinet for your cam only and leave the TH with the socks

  11. #51

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by Octarine View Post
    What do you hope to achieve by that? Definitely a TH will affect RH level, but it will also be depending on size if the dry cabinet. Resulting RH level will be too low putting your cam at risk. Cameras don't need "as dry as possible" but rather a stable RH of about 40-50% for storing. Once TH is finished RH will slowly adjust back to what is set by the dry cabinet dial. Use a dry cabinet for your cam only and leave the TH with the socks
    Oh..because im trying to get a lowest RH as possible. But seems that that being good is a myth. Anyway, my RH average reading is abt 40-50 too but sometime dip to 30%+ during weather changes.

    Why would a extremely low RH damage the dSLR?
    Canon EOS 30D , EF 17-40mm F4L USM , EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS

  12. #52

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    [OT] Wah! This thread so old still comes up ? [/OT]

    Btw, anybody know the dehumidifier lamp solution? the circuit? Well, a simple one will do, but any more "pro" design?

    Also, beside all these any other better solution. A dry cabinet's lifespan is around 5 years.

  13. #53
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by eosdigital View Post
    Oh..because im trying to get a lowest RH as possible. But seems that that being good is a myth. Anyway, my RH average reading is abt 40-50 too but sometime dip to 30%+ during weather changes.

    Why would a extremely low RH damage the dSLR?
    Hi eosdigital,

    There is no need to go as low as possible. Because if its too low, the oiled parts in the camera and lens will dry up and if there are leather and rubbery parts, it will harden due to lack of moisture and crack.

    You only need to go very low if your stuff needs critical RH levels to be dry. Camera equipment no need to go so low.

    Hope it helps!

    Cheers,
    Regards,
    Herman

  14. #54

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    As I know, low humidity will only accelerate the evaporation of water, not the oil-based sovent. So it may not cause the oil to dry up. Anyway, that is theory, any body has observed the oil dry up practically?

  15. #55
    Member lennyl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by phan_vinh_nguyen View Post
    As I know, low humidity will only accelerate the evaporation of water, not the oil-based sovent. So it may not cause the oil to dry up. Anyway, that is theory, any body has observed the oil dry up practically?
    Sounds like we need a mythbuster episode on this

    Someone posted a thread once, saying that while various camera manufacturers would not say outright what RH to set your dry cab to, they set theirs to around 50% (varies between manufacturers).

  16. #56

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    lolz i love that show mythbusters..
    haha but this one like less entertaining leh imagine the hosts watching the seals crack at low humidiity?

  17. #57
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    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    The whole idea is safe storage, and 'safe' implies peace of mind, fire and forget.

    i used to do the dry-box/fry-microwave silica gel routine, i think it's similar to the hungry hippo option. It was not a good life. Every now and then (maybe a week, maybe a few months), gotta keep checking in. Yeah, it's cheap, but it was not my idea of 'safe storage'. When photography becomes a hobby that stretches into years, the only sensible opinion IMHO, is a dry cabby.

  18. #58

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Can I ask a stupid question? I'm a newbie trying to figure what you guys are talking about, but I pretty much figured.

    Just want to know where do you guys get silicon gel? How do you "recycle" them and how do you know if its in a usable state?

    sorry if I sound like a complete noob, but thanks for your help!

  19. #59

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    buy from photo shops
    they add cobalt chloride to the gel so that you know if its 'dry' or 'wet'
    blue is dry
    pink or colorless is wet

    you can microwave heat in oven / sun to recycle it
    but beware the gel might leave toxic stuff so dun recommend using ovens for food.
    u can google for methods and the safety stuff

    there's a packaged version that includes a power plug that recycles the gel when plugged in.

  20. #60

    Default Re: Sillica gel; thirsty hippo; dry boxes; dehumidifier lamp in a cupboard which one?

    Thanks for the answer!, shall look around. =)

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