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Thread: Silicon Gel

  1. #1

    Default Silicon Gel

    Err, this might be a stupid question but than i was wondering if u could use the silicon gel from those food packing ? e.g Wang Wang? to put inside the Dry box?

    Is it the same ??

    Sorry for my noobie question.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Don't bother.

    Not all the dessicants used in food packaging are silica gel.
    Even if the one you have is, the amount in most food packaging is much too little for even a small dry box. It's probably saturated with moisture already, and the types used in food packaging are clear -- no indicator (the dye to tell you when it is dry or hydrated).

    A bottle of silica gel sells for ard $4-6 at camera stores.
    One type uses cobalt chloride as an indicator (blue when dry, pink when moist). Cobalt chloride is carcinogenic, so you might to get the other type -- I think it's orange when dry.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Same, but that size not effective. Just get a few bottles from most photo finishing labs. Also get a hygrometer to monitor the RH levels. Ideal for photo equipment is said to be 40% - 45%.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin Francis View Post
    Don't bother.

    Not all the dessicants used in food packaging are silica gel.
    Even if the one you have is, the amount in most food packaging is much too little for even a small dry box. It's probably saturated with moisture already, and the types used in food packaging are clear -- no indicator (the dye to tell you when it is dry or hydrated).

    A bottle of silica gel sells for ard $4-6 at camera stores.
    One type uses cobalt chloride as an indicator (blue when dry, pink when moist). Cobalt chloride is carcinogenic, so you might to get the other type -- I think it's orange when dry.
    Hey Edwin,

    How do you pack this silical gel into small satchets to be placed in camera bags? Do you use ziploc bags and poke small holes into them?

    I would like to dump a couple into my bag when I go travelling overseas.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Quote Originally Posted by hori View Post
    Hey Edwin,
    How do you pack this silical gel into small satchets to be placed in camera bags? Do you use ziploc bags and poke small holes into them?
    I would like to dump a couple into my bag when I go travelling overseas.
    Hi Bernard, I've never bothered when travelling, largely because my (soft) camera bags are far from airtight, and the bag is opened and closed so often it becomes pointless. It might be worth it if you're away for months, but if it's just a matter of weeks, I wouldn't bother.
    If you use airtight cases (e.g. Pelicans), it might make some sense, if you aren't using the camera gear for a day or more at a time.
    I guess one of the concerns is keeping the silica gel out of contact with your gear, esp the fine dust particles. So you want to put it in a porous bag (fabric?), but that would lower it's rate of moisture absorption drastically.
    Offhand, if you need to store your gear for a day or two when abroad, perhaps an airtight container (even a large Ziploc bag) with silica gel in an open container off to one side. You can't jostle or move this around too much without spilling the gel and exposing your gear to the dust though.

  6. #6
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Quote Originally Posted by hori View Post
    I would like to dump a couple into my bag when I go travelling overseas.
    Not much use. If you travel to countries with moderate climate then the average RH is already around the level you try to achieve with Silica gel. Secondly, fungus needs some time to develop, it won't suddenly mushroom in your camera bag after 3 days traveling even if you stay in tropical climate.
    For small bags you could use socks, filled with Silica gel and tied with rubber band or something similar.
    EOS

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Put a few satchets of silica gel together with your lens in a tupperware container. They are airtight. Large ones as dry boxes at home and small ones (square or round type) for travelling. When the silica gel changes color to pink or orange (after absorbing moisture) take them out and heat them in the oven to remove the moisture (change back to blue color).

    Cheers.
    LEW

  8. #8
    Senior Member ovaltinemilo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    why not go buy a tub for like a few bucks? Think even mustafa is selling for $5 only. can last quite long...
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    Default Re: Silicon Gel

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin Francis View Post
    I've never bothered when travelling, largely because my (soft) camera bags are far from airtight, and the bag is opened and closed so often it becomes pointless. It might be worth it if you're away for months, but if it's just a matter of weeks, I wouldn't bother.
    If you use airtight cases (e.g. Pelicans), it might make some sense, if you aren't using the camera gear for a day or more at a time.
    I guess one of the concerns is keeping the silica gel out of contact with your gear, esp the fine dust particles. So you want to put it in a porous bag (fabric?), but that would lower it's rate of moisture absorption drastically.
    Offhand, if you need to store your gear for a day or two when abroad, perhaps an airtight container (even a large Ziploc bag) with silica gel in an open container off to one side. You can't jostle or move this around too much without spilling the gel and exposing your gear to the dust though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Octarine View Post
    Not much use. If you travel to countries with moderate climate then the average RH is already around the level you try to achieve with Silica gel. Secondly, fungus needs some time to develop, it won't suddenly mushroom in your camera bag after 3 days traveling even if you stay in tropical climate.
    For small bags you could use socks, filled with Silica gel and tied with rubber band or something similar.
    Thanks guys. That's what I thought too: about not bothering too much if I'm only gone for less than a month. I think I'll just clean it regularly.

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