Q: about silica gel


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Oct 1, 2009
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#1
hello, i'm new here (& a new DSLR user, i bought my eos500d @ the recent comex)

& i was browsing around the threads, and discovered that i need to keep my camera in low moisture or something so that fungus won't grow on it >_<

i'm quite broke, so i was wondering- can i just use those Silica Gel packets that go (Do Not Eat Dessicated blahblah) that come in shoe boxes, food and all that other stuff, and put them in my camera bag? Will it work?

:D would appreciate helpful replies!!
 

Rashkae

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Nov 28, 2005
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#2
Nope, not enough. Please do try a searc on here for "dry cabinet silica gel" and you'll get better advice.
 

catchlights

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#3
taken from Dry Cabinet

usually people can only understand the important or the "must have" of the dry cabinet after their camera and lenses get infected by fungus.

you have the opportunity to prevent this happen to you, however, the decision it is still up to you.
 

Edwin Francis

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Mar 24, 2006
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#4
If you're going to use Silica Gel (there are many disadvantages to this mentioned in the other referred threads) don't bother with those you mentioned -- they're probably already saturated. You can get a small bottle of the stuff for a few bucks (ard 4-5).
Do note that apart from all the other issues, I've heard (from a CS thread) that it's carcinogenic.
 

#5
You can get silica gels from any camera shops cheaply. I last bought a bottle of those at Cathay photo for $5/- but the bad thing about this gels is that you have to keep generate them, after they turn pale pink... fresh ones look purplish blue...

alternatively u can still get thirsty hippo from the supermarkets..

but ultimately it is good to own a dry--cabinet, maybe u can try your luck in the B&S Section, a 30Litre cabinet should be about $60 to $70, but these are always hot items, usually sellers manage to sell it within the first hour of post... tt's from what i notice.. :)
 

Oct 1, 2009
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#6
thanks for all your feedback :D !

i reckon i'll buy some proper silica gel and a box >_< until i can afford a dry cabinet! (takes me a bit of time to save that kind of money, cause' i'm still a student)
 

Oct 19, 2008
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#7
Regenerate wet silica gel is simple, heat it in oven until it turns blue.
Silica gel is not known to be carcinogenic.
Silica gel is still useful for dry cabinet, keep silica gel in
try cabinet makes drying faster.
Silica gel is not corrosive, but the dessicant inside thirsty hippo is corrosive.
 

Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2005
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#8
Regenerate wet silica gel is simple, heat it in oven until it turns blue.
Silica gel is not known to be carcinogenic.
Silica gel is still useful for dry cabinet, keep silica gel in
try cabinet makes drying faster.
Silica gel is not corrosive, but the dessicant inside thirsty hippo is corrosive.
The blue/pink dye color IS carcinogenic.
 

Timolol

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Sep 24, 2009
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#9
Silica gel is not corrosive, but the dessicant inside thirsty hippo is corrosive.
Just curious, if you don't mind, where you got this info from? Would it corrode metals and other stuff in normal use, or does the material have to come into direct contact with the desiccant for corrosion to occur?
 

Sep 28, 2008
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#10
The blue/pink dye color IS carcinogenic.
the blue pink is cobalt chloride...stuff we use to test for water in secondary sch days..

if im not wrong go to any DIY shop they sell those with indicators insteads of a cobalt chloride coatings. cheers.
 

Sep 23, 2009
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changi
#11
my 2 cents' worth...

to keep your cost low before you have enough money to get a dry cabinet:
1. go to homefix outlet, get a packet of dehumidifier called- 'super dry'. costs about $5+ to $8, depending on the sizes you want. (packet of 3 or 5)
2. get a airtight container OR huge ziplock bag.
3. take 1 packet of 'super dry', put into the airtight container/ ziplock bag with your camera & lens. keep in a cupboard, & it should keep last for a few months.
4. discard the dehumidifier when it has done its job, & put in a new packet.

this should help to regulate the humidity to 39% RH-45% RH...
 

Last edited:

catchlights

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#13
thanks for all your feedback :D !

i reckon i'll buy some proper silica gel and a box >_< until i can afford a dry cabinet! (takes me a bit of time to save that kind of money, cause' i'm still a student)
this taken from Dry Cabinet

i bought my canon 50D about 3 weeks back. After paying the shop $2500 in cold hard cash, my heart ached.

I decided that I will save money and follow the "locknlock" method. So I drove to buy a 9L Lock N Lock and a bottle of blue silica gel.

I came home and told my mum that I am trying to save money. She said I was stupid and why did I not buy a $120 dry cabinet instead.

Now, 3 weeks later, I regret everyday when I see the Lock N Lock box. I could have used the money to buy a dry cabinet (about 20% of the price).

Just go and buy the dry cabinet, no need to worry about fungus (not that mine is growing any) but it is so convenient.

I am buying on on 20 October. Thats when pay day comes. :(
 

spheredome

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Jul 5, 2007
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#14
Can you advise further how to regulate an airtight environment to 39%? Thanks
My airtight container with dry agent is 14-19% humidity (reading from digital hygrometer).

But my equipments are happy.

my 2 cents' worth...

to keep your cost low before you have enough money to get a dry cabinet:
1. go to homefix outlet, get a packet of dehumidifier called- 'super dry'. costs about $5+ to $8, depending on the sizes you want. (packet of 3 or 5)
2. get a airtight container OR huge ziplock bag.
3. take 1 packet of 'super dry', put into the airtight container/ ziplock bag with your camera & lens. keep in a cupboard, & it should keep last for a few months.
4. discard the dehumidifier when it has done its job, & put in a new packet.

this should help to regulate the humidity to 39% RH-45% RH...
 

karnage

New Member
Feb 26, 2005
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#15
My airtight container with dry agent is 14-19% humidity (reading from digital hygrometer).

But my equipments are happy.
Happy for now. If it stays in too dry an environment for too long, lubricants will dry up, soft rubber will harden and become brittle and crack and crumble. Be careful.

Perhaps open the lid abit and close again, and see if the humidity increases. If not, do it again, and again, as necessary. If overshot, add more silica gel and repeat.

In my opinion, just get a dry cabinet soon as you can. Meanwhile, just bring out to shoot often. Fungus doesn't grow THAT quickly. At least, not on my equipment...
 

spheredome

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Jul 5, 2007
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#16
Fortunately for me, this has never happened since my film days of Konica TCX. While I do agree which what you say logically, it is not convincing for me. But papers and real leather will turn brittle though.

Suprising, people who complain rubber cracks, rust and lens flakes are using cabinets. And there was complaint to SIN Mint that their sold plated item discolors in dry cabinet.

As for lucbricant drying up within the seal body, still need proving. But yes by optimal guideline, direct silica gel on sealed box is too low.

Happy for now. If it stays in too dry an environment for too long, lubricants will dry up, soft rubber will harden and become brittle and crack and crumble. Be careful.

Perhaps open the lid abit and close again, and see if the humidity increases. If not, do it again, and again, as necessary. If overshot, add more silica gel and repeat.

In my opinion, just get a dry cabinet soon as you can. Meanwhile, just bring out to shoot often. Fungus doesn't grow THAT quickly. At least, not on my equipment...
 

night86mare

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Aug 25, 2006
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#17
i don't think hungry hippo is corrosive.

i've used it for 2 years before i got a dry cabinet, my gear's still fine.
 

#18
Just get a cheap "airtight" box like http://www.digihub.com.sg/SubCategoryList.aspx?MainCategoryID=15 like this one that was given free with my camera. I'm using this plus a "thirsty hippo". Bottom line must have a rh % to show you the levels... if it's too high, then there's a leak or your drying agent is spent. Too low... well... just make sure you take out every day and bring your baby for a walk =)

In the long run, must bring it out regularly... the "too dry" issues are mainly for either extended periods of "optimal (but reduced) rh %" or even short periods of extremely low rh%. For example... 40-45% rh is good enough... most people keep their stuff at 55% too... going all the way down to 10-15% is just overkill.
 

spheredome

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Jul 5, 2007
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#19
Hungry Hippo :bsmilie::bsmilie:



Yes, thirsty hippo it will not damage material unless the liquid comes into contact.
I will always throw 1 pack of thirsty hippo in my lugguage before storing.

i don't think hungry hippo is corrosive.

i've used it for 2 years before i got a dry cabinet, my gear's still fine.
 

Oct 1, 2009
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#20
thanks everybody!

Just get a cheap "airtight" box like http://www.digihub.com.sg/SubCategoryList.aspx?MainCategoryID=15 like this one that was given free with my camera. I'm using this plus a "thirsty hippo". Bottom line must have a rh % to show you the levels... if it's too high, then there's a leak or your drying agent is spent. Too low... well... just make sure you take out every day and bring your baby for a walk =)

In the long run, must bring it out regularly... the "too dry" issues are mainly for either extended periods of "optimal (but reduced) rh %" or even short periods of extremely low rh%. For example... 40-45% rh is good enough... most people keep their stuff at 55% too... going all the way down to 10-15% is just overkill.
anyway keenblade, how much does the dry box in your link cost? and where did you purchase it? haha it looks good.
 

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