K30 fried after using in rain

Started Jan 5, 2014 | Discussions thread
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DAVID MANZE Veteran Member • Posts: 3,962
Re: WHAT "WR" REALLY MEANS, as well...

JeffAHayes wrote:

One other thing to add to this subject...

The "WR" designation on almost ALL Pentax DSLRs (only the K-500 and I THINK the K-01 have NOT had it within the past three years or more) DOESN'T MEAN "water resistant." It means WEATHER resistant. It refers to especially tight seals that are supposed to keep out both DUST AND DIRT, AS WELL AS MOISTURE, but they're NOT fool-proof, as is very easy to see with some of the seals that have to be manually opened and closed to access various things, such as the SD cards, batteries and USB/HDMI ports, for example.

The number of seals varies from in the 70s to -- I believe more than 90! -- for the K-3, and many of those seals AREN'T generally going to be something we open on a daily basis, if ever (maybe something a service center might open for a thorough cleaning or to replace a part). But the fact is that in all likelihood few, if any of those seals are completely AIRTIGHT, which means that even if they DO keep out almost all water, dust and dirt, GASSES, such as our atmosphere, can ingress and egress. That may very well be what happened in Simon's case. He could have been outside on a very cold and humid day (and if it was raining then it's a safe bet the humidity was 100%. Then he put a fairly-well-dried-off K-30 back into a HARD CASE, which likely is as close to "airtight" as a camera case can get, and the camera warmed back up under those conditions. If that's what happened, it's possible any cold, humid air trapped inside the camera, say under the LCD, had nowhere to go, and thus as it warmed up it expanded and the water vapor in it ended up depositing on the inside of the LCD.

This is all just speculation, but as someone with a halfway decent understand of physics and chemistry it makes for a pretty good argument of what may have caused his initial issue. That said, I'm thinking that when we use our cameras in COLD humid environments -- especially if they get wet -- we should MAKE SURE that after we towel them off as well as we can on the outside we allow them to warm up as slowly as possible and in an area where there's plenty of low-humidity air to attract any humidity that might be trapped in any air inside the camera... Using a regular camera back, keeping it open in a car with a decent heater or AC (with either blowing DRY heat or AC) and keeping SEVERAL containers of silica gel in the bag (I collect and save ones that come in bottles of medicine, but it can be bought in quantities at craft stores, or so I've read), SHOULD help avoid such problems, I think. If not, then there may very well be defective seal(s), and that sort of issue SHOULD be covered by the Pentax warranty!

Oh, and yeah, one of our regulars who was a U.S. Army Captain in Afghanistan DID take his K-7 and K-5, both with a DA* lens attached to them, sit them down on the sand and COVER THEM with it, then take them in the shower and rinse them off and then turned them on and "took a picture" with them, so to speak. Of course the fact that he kept the lens caps on both lenses, so there really WAS no picture, and that the sand JAMMED one of the built-in flashes and he had to manually open it were also in evidence, but he DID prove you could do that, and I'm not sure a Canon 70D or a Nikon D7100 would pass such a test (NOR do I EVER PLAN to try that with ANY of MY Pentax cameras! ).


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A word is worth 1/1000th of a picture... Maybe that's why I use so many words!

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Hi Jeff,

With reference to the seals used in Pentax cameras, they are in fact a "silicon sponge" so they "not" designed to be airtight, in fact the opposite, the silicon works by "surface tension" to repel water and the sponge construction ensures that the camera can "breathe" so any build up of moisture can make it's way out of the body again.

There have been quite a few posts about people suffering from water ingress especially on the K30 (less with K5s)  around the LCD screen and battery box etc  when they have done nothing untoward,  water found it's way in to the camera when outside in the rain and once inside that's that. It's a big ask that the seventy to ninety or so WR seals on "every" camera will function a hundred percent of the time, inevitably a few slightly misplaced seals (and the glue line around the screen) will rear their ugly heads. One person on this site tested their newly purchased K30 by tipping a liter of water over it, neither the first nor the second replacement camera survived the test, posters were scratching their heads, two cameras in two weeks?  then the OP admitted how  she/he was testing them straight out of the box!

All you say about wiping the camera etc once out of the weather of course still applies. I have never risked my cameras out in the rain, but hey I don't like the rain!

All the best

Dave's clichés

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