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Old September 22nd, 2009, 08:51 PM   #1
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a good ol dust storm

Dust storm chokes Sydney - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

coming from Broken Hill I remember these all too well but I didn't have expensive camera equip as a kid.

I was dumping tapes and didn't put my camera away last night, even left a few tapes on the desk out of their cases.

this morning the red dust is everywhere, you can feel it on your skin and taste it as you breathe, the sky is orange.

No point in doing anything till it's over and then I guess I'll just wipe everything down and hit the camera & tapes with a bit of compressed air.

anything else I should do .. or not do??
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 10:58 PM   #2
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Yesterday I got in a hurry to document an onion loading operation and foolishly taped without my makeshift dust protection. Several minutes into recording I got a message that the heads were dirty, but I finished up--even switched tapes--and then got out of there.

Rather than blow air into the camera I vacuumed it and the tapes as much as I could then ran a head cleaner through the camera. It appears to be okay--playback tonight was fine.
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 11:17 PM   #3
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Whatever dust has got into the tape windings is there for keeps, now entrained in the lube. Use an art brush to shift dust out of cracks and gaps with the vacuum nozzle nearby to draw the airbourne dust. Same with the cassette tapes. With the tapes, start at the flap end first to draw dust out.

If you actually get a camera warning, a service might be a good thing in the not too distant future.

Last edited by Bob Hart; September 22nd, 2009 at 11:23 PM. Reason: error
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 11:50 PM   #4
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here's a good clip taken yesterday in Broken Hill

YouTube - Broken Hill comes over pitch black during a dust storm
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 02:12 AM   #5
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Shoots cancelled all over, Sydneys worst dust storm from the West. Its reached NZ the snow is bright pink.

Our guys are flying a 1936 amphibion Catalina flying boat from Albion Park Sth of Sydney to RAAF Edinburgh Sth Aust. 6hrs direct at 180mph. By late yest they were flying mostly backwards, so they overnighted at the halfway point at Griffith NSW. Got to SA midday today. There goes our fuel budget.

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Old September 25th, 2009, 02:57 AM   #6
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the next one

there's another dust storm due tomorrow!!

I've got a wedding - outside ceremony, outside reception - what the hell do I do?

I've got 3 tape HDV cameras - HV20, HV30 & A1

Can I get away with using garbage bags and gaffer tape?

If the dust storm is only marginal and they decide to go ahead with the ceremony outside - do I risk my cameras?
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Old September 25th, 2009, 03:35 PM   #7
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Paul - no good answers for the big camera, BUT you could pick up a couple Sony Sports Packs (not cheap, but cheaper than new cameras) and stick the HV's in them - operation would require you to use the remote through the clear shell, but it would be better than nothing.

I have the Sport Packs for my Sonys (of course the LANC/external controls work direct with the Sony cameras...) for just this reason - living in the desert, wind and dust are fairly common (unlike your current crazy dust storm - saw video on the news, looked like another planet!). I've only used the Packs a couple times, but I'd rather be prepared for anything!
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Old September 26th, 2009, 12:19 AM   #8
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We missed the dust storm.. it passed by here, 100km to the north... but having been in more than a few the advice is simple; Stay indoors till the thing passes.

Not only is the air particle count off the scale, but it essentially is breathing sand. Not only would you be risking a camera, but also the car as well (I know of clogged air filters..)

If you HAD to go outside. Gaffer the camera in a plastic bag, and double gaffer the areas where the buttons are. Dont open the bag outside at all to change tape/battery.

When you finish, use a damp disposable cloth to wipe the bag down with before opening, then use a vacuum cleaner around the camera.

Take bits off the camera such as Matte Boxes, filter holders and portabrace covers and hand was them.. Even the tripod and head.. give it a wash, keeping remote controllers out of the water..

Best of luck....

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Old September 26th, 2009, 03:42 AM   #9
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Plenty of dust made it through to Brisbane as well.

All I could think was that it was a brilliant opportunity to do external shots (if you were taping for Dr Who) as the sky was an alien orange colour.

Could only be bothered shooting some stills for colour reference one day.

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