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  1. #1
    Exsalisis's Avatar
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    Handling Fungi-Infected Equipment

    Hello!

    Just curious how you guys handle equipment which have unfortunately fallen prey to fungi. Is fungi communicable between lenses? Would you put an infected lens in the same dry cabinet as a non-infected one?
    I've read about how fungal spores are already everywhere, just waiting for the perfect conditions to germinate. If that's true there would be no conceivable reason why one would need to isolate infected lenses. What do you guys think?

  2. #2
    Rick A's Avatar
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    My entire family thinks I'm a fun-guy, and my attitude is infectious. I always handle my equiptment, and use it to try to communicate emotions. I dont need a special occasion or perfect conditions to have an idea germinate. I'm always conceiveing reasons to drag my gear out and shoot no matter the conditions, some of my finest were shot in the rain. I think its time to get off this computer and get out with my cameras.

    BTW-- I would keep them seperate for now, until you can get the infected gear cleaned up, then store in a bright sunny place to help keep it from returning. By all means, dont stow in a leather bag or case, those are perfect breeders for fungus.
    Last edited by Rick A; 06-20-2010 at 08:43 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: got serious
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum
    BTW: the big kid in my avatar is my hero, my son, who proudly serves us in the Navy. "SALUTE"

  3. #3
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    I do not treat lens fungus as a contageous condition. Just clean it up, put the lens back to gether and go shooting. Under warm, dry conditions, the fungus isn't growing anyway. If you keep your gear in dark, damp, cool conditions, the spores are all around the environment .

  4. #4
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ic-racer View Post
    I do not treat lens fungus as a contageous condition. J.
    Perhaps you should,

    Talking to someone who treats and remedies affected cameras & lenses a couple of months ago he said it was important to take precautions and fully treat the infection. His way was place in a sealed container/area with naptha moth balls which kills both the infection & the spores. He went on to say untreated the spores could attack other equipment in close proximity.

    As the remedy is easy it's a wise precaution.

    Ian

  5. #5
    Exsalisis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    Perhaps you should,

    Talking to someone who treats and remedies affected cameras & lenses a couple of months ago he said it was important to take precautions and fully treat the infection. His way was place in a sealed container/area with naptha moth balls which kills both the infection & the spores. He went on to say untreated the spores could attack other equipment in close proximity.

    As the remedy is easy it's a wise precaution.

    Ian
    Wouldn't the fumes from the mothballs pose a risk to the equipment? Even if there's no damage done I'd imagine the lenses will smell of mothballs for a while.

    Recently got a couple of my lenses (even the viewfinder of my folder!) infected. Don't have the cash to clean all of them at once, so I'm rather interested to know how I should deal with them in the meantime.

  6. #6
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    The fumes disappear quite fast in fresh air

    I bought a Minolta Spot F recently that has slight traces of fungal threads just visible so that's getting treated, and all the equipment here will get the same. As a former biologist I'm well aware how many fungal spores are in the air, very few attack lenses/cameras. But if you haven't had an infection you don't go sit in the middle of an infectious hospital ward, but that's what many subject their equipment to when infected lenses are put with others. Those lenses already harbour large colonies of spores dedicated to damaging more lenses

    Ian

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    Perhaps you should,

    Talking to someone who treats and remedies affected cameras & lenses a couple of months ago he said it was important to take precautions and fully treat the infection. His way was place in a sealed container/area with naptha moth balls which kills both the infection & the spores. He went on to say untreated the spores could attack other equipment in close proximity.

    As the remedy is easy it's a wise precaution.

    Ian
    Ian, you could smell the naptha moth balls in my grannies house as soon as the front door was opened and in many other houses back in the Sixties but isn't the trad naptha moth balls now impossible to obtain in the U.K. at least as a result of the dreaded Health and Safety regs?

    pentaxuser

  8. #8

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    The cobwebby strands we normally see in a fungusy lens are the mycelia which are the parts of the fungus that absorbs nutrient. Fungal spores come from the 'fruiting bodies' of a fungus which develop later on. I don't think the mycelia would be infectious in themselves, but if a strand was scraped off and fell on a clean lens I guess it might develop if conditions were right. I'm not too sure what the fruiting bodies of lens fungus look like, possible just some kind of blob. A couple of times on very fungusy lenses I've seen something that looked like a crumb of toast and wondered if it was a fruiting body, but possibly it was just a crumb of toast!

    I keep any kit awaiting de-fungusing in a sealed box with silica-gel at very low humidity (<10%). I've read that humidity this low may adversely affect lubricants, but I figure I'm going to re-grease anyway so why worry. An easier alternative is to put the gear on a bright window-sill. It won't kill the fungus, but it will probably slow it down a bit. I can't find any reports that moth-ball vapours have any fungicide effect at all, though they are still freely available in the UK (in Shropshire anyway!).

  9. #9
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Naptha and it's derivartives have had a long use as an anti-fungal agent, it was once sold in anti-bacterial, anti-fungal soaps, and is still added to some cleaning compounds to prevent fungal attacks. Other compounds tend to be sold now.

    Here's a link to mothballs and mold -and they definitely work that's why they are made - to kill moth larvae and fungal (mold) spores or active fungi

    Ian
    Last edited by Ian Grant; 06-25-2010 at 04:03 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: add

  10. #10

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    I stand corrected, Ian! My Google searches were obviously not rigorous enough. Do we have any volunteers on the forum (preferably with a poor or non-existent sense of smell!) willing to test the efficacy of the treatment?

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