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  1. #11

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Shooter
    Medium Format
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    59
    I've shot at -40 C with an OM1. I used the TTL metering and the batteries would often die quickly. I changed them over with one I had in a pocket and after a bit of warming they would come back to life.

    Dry cold causes static so be careful advancing the film and rewinding otherwise you get static streaks on the film. The film can also become brittle because of the cold so again be careful handling it.

    When shooting I found that its best to wear 2 pairs of gloves. The outer pair can be really substantial affairs. The inner gloves should to be thin enough to allow you to operate the camera. This way you don't have to expose your flesh to the cold. Tape exposed metal parts of the camera so they don't come into contact with your skin. It will burn at best and at worst pull away great chunks of skin which is incredibly painful.

    Condensation is the main thing to avoid when you take the camera from cold to warm. I kept all my equipment in its normal bag and when entering a building I'd just put the whole lot in a large sealed plastic bag. After a couple of hours I'd take it out. Going from warm to cold will mist up your optics wait a while and it will clear.

    Look after yourself. Make sure you have adequate clothing in wicking layers on. Don't over dress either as sweat freezing can cause severe hypothermia. At temperatures below -30 C you can't afford to phaff around when taking pics keep on the move and keep warm. Look out for frost bite.

  2. #12
    johnnywalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    British Columbia, Canada
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    Multi Format
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    78
    Put the equipment in a waterproof container (ziploc bags are great) until they adjust to the ambient temperature.
    If I had been present at the creation, I would have given some useful hints for the better arrangement of the Universe.
    Alfonso the Wise, 1221-1284

  3. #13

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    36
    I've photographed with a range of equipment in winter (and our winter can be as cold as -35 C) and am only concerned (as others have stated) when taking cold camera equipment from the cold into the warm inside. I have Ziplock bags ready and put the lenses, camera bodies etc. into the bags, seal them, and let them come to room temperature.
    The only concern about taking warm gear into the cold is that you don't want to drop anything warm into the snow (including car keys).
    I've never felt the need to get a camera 'winterized' or tape any metal parts, but do advance or rewind slowly. Although this climate has extremely low relative humidity, I've never had a problem with streaking from electrostatic charges.
    As others have stated, batteries can be a problem. I used a Pentax 67 for a number of winters and invested in the their remote battery holder. With it tucked into an inside coat pocket until needed, I never had a problem. Now, all my camera gear is über-manual so I am only concerned about my handheld meters.
    Oh, if you inadvertently fog the viewfinder with your warm breath, just put your mouth near the viewfinder and strongly inhale. Sounds odd, but it works.

  4. #14

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Minn.
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    1,262
    IF, IF-you are going to -regularly- use a camera in sub zero, F., weather, or simply near zero, it would be wise to have it prepared for such weather by a professional repairman.
    As was said before, either way, KEEP it UNDER your coat, and problems will be greatly reduced.
    IF you are using a motor-drive and need it, carry EXTRA batteries.
    The coat you normally wear in sub-zero weather may not be good enough to use to keep the camera warm, I use an Air Force parka good down to sixty below. Get something similar.
    Bobby
    PS--I shot snowmobile races in temps as low as -20 F, with a Topcon DM and keeping it under my coat worked quite well.

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Victoria BC
    Shooter
    4x5 Format
    Posts
    1,183
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    107
    I've been out shooting digital, 35mm, and 4x5 in -25 degree celsius weather. Actually my first time out with my 4x5 was more like -30. Bitterly freezing cold. No problems (except lower battery life with my DSLR, and trying to develop 4x5 polaroids is probably a bad idea - definitely don't try to warm them up with your hands or you'll get blotches).

    I hear some of the lubricants in some lenses might freeze up at extremely low temperatures. I've never used any antiques or anything in this kind of weather.
    The universe is a haunted house. -Coil
    .

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