You probably already know that it’s not a good idea to include your expensive camera gear with check in luggage, but what if you have no choice? If you must, then putting your gear inside a hard-sided “spinner” suitcase with four wheels is your best bet. The Huffington Post has published an interesting interview with an anonymous baggage handler, who gives the following advice:
Hard-sided suitcases will get less damage, but also look for well-designed handles that are attached with rivets and some sort of protection around the wheels. Speaking of wheels, the best bags to get are the “spinners” with four wheels on the bottom. We like these because we don’t have to throw them when loading. We just roll them down the belly of the plane so your bag and its contents will suffer much less damage.
The handler reveals that bags are commonly subjected to all kinds of abuse due to the strict schedules the handlers must abide by.
Ross Technology Corp. has developed an amazing silicon-based spray-on coating called NeverWet that can make almost anything completely waterproof. An iPhone sprayed with NeverWet still functions perfectly after being submerged underwater for half an hour. Spraying the coating on clothes causes liquids (e.g. water, oil, chocolate syrup) to slide right off. Read more…
If you have a GoPro or any other compact camera with a constantly exposed lens, you can protect the lens from scratches when it’s not in use by making a cheap DIY lens cap out of a ping pong ball and a rubber band.
Pose is a camera case that doubles as a simple stand. Designed to replace the little bean bags or mini-tripods that many people carry around separately, Pose has an attachment mount built in, and can either be propped up by itself on flat surfaces or wrapped around poles and curved surfaces. The $24 accessory is available for pre-order over at quirky, and will be manufactured if at least 1,000 people join in.
Yes, it looks like some kind of futuristic spaceship fuel cell, but it’s actually the Alpinist camera case by BetaShell. As you might remember, BetaShell sells a line of lens cases that guard against extreme environments, and the Alpinist offers the same kind of protection for people looking to bring compact cameras into extreme environments (rock climbing or extreme skiing, for example). They’re made out of aircraft-grade aluminum, and come in a few different sizes priced between $60 and $120 over on the BetaShell website.
Check out this wacky-looking custom lens cap designed by Japanese corp UN for the Olympus XZ-1. Many compact cameras don’t offer too much protection for the lens glass when the camera is off and the lens retracted (usually it’s a small plastic cover/curtain), so there are quite a few camera users that might benefit from a cap like this one. It’s secured to the front of the XZ-1 using an Allen key, and is pushed open when the lens extends from the body. When the camera is turned off, the cap automatically folds back into place to protect the glass. It’s supposedly available for about $90 if you email the company directly.
Camera toss photography involves having your camera shoot photographs while it’s being tossed wildly into the air. The problem is, you’ll usually want to play around with this kind of photography at night, when long exposure times will create pretty abstract images. If catching your camera on its way down in the dark isn’t something that sits well with you, you might want do try what Flickr user Robert Couse did — protect your camera using an inflatable swim tube, a piece of cardboard, and some gaffers tape.
The soft cases that are often bundled with higher-end lenses are good for preventing minor scrapes and bruises, but offer little when it comes to protecting your glass against harsher dangers. The BETA Shell line of SLR lens cases are designed to guard your lens against most things extreme environments can throw at them, offering protection from water, impacts, and extreme temperatures.
The cases range in price from $45 to $84 depending on the size of your lens, and are available through the official website.
I don’t know about you, but if it weren’t for the protective case on my smartphone, it would have probably needed to be replaced a long time ago. If cell phones have protective skins and cases, why shouldn’t cameras? Camera Armor is a protective case that’s custom designed for each separate DSLR model, and is available for both Canon and Nikon bodies — and a few others as well.
In addition to the silicon body skin, the system also includes protection for your lens, LCD screen, and other individual components of your kit. The cost of this protection is $40, which is pretty cheap compared to some of the novelty items we’ve featured here.
How far can you go in protecting your gear before people start thinking you have serious issues? We’re not exactly sure, but the guy in the photo above probably crossed that line quite a few filters ago. Thankfully (or sadly, depending on how you see it) the guy isn’t actually an uber-paranoid photographer, but just someone from the BorrowLenses team having a little fun. Read more…