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Cleaning the Canon 8-64


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#1 Isaac Brooks

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 03:46 PM

Hi,

I have a Canon 8-64, which for the most part is clean and solid. Under ambient sunlight, even up close, the front element and coating are both mostly pristine.

Under the beam of the flashlight with which I occasionally inspect the glass, however, there are definitely some marks. Some are tiny scratches that I simply know are the result of the lens getting on in age, but there are slight streaks too, broader than the scratches. Are those cleaning marks?

I have my method down for cleaning, with a blower bulb to start (or the delta 1 camel's hair brush for really resistant dust) and then Pancro fluid for whatever gunk is left of the surface. But, obviously I want to limit my cleaning of the element for the sake of preventing wear, and I just don't know when to stop. Am I being obsessive? Or should I go until there is nothing left but the most obvious permanent marks?

Thanks.
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#2 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 12:34 AM

If lens cleaner doesn't remove the marks it's not worth persisting. Slight coating stains won't affect the image in any perceivable way. The important things to clean off are stuff like fingerprints, spittle or sea-spray, which can etch into the coating if left there for too long.
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#3 Isaac Brooks

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 12:52 AM

Ok, thanks Dom.

Most of the stuff has actually come off. Pancro does wonders. Just the smallest mark or two left. remnants of time, no doubt.
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#4 Isaac Brooks

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 01:19 AM

Actually, one other thing,

Is it OK to use cleaner (Pancro) on the rear element, if the bower isn't getting off the hard to get stuff? I seem to remember being instructed that it's sometimes best to let well enough alone back there unless it's a big emergency.

Thanks.

Isaac
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#5 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 11:37 PM

Is it OK to use cleaner (Pancro) on the rear element, if the bower isn't getting off the hard to get stuff? I seem to remember being instructed that it's sometimes best to let well enough alone back there unless it's a big emergency.


It's fine to clean the rear element if it needs it. Usually it's protected by a cap or hidden inside the camera mount so it shouldn't need much cleaning (unless like me you work for a rental house that rents to film students who inexplicably like to leave fingerprints on rear elements especially.. no offence to students intended :) ).

It is a more important surface than the front so the less you clean it the better, but Pancro should be safe to use. Some lens rear elements have a black paint edge border that stronger cleaning agents can remove, or smear across the glass. To be safe I always clean from the centre to the edge in a single direction spiral.
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