Cheap "Dry Box" For Camera Gear?
July 31, 2009 5:57 AM   Subscribe

Are there cheap alternatives for the large and elaborate "dry boxes" I see listed for use as dehumidified storage cabinets for lenses and other camera gear? I've built up a little collection, live where the summer humidity is often high, and do not run my AC 24/7. My first thought is that this is basically an airtight box with a bunch of dessicant inside. Can't really be that simple, though.
posted by justcorbly to Technology (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Ziploc bags with a few bags of dessicant inside. You could do the same thing with vacuum sealing if you aren't going to use the items for awhile.
posted by JJ86 at 6:05 AM on July 31, 2009

Actually it can be that simple. I don't know squat from photography, but here in the laboratory we store water sensitive chemicals in dry boxes that are exactly that: a well-sealed box with some Drierite in the bottom. There are fancier ones, too, but they work just fine.
posted by Dr.Enormous at 6:10 AM on July 31, 2009

Yes, it's that simple. Ziplocs + dessicant bags kept my lenses happy in a humid jungle for nearly a year*. Just remember to check the dessicant now and then and replace if necessary.

*and then I lost all the photos when I moved house. Doh! (Pre-digital +internet days...)
posted by dowcrag at 7:14 AM on July 31, 2009

Some folks use setting drywall compound as a very inexpensive dessicant. It's about $15 for a 25lb. bag. You just have to come up with a way from keeping the power contained.
posted by bdc34 at 7:25 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]

You can get a dehumidifying bar and make a special closet to store all your photo equipment. When I lived in Hawaii, we had one for the piano to keep it in tune, and a closet to store camera equipment and emulsion slides, and hiking boots. Anything mold like to eat.
posted by effluvia at 7:31 AM on July 31, 2009

incidentally, Lee Valley sell large silica desiccant containers that appear to be identical to the much more expensive ones that Pelican sell for their cases.
posted by scruss at 12:38 PM on July 31, 2009

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