Tall Tales From The Field

It’s Alive!

So said Dr. Frankenstein about the monster. And that’s what I said yesterday to my Canon DSLR Camera. Back in the end of October while photographing the fall colors in the Eastern Sierras, my camera fell off from the tripod it was suppose to be mounted to. It not only fell off into some soft grass but preceded to bounce into Lee Vining Creek.  I immediately jumped into the ice cold creek and retrieved the camera within 10 seconds but the damage had been done. I dried it off, took out the battery and lens and tried to dry the camera body against my car heater. Ian Plant(famous photographer) once blogged that he dropped his into the Virgin River and dried his camera out in an oven. I believe it worked for him. He probably gets his gear for free.



I didn’t want to put the camera in an oven, so I sent the camera with lens to Canon. They said they couldn’t fix either(or the cost was too high) and sent it back to me. When I got the lens back, I tried it and it worked just fine. The water inside the lens did dry. The camera wouldn’t work but I decided to store it in rice, the rice absorbs any moisture. After a month, I tried it again and the camera IS ALIVE! It takes beautiful images and video!

Moral of Story- Do Not Listen to the factory repair people at Canon and use rice to absorb moisture from any device that was submerged in water. They wanted me to buy new equipment. Patience paid off here. I plan to write Canon a scathing letter saying that the camera you said was dead is alive!


24 responses

  1. Great to hear your equipment still works. Start saving for a replacement.


    January 19, 2016 at 7:15 PM

  2. Hooray! I am happy for yopu.


    January 19, 2016 at 7:16 PM

  3. Glad it worked for you. I wonder if rice would have worked for my phone that committed suicide by jumping out of my back pocket, with my hand on it, and into the toilet?


    January 19, 2016 at 8:01 PM

    • Thanks katelon. Rice may have worked. I wish my old cell phone would jump into the toilet. Maybe I’ll break down and get an iPhone then

      Liked by 1 person

      January 19, 2016 at 8:15 PM

      • I resisted getting a smart phone for many years but I’m enjoying my new phone. I know I don’t use all on it I could. I have a Samsung galaxy 5


        January 19, 2016 at 8:24 PM

      • You could always give it a push.


        January 19, 2016 at 9:44 PM

  4. Good for you on not giving up! I have had a similar thing happen as well.
    About 3 years ago my Canon SX260HS fell in the cats water bowl. It had to be in there for at least 8 hours, as I noticed it missing out of my work bag and was at work when I discovered it missing. I took the battery out and SD card out and soaked it in rice for 6-7 days and changed the rice. I did this twice more and it works wonderfully to this day.


    January 19, 2016 at 8:10 PM

  5. Good for you for trying and congratulations on succeeding! I am so glad you posted this so I will know what to do if I drop mine in the water. I’m wondering if it would work for salt water.


    January 19, 2016 at 8:36 PM

  6. Yay! You just tried harder than the repair people and you weren’t even charging by the minute.


    January 19, 2016 at 9:43 PM

  7. Wow. This is a fantastic story! Thanks so much for sharing…just in case, but hoping to not have to ever go this route. My son did the rice thing with his phone and it recovered also, but I wouldn’t have thought to try it with a DSLR.


    January 19, 2016 at 10:12 PM

  8. It must have been a terrifying experience seeing your camera fell off in the water. it happened to me once in a puddle. I used dessicant. I’m glad it’s working !


    January 20, 2016 at 2:11 AM

    • It was a terrifying experience. I was depressed for days. I have some dessicant around somewhere. I should find it.


      January 20, 2016 at 10:48 AM

      • You can put it back in the oven to dry it and reuse it each time. you place it on tray and leave it in the oven until it changes colour. We always keep dessicant in our camera and lenses bags.


        January 20, 2016 at 10:51 AM

  9. Great story and I’m so happy for you that it’s still alive. And, good to know the rice trick is valid! 🙂


    January 20, 2016 at 1:17 PM

  10. I’ve heard of rice being used for cell phones that have gone swimming. Guess it’d work for any similar problem.


    January 20, 2016 at 8:17 PM

  11. Thanks for sharing these tips, in case I meet with a water disaster.


    February 13, 2016 at 7:21 AM

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