Best way to store lenses?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by justinweiss, Mar 7, 2009.

  1. What is the best way to store lenses when they're not on your camera? Standing up, lying on their side, in some sort of protective case or rack, etc?
    Sorry if this is a stupid question, but these things are darned expensive and I want to keep mine in good condition!
  2. I keep mine in a couple of small, build-it-yourself cupboards from Wal-Mart that have doors. I have a few padded Tamrac lens cases that often have lenses in them.
    I kind of miss the days when I had just enough to fill a camera bag, because that's where I would keep them. If I keep lenses in my camera bag(s) now, it's too much work to find the one I want when I need it!
  3. Lenses have been designed to be carried around, so just put them in your bag....
  4. I was told that the best way is keep them standing on their mount end. It reduces the probability of having oil in the aperture blades. And we also need to avoid heat and moisture on them. I know there are special moisture controlled cabinets used in damp climates. Don't know how widespread those are used.
  5. I've always stored them in my Lowepro backpack with the camera, in a closet. Never had any problem with that. But I have only 5 lenses - if you have a lot, Eric's solution is more convenient.
  6. Changes in temperature and humidity are what can cause mold/fungus. Storing a lens in a zippered bag may not be the best thing for it since it can't "breathe". I think the important thing to consider is to store your lens in a dry place that has reasonable air exchange.
  7. Nose up minimizes the oil-on-blade problem.
  8. With primes and short zooms, I tape the end caps together and stack them in my bag. It makes switching lenses easier and faster. I hate fumbling for end caps. I have never had a problem with oil on the blades. Many of my lenses are 20+ years old.
  9. Store them so that the aperture is higher than the focusing threads. On most lenses this means that the front cap goes down.
  10. Ikka is right, front end down. Most aperture blade units are well isolated from the helicoid assembly (and the small amount of grease used) but some particular versions of lenses have a persistent problem of grease/oil migration. With those, it doesn't really matter which way you store, if they get to warm the grease migrates, the 55mm 2.8 and the mid version 50mm 1.4 Ais.
  11. I store mine every which way. They don't seem to have any problem going to sleep. Actually I usually keep the front of the lens up so that I can recognize it more swiftly when selecting.
  12. Autofocus lenses, especially of the AF-S generation, use little or no oil or grease. The bearing surfaces are essentially low friction self-lubricating types. Migration of oil is unlikely to be a problem no matter how the lens is oriented in storage.
  13. With silica gel.
  14. I stored my film SLR lenses nose down for over 30 years with out any problems. That included my 2 1/4 and 35mm lenses. I now store my DSLR lenses the same way, nose down in my camera bag. But if you think about it, how are they stored at the factory and in the stores - most likely on thier sides! So I don't think it really matters one way or the other.
  15. I also close the aperture ring to the smallest f stop to reduce tension on the springs.
  16. Make sure that they are capped (or screw-in filtered, instead of a front cap), so as to avoid moisture issues.
  17. I store them mount up to avoid getting oil on the aperture blades, inside ziploc bags to keep the dust and dirt off.
  18. Your only real concern should be excess humidity and poor air circulation that encourages the growth of fungi inside the lens. Store in a space with some air circulation and away from the floor. If you have any concerns about humidity get one of the large descicant tubs that can be placed into a closet or cabinet. Avoid any lens covering that can absorb moisture such as leather lens cases for extended storage.
  19. Justin,
    I would like to throw in my two cents here if I may. I'm not commenting on the best way to store lenses as it relates to orientation (not sure myself; guess that's why I'm reading these,) but more as to the type of container. I think storing in a plastic zip lock bag is a serious mistake. A plastic bag will TRAP moisture, and that can never be a good thing. A plastic bag may, however, be a good "temporary" solution if the sky opens up on you while your out doing a shoot.
    I have a gun safe in my basement, in which I store (obviously) guns, important papers, a little extra cash and some other important items. I use a HYDROSORBENT DEHUMIDIFIER SILICA GEL pack (see model # SG-450, which I purchased at a Gander Mountain store for around ten bucks as I recall. As the three little tabs on the cardboard box turn from blue to pink, I know it's time to throw the silica bag in a 240 degree oven for three hours to dry it out, and once the bag has cooled off, it goes back in the safe. It works GREAT, and my gun safe items have not suffered any moisture damage (been using the same bag for fours years now.) So, as it relates to the storage of lenses, I'm thinking that a good container that can be sealed, along with a silica bag (ya gotta' maintain it though) would be an ideal solution. Once again, just my two cents. Anyone wanna' beat me up on this one? Anyone agree? I welcome your feedback, and happy shooting!
  20. sbp


    Two bodies and next-to-be-used lenses in a Lowe Vertex backpack. Other bodies and lenses in a Pelican 1510. Shorter lenses mount down, long lenses on their side. Have never used desiccant for storage (live in Europe). When traveling to tropics, use silica gel-pack in backpack - but more to protect portable hard drives than lenses.
  21. Just a note: do excercise your lenses regularly or the apertures may freeze up out of lack of use. I've had this happen on some old lenses that I rarely use.
  22. Send them to the Walsh Lens Storage Facility.
  23. newer lenses can be stored any way you want that is convenient and safe in a dry environment. i store them in plastic shoe boxes ($1.50 ea) so i can see what's in it. i put several small packets of silica gel in each box. each lens is protected from rubbing to others with lens wrap. they go into my photography closet together with my older F bodies and lenses, cds, dvds, printer inks, photo paper, etc.
    my older manual focus primes and short zooms are kept front up mounted on an old base of a vintage camera bag (remember those leather bags?). old-school nikon techs recommend this orientation. maybe just a marketing pitch for those bags.
    my regularly used lenses stay in my bags with the hoods up so they are easier to pull out. but i carry my camera with a mounted lens facing down since i have the messenger type ones.
  24. It is not a good idea to store the lens in something that itself can capture moisture, such as camera bag and the lether case that comes with the lens. Keep them in a place that is well ventilated.
  25. Where can you find moisture controlled cabinets suggested by Raymond Wong.
  26. I live in a hot and often humid environment (on a Caribbean island), and have been worried about fungus growth on my camera gear, so I recently bought a large Rubbermaid plastic box with a sealing lid, and an Evadry EDV-500 passive dehumidifier. Seems to be working well, so far, but it's a little scary just how much moisture the little Evadry unit manages to find, even in that little sealed box!
  27. If it's not a good idea to store lenses in the leather case they come with, why do they come with one?

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