weatherproof vs sandproof?

Christine Nielsen chris at
Tue Jul 27 10:52:22 EDT 2010

While I was in the water with my kids yesterday at the beach,  a pack
of seagulls descended on our pile of gear in search of food.  To bring
my camera to the beach, I had taken the foam camera bag insert from my
handbag, in which it usually resides, and placed it inside a plastic
grocery bag, tied shut, to keep the sand and water out.  I placed that
whole mess inside our beach bag, safely nestled among the towels, etc.
 There was no food in that bag.  But that didn't stop those winged
varmints from looking!  I think they have learned that plastic grocery
bags usually contain food (last week, I saw a gull fly off with a bag
of snacks from a family's stash), so when they found the one with my
camera, they pulled it out, dragged it across the sand, and opened it,
unceremoniously dumping out the contents.  Imagine my horror upon
finding the business end of my lens half-submerged in sand, surrounded
by hundreds of webbed foot prints!

I did my best to carefully brush off the sand.  It was everywhere.
The on/off switch was "sticky" at first, but that seems to have worked
itself out.  Does the AF sound noisier than before?  Am I imagining
that the shutter sounds clankier?  Argh!!

So here's my question:  now what do I do?  Is it possible that tiny
grains of sand could get in there & gunk up the works?  My camera -
the k7 - is "weatherproof".  The lens - a sigma 17-70 -- makes no such
claim.  I've removed the sd card, carefully inspecting and removing
with a brush any grains of sand around the door.  I figure I should do
the same with the lens... but are there other steps I should be

OTOH, everything seems to be working, I had a UV filter on my lens...
and luckily - I'm guessing those gulls shoot Nikon.


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