View Full Version : F-803 in the rainy season?
I'm off to Venezuela in a couple of weeks and will arrive right smack in the rainy season. This essentially means that we will get at least one major downpour per day. I have never photographed in these conditions and am wondering about the right bag for the trip. I usually carry my gear in a Safrotto F-803. The bag is well sprayed with Nikwax and has never had a problem with Canadian rain. But the Venezuelan rainy season may be a different matter. Has anyone here used a Domke bag in similar conditions? How did it fare? Can anyone suggest another bag that can handle this kind of rain but is also as low-key as the Domke satchels? I will be carrying an M body with 35-50-90, film, and a Minolta autometer IVf.
Also, if anyone has other suggestions for shooting in this kind of weather, I will be very grateful for them.
How many spray coats of Nikwax?
I sprayed it three times.
Well, my (untreated) cotton-duck F803 has been through some nasty downpours (with gear mostly dry), but I imagine Venezuela is a whole 'nother kind of rain. The ballistic nylon version of the 803 might fare better, but I can't say for sure. One thing I'd advise doing is having at least a few heavy-duty zip-lock bags with a silica-gel pack in them for stashing the gear in the event of something just short of a washout. There are certain situations where almost no bag can handle things by itself.
Same number I sprayed mine. I'm going to Fiji in a few weeks and I'm thinking of giving my bag another couple of coats. I'm taking the canvas Domke though. If you are really worried I would look at a medium Timbuk2 satchel (waterproof) and put your Safrotto insert into it, that might work for you. You'll find them in outdoor stores like REI.
YMMV, but having lived in Southeast Asia for 10 years and 10 rainy seasons, I had to be very careful of leaving lenses in damp canvas Domke bags for extended periods of time. It is an invitation for fungus. I would always try to take the lenses out of the bag, or at a minimum leave the top of the bag open when I got to the office or back home, to encourage "drying out" (which can be a challenge in a humid environment)a. Ballistic nylon Domkes helped, but I eventually switched to Billingham, which I found to repel water better. Their black with black piping photo satchel worked for me.
Thanks for the suggestions guys (have a great trip to Fiji Peter!).
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