Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/03/24

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Subject: [Leica] Real world experience bashing front elements
From: "BIRKEY, DUANE" <>
Date: Tue, 24 Mar 1998 11:22:14 -0500

If you guys want to know a great way to damage your the front elements of 
your lenses.  Place your 50 Summicron in a Domke insert without the rear 
caps.  Now, place your 90 Summicron, 75 Summilux or 50 Noctilux  front 
element down  in the same compartment and walk or run around on a shoot 
for a while.

Now,  look at the front element of your lens and I'll bet you wish you'd 
had a filter on the front.

When I first bought my first 20-35 Canon zoom , I didn't have a filter on 
it and thats more or less what happened,  Needless to say I've got one 
lens with zero resale value and lots of B&W filters.  I remove the rear 
caps on all of my lens while I'm shooting an events and front caps stay 
in a drawer.   Good hoods protect lenses from most things but only if the 
object is larger than the hood itself.  I find I replace filters every so 
often due to nicks from hitting other lenses in my bag. 

I'm one pro who uses filters,  But my mentor and teacher, (another pro 
with a MA in photography) did too.

What I don't know is a pro who uses front lens caps.

Duane Birkey

HCJB World Radio
Quito Ecuador 

Jim Brick wrote:

>Using a UV filter as protection is silly. What part of the entire 
of your camera, is the lens glass itself. Typically, a very small
percentage. Now how, prey tell, can you bash ONLY THE GLASS OF YOUR LENS,
without taking out the rest of the front of your lens. How often does
something stick itself exactly in the lens opening and hit just the 
Looking at your camera overall, the chances of bashing the camera, the
pentaprism, the rangefinder, basically the camera itself, is far greater
than having something zero itself in, precisely on the lens glass. If you
are going to bash your lens, believe me, it won't be a dead center hit! 
it hit hard enough to break or badly scratch the front element, you've 
bigger problems than just the glass. So protect your camera. And use a