Store Camera Gear on a Budget

October 16, 2019

Being a photographer in an Asian country will make you realise the importance of a dry cabinet for storing camera gear. After forking out money to get fungus out of your lens, you quickly realise that you'll need to fork out yet more money to invest in a good dry cabinet for your lenses. I remember starting out in photography and being poor. I had one lens and I had to repair it three times because of fungus issues. Choosing between investing my money into more gear or a dry cabinet wasted me a lot of time. I never once thought that I'd ever find a solution to store my camera gear on a budget. Until I met my husband...

As I left photography behind, pursuing a career and later getting married and moving overseas, I finally picked up a camera again after 15 years. I soon realized that the Indian monsoons was gonna cause me issues again with fungus in my lenses. As I decided to finally invest in a dry cabinet, the hubby proposed a very simple solution. Initially I thought the idea to be rustic. What is the possibility of this idea working? In the end, I decided to try the hubby's idea for a year. To my amazement, I realized that it worked. I found a simple, cost effective way to store my camera and lenses without ever dealing with the fungus issue again.

diy storage plastic box store camera gear on budget silica gel

The hubby's idea was super simple. Get a plastic storage box with clips to secure the lid. Place into the box, a towel at the bottom. Place your camera gear into the box. Add a large or medium box of silica gel to absorb moisture. And viola! A simple way to store my camera gear on a budget! My very own DIY dry box. The silica gel containers I used are Absorbia brand ones that you can easily get on Amazon. The storage box to hold the camera and lenses are purchased on Amazon too.

I change the silica gel every month during the monsoons. Post monsoon, the Absorbia silica gel lasts at least 3 months without the need to be changed. I get through an entire summer without needing to change the silica gel packs. I've till date tried this out for 2 years and have never faced an issue with moisture damaging my lenses again.

While I will be investing in a dry cabinet in the future, I realized that this idea is perfect for those starting out in photography and can't invest money on a dry cabinet. I wish I had found this solution as a poor student starting out in photography all those years ago. It would have saved me a small fortune in getting my lenses cleaned and repaired.

This idea has now moved beyond just my camera box. We have resorted to placing these packets in our CPU to ensure we don't have issues during monsoon. I've had 2 instances in the past that moisture created. I leave a box of Absorbia in my cupboard where I keep my laptop and external hard drives and have never faced damage due to moisture again. On average, I'd be using about 4 boxes of Absorbia a year on my camera gear and collectively about 6 boxes in my CPU and cupboard.

Just goes to show that a husband's ingenuity to save money really does work after all.

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