Orion's Photos: portrait - mechanical - sony_p8_camera

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This is my wife Layla's Sony P8 digital camera. It's about 3 years old, and the lens abruptly stopped moving in and out--instead, when you turn the camera on, it just emits a worrisome buzzing noise.

So I cracked the case, and tore the thing down. I could easily wind the lens in and out manually after removing the motor and gearbox, but the gearbox wouldn't spin at all.

As it turns out, there were a few tiny grains of sand lodged in the tiny plastic gears that convert a super-high-RPM tiny motor into the slow but powerful push needed to move the lens. So a little alchol, a cotton swab, and a few toothpicks were enough to get the camera working again!

Having *two* digital cameras is nice, because you can take pictures of the guts of the broken one with the working one. Taking pictures is really a good way to figure out how to reassemble the dozens of tiny screws and puny wires...

The moral of the story: don't get sand in your digital camera! My wife often carried the camera in the same pocket she also uses to pick up pretty rocks; the pocket often is a bit sandy. It doesn't take much to jam up a 3mm nylon gear!

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All images taken by Orion Lawlor and placed completely in the public domain.
Converted to HTML on Wed Aug 31 22:49:30 AKDT 2011.
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