sink proofing your camera

so lets say you have one of these nice little pentax or olympus jobbies. they don’t float. so what do you do to make sure that you don’t lose them to the sea if you drop it when on the water?


Two things you can do.
1. Tether it to your boat or your PFD.

2. Attach a little float to it, they make small floats made for key chains.

light tethers – retractable badge reel

– Last Updated: Nov-28-04 5:40 AM EST –

I'd tether it mainly to my pfd, and stuff it down the pfd or in a pocket if it will fit.

For light tethers, I've found retractable badge reels to work nicely. They have a nice clip of one sort or another and a light but strong retractable cord. Yes, they are light duty, and certainly not corrosion-proof, but they are so cheap, that if you have to buy a couple a year it's no big deal. I use them on my pfd for camera, knife and radio, and on the foredeck for chart, nav-aid, gps, whatever.

See for example for what they look like. You don't want to buy there in quantity 100, but look in stationery stores where I've seen them go for $1.50-$4.00 each.

You can also buy heavy-duty retractable tethers at dive stores, but obviously for a lot more $$.

i’ve thought of that
the retractable ‘badge tether’. sounds promising. having loose lines dangling around doesn’t appeal to me but retractable could be the way to go.

i’ve wondered about floats as well but how big does it have to be to float something weighing a pound or more?

chums makes a bright foam float for sunglasses but i don’t think they will float a camera.

I use a float on the lanyard
It’s a Crookies from West Marine. It’s about 3.5" long and about 1.25" wide and will float a Pentax 33WR.

Test whatever you buy to make sure it works. It would be sad to watch your camera sink.

fly fishing suppliers
companies like orvis or llbean have retractable devices, and they’re usually corrosion proof/resistant

Fly fishing – zinger
Great lead… thanks. Looks like they are called “zingers”. I searched Froogle “fly (zinger OR zingers)” and found a bunch. I think I’d avoid the ones that pin on, but a number seem to have clips instead. Many do not say which. They run $3.00-$25.00, the higher end being LLBean’s.

Most of these seem to have nylon-coated steeel wire. I must say that the breakable nylon on the cheap badge reels seems like an advantage in case of entanglement. If there’s enough force on it to break it, the alternative may be more unpleasant.

Thanks. --David.