I just got a new toy - Nikon SB-700 - and working my way through some documentation and on-line tutorials &c &c. I take the little piece of plastic off the accessory shoe and place it on the desk and attach the SB-700 when an obviously stupid question emanates from my brain: "What the heck do I do with that little bit of plastic when I'm 'out in the field'?"
So, fully realizing that there are much (much!) smarter-than-I folk out there, does anyone have any suggestions as to the best way to ensure that little piece of plastic doesn't get lost? (My simple mind figures I'd just put it in the little coin pocket on my jeans, but I am hoping there is a much more clever solution out there.)
Well there aren't any stupid questions, but there can be stupid answers. Here is my stupid answer: throw it away as I did. I've never kept one of those things and have never noticed any ill effects. If you want to keep something in the shoe when you don't have a flash, consider a spirit level - they can be very handy.
I have a reason for using them... Several times I have tried to mount a flash on my camera and discovered that IT JUST DID NOT FIT. Wotzat? A (cringe) slight "persuasion" with (gag) a flat-bladed screwdriver fixes the problem. After about the zillionth time (probably about the fourth one, really) I discovered that putting the camera in one particular spot in my Airport International with the L-bracket mounted caused the shoe to sit up just far enough to get bent in - slightly - if the case ended up in some tight quarters. (Such as, for example, the overhead bin on a 747-400.)
Upon figuring this out (it took two months), I exhumed one of those little plastic thingies and now they ride around in the shoe when traveling. So far so good - no slightly bent shoe rails since then.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
Well, that's one approach. But I tend to believe god put that thing on earth for a reason: to protect your hot shoe from dirt, gunk and the other hazards of life that could make your flash non-responsive.
If you're likely to forget that you stuck it in your pocket, get one of these, stick the end on top of the cover and loop the strap through your camera strap or the strap lug.
Or get one of these for your camera strap to put the cover in when you're speedlight is mounted on the camera. It can also be used to put at hotshoe mountable GPS uint (it was designed for Nikon's GP-1) or any other hotshoe mountable accessory.
>If you're likely to forget that you stuck it in your pocket, >get one of >these, >stick the end on top of the cover and loop the strap through >your camera strap or the strap lug.
Thanks Mick - this looks very helpful (and quite clever too). I'll put that on my "to order list" - as, well, shipping costs on something like that would be kind of...non-optimal! In the meantime, I'll just use the "temporary storage in the coin pocket" approach.
Yeah, well, just went to the local camera store today and that emptied my wallet. If I go back again soon, the wallet will just get emptier... Is that possible? Seems to happen whenever I go into that store... But if I am near one of those other stores, I'll try to remember to get it there. Thanks again.
I was being a bit facetious - I don't recall ever throwing one out - just losing them almost immediately - without lament. Now in the case of my Pansanic 4/3, the cover also protects the recessed contacts for the EVF, which, unlike the top of the hotshoe, would be very difficult to keep clean. I've managed not to lose that one.
I can't imagine my hotshoe getting so dirty (or allowing it to) that a flash would not work. That has never happened. The only concern that has occured to me is potential issues arising from conductive material bridging the contacts somehow - though I don't know what if any real risk there is there. I haven't encountered any problem to date.
I certainly wouldn't encourage anybody to throw one out if they're concerned. Just, IMO, there needn't be too much angst associated with the risk of loss.
I have an old 35mm film canister that I keep in my larger camera bags. When I take a PC cap, MTR cap, or other small cover off of a camera body of flash it goes in the film canister for safe keeping. When I am using a smaller bag the caps go in a zippered pocket in the bag. Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!
How 'bout a wad of well chewed bubble gum, stuck to the tip of one of your shoes. Then stick the little plastic thingy onto the bubble gum. When you take your shoes off at night, it will be sitting right there where you left it.
HBB in Phoenix, Arizona Nikonian Team Member
Photography is a journey with no conceivable destination.
>From the deep weeds in far left field ... > >How 'bout a wad of well chewed bubble gum, stuck to the tip of >one of your shoes. Then stick the little plastic thingy onto >the bubble gum. When you take your shoes off at night, it >will be sitting right there where you left it. > >Clever, yes?
Clever for sure - but they don't make gum like they used to, at least it doesn't seem to have as much seemingly permanent stickiniss like it did when I was a kid. But it sure is a good thing to remember if caught unprepared otherwise...
In December of 2005 I took that little piece of plastic out of the hotshoe of my D200 and put it in a zipper pocket in my camera bag. It is still there and has never gone back on the camera. I have not had any problem with the hotshoe/flash and I don't expect any problems in the future. As already mentioned, none of the camera manufactures provided such a cover "back in the old days" and there was never any widespread problem with dirty flash contacts. Use it if it makes you feel more comfortable, or if you are at risk of damage like Brian with his L-bracket and one particular place in his bag, but I just don't want to have to worry about keeping track of it.
Stick it in a box with all the other pointless get in the way black plastic caps that cover the sockets on modern day cameras (that includes never ready lens caps)and forget about them until you decide to sell the item on. These silly little bits of plastic are a pain in the *** and should be discarded...
Wow! I guess it may be some Yankee-bred compulsion that makes me want to keep things as they should be. At least from the sounds of it, I shouldn't lose any sleep if I misplace the little plastic PITA...
Thanks to all - I do appreciate the feedback & insight.
>Stick it in a box with all the other pointless get in the way >black plastic caps that cover the sockets on modern day >cameras
I have a box like that. Hotshoe covers, plastic end caps for various Nikon batteries, battery compartment covers for SB-800's, and a host of things that really, I no longer have any idea what they are. But will I throw them away? Nah!
I save the box my camera bodies come in. Then I put the little hot shoe cover in the box, never to be seen again until I sell the body. When I put the body up for sale the little plastic piece actually makes the body look newer and better cared for than other sellers I'm competing with. Other than that I find it useless because I don't travel much or drop my camera prism first into a mud puddle.
I really like the chewing gum trick though. I had to wait until I stopped laughing before I could write this reply.
Not a stupid question at all - and in fact reading it made me realise that when messing around with my D800 a couple of hours ago I took the little plastic thingy off so I could mount the SB-900 - after I'd finished I put the camera back in my backpack (where it lives) and forgot the little plastic thingy, which was on the dining room table! I like to keep things right so even though the little plastic thingy (does it even have a name? manual not to hand so can't see if it has) may not be essential I still get twitchy about not losing it. So thanks for the reminder, even though it wasn't intentional!
D4, D800, D600
It ain't so much the things we don't know that get us in trouble. It's the things we know that just ain't so.
Why is this thus? What is the reason of this thusness?
I figured out something - will see how it works: Was reading "The Nikon Creative Lighting System" by Mike Hagen - and he suggested using velcro and a (large) index card to to help with bounce flash. Well, I looked at the resulting velcro on top of the SB-700 when some insight penetrated the thick slab of granite between my ears: I added a small piece of velcro a little further back on the top of the SB-700 and put a little on the back of the accessory shoe cover and - et voila! - it appears to be working. It's conveniently located for quick on/off and seems stable enough.
I have a lot of forehead Mick - never thought of using it to store things: I could put lots of velcro on it and have plenty of room to hold lens covers, accessory shoe covers, speed lights, other lenses, second camera body, ... wouldn't have to carry a backpack that way! Great suggestion.