The foam in my Zero Halliburton aluminum camera case has turned to "slurry"

In my teens I was thinking about becoming a professional photographer. With the overly generous help of my mom and dad I gathered up some nice semi-pro 35 mm gear. There was a store going out of business and I managed to buy the de rigueur aluminum Zero Halliburton travel case. Anyway, photography did not pan out – I was pretty good technically but I have learnt that I am artistic only in viewing…

Anyway, yesterday I opened my Zero Halliburton case to find that the foam has turned to a “slurry”. Or maybe, if you can imagine it, melted, sticky cotton candy that is black in colour. I am not impressed. As you can see below, I have emailed Zero Halliburton to see if something can be done. Hopefully the gear – while being film based – isn’t toast…

Hi Folks,

Many years ago as a teenager with thoughts of becoming a professional photographer I purchased a Zero Halliburton case for my camera equipment. That did not pan out and my in the last 10 years my gear was stored, safely and securely I thought, in my Zero case – batteries and film out of the cameras, end caps on all lenses, etc.

Yesterday, I opened the case and found that the foam had turned to, well, slush. Or, maybe black, sticky melted cotton candy would be a better discription. Not only that, but it is now stuck to my camera bodies, lenses and accessories.

Three questions:
a) what is the correct way to clean off this mess;
b) has this damaged my gears (e.g. seals); and
c) how do I get new foam?
Maybe four questions: Will the new foam turn to slush as well?

Thanks
Mike

 

[UPDATE]

I rather quickly received a reply from Debbie Pawigon! Not exactly the best answer I wanted but an answer none-the-less. Anyway, I think that the need to replace the foam every five years is important!

Michael,

It has been suggested to us that the best way to clean our lenses and accessories is as follows:

Isopropyl alcohol works—-but ONLY when used with a stiff brush, such as a bristle brush for fingernails.  Rubbing with a saturated cloth doesn’t do it.

I would try using the alcohol for the case as well-I contacted my repair facility and they didn’t have any other suggestions, I will also try and contact some foam companies that we deal with and if they have any additional recommendations, I will let you know.

Ordering foam can be done on our website-we do only carry a few sizes.

http://www.zerohalliburton.com/photography/foam-inserts.html

Please measure the case and if unable to find the size you can try a Company called Foam Plastics at www.caseclub.com.

Please note that foam should be changed every 5 years –please see information from our website:

 Foam Inserts (Camera Cases, Gun Cases, Cue Cases)

ZERO Halliburton uses the highest quality latex and petroleum-chemical based foam available, however, like any other foam product, the foam in ZERO Halliburton camera cases, gun cases, and pool cue cases is subject to degradation over time. If you notice any appearance of fine powder, loss of resiliency, noticeable color change or a consistency change such as a rubbery soft feel, it is time to obtain a replacement set of foam. As a maintenance procedure, we recommend that you replace the foam interior every five years. It is important to note that it is the sole responsibility of the case owner to regularly check for foam degradation and to replace the foam as necessary. ZERO Halliburton is not responsible for any damage sustained to the contents of the case due to foam degradation.

If you have any other questions, please let me know.

 Debbie Pawigon
Zero Halliburton
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