New Focusing Screen?


TPF Noob!
Jun 15, 2013
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So recently, amateur of me, I was cleaning my focusing screens on my Nikon D5100 and 7000 and I somehow made the dust problem worse and now the screens are covering in plenty of dust spots, and no matter how much I clean it they still are there. I even tried removing the focusing screen and carefully cleaning it but now there dirt on the mirror and I see what looks like a scratch but I cannot tell if its on the Focusing screen or the mirror behind it, looking through the viewfinder.

Im taking my camera to the repair shop soon to get it cleaned. Im hoping if the thing I see is scratch its on the focusing screen because those arent extremely costly to replace. From the description I gave, does it sound like a scatch on the mirror or the focusing screen? Is there anything I can do to prevent dust from getting in my viewfinder again and proper ways of cleaning the focusing screen? I feel so idiotic for doing this, to BOTH of my cameras. Lesson learned :thumbdown:
well one really easy way to check would be to take a bit of computer paper, and hold it right above the mirror with the lens removed, then look through the viewfinder. If you see a scratch, it's on the viewfinder.

Neither would be in your photos, though, so unless it's the biggest most horribly annoying scratch ever, is it really a huge deal?
Well, being a perfectionist it is, but over time I won't notice it as much anymore and it won't be such a big deal anymore.
I used a microfiber cloth that was brand new so there wasn't any previous dirt on it.

The scratch I see is only on the focusing screen, thus it needing to be replaced. Otherwise, all the dirt is on the viewfinder on my D5100 and needs cleaning. The focusing screen on my other camera might need replacing too, since its covered in black dots around the edges.
Don't touch any of the camera internals unless you really have to. Even with a microfiber cloth. Holding the camera so the lens mount is facing downwards and then using the blower straight up in the camera should be enough to dislodge any dirt and make it fall out. If you use the cloth when you don't need to and you haven't used the blower already then dirt and dust may scratch the glass. The same goes for lenses.
Many microfiber cloths are not lint free.

I cannot recommend using a cloth inside the camera. A hand blower and/or a natural bristle bush are better choices.

It sounds like you may have unnecessarily caused yourself problems by using the wrong tool(s).
I use only this kit for all my internal DSLR cleaning needs, and it works perfectly for me: Visible Dust Arctic Butterfly 724 Sensor Clean Kit,1.0x 4051342-1 The brush works really great, and so does the included lighted loupe. You can honestly see every little speck on the sensor with it.

Actually, I also use Kimtech wipes to extend the life of the swabs to get the tough stuff that won't come up with just the brush. I carefully fold and wrap one onto a used swab so that it mimics the original shape, and use it like a new swab, then throw away the Kim Wipe. Works great for me.

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