Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM: Rubber Deterioration

Owners of the Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM may be quite familiar with the rubber coating on the majority of the lens barrel towards the rear.

Over time, and particularly with heat, the rubber deteriorates and becomes unpleasantly sticky, reminiscent of melted electrical tape.

The rubber coating on mine is in a bad state of deterioration.

I raised a support case with Canon Australia, but that approach looks to be time-consuming, inconvenient and expensive, and involves shipping, which I would rather avoid.

The component of the lens containing the rubber coating is actually a relatively inexpensive housing, for which a replacement part exists, and which can easily be replaced by removing six screws.

If your lens is quite old like mine (manufactured in 2007; purchased in 2008), warranty considerations do not apply, so you may like to do it yourself.

In case anyone needs to replace the housing, the part number is CY3-2154-010, and it can be ordered from eBay.

The following video discusses the problem, and shows how the owner dealt with this issue.

The owner in this case decided to remove the rubber coating from his original housing, using an unspecified "little chemical solution".

This issue is well known on the Internet, but I thought I would post it here in case any 85/1.2L II owners encounter this and do not wish to ship a lens to Canon or pay more than the cost of the housing.

While a replacement lens housing has been ordered, I decided to remove the rubber coating from my lens's existing housing.

Here is how it looked before (after I had tried to wipe it, which made it worse than it was):

Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM - Rubber Deterioration

Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM - Rubber Deterioration

And here is how it looks now:

Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM - After Removal of Rubber Coating

Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM - After Removal of Rubber Coating

What a huge difference.

To remove the rubber coating, I used a combination of hot water, detergent, hand sanitiser, rectified spirit, white vinegar and methylated spirits, plus a lot of scrubbing.

It was worth the effort.

Published on Saturday, 21st November, 2020.


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