Firstly let me just say that this is a good news post and one that I hope will help resolve any issues with other worried Nikon D7000 owners on our forum and point them in the right direction.
I recently received a Nikon D7000 housing and had mounted a Tokina 11-16mm straight on to it. I proceeded to take photographs from people to wildlife and scenery. About 5 weeks later and 300 actuations I noticed some artefacts in my photographs that weren’t there the day before. I took a test picture of a white piece of paper and the way that I did that was to switch my lens to manual stepped it down to f22 and snapped off a shot. This clearly showed the artefacts. I started to research where to get a sensor clean and came across a few posts detailing a problem with the new Nikon D7000 and oil on the sensor. After more research there seemed to be a lot of speculation on what this substance was and what the cause was related to. People were reporting that they contacted Nikon who denied there was a problem and even going so far as to say that they don’t use oil of any kind. I sought advice from other people who's opinion varied from cleaning it myself to taking it back and getting a new body. In the end I decided to go to Nikon Australia and try to have my issue resolved personally. Besides it was brand new with 300 actuations and covered by Nikon Australia Warranty. So off I went.
This morning I drove to Nikon Australia Unit F1, Lidcombe Business Park, 3-29 Birnie Avenue Lidcombe NSW 2141 there I was met by Robert Lindsay Assistant National Manager, Nikon Professional Services. I proceeded to pull out my Nikon D7000 camera and my Ipad2 with the photographic proof of my sensor bunnies. I introduced myself and started to detail my experience from being given a D7000 body as a present and not having a receipt, finding artefacts in my photographs after only 300 actuations and my research indicating that there may be a similar problem with other D7000 owners. Whilst I was doing this Robert was smiling and didn’t interrupt me at all he was nodding his head and as I took a breath he said, "I know exactly what the problems is". Just like that and I asked him to explain it to me. He stated and I quote, "It is an excessive application of lubricant." I asked him if it was a new lubricant that was less viscous and slightly runnier and he nodded. He went on to tell me that it wasn’t a batch problem but he has heard of several cases and they all related to too much lubricant on the parts in the actuation assembly.
Robert told me that there were a number of things that they could do to rectify it the first being to clean the sensor which he stated wasn’t what he really liked to do. The second was to replace the body, again which was something that he didn’t really like doing as who was to say that it would happen again. The third solution was to have a technician strip the assembly clean it and lubricate it with the correct amount.
I asked him "what if" my problem comes back after your service. He told me that they would fix it for me "if" the problem was to reoccur. Robert took my camera and assured me actually he promised me that it would be ready for pick Thursday morning prior to my flight to Maroochydore where I was spending a week with my mum and her new Nikon D90 out taking pictures. Oh and watching an occasional movie with my dad haha. He also said that if I hadn’t heard from them by midday on Wednesday to call him.
I shook Roberts hand and thanked him for his excellent service and was glad that I had taken the time to visit Nikon and resolve the issue myself. At this stage my D7000 body is in the hands of a technician being cared for and made better again. If I have a follow up problem I am confident after speaking to Robert that Nikon will resolve the situation to my satisfaction.
If any other fellow forum users and Nikon D7000 owners have a similar problem I highly recommend that you go and see your local Nikon Service Centre or call them to explain the situation and I’m sure they will assist you in fixing the problem.
Ps: Rick, I created a new thread so that if any of our fellow forum members and D7000 owners had a similar problem they could search our forums and find this topic addressing the problem. Is that ok?