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Glass Dome Port Repair


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#1 jimirak

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Posted 14 August 2013 - 09:38 PM

I have an Aquatica 4 inch mini-dome and I recently slipped in a stream and put a small "smudge" on the dome. It probably hit a smooth rock. The smudge is about 1/8 inch long and a little less than that wide. If I rub my finger over the dome I can feel some roughness in that region.

 

For so long I heard that glass dome defects like this cannot be buffed out, but I have nothing to lose by trying something because the only alternative is springing for a new dome.

 

I was hoping there was a way to buff out the opaqueness of this little area which lights up when my strobes fire.

 

Does anyone have any ideas on this?

 

Jimirak



#2 Paul Kay

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 03:22 AM

Glass usually require special polishing and the problem is that grinding the damage away effectively can lead to heat build up which can shatter the glass - I know! But it is as you say, worth a try - find a glass repair specialist if you can.

 

Why not ask the Aquatica about it? It may still be cheaper to have a new glass dome fitted than repace the whole port.


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#3 tdpriest

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Posted 19 August 2013 - 02:38 AM

Glass usually require special polishing and the problem is that grinding the damage away effectively can lead to heat build up which can shatter the glass - I know! 

 

Me, too...



I have an Aquatica 4 inch mini-dome and I recently slipped in a stream and put a small "smudge" on the dome. It probably hit a smooth rock. The smudge is about 1/8 inch long and a little less than that wide. If I rub my finger over the dome I can feel some roughness in that region.

 

 

Does it appear underwater? Small abrasions are often invisible once underwater, and don't affect the image: are your strobes pulled back behind the dome? I'm a little surprised that they light up the abrasion, unless it's a really bad one.


Edited by tdpriest, 19 August 2013 - 02:40 AM.


#4 bvanant

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 07:56 AM

There are a large number of companies that can easily polish out scratches in dome ports, but if the dome port is optically coated (don't know about Aquatica, Jean can probably answer) then polishing might make it worse.  If you do polish it by hand (there are many kits out there), fill the dome with cold water while you polish it or have a way to keep it from heating, otherwise you will find out what Tim did and have lots of glass pieces on your bench.

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#5 Photec

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 09:20 PM

Try cerium oxide on a felt buffing pad with a dremel or low speed drill with frequent breaks to let the glass cool. It is a slow process but will remove scratches from a glass dome. The wall thickness of the glass is of course reduced locally at the scratch location when you finish, but any distortions will not show underwater.

Mark



#6 jimirak

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Posted 13 April 2014 - 09:06 PM

Thanks to each of you for your suggestions. Sorry I am late with this reply.

 

I was able to remove the little "mark" on the Aquatica mini dome port by just using Novus plastic polish. The first thing I did was to mask around the affected area using masking tape. Then with a soft cloth and the intermediate Novus polish (red lettering on the bottle) I rubbed vigorously. Two fine scratches disappeared immediately and then the "mark" later disappeared as well. I finished up with the fine polish (green lettering bottle). So we know that this Aquatica dome is not coated on the outside.

 

Recently in Palau, a friend put a ding in his aquatica mini dome port as well. It took more rubbing, we did not mask, but eventually we did get the deeper ding to be almost gone. He was shooting only video and checked it out and it did not show up in the videos. I think with a little more work I could have got the ding to be completely gone.

 

So there is hope for glass dome dings if the ding is not too bad.

 

Jimirak