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rschrager

Removing scratches from a dome port

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Hi All,

This is my first post here. Sorry its coming in the form of a question. Lots of good info and have been enjoying the forum.

 

I have an 8" Aquatica dome port that has a few small scratches in the middle. Its fine underwater but noticeable on over unders. i bought the micromesh kit and my question is can i just polish out the small are that has the scratch or do I need to do the entire dome?

Thanks!

If you only polish one spot, you'll end up with a flat spot which will show as distortion in your pictures. Start with your bad spot and do an expanding circular pattern around it, staying even pressure on all sides. Check frequently until the main scratch is gone, then go to the finer polish.

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I want to throw a bit of a spanner into the discussion and see if anyone can help me. I, unfortunately, had an incident the other day where my zoom focus ring came off of my lense while I was diving. Typically I dive with my camera dome port facing down, so the zoom gear ending up lovingly nestled in my dome port where it has left a few minor, but very irritating scratches.

 

I have searched around but am unable to find any advice on the best way to remove these scratches. I have a full dome 'buffing' kit already so I just need the technique and I am at your mercy for help. I am using an 8" Sea & Sea acryllic dome if that helps any.

 

Patiently waiting a reply,

 

Victoria

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I would first shoot a few to see what shows up.

It may be inside the critical focus zone!

Some times you luck out!

:notworthy:

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If the scratches are on the inside of your dome, they are kind of hard to reach. All of the various methods work by grinding off minute amounts of the plastic, just with differing grits of either sandpaper (use wet sandpaper, like body shops use), polishing compounds of various forms (all the way from acylic "headlight restoration" kits to NOVUS polish). The main ingredient of the polishing is the elbow grease!!!

 

You can get "buffing" pads that fit on the end of a power drill. Buy a bit extension, and you should be in business. In polishing, you have to be careful not to wear a flat spot on the area you are polishing, and that is more difficult on a concave suface, as they don't make a convex polishing head (at least that I've seen). If you use a smaller head on the polishing bonnet, that should help matters.

 

As mentioned by a great many posters, you just have to be patient with the process, and work the area a little at a time.

 

Hope this helps.

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Cheers for the heads up Bob. I've been looking for a way to fix the scratches in my ikelite housing for a while now.

K

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Anyone notice the polishing process impacting water tension across the dome and ease of over/unders?

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I cannot thank you guys enough for this thread!

New member here but for some reason I could not post a new topic in the member Introductions thread.

 

I scratched my dome port up getting slammed in to a shallow sand-bank shooting some surfing recently and was really stressed about the cost of getting it replaced, plus shipping to deepest darkest Africa which always nails us on top of a difficult exchange rate. After reading this and ordering the micro-mesh kit I made the call to try what I could whilst waiting for shipment/delivery.

 

I got lucky and tried a 4-step emery board which was a nylon mesh/material and not sandpaper and it buffed my port out enough so the scratches are still slightly visible, but not coming out in my photos. Result!

I will try post some photos soon. I will also give the port a proper going over once the micro-mesh kit arrives.

 

I really just wanted to stop by and thank you guys for the input which saved me literally hundreds of $s

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Just finished mine couple day ago. Took me almost four hours but that was only because I really wanted to have it crystal clear and had to repeat few steps back again. Here are some tips for everyone who wants to try it:

 

- get Micro-Mesh NC-78-1 (Europeans can use this shop: http://www.sylmasta.com/acatalog/Micro-Mesh-Micro-Mesh-NC-78-1-Kit---Plastic-Wood---Paint-531.html#SID=372#SID=372

- take your time, be prepared for repeating the whole process if something goes wrong

- use some lamp to look through the port so you can see all the scratches

- put few towels on the table you will work on

- use air blower if you have any so you can clean in from the dust when needed

- start brushing it WET in straight lines (this is very important!)

- once you have have it brushed all over, rotate 90º and start with next sand paper in straight lines again

- now you can clearly see if you covered all the lines from the brushing from the step before (remeber, if you not brush it COMPLETELY you will NOT be able to clear the older deeper lines anymore). Use the light to look through the port, especialy in the edges!

- go step by step to finish it with the finest 12000 paper

- if you did everything right you should be able to do final polishing with Micro-Gloss Liquid Abrasive and the port should look like new

- at the end use the Anti-Static Cream to clean the port

- for cleaning the port use ONLY Flannel Cloths which are included with this kit

 

This is the knowledge I have from polishing my port, will be happy if this will help to anyone else ;)

 

 

916519_1015310108510484_262368047_n.jpg
Edited by sch

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I went to a local acrylic shop, TAP Plastics, and they recommended the following product and it worked great on my Aquatica 8" dome

 

Novus Plastic Polish No. 2

A liquid that took about 5-10mins of polishing to take out some good size scratches (not super deep)

 

Novus Plastic Polish No. 1

Nice finishing product looked like new.

I have both the Novus Nos. 2 and 3 and have had pretty good luck removing scratches.

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I also had good results using Micromesh on my acrylic dome Port, now after a few years of diving its time to give it another clean up

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I have just put a nasty scratch right in the middle of my Weefine WFL-02 fisheye lens and unfotunately this shows in the photos. What makes this even more upsetting is that it was on the 1st dive with the lense.

 

"The lens is constructed from 4 high-quality low dispersion optical glasses and a hard-coated polycarbonate dome to correct unwanted aberration. All the glass lenses have been coated with (BBAR) broadband anti-reflection coating."

 

Can this be polished out or have I made a very expensive mistake?

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I do not know the lens, so I might be guessing...

 

The glass part, definitely cannot be recovered.

 

On the description of the lens that you made, it seems that the lens might have an acrylic element to correct aberrations from the glass lens. If this is the external part of the lens, theoretically you can polish it, but being an element of correction, the correction will be altered, and the final result won’t be so good as the lens was in new.

 

If it is too bad or if the loss is minimal, I do not know....

 

But if the lens "as is" is not usable, maybe you do not have too much to lose to try to polish it....

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I would contact Weefine support - they may be able to sell you a replacement front element for significantly less than the entire lens assembly.

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Thanks for the info guys, I have been in contact with my retailer and he informs me having spoken to Weefine that the dome has to be replaced by the manufacturer as its a sealed unit and has to be done in a 'clean' environment, I believe its gas filled. The dome is too hard to be polished. From UK back to China (im assuming) 3 week turnaround and £125 bill which I believe £60 of is carriage. I suppose it could have been worse, it could have been a total loss.

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This is the sort of thread I was hoping I would find here.

The acrylic dome port that came with my secondhand aquatech housing had a few deep scratches. Going off the recommendation of the people at aquatech I got the novus kit. it worked ok but I cant get it up to a perfect clear finish and it looks like it has thousands of tiny scratches in the acrylic. Ive spent hours trying to gently polish them out but its not working, somehow theres more scratches on the inside of the dome than out so Im thinking the micro mesh is the way to go here....

Has anyone else had this issue with the novus system Or am I doing something wrong?

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This is the sort of thread I was hoping I would find here.

The acrylic dome port that came with my secondhand aquatech housing had a few deep scratches. Going off the recommendation of the people at aquatech I got the novus kit. it worked ok but I cant get it up to a perfect clear finish and it looks like it has thousands of tiny scratches in the acrylic. Ive spent hours trying to gently polish them out but its not working, somehow theres more scratches on the inside of the dome than out so Im thinking the micro mesh is the way to go here....

Has anyone else had this issue with the novus system Or am I doing something wrong?

 

I have the same issue as Luke. I used the Novus polishing kit to remove some scratches from my knekt dome for my go pro. It did an okay job removing most of the large scratches but left a ton of smaller scratches that are visible when looking into direct light. Is there any way to fix this other buying the micro mesh kit? Has anyone had great successes using the Novus kit?

 

Any insight would be very much appreciated.

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This is the sort of thread I was hoping I would find here.

The acrylic dome port that came with my secondhand aquatech housing had a few deep scratches. Going off the recommendation of the people at aquatech I got the novus kit. it worked ok but I cant get it up to a perfect clear finish and it looks like it has thousands of tiny scratches in the acrylic. Ive spent hours trying to gently polish them out but its not working, somehow theres more scratches on the inside of the dome than out so Im thinking the micro mesh is the way to go here....

Has anyone else had this issue with the novus system Or am I doing something wrong?

Hi Luke,

The Novus product is made for flat sheets of acrylic or plexiglass... like that used in picture frames. So while it does an excellent job removing superficial scratches from these sheets it's not designed to remove the microfine scratches you're seeing on an optical port.

First, make sure you're using a soft flannel cloth and nothing else for the final polishing step. Next, go to this website: http://micro-surface.com/index.php/products-by-type/micro-finish.htmland go to the left side of the page and click on: Products by Type. That will take you to: Micro Gloss #5. This will remove 9 micron scratches. Next use their Micro Gloss Liquid Abrasive, Type 1 Cleaner and Polish, again with a soft flannel cloth (also sold here under Products by Type/Flannel Cloth). This will clean 1 micron scratches. Finally, use their Micro Surface/Micro Finish Polish to complete the job. The 2 oz bottles plus the flannel cloths will run you under $26 plus postage and these will restore your dome to it's original finish.

I tried the Novus products, which I've used for years to polish sheets of acrylic glazing for picture frames, and it left a haze with fine scratches that could be seen in a directional light. I also mistakenly used a micro fiber cloth, which I was later told to never use for applying the aforementioned polishing compounds by a Tech Rep at Micro-Surface Finishing Products.

You can be penny wise and pound foolish by trying to do this on the cheap... but if you want the best results I'd suggest the products mentioned above. I made the usual mistakes before finding this company online and I'm stoked that I did.

Lawrence

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I recently had to polish out a fairly good scrape. I tried Novus liquid first but it was too deep so i ordered this sand paper kit from Amazon and went through the whole stack. Finished it off with Novus #2 and it came out great...

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M6A7D9A/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Edited by reefsafe

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Great info here. I didn't see it in the thread, but I have a Nauticam 8.5 inch acrylic dome. It looks like the flanges are removable before polishing, but before trying that, I thought I would check to make sure they actually are before I ruin the water integrity of the my dome.. :)

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Great info here. I didn't see it in the thread, but I have a Nauticam 8.5 inch acrylic dome. It looks like the flanges are removable before polishing, but before trying that, I thought I would check to make sure they actually are before I ruin the water integrity of the my dome.. :)

Could you get the shade of?

 

Also, if the scratches are not too deep, just many small ones, would you guys skip a few of the micro-mesh pads going straight to a higher number?

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I would just go ahead and run through the whole stack. It may not be required to spend as much time on the roughest levels, but it won't hurt to start there.

 

I usually sit down in front of a movie for 2hours with a towel on my lap, bowl of water to wet and rinse the paper, and the dome. Use the Novus at the end to finish up.

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Thanks for the info guys - been searching back and forth online for weeks re minor scratched. Should have tried here first

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Hi everyone,

I will share my recent experience with scratch removal, as it my help someone. I got tons of good ideas from this thread (thank you for this!).

So two months ago I had a flood in my Salted Line A6xxx housing, while diving at 40m deep. How it happened it's a story for another topic... but the important is that I got a very nasty scratch on my 6'' acrylic dry dome port. It was deep enough that you could feel the level difference clearly with your nail.

I wasn't very eager to try removing it, as I had had bad experiences with other plastic domes before. A colleague recommended me the Novus kit and luckily I found it in stock on a store nearby. I applied it after reading/watching thousands of reviews. And it worked. Not perfectly...but enough to don't throw the dome in the trash can. It was possible to remove the heavy scratch almost 100%. I only see it now because I know where it was and how it looked like but the thing is: in the process of removing the heavy scratch you create a ton of lighter scratches. The solution number 2 is good to get rid of the heavy marks of the solution 3, but it leaves a lot of fine, smaller marks. The solution 1 has no abrasive at all... and that's where there is a problem. You don't have anything to remove the fine scratching. In this moment I resorted to tooth paste to do the finishing. It worked better than I expected.

It is far from been as clear as new, but the heavy scratch is gone and I honestly can't see much effect of the fine scratches in my photos. I suppose part of them fill with water and become harmless.

I would like to try the mesh kit on a next occasion... but actually, I wish I never had to remove scratches of a dome port again!

 

 

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