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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Kapellen, Antwerp, Belgium
    Posts
    345

    Cleaning a circular polarizer

    Okay, I just kinda totaly ruined a 2 months old Hama circular polarizer by cleaning it...
    This morning I decided to clean the circ pol because I noticed it looked like it had a layer of fine dust on it (almost like a haze).

    Cleaning the front was no problem, but once I started to clean the back I noticed that after a few wipes it had a lot of scratches. To make things worse, I decided to just run some water over it and I noticed some silver-like particles in the water.

    If I now look through the polarizer it only causes some discolorization (it looks a bit like a 6500k to 9300k conversion). My camera doesn't seem to have a problem with this (probably fixed by auto WB), but it kinda sucks that I totaly ruined €34.

    So, now my question is: how on earth do you clean a circular polarizer (and especialy the side that is facing the camera).

    Retired: Fuji A205S
    Current: Fuji F6500FD

    My album -> http://wutske.deviantart.com/
    My blog -> http://my.opera.com/wutske

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    4,428
    What material did you use to wipe off the water?
    I blow the dust off, breathe on it then wipe off with good quality microfiber cloth. The same for the lens.
    Nikon D90, D80
    Nikkor 16-85mm AF-S DX F/3.5-5.6G ED VR, Tamron SP AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) macro, Nikkor 50mm F/1.4D, Nikkor 50mm F/1.8D, Nikkor AF-S VR 70-300mm F/4.5-5.6G IF-ED, Sigma 105mm F/2.8 EX DG Macro ||| 2x SB800 | SB600 ||| Manfrotto 190XB

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Kapellen, Antwerp, Belgium
    Posts
    345
    I usualy also only use the moisture from my breath, but the haze on the front of the filter came of without any moisture so I didn't use any water at first.

    I used a soft hankerchief to clean the filter, I always use these and I've never had any problems with them before. I think the problem is that on the back of the filter there is a loosely binded coating which can be easily wiped of because there's no protective layer...

    Retired: Fuji A205S
    Current: Fuji F6500FD

    My album -> http://wutske.deviantart.com/
    My blog -> http://my.opera.com/wutske

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    4,428
    Soft hanky can be made of material of harsh fiber. A few loose dirt on the lens will cause damage. You should try microfibre cloth or if that's not available use pure cotton cloth.
    Nikon D90, D80
    Nikkor 16-85mm AF-S DX F/3.5-5.6G ED VR, Tamron SP AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) macro, Nikkor 50mm F/1.4D, Nikkor 50mm F/1.8D, Nikkor AF-S VR 70-300mm F/4.5-5.6G IF-ED, Sigma 105mm F/2.8 EX DG Macro ||| 2x SB800 | SB600 ||| Manfrotto 190XB

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Kapellen, Antwerp, Belgium
    Posts
    345
    It's possible, but so far I've never had any problems with the soft hankerchiefs I use.

    I just decided to give these cleaning tissues for glasses a go (since the filter was useless anyway) and it turned out that the filter wasn't useless at all . Since it was damaged anyway, I just removed the whole coating (which was scratched) on the back of the filter and now I can use it again .

    It was probably some anti-reflective coating, gonna have to test that one out on a sunny day ^^

    Retired: Fuji A205S
    Current: Fuji F6500FD

    My album -> http://wutske.deviantart.com/
    My blog -> http://my.opera.com/wutske

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Brisbane, CA
    Posts
    3,591
    If your cleaning cloth isn't clean then you can scratch your filter
    Lukas

    Camera: Anonymous
    I could tell you but I wouldn't want you to get all pissy if it's the wrong brand

    Flickr

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Kapellen, Antwerp, Belgium
    Posts
    345
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWengler View Post
    If your cleaning cloth isn't clean then you can scratch your filter
    It was definitly not caused by any dirt on the cleaning cloth. I'm now 100% sure that the coating wasn't made to be touched or cleaned (afterall it was the cheapest circular polarizer).

    Retired: Fuji A205S
    Current: Fuji F6500FD

    My album -> http://wutske.deviantart.com/
    My blog -> http://my.opera.com/wutske

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    1,087
    Quote Originally Posted by wutske View Post
    It was definitly not caused by any dirt on the cleaning cloth. I'm now 100% sure that the coating wasn't made to be touched or cleaned (afterall it was the cheapest circular polarizer).
    Lens paper or a lens pen

    Or, get a decent filter to start out with. There are a few (like Marumi) that are very good quality at a reasonable price.
    E-510
    E-1
    Zuiko 14-54 F2.8-3.5 MkI
    Zuiko 70-300 F4.0-5.6
    Konica Hexanon 52mm F1.8
    Cullmann 2503
    Benro KS-0

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    New Hampshire, USA
    Posts
    333
    Quote Originally Posted by jekostas View Post
    Lens paper or a lens pen

    Or, get a decent filter to start out with. There are a few (like Marumi) that are very good quality at a reasonable price.
    I second the Marumi recommendation. Good quality at a fair price.
    -Paul-
    Canon 7D - Canon 17-55 IS USM - Canon 70-200mm f/4 IS - Canon 50mm f/1.8 - Sigma 30mm f/1.4 - Sigma 10-20 f4-5.6 - Canon 430EX II Speedlite


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    270
    Quote Originally Posted by fdexclpl View Post
    I second the Marumi recommendation. Good quality at a fair price.
    Are the Marumi's really that good? I've seen little price difference from the B&W's. I have their ND filter and it is good, but I have nothing else to compare it to.

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