Glass Polishing for Special Lenses




Introduction: Glass Polishing for Special Lenses

About: Born in 1965, engineer. Living in Hungary. Spoken languages: hungarian, romanian, english, german. interested in repairing Canon Lens and DSLR, photography, machining (turning, milling)

Polishing a lens is not easy, but not impossible.

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Polishing Glass: Cerium-oxide

If you have on optical surface, the best solution to polish it is to use a mixture of water andcerium oxide (prepared special for this purpose). Or, you can purchase for example the 3M 60150 material. This is a water based suspention, which you have to use with a clean smooth tool, made for example of wool. OK, this works for plain or uniform surfaces - but what to do, when you have a special shaped lens, which, to make it even more interesting, is made of plastic and not of glass. This is a problem, because if you use a formless piece of wool, you can definitely modify the lenses shape.

So we need a perfect negative of the final lens. The problem is more complicated, when the lens is non-spherical like in my case....

During the polishing you need to work with a concentric and radial movement - so I decided to make the negative form on a small grinding tool, which can be fixed in the power tools used by modelling.

Step 2: Making a PERFECT Negative

I used a 2 component glue named Poxipol, made in Uruguay (!!!). To protect the lens, I covered it with a piece od nylon bag. Pulling it with a certain force covers perfect the lens, and gives a very thin separating layer.

I applied the glue on the surface of the nylon cover, and I positioned the grinding stone perfectly vertical.

After 10 minutes (Poxipol is a wonder...) I just separated the hardened glue - and i have got the negative.

Step 3: Mounting of the Smooth Layer

As a smooth material I used an optical tissue, fixed on it just with some tape. And after 15 minutes of polishing in a plastic box I was like a white pig - but the lens has got back it's original form and shiny surface.

(Just to understand why did I have to do this: unfortunately I whiped this lens whith some methanol during cleaning. It was a fault: the lens has been damaged immediately.)

Build a Tool Contest 2017

Participated in the
Build a Tool Contest 2017

Glass Challenge 2017

Participated in the
Glass Challenge 2017

Be the First to Share


    • Backyard Contest

      Backyard Contest
    • Silly Hats Speed Challenge

      Silly Hats Speed Challenge
    • Finish It Already Speed Challenge

      Finish It Already Speed Challenge

    3 Discussions

    thanks for sharing! How did you position the grinding stone to be perfectly vertical while the glue sets up?


    Reply 3 years ago

    there is no need of that. just positioned visually.

    if should be more precise, I would use the drilling machine in a stand.


    3 years ago

    just wonderful!

    Thank you for sharing this!!!