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Do-it-yourself repair of bent filter ring?

R Jackson , Sep 12, 2004; 12:41 a.m.

Anyone know how to repair a bent filter ring at home without expensive equipment? I, obviously, would like to preserve the threads if at all possible. Lens is a 20mm Nikkor.



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Bob Bell , Sep 12, 2004; 01:12 a.m.

Obviously you cant buy taps that big but I was thinking you could take a cheap filter in a steel frame, take out the glass, cut the filter ring so it is about the same size of the dent and take a pair of pliers and see if you can slowly move it back into shape with the filter piece protecting the threads from the pliers. By keeping something threaded on, i dont think you would ruin the threads and still be able to put a decent amount of pressure on it. If you could warm up the metal a bit you will have better luck but you dont want it to get hot or burn the paint off.

Mike Elek , Sep 12, 2004; 01:53 a.m.

One way is to get a scrap piece of oak or a hard wood about 2" inch thick. You might even be able to get something from Home Depot or Lowes for a couple of dollars.

Get a hole saw and make a hole that's rougly the same diameter as the lens.

Cut that piece of wood in half, so you have two pieces with half-moon cutouts. Now, get a small piece of wood: 6 inches long, 1/2 inch wide and 1/4 inch thick. Round off one end.

Put the lens filter ring into the cutoff and lightly (and I mean lightly) tap it back into shape. Just do a little at a time. it will never be perfect, but you should be able to get it very close.

Micro-tools.com sells material for doing this, but you can just as easily make your own, if you can handle power tools.

Colin Carron , Sep 12, 2004; 07:42 a.m.

If the dent is not too extensive and the above ideas don't work you could cut out the damaged part.

R Jackson , Sep 12, 2004; 09:26 a.m.

Thanks. Some good ideas. I'll post how things work out.

Donnie Strickland , Sep 12, 2004; 09:43 a.m.

Also you could try this, if the ring isn't dented too badly: wrap the jaws of a pair of needle-nose pliers in electrician's tape -- down at the tips of the jaws. Then, starting at the edge of the dent, slowly bend the filter ring back into shape. (It helps to have a junk lens to practice on.) Work slowly, a little at a time, until you can screw the filter on. As mentioned previously it doesn't have to be absolutely perfect to get the filter on (and when you get it on, leave it on! :)

Frank Uhlig , Sep 12, 2004; 10:59 a.m.

I am confused: is one of your filters bent? or the front of a lens intended to take a screw-in filter ???

Winfried Buechsenschuetz , Sep 12, 2004; 01:05 p.m.

There is an excellent article about repairing filter rings on


repair article section

However, when rebending a filter ring in most cases the thread itself will be damaged. Some machinists have a tool called thread chaser to re-work damaged threads, it is basically a blade with teeth with the same pitch as the filter thread (usually 0.75mm) which is driven along the more or less damaged thread and will scrape it to the correct shape. I have access to such a tool but have not found a supplier yet.

David Calleri , Sep 12, 2004; 01:37 p.m.

I have one of those micro-tools wooden devices; the one with several sizes of cut-outs and it works great. Does not damage the threads or the lens.

R Jackson , Sep 12, 2004; 02:08 p.m.

Thanks again for all of the tips. Frank-- the front of the lens where the filter is screwed on is referred to as the "filter ring".

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