Bank Shot

As I was spinning, I saw a nice bright flash from my camera. Even though I couldn't be sure where it hit exactly, I was pretty sure it hit the lens. When I took a look, sure enough, there was a chip in it (well, what I thought was a chip at the time anyway.) When I was able to pull this shot up on a large screen it was pretty obvious where it was hit (check out the faint blurry, angled streak near the top right.)


I cleaned the lens and could feel texture from the spot so I was pretty sure it had gotten pockmarked, but when I took a macro shot I could see the texture was outward instead of inward. It wasn't a chip. It was molten steel that hardened and stuck when it hit the glass. So now I'm working on finding out how to best remove it with minimal damage to the glass... Suggestions?

  • Jon Beard 3y

    Spec of melted steel:
    Good news! (kind of...) by jon_beard
  • Otd 7 // Photography 3y

    Magic !!
  • Edward McNally 3y

    Try a strong magnet.
  • Guthrie Straw 3y

    I know it's too late for this one, but I really love the insurance that a good quality filter can bring to your lens. If you find yourself able to use this lens in the future, you might want to look into it.

    Seconded on the strong magnet, try to keep it away from the logic/focus motor circuit on the back end of the lens.
  • gtridr2012 3y

    Am i the only one tempted to dub this shot worth it?
  • Jon Beard 3y

    Guthrie Straw The 14-24mm does not accept filters.
  • Todd Shoemake 3y

    great image, despite the glass damage.
  • Terry Aldhizer 3y

    Awesome shot! Really like I can see person making sparks and they appear as if standing in water? Super cool! Hope you can get that stuff off your lens. Even if you can't get metal off or it takes some of the coating with it hopefully not too costly just to get glass on lens replaced.
  • Jon Beard 3y

    Terry Aldhizer Yep. That's me out in the Roanoke River. ;)

    Numbers I'm seeing for the cost of a front element replacement for that lens is somewhere between $400 - $700.
  • Justin Allen 3y

    this weekend i myself had a photo property boo boo, while being me and being stupid i took my camera out on the town and decided to bring it clubbing where i got intoxicated and dropped my camera as i picked it up the glass was shattered. luckily tho it was only a UV filter that i purchased for around 15 dollars.
  • w.kondziella 3y

    Have you done some test shots with the speck on the front element? Usually the front element can be quite severly scratched before the image quality degrades to a noticeable extent. I'd suggest you to have a try and see if the damage really has that much effect on the image quality.
  • Charlie Hastings 3y

    My guess is that even if you find a way to remove the piece of metal, it will still have etched a mark on the glass itself. Sorry!
    Thanks for the caution though. I will be putting a protective filter on all of my lenses from now on.
  • nanhi48 3y

    Jon Beard
    1) Hello Jon, please do not worry. Just change the front element yourself. Pretty easy DIY project.
    Of course you will need to order the front glass element from Nikon.
    2) Or you could try sending the glass to Ukraine or India for polishing and coating. The ones in the US, UK and Australia are damn too expensive.
    3) Continue using the lens as it is. You will be surprised at the photos - as if nothing had happened - almost. There is an article with photos on the net, where a guy shattered the front element in 5 or 6 pieces, yet it produced good photos. Bipin -
  • touristguy87 3y

    "So now I'm working on finding out how to best remove it with minimal damage to the glass... Suggestions?"

    trade for a good used lens on eBay?

    sell it as "heavily used but still functional" on Amazon?
  • Keenan Adams 3y

    Jon Beard You can get a rear filter
  • Shaun Murphree 2y

    Id assume you got rid of the piece of metal by now, but from a chemistry stand point of not actually physically removing and risk scratching it would be to dissolve it with an acid (i know sounds scary lol) Due to the temperature the steel landing on the optics, I doubt theres any coatings on the lens where it is anymore. I would, build a clay "dam" around the steel trying to get it as close as possible. Then use some muriatic acid (hydrochloric acid) and fill it in a needle and carefully deposit the acid in the dam you made around the steel. It'll dissolve all the metal thats there and not harm the glass as glass is an inert substance to acids (...just avoid the plastic as it would discolor it and the rest of the lens coatings). There will be an ionic exchange occurring with the metal and acid as it slowly dissolves.
  • Jon Beard 2y

    Shaun Murphree I decided to leave it. There's no effect on image quality and it's a pretty nice battle scar. ;) Interesting info though!
18 faves
Taken on February 10, 2012
  • 14.0-24.0 mm f/2.8
  • ƒ/6.3
  • 14.0 mm
  • 30
  • 320
  • Flash (off, did not fire)
  • Show EXIF
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