Stuck Polarizer on a UV Filter

Yesterday on my Nikon 24-70 lens I decided I was going to be lazy.  I already had a Hoya UV filter on it for general protection.  I know this is somewhat a religious topic, but I don’t use a lens cap – like never ever, not even in a bag, not even in storage, not even on a train or even on a plane, I do not like them, Sam-I-Am.  So for me a protective filter is important, it takes the stress out of life.  You’ll never see me futzing with a lens cap because they are stored away and not even in my camera bag.

UV and Polarizing 77mmm Hoya Filter (D90 1/200 f2.8 ISO 200 50mm dual SB600 flash 24-70 lens)
UV and Polarizing 77mmm Hoya Filter (D90 1/200 f2.8 ISO 200 50mm dual SB600 flash 24-70 lens)

Anyhow, I have my 24-70 FX lens mounted on my Nikon D90 DX body.  It’s an FX lens on a DX body.  I know for certain I won’t have any vignetting, so I take the lazy road and screw my Hoya polarizer on my UV filter thats already mounted to the lens.  What a bad idea.  The photos…. Well I haven’t reviewed those yet to see if there was any impact by doubling up, but thats irrelevant because I won’t do that again.

When I went to take the polarizer off the UV filter, both came off together. I swear I didn’t screw it on that hard, but the two were stuck together.  It didn’t help that I was adjusting the polarizer while they were mounted together.  They were not cross threaded, just so tight I took skin off my fingers trying to unscrew them.  It also didn’t help that the knurls on the polarizer are designed to rotate freely making grabbing the polarizer very difficult.

I tried my rubber pipe wrench (yes very carefully) on the UV filter side and still couldn’t get it to budge.  So I stuck the two in the freezer for a few minutes.  Nope, not budging.  I then tried the reverse and stuck them in the sun for a few minutes.  About 10 minutes into the whole process I was seriously thinking I might actually have to take them somewhere to have someone else undo them.  Fortunately the heat did the trick and I eventually got them apart.

Moral:  Don’t stick your polarizer on your UV filter.  If it doesn’t stick now, I bet it will at some point in the future when you really don’t want it to happen.  I’ve noticed filters sticking to my lens in winter.  My theory is the lens mount has enough mass difference from the filter mount that they two change sizes just enough to make life miserable.  Especially if you put the filter on in one temperature and try to take it off in another.


One thought on “Stuck Polarizer on a UV Filter

  • October 23, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    I was just successful using that rubber strap tool sold at Home Depot to loosen pipes under the sink.
    Once that gripped the smooth side of the cpl, the rest was easy 🙂


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