A protective plastic coating protects a variety of our flat optics, such as optical windows, optical mirrors, and beamsplitters, from scratches during shipping. It can be easily removed prior to use with the quick methods shown in this two minute video. Patrick McKenna, R&D Engineer, demonstrates how to safely and effectively remove the protective plastic coating from a standard N-BK7 window using two methods: Scotch® tape and bamboo tweezers.
Many of our optics, mainly our windows and mirrors, ship with a protective plastic coating adhered to the front and back surfaces. This coating is used to protect the surfaces from scratches during packing and shipping. This video highlights how to identify and safely remove protective plastic coatings in preparation for using an optic in one's application. In front of me is a square N-BK7 window to use as an example. If the window has a protective plastic coating, you will notice that the edges are clear and that the surfaces have a blue tint, almost like a blue filter. First, I'll show you how to use Scotch Tape to remove the protective plastic coating from one surface of this window. Peel off a decent size piece of Scotch Tape, a few inches in length, in order to be able to securely attach it to the protective plastic coating and maintain a firm grip. Adhere the Scotch Tape to one corner and gently pull backwards. If you are having some difficulty, you can even try to lightly place your fingernail underneath one of the corners where the plastic coating is adhered in order to loosen the edges. Second, I will show you how to use bamboo tweezers to remove the protective plastic coating from the other surface of this window. Try to get a firm grip on one end of the plastic with the tweezers, then slowly pull backwards until all plastic is removed. Now you can see a clear, scratch-free surface.