Tag Archives: diy

How to make a CD lens cleaner for your DVD/CD Player

This post will show you how  to make a CD lens cleaner for your CD Player, or dvd player.

My in-dash car cd player has been having a really difficult time reading CD’s lately. I figured it was all the dust accumulating on the lens, as the playing is intermittent and random.  I looked on ebay and in stores for a solution to clean the laser lens, but found they cost a lot of money for just an audio CD with a little brush glued onto it. Therefore, I decided to make my own for free. This is how I made my own lens cleaner for a cd player (in my case, a car in-dash cd player). This however, should work for any type of player such as Blu-Ray, DVD, HD-DVD, CD, whether be it a computer or standalone player.

I think this hack is probably the simplest solution I have done to date, as you only need three items:

1. Any crappy Audio CD (burned or whatever).

2. Super glue (A glue stick might work, but I was hesitant to use one as the material might not hold as well and fall off into the player).

3. Cotton ball, Felt material, or in my case, PEC pads (used for cleaning sensitive electronics like a digital camera CMOS sensor). If you are using a cotton ball, just glue the ball onto the CD, then pull and leave some cotton adhered to the CD (it should work the same).


First, cut a thin strip of the material you plan on using on the CD. I made mine about 2/8″ wide, and cut to the length of the CD.


Just draw a thin line of super glue on the CD. Next, Glue the strip onto the CD and cut off the excess. It should look like this.

Glued on strip of material

Glued on strip of material

Here is a closeup view of the material on the CD. I checked the clearance of the CD Laser assmembly to the CD to be around 1/8″ (the distance of the gap between the laser element and CD). So I left roughly that amount of material hanging off the CD.

Fold and bend the material to stick up about 1/8" high

Fold and bend the material to stick up about 1/8″ high

I stuck the CD into my cars in-dash CD player and heard the disc spinning for a few seconds, then the player ejected it. I repeated this a few times and then tried an audio CD. Played right up! Simple, cheap, and effective…just not as elegant and pretty as the ones sold in stores.

**Update**  – After two days of using my cars cd player. I can honestly say that this cd lens cleaner works like a charm. My player used to error out when I would start the car after ending work, and I would need to pop the cd back into the player several times before the cd player would read the disc. Now the player reads the disc from the point where I turned off the car.

Do this at your own risk. I assume no liability for any damages done to your equipment.

Post to Twitter

How to refinish marble floor tiles and make your wife think youre hot stuff

When renovating the house we purchased in 2008, we installed the marble floor tiles ourselves…This was a mistake, or rather, we made a lot of mistakes. We used 1/4″ grout spacers, used grey thinset for very light colored marble tiles (the grey thinset will show up in your grout lines), and used sanded grout (because of the 1/4″ grout spacing). After everything, all the work which was needed to scrape away the grey thinset outlining the tiles, the scratches which were produced from the sanded grout, and the lack of cleaning up the grout residue from the marble in a quick fashion left our tiles in bad shape. Really bad shape. They were now dull, had scratches, and did not reflect the finely honed polish which they were supposed to have.

Having them professionally refinished was not an option for me as im terribly cheap and did not want to concede to being defeated by lowly floor tile, so I embarked on what ended up to be one of the coolest lessons learned since starting work on the house…How to refinish marble floors for less than $100 and make them look as good as new.

So heres how you do it:

What youll need

1. Get a liter of Dia-Glo Diamond Buffing Compound for Marble (available online or any professional flooring shop). I used the “M” variant for marble ($30). I got mine from keystone tools in San Francisco (http://keystonetools.com/)

2. Get a variable speed angle grinder which uses 5/8 attachments (or if you want to do this all within 2 hours, rent a floor buffing machine from home depot pro). I had one laying around in my garage, but you can always buy one at Home Depot or Lowes and then return it after. A word of caution – you do not want to get your rpms up too fast. I had a variable speed angle grinder and kept my rpms around 5,000.

3. Get a 4″ velcro loop attachment (which uses the 5/8 fitting) to use with the angle grinder ($10). Its a little disc attachment which has little hooks on it (like velcro) to grab onto velcro disc pad attachments (also bought from keystone tools)

4. Go to Home Depot Pro and go to their tool rental section. Look for a white polyester buffing pad. It will be a big circular disc. (Costs about $6). Cut a piece of the white polyester buffing pad in a circle shape to fit the angle grinder velcro loop attachment. Stick it onto the attachment and make sure it stays put (the hooks will grab onto the polyester fibers).

5. Get a shop vacuum to suck up all the water and compound mixture.

6. Tile/Stone Sealant to finish the job and keep your tiles from getting stained and prematurely dirty.


1. Section your floor into smaller work areas. I did small 5 x 5 ft sections to make work cleaner. I used rolled up towels around the 5′ x 5′ perimeter to limit the amount of kickback spray from the spinning motion that the angle grinder generates. If you dont do this, the milky colored spray will get everywhere.

2. Wet the section of the floor with water and cover the tiles with a nice layer of water (I found more was better as it provided lubrication for the pad). Add a small handful of buffing compound and mix thoroughly (just spread it around with your hand). Make sure the water/compound mixture is milky and pretty dissolved before buffing. USE GLOVES when doing this as the buffing compound is acidic and will dry up and irritate your skin.  I didnt and it dried my hands for 3 days. Also made everything I wore smell sour even after several washes (do not wash your work clothes with your other laundry, they will end up smelling sour too).


3. Use the angle grinder with the nylon pad to go over your tiles one by one. Let the angle grinder do the work and just hold the sucker steady. It will take a bit of getting used to at first, but youll get the hang of it. I spent at least 30 seconds on each tile to make sure the scrapes, scuffs, scratches were buffed down and smoothed as much as possible. Keep the grinder moving in small circles to polish the tiles evenly.

4. After you have finished the sectioned area, pour clean water over the area and mix it around making it wet again. Use a shop vac and suck it all up. Then if necessary, rinse with clean water and suck that up too.

5. Move onto the next section until every tile is done.


6. Use a clean wet towel and wipe your floors so you can get as much of the leftover splash and residue from the buffing compound off the floors and fixtures. Then go over your tiles once again with a dry towel.


7. Finally, after your tiles and grout lines are dry, use a stone/marble sealer (I got a jug at home depot…$30) and seal your tiles. Two coats are sufficient and your floors will look as good as new.

My floors after polishing (I didnt have a before picture, but I can assure you there wasnt even a reflection)

Post to Twitter