July 18, 2006
Getting scratches off my iPod

When I received my video iPod last year, people warned me, "Put a screen protector on your iPod." Of course, I didn't listen.

Sure enough, the face of my iPod got covered in scratches and gouges in short order. Daily life in a pocket or briefcase is far too tough for a dainty iPod and I doubt anyone can avoid scratches without protecting it somehow. The iPods scratch so easily, there is an entire industry devoted to protecting them from the harsh world.

With several large marks on the screen, I decided to do something about it. I knew that I could polish the clear plastic with a gentle abrasive and remove the scratches and get back to a clear face. The question was which polishing product to use. Google searches ended in a confusing knot of conflicting advice between household products and specially made iPod polishes. Overwhelmed, I dropped the idea for a bit.

A couple weeks ago, when on vacation, I had some time to spare and discussed the idea with Cousin James. We agreed that most light polishes would work. On a trip to the nearby Walmart, James grabbed a bottle of Kit Scratch Out for $2. I think the polishing cloths were another $2. Much cheaper than the special iPod polishes going for $20-30 on the net.

When we got back to the beach house, I started polishing the iPod. There were several significant gouges that you could feel on the surface. I rubbed and rubbed and rubbed. And sure enought the scratches started to come out.

I probably spent 2-3 hours polishing the screen. This is process takes some time. My fingers were hurting and at points I thought that maybe all the scratches wouldn't come out. But sure enough, in the end, the screen looked great.

There is a limited to the Kit polish I was using and it would not get the screen completely flawless. To get it flawless, I'd probably need to get a even lower abrasive plastic polish. But since the screen scratches so easily, trying to keep a screen flawless is the road to insanity. Even if you get the screen flawless and cover it in a protection of some sort, the protection will get scratches. What are you going to do, polish the protector?

To protect my work, I've order a screen protector and skin from Gelaskins. Their use of art on the skins looks great.

When the protector arrives, I'll probably do a quick repolish to pick up the scratches that have appeared on iPod when a gentle breeze blew across it. Once looking good, I'll put on the protector, like I should have in the beginning, and be done with this silliness.

Posted by michael at July 18, 2006 06:49 AM


Okay...on vacation...staying at a beach house....spends 3 hours polishing an ipod. Mike, you need a vacation from your vacations!

Posted by: Chuck C [] on July 18, 2006 11:16 AM

Apple polisher!

Posted by: Brad [http://www.flyingw.org] on July 19, 2006 8:29 AM

thanks for the protector link :)

Posted by: baldo [http://www.sanbaldo.com] on August 5, 2006 6:46 PM

does this work with alot,alot of scratches on an ipod?

Posted by: yv [] on August 24, 2006 9:40 PM
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