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I dropped my lens and it got bent at the little metal hooks/tabs that latch it to the body. Is there any way to fix this kind of damage (see image)?

You can see the bend to the left (the hook is below the black part of the lens).

image

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The first thing you need to ask yourself is, "Am I sure the only damage to the lens is to the mounting flange?"

The second thing you need to ask yourself is, "Considering the cost of a new EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 is only around $200 and a used one can be found for half that, why would I consider sending the lens in for a repair that will likely cost near that just in labor cost and a replacement flange ring?"

Any force that managed to bend the bayonet lug more than likely managed to knock the alignment of the various optical elements inside the lens out of whack as well. Finding any shop that does quality lens alignment once a lens has left the factory is difficult at best. Finding one that will do it for less that the cost of an EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 is pretty much impossible (as discussed in both this blog post and comments and this one from Roger Cicala at lensrentals.com).

If you can repair the flange mount ring enough to get it to mount (without forcing it - force it and you could damage the camera's mount ring) you could then test the lens to see if the optical performance has degraded compared to before you dropped it. Otherwise you're probably better of just writing it off and replacing it. If you're shooting with an APS-C camera you might consider the EF-S 55-250 rather than another copy of the 75-300 that many consider the worst lens in Canon's current lineup. For a minimally higher price you get better optical performance and Image Stabilization. You give up the 250-300mm focal length range but you gain the 55-70mm focal lengths.

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  1. Check if you can somehow get this replaced/repaired for free by some expert due to warranty, insurance, etc. That would be the best solution.
  2. Find out the price that an expert repair costs or at least get an estimate and compare it to what a used lens costs. To know what the prices are for a non DIY solution.
  3. Take a flat srew driver or any other stiff/rigid small long object and try to use it as a lever to bend the hook back up. Take your time. Be careful. You usually cannot break a broken thing even more. The metal part is the lens mount. For a repair by an expert, it wouldn't matter much if the hook is just bent or let's say broken off as they would exchange the whole piece anyway. If you "break" this part during your attempts to repair it more than it is right now, you aren't worsening the situation. Should you not be able to bend it back up, you have the following options:
    • sell the lens as broken
    • buy another lens used
    • buy the lens mount as a replacement part and try to perform the exchange of the part yourself
    • send it to a repair shop and get it repaired

One important thing to remember is that the bent hook might not be the only thing that suffered from the impact. There might be other things broken inside the lens. Should you be able to fix the mount yourself, you might be left with a lens with a broken auto focus motor for example. Nobody can tell you this and no repair shop can give you an estimate on this.

  • You can easily break a broken thing more! I know you're thinking of the mount itself, but I can think of several ways that trying to fix the mount might damage the lens, making a simple problem much more serious. – Caleb Oct 31 '16 at 2:35
  • @Caleb I absolutely agree, though I wouldn't describe a lens dropped hard enough to bend the mounting ring as a "simple problem". It's a very complex device that is probably now broken in all kinds of subtle ways. – David Richerby Oct 31 '16 at 7:49
  • @Caleb but not if you carefully and slowly try to bend the hook back. Yes, there are ways to break it more, but if you apply common sense it should be possible to avoid them even if you are not an experienced lens repair guy in this case. – null Oct 31 '16 at 9:54
  • @Caleb's right, I've broken a similar lens much worse trying to repair it (I actually got it apart and back together once, but the aperture control cable didn't make good contact, 2nd time I broke the cable) – Chris H Oct 31 '16 at 13:22
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    @null I'd remove the mount and stick it in a vice to repair it, as it's only held to the lens barrel with tiny screws into plastic. Some of the most fragile things in a lens are the flat cables going to the contacts, which may or may not be attached to the mount (I've seen both with metal mounts for Canon). On the plus side the mount could be easy to get off – Chris H Oct 31 '16 at 13:38
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For this sort of damage, and after checking the lens as best you can as suggested in another answer I'd:

  • Look on ebay etc. for an identical lens broken in a different way.
  • Attempt to remove the mount. It may well come of cleanly but it's not guaranteed -- watch the cables especially.
  • If you can't get it off nicely, give up.
  • If you can't find a source of parts, either:
    • Give up,
    • Keep your search running in the background while you enjoy a new lens, or
    • Try to bend the mount straight with it off the lens. But there's a risk that if you get it wrong you may jam it onto the body, or even halfway on, neither on nor off.
  • If you find a donor lens, good luck with the repair.

The hit this took would leave me cautiously optimistic about the rest of the lens -- when I killed the optics in a similar lens it landed on its side (with the detached body on top of it). From what I saw of the insides they shoudl be more robust against an end-on hit than a hit on the side. But it's not actually easy to inspect the innards of a lens from the outside.

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If it is only slightly bent you cold try sanding off that portion of the hook that is preventing the hook from working.

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