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Everything posted by AndyHull

  1. Googling the Hazmat sheet for the Elma Luxury cleaner, etc, I noticed that the Bergeon 2552 One Dip appears to contain 99% tetrachlorethane https://www.scribd.com/document/61062721/Bergeon-2552-One-Dip-899-F0668 Take care with that, and avoid contact with your skin, eyes etc. Back in the distant past, we used to use it a lot of that in the workshop to clean printer parts and other computer bits. Later we moved to isopropanol, which is slightly less hazardous (but not suitable for contact with shellac, and probably much more flammable). Tetrachloroethane can be pretty nasty
  2. A quick "sketch and pad operation" in FreeCAD later and I have a first draft of the Silvana movement ring. It seems to slice jist fine in slic3r, so I'll print that off this evening if I get a chance and see if it does the trick.
  3. Looks like my pessimism about finding the crystal for the Silvana was ill founded. Some careful measuring and a bit of internet trawling and it appears that CousinsUK stock it, or something remarkably similar. https://www.cousinsuk.com/search?SearchTerm=FT315440 FT315440 I'll probably hang fire on purchasing it, until I figure out what else I need, since the watch is still not 100% fully working to my liking. I'll also need to design a movement ring in Freecad and 3D print that. Watch this space for the finished results. I will probably put the EB 8800 pin lever pal
  4. Another "honorary member" for the 404 club, a few pennies over the limit, and advertised as in need of TLC, this HMT Rajat arrived sans strap and pins, but otherwise almost as clean and polished as the day it left the Bangalore factory. I have it a quick wind, and a rub down with a soft cloth to remove the fingerprints, and off it went. It is rock solid at about -2 to +4s/day face up and face down. I decided that in light of its performance I wouldn't touch, since there is a slight chance I might fix it till its broken. I didn't even open the back, it seemed somewhat unnecessary, t
  5. Well here is another useless fact you may not be aware of in that case.. wood working French polish consists of shellac dissolved in denatured alcohol aka methylated spirits. I suspect the shellac glue used to fix the impulse jewel is formulated somewhat similarly, but I'll let the experts chime in on that one. Shellac is a very traditional natural substance, which has been used since well before the invention of modern plastics for bonding things where bond strength doesn't need to be too high, but the glue needs to take up very little volume and where it may be necessary to remove
  6. Just call me Mr Pedant from now on. The little cleaner I have is an ebay China special, they come in about £50 new, but I picked up mine "spares or repair" for about a tenner a few years back. It needed a new power switch and a fuse and it was good to go. It looks similar to this, but without the heater, and with some other generic Chinese brand name. What I will say is that the quality of construction of the Chinese ones is reflected in the price. It is stainless steel, and it certainly works for the infrequent use I subject it to, and does actually use a couple of fairly ro
  7. I hate to be pedantic, but if it says 37Hz it 'aint ultrasonic. You need to be careful. There are some really cheap "dental ultrasonic" cleaners on ebay that are not remotely ultrasonic, since they use a small vibrating 3V motor. They are at best agitators. They may well vibrate at 37Hz for all I know. The point is ultrasonic is high frequency sound, and it's frequency is measured in killo hertz so they would be say 37kHz or 40kHz or whatever. Anything typically between 20kHz and 250kHz would be accurately described as ultrasonic. The other thing you need to be aware of is the output power.
  8. Here is the "before" shot again.. stone dead and in need of some serious TLC. Well now at least it goes, albeit with a pretty ropy auto-winder, and it is in dire need of a crystal. I added a couple of small felt pads to stop the crystal from flapping about in the breeze. I don't think its going to pass any waterproofing test in its current state anyway. Those deep scratches on the back were much worse. I've polished them down till they are barely noticeable. I suspect someone had been attempting to open it from the rear. Any suggestions for what kind of a strap would suit
  9. I put it all back together and it runs, however there are a couple of issues. 1) Obviously the crystal. Where would I source one in such an odd design? 2) When fitted, the crystal is loose, so presumably *something* is missing. Would that something be a sealing washer or disk does anybody know? 3) The lacquer on the dial is damaged, how best to repair this? 4) The mystery screw is actually the wrong side, hence its tendency to jump out of the hole and vanish, this means that the autowinder doesn't fit correctly and this appears to cause drag on the mainspring, reducing the
  10. The actual dose you receive from working with lume is probably relatively insignificant, even if it comes in contact with your skin. Ingesting or inhaling lume on the other hand presents a somewhat greater risk, particularly if you do so regularly. If you were to remove and store all of the lume from every watch you ever encountered, and then swig the resulting concoction, the acetone would be a more immediate hazard. Here is a chart of relative doses that brings some perspective to things. https://xkcd.com/radiation/ It is factually correct to state there is no such t
  11. Be aware that even if the dial no longer glows, it is still probably radioactive, since the half life of Radium is around 1600 years, and other transuranic elements are probably present with similar or longer half lives. The hazard is relatively low, but you should still take care. If removing old lume, wear gloves, and a mask, and keep the old lume in a paste form by using some form of barrier material, water, while it may leave marks is probably OK. Something oil based may be better, and any solvent that evaporates rapidly may transport the particles into the air. The amount of ma
  12. To save any wild guesswork, the movement is an ETA 2472 Here is a close up, prior to de-gunking. That little screw on the left, holding down the autowind decided to do a disappearing act, the moment I touched it with the tweezers. Fortunately it mysteriously re-appeared after much hunting, sitting in plain sight, next to the screwdriver I had unscrewed it with. I'm sure quantum effects are operating on screws this small, and they pop in and out of existence at random.
  13. Another 404 club member. The Silvana TV faced automatic got a quick look over tonight. My fears about worn balance jewels were not far off the mark, There was a rather disgusting black blob of something on the balance adjuster, which only became apparent when the auto-winder was removed. I initially thought the thing might be too badly corroded to save, but the gunk came off fairly easily. Dismantling this particular watch was a bit of an education in itself. The watch splits in half, rather than the back coming of, and the movement is removed from the front of the re
  14. Budget blown by a whopping £0.95p, but I think I'll make it an honorary member of the 404 club. Listed on ebay as "not working - ticks for a few seconds", I picked it up for £4.99 (plus p+p) It was miles out of beat (clearly someone had been fiddling with things they shouldn't have touched) , and evertthing was in dire need of a clean and fresh oil. What started off as rather tatty Seiko 5, with a crystal with a circular crack round the outside, and scratches that looked like an ice rink, responded to a little TLC, a clean, a little light oiling and a facelift in the for
  15. I still find it amazing that unscrewing the rather scratched and unassuming back of something that cost £0.99p reveals such a miniature engineering marvel. Now the electronic engineer in me knows that there is far more engineering in a quartz movement, but somehow the difference is akin to the difference between a steam locomotive and one of the modern nondescript, overcrowded articulated sets of three plastic filled buses that passes for a train these days. I bring you the latest member of the 404 club.. and one that actually works (although not extensively tested).
  16. Nice. What sort of vintage is it? I presume that is a Mercury (a now defunct Ford motor company division) promo watch. My guess would be early 1960s. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_(automobile)
  17. Another member of the class of 404 This one might however prove a a little more challenging, owing to the invisible balance made, no doubt from pure, refined 100% "unobtanium". A bit of a shame really as I like the vintage look of the thing. Oh well, you win some, you loose some.
  18. The stopping when face down issue appears to be related to the balance. If I back off the balance bridge screw by 1/8 of a turn or so, then it goes a little better. I suspect either the pivot is worn, the bearings are gummed up.. or possibly, both. I'll take a crack at cleaning and inspecting some time in the next couple of days. The previous issue, in case anybody didn't guess was that someone had been fiddling with the balance, and it was miles out of beat, as well as running really slow. I suspect that someone fiddled with the balance in the hope of fixing the stopping issue, but inst
  19. I think I answered my own question. Yes, it undoubtedly has an issue, but the wildness was because some previous owner had fiddled with the thing. It looks a little better now. It does however stop when face down, so there is clearly another issue there.
  20. Now I'm confused. I recorded this watch with timegrapher, and it it is all over the place. Can anyone explain why the results are so wild?
  21. Another 404 error. In fact it made it past the winning post with £1.05 to spare. This time a Sindaco 17 jewel Ronda 1215 based example. I would guess from the styling that from the early 1970s It goes for short periods, several minutes sometimes. I suspect the movement is in need of a good clean. The watch itself however is immaculate.
  22. I have one of the cheap 'n cheerful small Chinese ultrasonic cleaners, and while it works (I bought it faulty and fixed it), I can't say the build quality is very impressive, in fact quite the reverse. Some of the really cheap items advertised as "ultrasonic" dental cleaners are not even genuinely ultrasonic. The small plastic ones often have nothing more than a vibrating motor in them, so steer clear of those.
  23. Pictures of the EB 8800 based Adrem 17 jewels. The first image is the state when it arrived. The crystal was been polished and this showed up a bunch of flaws on the dial, so that was removed, and carefully cleaned. There was a fingerprint etched into the original finish coating, and the finish had become very flat and matte over the years, with a number of scratches so the face was carefully brushed, degreased and a light rub of denatured alcohol was applied to lightly key whatever finish remained. Next a very fine misting of clear-coat was
  24. Another thing worth checking. Clean the battery contacts on the circuit board. Oxidation of the contacts can vastly increase their resistance which will have a similar effect to a flat battery, as it will reduce the voltage and current available to the circuit. This can cause issues with the oscillator frequency.
  25. Here is a quick cleanup of an old acrylic glass. I used three household abrasives, and a little WD40 to keep the material removal as smooth as possible. Remember polishing involves removal of material, the least amount possible to achieve the effect you require. I polished the acrylic using the face of a scrap CD as my polishing surface . Use the opposite side from the printed one, otherwise you will abrade the metalised film, which is slightly messy. I worked on top of a small block of MDF. This smooth level surface the CD provided is of similar hardness to the watch crystal. Having a
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