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DFeryance

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  1. Oh as you are looking at doing forming or plating over brass, there is the lead issue. You may need to do a strike or activation step first to get a good plate. While plating over copper is quite simple.
  2. I have some experience with a few of the techniques you mention, albeit not for the task of repairing a watch case. You can use low temperature brass or copper solder but there are plenty of risks involved. The solder might not want to flow in the gap you have, or it might flow to some other part of the watch case. Or you might melt something you won't want to melt. So it takes quite a bit of skill to get right. Electroforming is pretty incredible. It is really cool to get a large hunk of solid copper out of a acid solution. Yeah masking is critical as is making sure the area you want to form is clean. You'd likely have to form larger than the are you want to fill and file and polish to shape. Copper polishes and plates quite well but it is softer than brass. I wouldn't really worry about that unless you have very large gaps to fill though. There is also nickel electroforming, but copper is much more accessible. Electroforming is pretty accessible to pick up. You just have to use the right solution, and go very slowly. Plating, however requires much more skill. The basics of plating are easy but getting really good results requires experience. I can do basic plating from a guidebook but often get unreliable results. I wouldn't recommend you try to plate yourself unless that is as skill you are looking to learn. If you get it wrong, you will have to polish the plate off which could damage the watch case. There is also the hazardous chemicals and disposal to deal with.
  3. I've often wondered this myself. I had an indiglo fail and timex shipped me a new watch instead of repairing. EL material can fade over time. It matters what kind of failure if its electronics or the sheet itself but it might be possible to cut an EL sheet to size. I'm guessing no one ever tries this due to the low cost of timex watches. I haven't bothered as it isn't worth the effort.
  4. Could you post a photo? There are a few different case-back designs and how to remove will depend on your specific watch. Some watches don't even have a removable case-back and the movement is removed from the top.
  5. I've often thought of trying the www.ponoko.com service. They can laser-cut and laser-engrave brass. It wouldn't have the craftsmanship and character of a hand-made cut but would be easier to get some crazy designs. I've got enough other projects going on that I haven't tried it yet though.
  6. Congratulations! Isn't it great when you can always glance at your wrist to see the results of your work?
  7. If it wasn't for your dial size requirement, the esslinger kit is a close match as it comes with a NH35: https://www.esslinger.com/make-my-own-watch-kit/ As the NH35 has a date wheel, one thing to be aware is that the date window will have to be at the same distance from the center regardless of what size dial you use. So a larger dial will have the date window further from the edge.
  8. I don't think you would have trouble getting any of those sizes to work with a common movement. They don't have dial feet to line up and don't have a date window or small seconds or chronograph holes. Keep in mind that you can always cut a dial out of a thin sheet of brass to make it the size you need. Making it round is harder without a lathe but it is possible to still spin it on a rotary tool and grind down the edge.
  9. It may be wise to start on a watch movement you don't care about. It is easy to loose parts or break something. I also just finished the first two of Mark's courses and I am working on some cheap movements I got off of ebay. Just a thought.
  10. I didn't have trouble with the shock system on this movement but it is good to know that others could be tricky. I've run the movement for a while comparing it to a known time and there weren't any major deviations. I also didn't have any problems with it getting stuck after running for an extended period of time. I have a good amount of electronics background so I plan to build the microphone and amplifier for watchoscope software. That'll get me a much better feel for how well the movement is running.
  11. I've been following Mark's courses and finally had the courage to attempt servicing a watch movement myself. I collected a few old movements off of ebay. I decided to start with a Gruen Precision as it was the only one without a date complication so I figured it would be easier. I'm very much a beginner and made a few mistakes but as I didn't break or loose any parts -- or bend the hairspring -- I call that a success. Probably the biggest mistake is that I didn't take enough pictures when disassembling. I knew better, but wasn't patient enough. To some degree I was worried about springs popping off and concentrated on those instead of grabbing the camera. This caused pointless frustration when re-assembling and I also don't have as many photos to share. The other mistake is that I didn't purchase enough sizes of screwdrivers. I started with a 0.60, 1.0 and 2.0 (mm) figuring that would cover the range. A good number of screws required something in between 1.0 and 2.0 so I had to use a 1.0. This caused some small notches in the screw heads. I have since bought 3 more screwdrivers so I should be better in the future. Here is the Gruen before servicing. While I was trying to be careful to not unscrew the setting leaver screw too much, you can see that the crown wheel fell out. I don't know if that is normal with the movement or it was just loose. The #13 etched into the top plate was not done by me. I have no idea what that means. Year serviced? It isn't the caliber number as that is on the back. I was very careful to keep the screws next to the associated plates and parts as well as take pictures of them. I had no problem finding the right screw on re-assembly. For cleaning I used Naptha in an ultrasonic machine. I also did hand cleaning on pivots as well as cleaning off corrosion. The movement had corrosion near the barrow, the keyless works and the minute wheel. I was able to clean the corrosion off of the plates but didn't attempt it on the minute wheel. I was concerned I would end up damaging the teeth. For lubrication I used the Mobius synthetics. Instead of D5 I used Moebius 9104 Synthetic Oil Synt-HP 1300 as I saw that in ETA service guides and is pushed as a successor to D5. But otherwise I used the oils from Mark's course. It took a while to learn how the different size oilers pick up the different viscosity oils. I had plenty of cases where I had to clean up extra oil with rodico. But I am getting a better feel for it now. The mainspring was an old blackened steel spring. While I wanted to finish the project quickly, I decided I wanted to do this right and order a new alloy mainspring. I also don't have a mainspring winder to get it back in anyway. I ended up messing up when pushing the new mainspring into the barrow. The outer side didn't fully slide in. While trying to correct that, the whole thing popped out. Figuring it was all a loss now, I tried to do the manual wind technique to see how it goes and managed to bend the spring horribly. I ordered a new mainspring and was able to slide it into the barrow ok this time. The movement design was a little different than the Unitas the Mark shows in his course. The click mechanism is different. Also the winding reverse-threaded screw is instead two screws which is pretty nice. Probably the tricky part was the plate design. I followed Mark's videos as I re-assembled but I had to remove plates after I installed them to get all the wheels in place. The barrow had to go in earlier. One annoying problem is the cannon pinion; it wasn't sliding properly. I suspect corrosion but maybe it was just tight. It was so tight, the balance would freeze when trying to move the hands and the hands didn't move much. It was this way both before and after I cleaned and greased it. I used a tiny drill-bit to try to scrape the sides of the inside hole of the pinion hoping to get any corrosion out. After that I used baking soda hoping that would also help clean and polish a bit. After that a rinse in Naptha. Not sure how great of a technique that is, but for sure it helped. I can now set the time without problems. All put back together Very shiny except for the minute wheel. And with the dial and hands re-installed. The hands were originally bent but I was able to carefully straighten them. I am quite proud of doing this for the first time. I've done other work with watches before this but this is the first time I've worked on a movement.
  12. I can see why jdm recommended a microscope. I took pictures with my best digital camera and a flashlight and still have trouble getting good detail. This is the gruen movement. And then the peseux 7016 On camera, in both cases you can see the pivot. For sure the Gruen support a seconds hand as I have the dial and hands. But I am unsure on the 7016. It could be that the pivot is extended as it is visible, but it could also be flush with the jewel and visible as well. Here is the Gruen with the dial. It is clearly old but seems quite serviceable. I don't have the case but I plan to make one to turn it into a full watch.
  13. Well I've been wanting a microscope for a while. I have 10x lenses but that doesn't compare to what a microscope can do. In general I guess I'm just confused at the movement inconsistency. It seems really hard to figure out if a movement is hour+minute only or if it supports small seconds since there are often different variants with the same caliber number.
  14. I have collected a small assortment of movements to practice servicing them. Most are quite old so they don't have center seconds. I've been quite confused over if the movements support a small seconds hand or not. I have a Peseux 7016. This movement doesn't seem to have an extended pivot on the forth wheel. I see the jewel exposed to the top plate but the pivot doesn't come up to the top of the movement. When looking at the parts list at jules borel, I see there is a forth wheel regular, and a forth wheel w/ second. So from that, I presume the variant I have doesn't support small seconds. Does that sound right? I was able to get a small seconds hand to turn a bit by placing it in the forth wheel hole but it wouldn't stay on the pivot. Another movement I have and looked at is the Peseux 7001. I noticed from different sellers that there are variants with and without small seconds as well. However this movement does have a pivot extending above the top of the movement. So this is quite clear it supports a small seconds hand. It wouldn't be possible to fit a dial on it without a hole for the small seconds. Based off of the above two movements, my conclusion was: if the pivot extends above the movement, it supports small seconds and if it doesn't, then no small seconds. However.... the next movement contradicts that. I also have a Gruen Precision movement. Unlike the other ones, this came with a dial and hands. I know for sure this supports small seconds as it came with a working small seconds hand. However, the forth wheel pivot does not extend up to the top of the movement. It looks very much like the 7016. However, in this case the small seconds hand tube is long enough to reach into the movement and grab the pivot. So now I am at a loss. Could it be that my Peseux 7016 does actually support small seconds but I just need a hand with a longer tube? Is there some general way to inspect the movement or forth wheel to determine if the pivot is long enough to support a small seconds hand? I plan to tear it down to service it but haven't done that yet.
  15. I believe the area marked push is correct. It may be that there is a tab or smaller piece within that hole that you need to press and aren't pushing in. This should be the technical guide for that movement: https://www.timemodule.com/upload/PDF/VD53_TG.pdf per the document: Winding stem ・How to remove While pushing the indented portion of the arrow, pull out the winding stem
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