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manodeoro

1002 DIAL ... advices needed for cleaning

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Hi guys

Today I received that nice 1002 dial, probably late 70ies.

Condition is not very good but all the printings are there though some are really faded, and "Beyeler" engraved on the back.

It needs some work before putting it back in its case but I must admit I'm really hesitating on how to proceed and which method would be the more safe.

I know it won't ever look like new again (and that's better for a 50 years old dial) but I would like to clean it at my best.

So here are the pics and feel free to give your opinions about that.

1132280679_01-GENDIAL.thumb.JPG.a7475883d4b6308a96c76fcc147c5582.JPG

 

47602397_02-GENDIAL.thumb.jpg.7ac2456eb6fe81bc073fb959e7341646.jpg

 

1198949846_03-GENDIAL.thumb.jpg.f5bf0a223bce8aa259a96be5c9507bea.jpg

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The dial looks good for it's age. 

From my experience there is really much that can be done to improve the look of a vintage dial. Often what appears to be dirt is instead oxidation and cannot be removed without changing the appearance of the dial. I would stick to using Rodico and Q-Tips dipped in distilled water. If you do anything, be very careful and work very slow.  Keep in mind the printing on the dial is often placed on top of the lacquer and it's the first to go when "cleaning" is attempted.

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There is no definitive answer as some dials are easier to clean than others. What ever you try always try in a small area preferably an edge which is hidden when assembled into the watch case. One agent that sometimes works is human spit try some on a cotton bud and test. 

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2 hours ago, clockboy said:

There is no definitive answer as some dials are easier to clean than others. What ever you try always try in a small area preferably an edge which is hidden when assembled into the watch case. One agent that sometimes works is human spit try some on a cotton bud and test. 

Don't forget to clean it off spit with distilled water or isopropanol afterwards though, as it contains quite a lot of bacteria, which may dine out on the varnish in the long term. The bacterial content of human saliva is the main reason I would suggest that you never blow in to a watch, or breath on to a camera lens to "clean" it.

Slightly more aggressive is white vinegar, which works on certain stains and marks, but needs careful testing with a tiny amount on an area that is not going to be seen. It may dissolve some types of lacquer. Denatured alcohol works on some stains, but again it also dissolves some finishes, likewise acetone, isopropanol, and other organic solvents.  

As has been stated, any action runs the risk of further damage. Even tap water, depending on the mineral content, may leave annoyingly obvious marks when it dries.

Less is often more, so work on small areas at a time, use good magnification so you can see the results of your actions close up,  and if you get the slightest hint that the varnish is lifting, or the finish is being damaged, stop before you ruin the whole thing.

Edited by AndyHull

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Thanks a lot guys ... I'll do some test and show the results.

I really love that dial though it's pretty stained and scratched so I'll try first with Rodico, Q-tips and distilled water and see how it goes.

There is no financial risk as I got it for cheap ($40 shipped) but those 1002 dials don't often show up on the net and are sold for much more, even if they are damaged ... plus I have a nice 5500 case that's waiting for a dial ^_^

 

By the way ... did anyone of you ever drilled an ETA 2840 mainplate to make place for Rolex dial feets ?

I'm asking because I have the case, the low beat ETA and a handset that could fit but I don't think I could ever cut the feets of a Beyeler Rolex dial :unsure:

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