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Hi all. I have a Tag Formula 1 dial that is very dirty. I have tried a cotton wool bud and some water on its edge but it took the paint straight off. Does anyone have any advice or am I better of leaving it alone. Many thanks in advance.

 

 

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Unfortunately in the majority of cases the delicacy of a dial's makeup means cleaning is not possible without damage to the features. If you've managed to strip paint away back to bare brass with just water on your test area then yours is even more delicate than most and attempting further cleaning would just damage things even further.

Your dial actually has quite a nice patina so advice would normally be to leave it as is and accept the more vintage look.

There are professional dial reprinting companies as @jdm intimates but this is not a cheap option. Sometimes good condition or 'new old stock' dials come up on ebay or similar but if after a very specific dial this might be a long time coming.

There is a third option perhaps given the design of your dial but it would be dependent on good competency with airbrushing. I could expand further on this but would only recommend it as a route if the 'just leave it as is' suggestion isn't welcome!

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Here's a brand new one for starters which looks to be the same as yours (?) ... https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/DIAL-TAG-HEUER-F1-HX0266/302649416687?hash=item46774f9bef:g:m1UAAOSwYNxagv4f . Someone else on this forum might have another source other than ebay.

However at this price it's also worth looking out for (non-working) complete watches in good condition. Assuming this is the same as yours then this sold for £41 recently as an example of what can come up if you keep an eye out: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ladies-TAG-HEUER-F1-200m-Watch-Spares-Or-Repairs-/293105389179 

Perhaps one further suggestion is also to consider an alternative Heuer dial. Unless you're set on the pink there seem to be quite a lot of other Heuer dials available. Of course you'd have to double check diameter and dial feet positions but just an idea if all else fails!

Good luck! :)

 

Edited by WatchMaker

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