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Seiko,

In my view the actual quality of a tool is its ability to perform the task that is expected of it. Other considerations are simply sales fluff. Once I discovered that the Bergeon lathe was actually manufactured by a company (Dixie) that is owned by Mori Seki (a Japanese company), I began to take a closer look at what Bergeon actually is. In contrast to Horia, which actually does manufacture products, I suspect that Bergeon is really  a sales and distribution operation. This would explain why many of their products look exactly like similar products that are marketed as Chinese. There will always be a hard core element that looks a lot more closely at a brand name than the actual product. They will always look the the Chinese product as "cheap Chinese junk" and a Swiss label as "the finest quality". This is in spite of the fact that both products are probably made in the same Chinese factory.  While I see nothing wrong with that world view I simply have a different way of looking at things. After all, why pay a reasonable price for something that does a great job when you can pay an excessive price for something that does the same job and has a designer label.

david

 

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It's amazing the number of folk that get blinded by price! They think expensive means it must be good and cheap means it must be bad, what a load of b*****cks. There are cheap tools and expensive t

Cheap screwdrivers and cheap tweezers avoid. The screwdriver blades will break the tweezer ends will go out of shape that is if the points measure up In the first place and snap. Buy the best you can

What about the Bergeon 7812 Watchmakers Quick Service Kit? It would be 35 pounds over your budget (e.g. Cousins), but there won't be any waste in there.

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Oh my ! At this price, I do not think these tools are for beginners. But I can be wrong .. Price, is this the reality of what it is worth? .. It seems to me that it is expensive a little do not you think?

There's very little on David's list I personally would buy.except the blower.
I purchased a brand new set of Bergeon screwdrivers in there wooden box for £100 app, which are absolutely superb.
As for Auto winders, they are a convenience rather than beneficial. That is if you where different watches on a regular basis. Remembering if the watch lacks lubrication through lack of service or being done incorrectly. Keeping the watch running will lead to accelerated wear.
Also I have a set of Bergeon auto oilers that are superb, that I acquired for my last birthday. The cost would of been around £140.
You don't have to break the bank to buy quality tools, just be prudent on what you buy.
The cost and value of any product, really depends on your point of view. Elma do an ultrasonic cleaning machine which costs over $10,000 is it worth it ? If I had the available cash I'd certainly like to find out.

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3 hours ago, david said:

Seiko,

In my view the actual quality of a tool is its ability to perform the task that is expected of it. Other considerations are simply sales fluff. Once I discovered that the Bergeon lathe was actually manufactured by a company (Dixie) that is owned by Mori Seki (a Japanese company), I began to take a closer look at what Bergeon actually is. In contrast to Horia, which actually does manufacture products, I suspect that Bergeon is really  a sales and distribution operation. This would explain why many of their products look exactly like similar products that are marketed as Chinese. There will always be a hard core element that looks a lot more closely at a brand name than the actual product. They will always look the the Chinese product as "cheap Chinese junk" and a Swiss label as "the finest quality". This is in spite of the fact that both products are probably made in the same Chinese factory.  While I see nothing wrong with that world view I simply have a different way of looking at things. After all, why pay a reasonable price for something that does a great job when you can pay an excessive price for something that does the same job and has a designer label.

david

 

I 100% agree with you David.  For years I have thought that a lot of the "High Quality" (expensive) stuff has come from China, and not just watchmakers tools.

The bottom line is buy what works well makes you happy, whether it cost hundreds of pounds or pennies, just choose carefully guys.

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Some cheap tools are fine & some not. A good example being, I purchased a a chinese set of Rolex style case opening dies for approx. £30 (see pic below). However when used they would not hold under pressure and slipped and I could not open a 3135 Rolex case. I then raided my savings and purchased a Horortec opener (Horotec 07.320) for £230
BUT it worked perfectly first time & works first time very time with no issues. Unfortunately in horology some tools are expensive.

THESE DID NOT WORK (for me anyway)

58a16acdd7aba_ScreenShot2017-02-13at08_05_54.png.f1549a2448f3294013c6104c7815b9c1.png

BUT THIS TOOL WORKS 100%

58a16af90ee2d_ScreenShot2017-02-13at08_10_13.png.c1ef0e6b97f3d6fec9a1ad17867eeec5.png

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While the watchmaker does the results as you put it .. If they cut corners on the tools of their trade, chances are they cut corners on the quality of their work.

No corners are cut, be reassured. We are trying to explain how most tools are exactly the same but overprice by Bergeon and others. BTW are you a professional? Sorry I didn't read your introduction.
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I have put this on other posts but just recently I have been very disappointed with Bergeon. I don,t mind paying a premium for better quality tools but I suspect many of their tools are now being made outside of Switzerland. In my opinion if buying Bergeon it is best to buy the vintage Bergeon tools as they seem to be of a better build quality. 

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Some cheap tools are fine & some not. A good example being, I purchased a a chinese set of Rolex style case opening dies for approx. £30 (see pic below). However when used they would not hold under pressure and slipped and I could not open a 3135 Rolex case. I then raided my savings and purchased a Horortec opener (Horotec 07.320) for £230
BUT it worked perfectly first time & works first time very time with no issues. Unfortunately in horology some tools are expensive.
THESE DID NOT WORK (for me anyway)

BUT THIS TOOL WORKS 100%

I think you are comparing apple with oranges here. Most likely the handheld dies did slip simply because by hand pressing and turning cannot be applied effectively, but with a press style tool that is not a problem
In fact the dies which you purchased first can be used on a 5700 type machine like the one that david pictured in a previous post, and I consider the handle to be included just as a convenience.
The chinese also manufacture a copy of your second tool for about one half of what you paid.
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No corners are cut, be reassured. We are trying to explain how most tools are exactly the same but overprice by Bergeon and others. BTW are you a professional? Sorry I didn't read your introduction.

No one said it has to be Bergeon ...If you happy buying cheap and think your getting a bargain good for you. No I am not a pro.. but I use tools of all kinds and prefer reliable ones.As we are talking about pros are you? EVERY pro I have read that teaches watch repair all suggest better tweezers, screwdrivers and to stay away from the cheap knockoffs. But what do they know. it must be a conspiracy and all the people who know are in on it.

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Sorry JDM but the dies slipped not because of the method I was using. I think the problem is the grooves are not deep enough on the dies and therefore do not give enough grip when undoing a tight case. I am not aware of the chinese version of the horotec but at the time I did not want to risk any to damage to a £5k watch.

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Those **BLEEP** Chinese Rolex can openers are only fit for Chinese Rolex knock offs. They are off by a microscopic amount but that is enough to make it slip.

I tried one out and it slipped and there was a lot of metal debris as a result, thankfully all of it was from the tool!

You can get by with cheap screwdrivers and if you're a hobbyist I don't see any problem but don't be cheap with your tweezer's...  they make a world of difference. Having said that I have a few cheapo tweezers on my desk for rough work tho'.

52 minutes ago, clockboy said:

Some cheap tools are fine & some not. A good example being, I purchased a a chinese set of Rolex style case opening dies for approx. £30 (see pic below). However when used they would not hold under pressure and slipped and I could not open a 3135 Rolex case. I then raided my savings and purchased a Horortec opener (Horotec 07.320) for £230
BUT it worked perfectly first time & works first time very time with no issues. Unfortunately in horology some tools are expensive.

THESE DID NOT WORK (for me anyway)

58a16acdd7aba_ScreenShot2017-02-13at08_05_54.png.f1549a2448f3294013c6104c7815b9c1.png

BUT THIS TOOL WORKS 100%

58a16af90ee2d_ScreenShot2017-02-13at08_10_13.png.c1ef0e6b97f3d6fec9a1ad17867eeec5.png

Anilv

 

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TheBeerGuy:

As david pointed out, you can buy a French set of screwdrivers, re-tap and replace the set screws, and buy a set of Burgeon blades. That's what I did, and they work just fine.

Here's another example of buying non-Burgeon products that work just fine. In one of the previous posts, someone recommend buying a pair of Burgeon hand levers for $219.00. Here's a pair that I have and they only cost $6.13  + shipping. 
http://www.ebay.com/itm/2pcs-Metal-Precision-Watch-Hand-Remover-Pin-Lever-Replace-Watchmaker-Repair-Tool-/381381404354?hash=item58cc1a66c2:g:ddgAAOSwd0BV4~fr

The quality is very good and they function as designed. I also have a larger pair (made in India) for pocket watches, but I don't use them very much. 

There are some high end tools that Burgeon and Hortec make that can't be found elsewhere, but for basic tools there are cheaper alternatives.

Honestly, I find this name brand worship ridiculous.

Thanks!

 

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We need examples how is this one ....I purchased cheap chinese crap Watch Hand Remover Plunger Puller and Set Fitting Kit  for $15 who wants it at cost? Tell you what you can have for half off. Disclaimer : these items have a lot of

issues

puller.thumb.jpg.6ba43301dd049f61b5546bca11a966fe.jpg 

 

I also bought a used Staking set for $125 Who will take it for double.58a1ff635ec8e_stakingset.jpg.dda0e6e5e437496582a76a9cf1f2f6d5.jpg 

While this is an extreme case so is comparing all tools to Bergeon. 

 

 

 

Edited by adiorio110
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We need examples how is this one ....I purchased cheap chinese crap Watch Hand Remover Plunger Puller and Set Fitting Kit  for $15 who wants it at cost? Tell you what you can have for half off. Disclaimer : these items have a lot of
issues
puller.thumb.jpg.6ba43301dd049f61b5546bca11a966fe.jpg 
 
I also bought a used Staking set for $125 Who will take it for double.58a1ff635ec8e_stakingset.jpg.dda0e6e5e437496582a76a9cf1f2f6d5.jpg 
While this is an extreme case so is comparing all tools to Bergeon. 
 
 
 

I also purchased that hand pusher changing the heads for every size hand was a nusense & the plunger would stick when pushing down. I broached out the hole for the plunger which improved its action.


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2 minutes ago, clockboy said:


I also purchased that hand pusher changing the heads for every size hand was a nusense & the plunger would stick when pushing down. I broached out the hole for the plunger which improved its action.


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Clockboy 

Absolutely, Also the guide the plunger rides on falls though the hole sometimes also. I considered throwing it out the window. Maybe I'll screw with it and try and fix if I get bored. I can use the staking set to press hands on now, so really no need for it any more. Maybe I'll get lucky and someone who likes cheap tools will want it. Like some people said the cheap tools will work in some cases but the aggravation is not worth it. 

 

Anthony

 

 

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12 hours ago, clockboy said:

 I am not aware of the chinese version of the horotec but at the time I did not want to risk any to damage to a £5k watch.

Two choices by Ruihua
Similar at $190 https://www.aliexpress.com/item/High-quality-unlock-caseback-machine-watch-case-back-opener-watch-repair-tool/32781301330.html
Even more similar but with lug inserts, not plastic posts (which is better IMHO) at $290, admittedly not cheap! https://www.aliexpress.com/item/High-quality-Medium-multi-functional-capping-machine-watch-case-back-opener-watch-repair-tool/32784175698.html
If the issue is with the dies, a budget conscious person can buy the Chinese press and the Swiss dies.

Based on my direct experience I will remain of my opinion an repeat it if allow me: most cheap or copied tools are just fine, what makes the difference is how one uses them. For example, I absolutely I do not need a press to set hands, thanks heaven my bare hands are good enough for that. BTW, I could absolutely afford the original, but gladly I do not buy them. 

And here's again the thread I've opened about pathetic tools, feel free to add to it anytime
http://www.watchrepairtalk.com/topic/3052-have-a-laugh-tools/

 

Once again, my knock-off crystal press, pressure machine, timegrapher, demagnetizer and soon caseback machine, do not fall into that.

Edited by jdm
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So I think I definitely have a better idea of what I'm looking for tools. Now a lot of the stuff ill personally have to keep an eye out for them second hand. I'm currently looking at a set of new af Swiss screwdrivers to start off then I'll pick up some of Dumont tweezers. Also looking at a cheap loupe that will clip on my glasses, I'm not sure really if that is a good move to cheap out here however I like the idea of the clip on just unsure if ill like the extra weight on my glasses.

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So I think I definitely have a better idea of what I'm looking for tools. Now a lot of the stuff ill personally have to keep an eye out for them second hand. I'm currently looking at a set of new af Swiss screwdrivers to start off then I'll pick up some of Dumont tweezers. Also looking at a cheap loupe that will clip on my glasses, I'm not sure really if that is a good move to cheap out here however I like the idea of the clip on just unsure if ill like the extra weight on my glasses.

Going back to your original question. There is no restraint, other than financial, why the Chinese can't produce high quality tools or watches that are on par with any other manufacturer in the world.
My personal choice is Bergeon and Horotec but I have many tools that are not by these two manufacturers. Also the Japanese produce very high grade tools if not specific to watch making.
Load bearing tools of high quality should be treated using "Slow Tempering " to achieve the necessary hardness to maintain their stability. Case Hardening is ok but even the best processes normally can only achieve 25thou thickness.
Cheap tools that may look identical to there more expensive counterparts can be untreated and soft but may well prove to be adequate.
I think GEO got it right when he stated that it doesn't matter if you pay hundreds of pounds or penny's, as long as you're happy with your acquisition.
Careful buying is the solution

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Good explanation. For instance I have noticed a difference between cheap & good gravers. The cheap HSS gravers you can pick up on the Bay need to be sharpened constantly compared to a "VALLORBE"  graver. I guess it must be the composition of steel used.

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10 hours ago, jdm said:

Two choices by Ruihua
Similar at $190 https://www.aliexpress.com/item/High-quality-unlock-caseback-machine-watch-case-back-opener-watch-repair-tool/32781301330.html
Even more similar but with lug inserts, not plastic posts (which is better IMHO) at $290, admittedly not cheap! https://www.aliexpress.com/item/High-quality-Medium-multi-functional-capping-machine-watch-case-back-opener-watch-repair-tool/32784175698.html
If the issue is with the dies, a budget conscious person can buy the Chinese press and the Swiss dies.

Based on my direct experience I will remain of my opinion an repeat it if allow me: most cheap or copied tools are just fine, what makes the difference is how one uses them. For example, I absolutely I do not need a press to set hands, thanks heaven my bare hands are good enough for that. BTW, I could absolutely afford the original, but gladly I do not buy them. 

And here's again the thread I've opened about pathetic tools, feel free to add to it anytime
http://www.watchrepairtalk.com/topic/3052-have-a-laugh-tools/

 

Once again, my knock-off crystal press, pressure machine, timegrapher, demagnetizer and soon caseback machine, do not fall into that.

Interesting alternatives. Do these case openers allow fittings for dies for Rolex/Omega etc.

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I strongly recommend *not* using cheaper Presto-style hand removers. I knackered a set of hands with one which were worth more than the price of a genuine Bergeon Presto (£30 odd). The cheaper ones, like cheap tweezers, can twist. They are also made of softer steel which won't dress as sharply and stay sharp. 

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16 hours ago, SeikoWatch said:
With this kind of 'hand remover' despite the precautions taken, I still broke hands. But it can temporarily troubleshoot

Yes, my findings too. I now use it as a cannon pinion remover (just widen the hole at the end). 

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6 hours ago, rodabod said:

I strongly recommend *not* using cheaper Presto-style hand removers. I knackered a set of hands with one which were worth more than the price of a genuine Bergeon Presto (£30 odd). The cheaper ones, like cheap tweezers, can twist. They are also made of softer steel which won't dress as sharply and stay sharp. 

If  hands and the entire watch is valuable, isn't better to use the separate lever and a lot of attention? For example I see Mark using these in all his videos. On the other hand (pun intended) I never damaged anything or had any problem with my $3 presto tool.

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