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Starter tools and watch repair kits


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Esslinger.com beats CousinsUK in quality and typically price, especially with Swiss Bergeon tools and tool kits. Esslinger offers tool kits for beginners as well, starting at like 60 USD. That is where I started off, even though it hasn't progressed to much.

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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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10 hours ago, Atul said:

also looking for some mechanical watches for him to start playing with.

To practice on initially, you can't go far wrong with a few scrap mechanical watches from ebay. Maybe a couple of pocket watches to start, and of course a couple of my favorites,  HMT's and Sekonda, as they have jeweled movements, and clean up well.

Don't pay big money for those, as you can usually pick them up for £10 or less in a non working condition.
 

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  • 3 months later...

Apologies if this has been answered many times previously. I used the search function but couldn't find what I'm looking for. Please direct me to the right post if I've missed it!

I'm just after some recommendations on some general purpose watch repair tool "sets" or "kits".. something that'll have most of what you're likely to need for the standard work opening cases, taking apart a movement etc. (even a list of must-have individual items would also be helpful). There seems to be a lot of options out there and I'm wary of a) buying cheap rubbish, and also b) spending too much on something needlessly professional for a novice mucking about with flea market junkers and the like. I don't mind buying something nice if it'll be worth it in the long run, but again - I don't really have the expertise to make that judgement call :) cheers!

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Hi There are probably more answers than tools available as to what constitutes a list of tools for watch repair, but here goes.

A good quality set of screwdriver,the French screw drivers are good value for money, I you want the best Then its Bergeon but you pay the price, Likewise tweezers, there are good mid range tweezers, by Idealtek and others but the best are Doumont. these I wouldn't skimp on as they are the extensions to you fingers.        They come in various styles and sizes  and you will no doubt be advised by others as what to buy or what they recommend by way of sizes.     Next is a good loupe (eye glass) again these come in various sizes and types   X5     X10  X15 all determined by the focal length.     Some are binocular Visors with interchangeable lenses.         A good movement holder, you can get a good Bergeon movement holder around the £20 mark. Stay away from the cheap chinese ones they are cheap for a reason.  I have attached two PDf's to get you started.

TZIllustratedGlossary.pdf Oils_and_Greases_June_2019.pdf

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Wow, your attachments are great.  I wish I had these prior to destroying 2 ETA 2824 clones.  That's one suggestion I would give to a new person starting out.  Practice on the cheap ones first.  

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  1. Hi Jeryl   Best thing to do is start on the cheaper modules as you are bound to destroy one or two, we all have due to a slip of the hand or dropping something. Remember no matter how simple a question just ask we are all here to help.    cheers
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22 hours ago, watchweasol said:

Hi There are probably more answers than tools available as to what constitutes a list of tools for watch repair, but here goes.

A good quality set of screwdriver,the French screw drivers are good value for money, I you want the best Then its Bergeon but you pay the price, Likewise tweezers, there are good mid range tweezers, by Idealtek and others but the best are Doumont. these I wouldn't skimp on as they are the extensions to you fingers.        They come in various styles and sizes  and you will no doubt be advised by others as what to buy or what they recommend by way of sizes.     Next is a good loupe (eye glass) again these come in various sizes and types   X5     X10  X15 all determined by the focal length.     Some are binocular Visors with interchangeable lenses.         A good movement holder, you can get a good Bergeon movement holder around the £20 mark. Stay away from the cheap chinese ones they are cheap for a reason.  I have attached two PDf's to get you started.

TZIllustratedGlossary.pdf 4.2 MB · 5 downloads Oils_and_Greases_June_2019.pdf 1.25 MB · 12 downloads

Thanks so much for the info, and those attachments. And yes as Jeryl said, I'm going to start on cheap watches of no sentimental value, hah.

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  • 3 months later...

Hi everyone, 

I did some searching on WRT but haven’t been able to find anything really. 
After speaking to a company here that supplies tools and parts to the industry, they suggested that I buy a cheap kit from the internet (I ended up at Esslinger.com) in case I find that watch repairing is not for me. Rationale was that I wouldn’t have spent a whole bunch. 
My concern is that buying cheaper tools can cause you to become frustrated due to the quality.
So in short, does anyone have any sort of idea with regard to these kits?

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Is not like there is much alternative unless you are OK to spend big money.

A Chinese kit is OK to open some (but not all) watches, change batteries, straps, and little more, (but not closing tight snap backs) can be $15 - $25 and worth that. The equivalent Swiss "quick service" is GBP 155,  certainly overpriced for the little  it delivers, still no press or snap-back tool in there, all it takes is a current Swiss watch for sorely missing having these.

The recommendation you have been given is the correct one, find first how much really watch repair takes you in before spending big money.

Remember that is the person that does the job not the tool, although there are many times where the specific tool is needed, sometime it can be made. A poor tool plus beginner's inexperience is a recipe for damaging the watch, let alone frustration. At the same time it happens a lot that beginners break perfectly working watches with perfect tools.

You will hear again and again "buy the best tools you can afford", but in practice that often that means "buy expensive tools", there is a lot of "tool adoration" in watchmaking.

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I have been trawling through both of those as well. There is also a third that I know of.

Australian Watch & Clock Supplies.

With not being able to travel to Melbourne due to all the restrictions, I can't go into any shops to have a look at things and say "Right. This bundle of tools will do me."

Where I live, I would suggest that the most precise tool that I could be would be a ball peen hammer.

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17 hours ago, Michael1962 said:

With not being able to travel to Melbourne due to all the restrictions, I can't go into any shops to have a look at things and say "Right. This bundle of tools will do me."

Surely you aren't the only one. The age of brick and mortar watch material houses is gone to not ever return. The last time I visited one was the week they were closing down, that was in an EU country capital BTW. No big loss, they didn't even had much stuff anyway.

Now everyone buys online and if possible gets an idea first using forums like this.

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On 9/14/2020 at 10:22 AM, Michael1962 said:

Hi everyone, 

I did some searching on WRT but haven’t been able to find anything really. 
After speaking to a company here that supplies tools and parts to the industry, they suggested that I buy a cheap kit from the internet (I ended up at Esslinger.com) in case I find that watch repairing is not for me. Rationale was that I wouldn’t have spent a whole bunch. 
My concern is that buying cheaper tools can cause you to become frustrated due to the quality.
So in short, does anyone have any sort of idea with regard to these kits?

I'm not a fan of kits as most that I have ever seen tend to be limiting or poor quality. The high quality kits tend to be aimed towards strap and battery changing/removing links and general after sales rather than on-the-bench watch repairing.

I did create a blog post with some essential "Day 1" tools that are advisable to have on hand when you are creating your tool kit and you may find that useful. https://www.watchrepairlessons.com/2019/09/30/essential-day-1-tools/

Perhaps you could use that as a guide - all of these tools are readily available from many different online sources such as Cousins UK, eBay, Amazon etc etc.. 

There is also a PDF I have made available which may help you decide on your Day 1 lubricants kit which you can download here: 

 

I hope this helps.

 

P.S. - Moving this thread to the tools section

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I am learning about tool quality as I go along also.  I agree with the others on this: good screwdrivers are a must.  Good brass tweezers will be used often.  Generally, the better the case knife is made, the easier it is to use.  Definitely get a demagnetizer at some point, for both movements and tools.  I could probably mention more but the veterans on this forum have posted so much helpful information already. Sometimes the best tools are not always the most expensive; that does occur. And often, getting a more expensive tool is cheaper than buying five crappy ones. Digging through the posts on tools is worth the effort.

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  • 2 months later...

Hello, I am a watch enthusiast and have always been interested in the mechanics of watches.  I have a drawer full of old soviet watches that no longer function and I would like to learn how to fix them.  I do not have any appropriate tools to do so.  Is there a recommended kit that is recommended on this forum?  The kits I see available on amazon look a bit cheap, but I also dont want to shell out for a bergeon kit quite yet.  Excited to dive into this hobby!

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  • jdm changed the title to Watch repair kit
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Welcome to the forum.

Have a look at what has been suggested in this thread, and also look into some soviet watches being repaired/restored here on other threads, That would give you a very specific listing of the tools you must have to do a service on one.

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  • jdm changed the title to Starter tools and watch repair kits

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