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Elma Watch Cleaning Machine

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Well, got most of it disassembled ready for the soak in acetone. One slight problem though, I can't seem to get the bottom casing off the base plate, the centre shaft won't come off. Mickey, can you advise how this comes off? I've removed the bolt from the bottom, I'm assuming it then pulls out? Mine is stuck solid if that's the case, even after half a can of WD40!


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As you know I purchased a vintage Elma cleaning machine recently. Being the curious type and always looking for input as per Jonny 5 (Short Circuit), I sent an Email to Elma asking what year it was made.

To be honest, I didn't really expect to get an answer, as I have contacted companies in the past requesting this sort of information and have had no reply. Well not Elma, within a couple of hours their Technical Support Manager git back to me to say that it was made in 1966.

I thanked him for the fast response, and that it was greatly appreciated. The next thing I receive another email saying "To be honest this is a version I never have seen before. I collected some for our Elma museum...all are different." This got me thinking, has someone modified the machine sometime in the past. I responded by asking him the question.

Back came an immediate reply "I trust this is original design - one of several varities during the years.

Hans Schmidbauer, a Swiss watchmaker was the founder of Elma in 1948. now the Company is still in family hand 3th generation.

Good luck with the machine."

I wish more folk were as helpful!

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That's awesome Geo...and to tell the truth you might even have a unique version of the machine...might even be worth an exchange for a new one if they have a museum! I know the story of a guy here that had an old chevy and was offered money and a new model by the factory...I don't know the details but it definitely is something to think about.


In any case, that's a professional quality machine that will give you service for years to come.





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The strange thing about that is that it is now working. Didn't do anything either, it just decided to kick on?!!

To be honest, I generally keep it on the fastest speed anyway unless I have a particularly heavy item in the basket, then I will slow it down until the vibrations stop.

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It's always good to get such a courteous response, isn't it? I bought a J.W. Benson watch a few months ago - cased by Louis Audemars of London - and a descendant of the firm sent me lots of fascinating information about the doings of the firm in London.

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Well, got most of it disassembled ready for the soak in acetone. One slight problem though, I can't seem to get the bottom casing off the base plate, the centre shaft won't come off. Mickey, can you advise how this comes off? I've removed the bolt from the bottom, I'm assuming it then pulls out? Mine is stuck solid if that's the case, even after half a can of WD40!



Looking good Paul, regards the motor, its speed, and functionality, its impossible to grasp the speed with the basket out of the chemicals.   Here's a couple of demo videos I just shot for you, the first one out of the chemicals, speed variances, and the second, the same speed changes whilst submerged, the motor feels the velocity of the liquid, and in turn you achieve the correct speeds.


Its also worth noting that the central shaft that goes through the motor should be completely cleaned, no surface rust should be present at all.  Using some fine sandpaper whilst the motor is running can clean this up, be careful not to catch yourself anywhere.



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Thanks for that Micky, I've cleaned the shaft up, I got all the rust off with a grinding wheel, then polished it back up to give it the shine back. It's looking good. The motor seems ok now, speed wise. I guess I'll find out when I out it all back together and give it a test run. I'm just waiting for delivery of the acetone to strip the old paint.

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