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Seiko 7546 quartz - what lubricants do I use?


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Hi all,

My 1978 Seiko quartz diver, movement 7546, has started to run slowly (battery is fresh). Sometimes it slows down very slowly, other times it's more extreme. Maybe it's debris somewhere (it has never been serviced) I'm thinking of cleaning and lubricating it, but have only worked on mechanical movements. I'm not what lubricant(s) to use, and where. I assume I'd use D-5/HP1300 on the metal to metal moving parts, 9504 on the stem and clutch, but not sure if the 4 jewels get any oil. If so, I'm guessing 9010? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Seiko 7546.jpg

Actually, Bodo replied to a similar post I made a couple years ago, so I think I'm all set, unless someone has any other suggestions:

Posted December 8, 2020

I tend to use 9504 for keyless, very small amount... also on centre wheel staff for canon pinion. 9010 or Moebius quartz oil on jewels and 9104 on bearings. 9010 on outside of cannon pinion for hour wheel and maybe a touch of 9104 on the date wheel jumper where it meets the teeth of the date wheel. 

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10 hours ago, DanB said:

My 1978 Seiko quartz diver, movement 7546, has started to run slowly (battery is fresh). Sometimes it slows down very slowly, other times it's more extreme. Maybe it's debris somewhere (it has never been serviced)

Your 1978 watches basically 44 years old. Did you know that the lubrication can go bad and get sticky very sticky and that would be a reason the watch need servicing? In other words stepping more quartz watches need to be serviced just like any other mechanical watch.

Then just in case everyone else isn't familiar with the watch I'm attaching the tech sheet.

Then it looks like from the tech sheet they're only using two lubricants which would be basically 9010 I'm guessing the other ones a grease.

10 hours ago, DanB said:

9010 or Moebius quartz oil on jewels and 9104 on bearings

Personally I like the quartz oil on the quartz watch.  You want to be careful with using any heavy lubricants on the gear train part of the watch this is not like a mechanical watch where you start with a really heavy oil near the mainspring barrel and go lighter and lighter.  The problem is quartz watches have extremely little drive capacity and you don't want any heavy lubricants on the gear train itself whether it's a metal bearing or jeweled bearing it has to build a move very very freely. This is also where test equipment like the ability to measure the current consumption is helpful because of ego too heavy on the lubricant you will see an increase in power consumption of the watch.

 

seiko 7546A.pdf

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3 hours ago, DanB said:

Would that be the same as Moebius 9000?

Yes that would be I've always found it was the best for quartz watches. Both the quartz watches with jeweled bearings and quartz watches without jeweled bearings. But if you're only going to do the one watch you could probably just use 9010. I guess it depends on how many quartz watches you going to do at least this one is a bigger quartz watch you start doing a smaller ladies watches then the oil becomes critical or watches with metal bearings the oil is really critical.

 

tinf_9000_en_0.pdf

9000 quartz oil picture.JPG

Edited by JohnR725
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FYI

M9000 quartz  oil has viscosity 100cSt at 20C (ie VG32)

M9010 has viscosity 150 cSt at 20c (ie VG32/46) and appears to be same as M9000 apart from viscosity.

M9415 has viscosity 104 cSt at 20C (ie VG32)

Therefore M9415 has nearer viscosity.  However, M9415 is an ester/di-ester (ie a chemical) and not a PAO (synthesised hydrocarbon) as M9000/M9010.  Should be ok but I would check out compatibility with plastics which are nearly always found in quartz movements.

 

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4 minutes ago, canthus said:

M9010 has viscosity 150 cSt at 20c (ie VG32/46) and appears to be same as M9000 apart from viscosity.

This is always the problem with the specifications we get for the lubrication's in other words we don't get a lot of specifications and were missing important details that would be helpful to make a decision. But personally for me the quartz oil has worked on problematic watches the only problem is if somebody is only going to do one watch that it's a waste of money to buy one bottle of oil for one watch.

Then we could always use another oil because I notice the watch companies don't necessarily even specify using the quartz oil anymore for instance the tech sheet attached. They are using 9014 Which if you go through and read the tech sheet is basically a low temperature oil. But somewhere had seen a reference that the low temperature oils tend to be way more fluid as the temperature warms up and they really recommend epilam to keep it in place. But still this seems to be the oil of choice of modern watch companies for reasons I have no idea if you have a perfectly good oil recommended for quartz watch wire using something else? Maybe it's cheaper.

 

CT_E64101_PRD_FDE_535913_04.pdf

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Thanks again for the replies - so helpful! I just order a bottle of the quartz oil. I figured for the price of the oil vs what it would cost to have the watch cleaned and lubricated professionally, I come out ahead, plus I get the pleasure of working on my own watch. I have another Seiko quartz with the same movement, though unlike the diver I'm about to work on, I bought this one a few years ago. At some point I can give that a service. And I got my son a Seiko with the 7546 movement from eBay for $50 about a year ago. He loves it. So, maybe at some point 3 watches will get the use of this oil. You can tell, I'm a fan of these movements and the case styles they came in.

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36 minutes ago, DanB said:

You can tell, I'm a fan of these movements and the case styles they came in.

I'm not saying that all Seiko's are Not collectible but I'm reasonably sure that this is a very popular style of watch. It's why people get upset when the quartz watch doesn't run anymore and those movements Are not available so if you can't fix it yourself you're screwed and you're pretty watch doesn't run anymore.

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Yes, I'm lucky to still have this diver after nearly 45 years. I remember buying it and what I paid - $155 in 1978 dollars (I think the list price was $195). About a year ago I installed a new crystal and gaskets including one for the rotating bezel which now operates really smooth. If my service is successful maybe I'll get another 10-20 years out of it. 

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M9014 -  100cSt Viscosity at 20C.  Pour Point -45C (M9000 -43C).  Other properties almost identical to M9000 quartz oil.

Described as an intermediate between M9010 and M9030.

Elsewhere described as a blend of 70% M9010 and 30% M9030.

Another Moebius marketing ploy???

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23 minutes ago, canthus said:

Another Moebius marketing ploy???

Have you looked at their website lately?  They have the lubrication chart which has interesting note at the bottom of not using HP oils on metal on metal bearings which conflicts with everybody and Swatch group. But that's the only place they have that reference

Then if you go to the oil section you can download a PDF product catalog. 13 pages of how many different lubricants? Then there's the nifty chart look at that you can make wise decisions based on? You look at the two oils in question and they appear to be identical except one is made for quartz watches and the other is made for the purposes of confusion? The start looking at all those other lubricants are they good or they bad why the heck do they exist. Plus my biggest complaint of all were missing information. I find a fascination with contact angles and would like to see those printed.

Then mixing oils to make a new oil that's clever maybe they were bored at the factory and wanted something fun to do how many ways can we mix the lubricants up how many different types can we have how much confusion can we have maybe they were just bored or something. They want to see if anyone would notice these weird things they do.

synthetic watch loyal comparison.JPG

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Yup, give the customer multiple choices so they will buy many different products 'just to be sure'.  'Special properties' abound, just highlighting the different individual properties/additives all in the same oil formulation. Some may be needed, some not, but it won't matter if they are still in there.

Re HP grades, it may be that they are not happy with elements of the active HP additive with regards to staining some metals (ie brass).

I have a blending chart from my old days and used it regularly to blend intermediate grades of the same oil formulation, to solve some specific problems where viscosity was an important factor.

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I have serviced/ tinkered with only a few quartz movements but the principles of the service are the same as mechanical watch movements. For the lubrication I have just used tiny amounts of Moebius Quartz oil. I do have a cheap Quartz testing tool that can give the hands a rapid spin which can free the movement up for a while.

 

5D42AE85-B717-41A9-8CDA-9958F0BD4BC0.jpeg.e311a59d188a8325aac73a2fd49f3bd4.jpeg

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7 hours ago, clockboy said:

I have serviced/ tinkered with only a few quartz movements but the principles of the service are the same as mechanical watch movements. For the lubrication I have just used tiny amounts of Moebius Quartz oil. I do have a cheap Quartz testing tool that can give the hands a rapid spin which can free the movement up for a while.

 

5D42AE85-B717-41A9-8CDA-9958F0BD4BC0.jpeg.e311a59d188a8325aac73a2fd49f3bd4.jpeg

This is actually not a bad little machine considering its cheap price. It can detect if the module is working, so a seperate component eliminated from a list of defects. Not specifically the cmos of course but the cmos, circuits, trimmer and quartz as a whole without the coils. But also the quartz crystal on its own. Insert the two wire ends of the crystal into the two small socket plugs. The device will give one second pulse intervals for a working quartz. Tested a quartz casing that i pulled the crystal from which gave no pulse.

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8 hours ago, canthus said:

Re HP grades, it may be that they are not happy with elements of the active HP additive with regards to staining some metals (ie brass).

The staining aspect is interesting aspect don't know if it's true my theory was that it doesn't stay in brass settings. Typically any time you see the HP oils used on keyless mechanisms or dial side it's with epilam. Although basically the trend for the watch companies now is epilam and basically the entire watch with the exception of the balance wheel and just a couple of components that they don't epilam everything like even the fork they only do the jewels.

 

 

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The 7546 is largely based on the 6309 and the calendar side is identical.  It has one foot firmly in the mechanical world and one foot firmly in the quartz world.  Don't over think the oils.  Seiko says 9010 for most of it with grease for the metal to metal parts.  I use 9504 where S-6 is called for.  I think the color of it is nice and it's really slippery. 

I serviced a few of these and find that they respond really well.  I have a cheap quartz tester from Aliexpress that show the rate.  Before service -10 seconds, after service 0.0 seconds.  Never touched the rate adjustment screw.  My opinion is that Seiko adjusted these really well at the factory and no good will come from messing with that screw when 40 year old oils are in there.  These movements are really easy to service compared to a 6309 mechanical.  Keep the electronic parts and the plastic parts away from cleaning solutions. 

Bonus tip.  On the tech guide, there is an oil dot symbol floating above the calendar side that doesn't seem to point to anything.  A small quantity drop of 9010 goes on the track where the Day ring rides.  This placement is more clear on the full color 6309 tech guide but still ambiguous.  Observe where the Day ring rides and it will make sense.  I can confirm that the Day wheel moves better when this oil is there. 

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  • 1 month later...

I serviced the 7546-6049, I believe successfully since it fired right up and has been running fine (I feel very lucky), so I want to again express my appreciation to all who weighed in, particularly JohnR who shared the technical pdf. The service would not have gone as well without it since I may have oiled parts that don't call for it. Also thanks to Bklake on the note about the calendar side/track. I figured that out by looking closely at the pdf on my computer screen and gave the surface a bit of oil. I'm on the lookout for a crown seal gasket (Seiko 0K0180B Crown Seal), but may just estimate the size and get a generic one from my local parts supplier, Otto Frei.

I was really surprised by how clean the movement was. I was the first person to open it in 44 years, so I guess that makes sense. But this watch has seen a lot of use - some swimming with it, but often worn when I was doing carpentry, so exposure to fine dust, etc. No sign of any water or debris entrance to the watch. The jewels had dried oil, and given how small those pivots and holes are, it makes sense that it effected performance.  I was blown away by the setting wheel lever complete (what a little machine) and the keyless works in general. It works really smoothly.  

Seiko 7546 day:date:keyless works.jpg

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 12/8/2022 at 10:03 PM, DanB said:

Yes, I'm lucky to still have this diver after nearly 45 years. I remember buying it and what I paid - $155 in 1978 dollars (I think the list price was $195). About a year ago I installed a new crystal and gaskets including one for the rotating bezel which now operates really smooth. If my service is successful maybe I'll get another 10-20 years out of it. 

Hi Dan

I'm working on my late father in laws Seiko Sports 100 and I'm having difficulty locating the Gasket for the bezel. Do you happen to recall the type or dimensions? Any help greatly recieved!

 

 

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7 minutes ago, gonzo67 said:

Seiko Sports 100 and I'm having difficulty locating the Gasket for the bezel. Do you happen to recall the type or dimensions? Any help greatly recieved!

Is your watch exactly the same as the one here? Unfortunately gaskets are different sizes for different cases we would need the case number to bill a look up and see what gaskets you need for your particular case. On the back of your watch the case number is the four digit number with the-or space and then usually another four digits

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I don't know the size, but I believe this is the part number that fits my case: OZ3524B. I got mine from Mornington Watches where they also sell a kit of three gaskets: for the stem, for the case back, and for the bezel. They fit several models of this Seiko and he lists which ones they fit on his site. You can find them online at other vendors as well. That bezel gasket has to be just right (diameter and thickness) for the bezel to rotate properly. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 12/12/2022 at 1:13 PM, bklake said:

The 7546 is largely based on the 6309 and the calendar side is identical.  It has one foot firmly in the mechanical world and one foot firmly in the quartz world.  Don't over think the oils.  Seiko says 9010 for most of it with grease for the metal to metal parts.  I use 9504 where S-6 is called for.  I think the color of it is nice and it's really slippery. 

I serviced a few of these and find that they respond really well.  I have a cheap quartz tester from Aliexpress that show the rate.  Before service -10 seconds, after service 0.0 seconds.  Never touched the rate adjustment screw.  My opinion is that Seiko adjusted these really well at the factory and no good will come from messing with that screw when 40 year old oils are in there.  These movements are really easy to service compared to a 6309 mechanical.  Keep the electronic parts and the plastic parts away from cleaning solutions. 

Bonus tip.  On the tech guide, there is an oil dot symbol floating above the calendar side that doesn't seem to point to anything.  A small quantity drop of 9010 goes on the track where the Day ring rides.  This placement is more clear on the full color 6309 tech guide but still ambiguous.  Observe where the Day ring rides and it will make sense.  I can confirm that the Day wheel moves better when this oil is there. 

Hi

I've serviced my Seiko 7546 and all well but(!) I have an intermittent battery issue. I have seen other photos of this movement and there appear to be some with a battery strap. Mine seems to be missing and it's leading to a lose of contact. Is it possible  to source an after market fitting? I've added a photo for clarity

Cheers

J

20230330_091232~2.jpg

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19 minutes ago, gonzo67 said:

I've serviced my Seiko 7546 and all well but(!) I have an intermittent battery issue. I have seen other photos of this movement and there appear to be some with a battery strap. Mine seems to be missing and it's leading to a lose of contact. Is it possible  to source an after market fitting? I've added a photo for clarity

if you look at the service guide this posted up above I'm not seeing a battery strap. I also googled pictures are not seeing one they are either. Not saying it's possible that your particular situation there may be one but I'm not seeing it. Then how do you know you're having intermediate battery issue? The other thing is if you look at how the battery goes in there's a side contact that makes contact with the positive part of the battery so all the back has to do is is hold it in place.

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20 minutes ago, JohnR725 said:

if you look at the service guide this posted up above I'm not seeing a battery strap. I also googled pictures are not seeing one they are either. Not saying it's possible that your particular situation there may be one but I'm not seeing it. Then how do you know you're having intermediate battery issue? The other thing is if you look at how the battery goes in there's a side contact that makes contact with the positive part of the battery so all the back has to do is is hold it in place.

I came  to the conclusion that the problem was the battery because the watch runs perfectly as long as its left on the bench. If worn or moved it stops after awhile.  Press the battery back into place and it starts up again. With the case back fully screwed down the problem persists.

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