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chrisdt

Watch dial restoration/cleaning

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I know this is a difficult subject and many a watch dial has been completely ruined by over zealous attempts at cleaning but I thought I would pass on a method that seems to work for me. 14 or 15 q tips and a tiny amount of neat  'Sensitive Metals Ultrasonic Cleaning Fluid. I did'nt take a before and after photo because I thought it would be a failure but I can assure you that the dial of this Rotary Super Sports was nearly as dark as the pad it sits on. In fact it was almost impossible to read the 'Super Sports' wording. Whatever you do dont flood the dial with the fluid, just damp q tip and work from the centre out. Just thought it might be worth a try especially if you have an ultrasonic cleaner. No liability accepted.

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I AM NOT making a recommendation as I have ruined my fair share of dials ,.....BUT , and that's a big BUT ,.... I have had some luck with Simple Green cleaner and a soft Ladies cosmic brush .  I spray the simple green on and quickly give the dial a few swipes with the brush usually from the center out , then quickly rinse the dial with running warm water and also quickly blow dry it with my watchmakers hand blower .

Use at your Own Risk .....

59bb5b63c191a_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_47_02PM.png.af039d73e9be795b9d51cd61be84ce0f.png

 

Here's the results of my latest game of Russian Roulette with dial cleaning using the method I described . 

Disclaimer , " I Lucked Out "....

59bb5c858eedf_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_51_39PM.png.46fdccbb989a05628652bf0011b5f6da.png

59bb5d7b8bdbf_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_55_58PM.png.d6522101b66e77320ef965892ca8e6bf.png

59bb5c9719b27_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_51_52PM.png.b606ec1a10ccec59524191e2ffc18c07.png

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I AM NOT making a recommendation as I have ruined my fair share of dials ,.....BUT , and that's a big BUT ,.... I have had some luck with Simple Green cleaner and a soft Ladies cosmic brush .  I spray the simple green on and quickly give the dial a few swipes with the brush usually from the center out , then quickly rinse the dial with running warm water and also quickly blow dry it with my watchmakers hand blower .
Use at your Own Risk .....
59bb5b63c191a_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_47_02PM.png.af039d73e9be795b9d51cd61be84ce0f.png
 
Here's the results of my latest game of Russian Roulette with dial cleaning using the method I described . 
Disclaimer , " I Lucked Out "....
59bb5c858eedf_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_51_39PM.png.46fdccbb989a05628652bf0011b5f6da.png
59bb5d7b8bdbf_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_55_58PM.png.d6522101b66e77320ef965892ca8e6bf.png
59bb5c9719b27_ScreenShot2017-09-14at6_51_52PM.png.b606ec1a10ccec59524191e2ffc18c07.png

Impressive


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Hi Chrisdt,

This is interesting! 

Personally I have had "some" success with oil-based cleaning methods ex. a drop of 9020 on a cotton swab. My main mishaps have been when trying anything with a fair amount of or based on water. I had one case where even the slightest amount of water would immediately start to dissolve all printing, whereas the oil didn't affect it at all. 

I suppose these ultrasonic cleaning fluids are water based? Do they come with any hint of ammonia (should be apparent to your nose if they do) ?

I will for sure try to get hold of some of this to carefully try out. Can you possibly post a picture with the brand visible and I'll see if I can get hold of that in my part of the world?

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I'm sure most of us have a box of scrap watches and or dials to practise with various liquids and methods for improving dials. Some dials react differently to cleaning. Raised batons and silvered surfaces being more hardy than print on dials. Perhaps we could have more contributions from members as to what works best for them or are these dials best left with dirt spots and stains to grow old gracefully (as we all do!!!)

 

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