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Right to repair. (Ability to repair.) or the watch is here.

  1. sheepdoll

    sheepdoll Jan 11, 2023

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    I decided to start a new thread. Partly because the quote from the other thread in a way bothers me. Granted I could have a single watch for the price I paid for the three watches. The other side of the question is I am all for the right to repair. I also collect vintage computers. And work on Pipe organs. Tossing out stuff is a horrible thing to do. Especially with 8 billion on this planet, and a cellphone and watch for each person. Probably more than one watch. That is a lot of watches that have been made over the last 500 years.

    I notice that this watch has a crystal that looks like it has been sand blasted. Are these crystals glass or are they sapphire? (which is a transparent aluminum oxide.) My guess is they are a sort of borosilicate glass, the the screen of a phone or cookware (Pyrex.) That scratches in a similar way.

    How easy it is to remove the crystal? Are special tools needed? Are they glued in? If the latter what solvents release the glue?

    I think there is a flavor of polywatch that can be used to lap glass crystals. What ever the case I suspect lapping crystals is something not done given the disposable nature of such things.

    I notice that this watch has a different style number 370.508. Where the other watch with the rusty hands is WA1416. The charts pinned seem to refer to the latter type of marking.

    The movements all look similar. So I could probably swap the working movement into the case that has the better crystal.

    What is the correct method tool for removing the bezel?

    I suspect this will invoke the ire and admonition of the purist. Yet I get the feeling that car people like repairing and customizing cars and trucks.

    The other quote from the other thread is
    I do not think anyone paid that. Given that I got an identical watch from the same seller for a pittance. (Took for ever to arrive.) I suspect that the sale was canceled and relisted. Actually this one is the nicest of the three watches, with a screw down crown and a bracelet. It was also the cheapest of the three.

    I do not like the bracelet on the Goodwill watch. It is one of those stretchy aftermarket types. My ultimate goal is to make my own strap from either denim or some leather I used in repairing pipe organs.

    This is only the beginning of this next adventure in watchmaking. On the other hand I have a number of mechanical movements on the bench, which take priority. And one of those is the impossible rusted Chronograph with the Heuer dial (which is more for the vintage section.)
     
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  2. Pitfitter446

    Pitfitter446 Jan 12, 2023

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    Half? the satisfaction comes from taking a wreck and making it good again, look at guys that spend a fortune restoring cars then stick them in storage, too much a throwaway society now.
     
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  3. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jan 12, 2023

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    I'm sure if you look hard enough you'll be able to find the parts, but you will end up with a watch that is worth half what you paid for it. The bezels go for about £50-70 straight away. Glass can be had from eBay for £10, or you can pay Timpson £120 to do it, no I'm not joking!
    I appreciate your desire to fix it, but you could find this watch on eBay for £200 easily in perfect condition. I bought one from Japan for less than £200 and it looked like new. It's up to you.
     
  4. RockBurner

    RockBurner Jan 12, 2023

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    Its not about the financial value of the item, it's about knowing the item intimately and completely, and understanding it utterly.
     
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  5. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jan 12, 2023

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    Yeah I get that, and it's very admirable. If you are happy to spend twice as much as it's worth to get the satisfaction then go for it. It seems to me the spares are overpriced in the first place. Like a plastic bezel for an old F1 costs basically the same as a polished steel bezel for a Kirium, how does that work? Surely the plastic bezel should be like £20? These watches were only £145 in the first place.
     
  6. RockBurner

    RockBurner Jan 13, 2023

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    Your second sentence tells me that you don't get it at all. :). No offence meant to you in any way.

    "Worth" is a very subjective thing. Its different for different people. Monetary value often has nothing to do with it.
     
  7. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jan 13, 2023

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    I would spend whatever it took to fix some watches that have 'value' to me, but I wouldn't go around buying trash that needs twice as much spending on it as I could buy it mint. If that's what you mean by I don't get it then you are right. .
     
  8. sheepdoll

    sheepdoll Jan 13, 2023

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    I did not realize there were replies as I was not quoted. I spend most of my time on OF. I do not normally subscribe to threads as I do not like cluttering the in box.

    Yes, I like to buy trashed watches and practice repairs on them. I do not quite have the disposable income to simply lay out a couple hundred for a watch. I can however spend the price of a meal on a watch to play with.

    It is all about the entertainment value. For me a complete working watch would be boring. Something that would simply sit in a drawer.

    Looks however like I am going to need to do some homework as the the best way to remove the bezel and crystal since no one answered that question.

    I have been collecting and playing with watches for over 30 years. I took an 18 year break. A recent unrelated trip to Switzerland re-kindled my interest in watches. During that 18 year gap I designed electronic control systems for pipe organs (which I still do.)

    In the 1990s I worked for Apple Imaging (design testing laser printers.) This allowed me to travel to places like swizerland where I was able to meet with some of the best watch makers at the time. My mentors were 30 to 40 years older than myself and passed on about 20 years ago. They had little interest in quartz watches.

    On the other hand these TAG/Heuer watches have aged well design wise. They were for the most part designed to last. At the moment there is a point where one can acquire a decent collectable watch for a low value.

    Given the repair costs, I am looking in to seeing how these so called 'garbage watches' can be fixed at a lower level. With out swapping modules that are increasing in price.
     
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  9. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jan 13, 2023

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    Hey listen, I wasn't putting you down. If you want to fiddle with watches that's great. Maybe you just didn't appreciate that the spares for these watches would cost more than a complete one? Which is what it boils down to..
     
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  10. sheepdoll

    sheepdoll Jan 13, 2023

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    I did not think anyone was putting me down. I was asking technical questions and getting investment advice in return. I do realize that many here are mostly interested in the investment values.

    So the watch I got this week is really dirty. I had to search elsewhere to find out how to remove the Bezel. While I do have the fancy bezel remover. I find that does not work well. The recommendation was for for using a kitchen knife which worked great.

    Has to be realized that while I have over 30 years of experience on mechanical watches. I have little experience with quartz watches.

    Now that I have some watches I can research parts and availability. I also learn that two of the watches use a 956.112 movement. So I am able to download the data sheet. The watch I got this week 370.508 uses a 956.114 movement even though the case is the same as the WA1416 case. Case parts seem to be interchangeable between these reference numbers.

    Now that I have numbers to research I can see what the parts sell for. And more importantly the availability. I am on the west cost of the U.S. of A. I notice that searches on eBay show no parts availability in North America. There is some availability in the UK at what look to be fair prices. Which are about what I paid for these. I would probably order such like that plastic bezel retainer clip, but for the problems with UK postal service.

    Since these use common ETA movements I can download the data sheet. As noted my interest is in seeing if I can fix the water damage through disassembly and see If I can get the movement to tick. I also think it might be fun to use some old chips I have which are sold under the name 'Arduino.' to see if I can customize some of the watch functionality. This style watch is probably not a good candidate as a lot of the movement is mechanical functionality with friction set timekeeping.

    As for the crystals and removal replacement. Since I have what seem to be two identical cases, I can swap things around so the working movement is in one of the non working cases.

    Ideally this would be the 956.114 in to the unmarked case with no reference. However the Bezel does not fit onto this case as that case uses a different style bezel that is a mm or so larger. The screw backs are also not interchangeable.

    There is still a lot here to learn.
     
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  11. NGO1

    NGO1 Jan 14, 2023

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    cool project.

    Even though THF and OF share the same login, you’ll find THF more of a social club, I don’t think we have many/any technical member here.

    If you have a very technical post, I’d suggest trying the OF knowledge pool.
     
  12. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jan 14, 2023

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    I wouldn't say we're interested in 'investment' values to be fair, just not spending more than something can be sold for if we lose interest in it.
     
  13. sheepdoll

    sheepdoll Jan 14, 2023

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    Yeah I am getting that impression.

    I am actually quite pleased with the watches I got in the last week or so. It is a different area than I normally collect (Vintage mechanical.)

    There are not too many hobby watchmakers out there. I suspect most with any skill can make a decent amount if they are charging 400 to 1100 a watch. For the most part I have most of the basic tools, although I am finding recommendations for some upgrades would be in order. Especially when working on chronographs.

    I have not had much luck flipping watches. Too competitive. I put some nice vintage 1960s Bulova on eBay. So I can make room for things like the Heuers I just got. More so I can be less distracted with the vintage chronographs. There is simply no interest in self restoration of such things outside of OF. Collectors simply see the +400 number for a 20 dollar watch and walk away. Do not blame them. That also precludes finding someone who can service the watch.

    People expect watchmakers to be perfect. Which is why I do not want to work for others. There has also been a territoriality to watch repair as well. Many watchmakers are afraid of some guy coming into the territory and undercutting them. Which is counter productive.

    I do think that many of these vintage pieces are under valued. Even the quartz stuff. Which is good as I have been able to fill in some gaps in the collection. I have always liked Heuer. I am also noticing that there is a much larger line than Omega. Probably because Omega has the swatch group to handle the quartz side of things.

    I am still having trouble identifying the watch than inspired the purchase from the Hawaiian pawn shop. And yes it is a poor example, which is probably why it sold for 144, then was relisted. The back of the case is so polished there are no longer any reference numbers. Still the dial and movement are in fair shape and will make a nice study example. Would be nice to find a bezel as the Formula 1 bezels does not fit.

    I am a bit surprised that there were not some pointers to the different reference sources. Yes I can and do search for some things. Easier now that I have physical examples in hand.

    I can also tell from the quote I transferred from @Aquagraph that the watch in question is a 2000 E. I also found from online searching what the E stands for. I can also see that 100s of these are offered in any hour on eBay. Mostly from non North American sellers. This tells me a lot. I also find I need to click on the external link to the blog, which took me a while to figure out.

    I still plan to contribute here from time to time. Probably more with the results of my efforts. I think there are those who do enjoy seeing basket cases revived.
     
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  14. thingziliketoo

    thingziliketoo Jan 14, 2023

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    Looking forward to seeing your work on reviving anything you like!
     
  15. NGO1

    NGO1 Jan 14, 2023

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    eaxactly this. I picked up a minty (in appearance) Chronostop last year. The movement is pretty much dried up. Miraculously, it still keep time, for about 4 hrs, with a full wind. Service cost for it is 50% of the price of the watch. I bit the bullet and finally got it serviced. It’s awesome that you can service your own wrist blings. If you need to practice on a Rolex GMT, I’d like to volunteer mine :)


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  16. Mspeedster

    Mspeedster Jan 14, 2023

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    Many of us are quite interested in the work you're doing. We just don't have the skills to give you some of the answers you're looking for.

    I would suggest sending a PM to @TAG1000Diver.com (Justin), he's an expert on these old quartz TAG Heuer watches from the 80s & 90s. But he doesn't frequent the forum that often.
     
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  17. sheepdoll

    sheepdoll Jan 14, 2023

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    That is one of my favorites. Although they tend to look naked without the moveable 24 hour ring. I think such watches are the best ever made. Then again I am most partial to Omega.

    I think Heuer is second to Omega, which is a personal opinion. Most because in the 1990s I was able to visit the Basel Fair a few times. They also have good marketing and great design. I have a Baylor triple date Heuer which is my third favorite after the two Omegas (Speemaster and Chronostop.) I really like the chronographs. Hopefully I can get the Heuer dialed Val-72 working again. That is a real money pit. Screws can cost up to 15USD each.

    I do not have much tolerance for Rollex as they are mostly marketing fluff. That company has been making the same watch for 100 years. I am sure it is a good watch, So are the A Schild 1187/94 watches I have been practicing on.

    Seems like the watchmaking situation will only get worse. Especially if an individual can only do 2 to 4 a day, and that is simple cleaning. I have been experimenting again with hairspring manipulation. An exercise in futility. One can spend 6 to 12 hours and be no where in the end of that time. Who will pay for such work? The hardest thing, and why I am not inclined to work for others is the whole warranty thing where the repair does not fix all the issues. Sometime you have to simply set the watch aside and work on another.

    The quartz stuff is something new. Back in the 1990s when I was actively collecting I turned my nose up on it. Now here a quarter of a century later I think the designs have aged well. These are definitely not the same as the goodwill (charity shop) watches sold by the pound.

    Purchasing these old junkers, gives me the reference numbers to search for. Does seem though that the laser engraving on the back tend to wear down to unreadability. I wonder if the Hawaiian pawn shop watch was found on the beach. The back is really polished. Even the WA1416 has much of the word Swiss almost worn off. I absolutely love the tropical hands and dial on this watch.

    Using the bracelet number BA0313 I can find reference numbers to similar dials (like 1310 or 1315) Bit tricky as there are a lot of models. At least I can get an idea what the missing bezel should look like. As noted I can always make a temporary bezel. Especially now that I have a formula 1 bezel so can see how they work. I know others on OF have cast and machined their own bezels.

    I also want to explore strap making as I find the metal bracelets uncomfortable on my smaller wrists.
     
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  18. imagwai

    imagwai Jan 15, 2023

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    This!