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automatico last won the day on August 11

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  1. "Many of the "repainted" dials you see are not actually repainted blanks - more likely they have fake Singer stamps." Agree. Maybe one out of one thousand are genuine blanks. After handling a lot of genuine dials the 'fake blanks' stand out...poor dial foot soldering, dial feet too big or too small in diameter, too long or too short, dials too thick or too thin, notches at 3 or 12, ratty name stamping on the back etc. After all, where are fly by night 'dial refinishers' going to get hundreds of genuine new or used dial blanks? "A complete 5513 replica case is much cheaper than a dial from there so it's kind of weird." Very, very weird imho. In 2005 'Paul' of Abay fame sold me 10 vintage 5513 and 1680 submariner 'Singer' stamped ETA dials for $10 each delivered. Not first class quality dials of course but not too bad either so maybe a first class dial will cost $25 or $35 now at the source. The cost involved in making dials is the pad printer and associated pieces. A pretty good manual model can be had for $2000 or less and a one man operation can crank out dials faster than he can sell them. Cases take a LOT more work than dials but my guess is many of the sellers buy them for not much $$ and detail them before sale. In my experience, aftmkt rlx dials are hit or miss no matter who sells them. I have dials from IG44, Yuki, 'Paul' and a few 'UFOs' that I do not know where they originally came from. Yuki dials are Ok (about 20) except for two that had printing that looked like '''''''''''''''''''''''' under magnification instead of solid lines. About 6 on a 10 scale. All the others are better, about 7 or 8 on a 10 scale. The 'Paul' dials are about a 6 on a 10 scale. The dials that came on my MBK watches are about 7 on a 10 scale not counting the rough outer edges where they cut the 1680 dials down to 26.0mm. IG44 dials are about 8.5 on a 10 scale. They are the best of what I have. The 'UFOs' are between 6 and 8 on a 10 scale. The one that ranks 8 was claimed to be an IG44 dial. The dial that came on my 2 or 3 year old cartel '5513' is about 6 on a 10 scale and is very close to the 'Paul' dials from 15 years ago...sharp lettering and hour marker dots but the lettering/minute marks are a bit dim and do not stand out like Yuki etc dials. Have a few low ball steel case/bracelet YM and submariners from 15 or 17 years ago and the dials are about 4 on a 10 scale. Besides the overall quality being sub par, the lettering is silver instead of white. They are tough SOBs though, a few from back then are still running (ST16 mvt). They were between $28 and $35 back then depending on quantity iirc. A guy sold them out of the back of his car.
  2. It has 'The Look'. Many do not. What is 'The Look'? Hard to describe but it has it. "The movement (for now) is a SeaGull 2824-2 with datewheel removed and no spacer since that's all that will fit in a gen. spec 5513 case until I buy a 1520, 1530, or 1570 movement in the near future." Buyer Beware. Example...here is a 1520 being sold as a 1570 with 4 hours to go: eBay item number 223623776858 If it stays below $1200 it is still not too bad at today's prices. Update...it went for $1430.55 plus $25 shipping. Maybe the buyer knows it is a 1520. Maybe not.
  3. "Didn't MBW do that on a batch of GMT Master dials way back in the day?" Have a '1675' from around 2005 with a swisseta 2836 that has 'OYSTER PERPETUAL DATE' on the dial. The word 'DATE' should not be there. Since it has a 28800 bph movement maybe it can pose as a '16750' with 'DATE' on the dial by mistake. Printed marker dials did not have the word 'DATE' (afaik, never say never), but the 16750 with applied markers did have the word 'DATE' on the dial. It also has a 6.0mm crown, might be a submariner case of some sort. It looks pretty good from about 15 feet away. Also have a clasp from the same period with 'RBGFRKED' over 'SNSAWABE' on the left side and 'STEBLHOX' on the right. They must have been Shitinerand when they made them. Here is a similar clasp: https://www.rwg.bz/board/index.php?/topic/51294-rolex-datejust-rbgsfrked-snsawabe-steblhox/
  4. Good fix. Otoh...I am deeply hurt. I'm proud of my cheap tin replicas. ...and BB panties.
  5. Why are looney toon rolex freaks paying $15 or $20 thousand bucks for average 5512/13, 1680 after they sat idly by when the same watches (with less wear and tear) were for sale for $2 to $5 thousand bucks a few years ago?
  6. "My first experience in buying replicas was when Paul had his crazy $159 sales with high quality merchandise and was immediately hooked on this bug. I never had a problem with any of his items and the quality for a "non quality control" outlet was impeccable. His submariners were well made with a quality eta 2836-2 movement and also passed the pressure test which I used it for swimming for many years." My first experience with mail order 'swiss replicas' was with Watchlover David around '99 or 2000. The watches I got had new swiss ETA 2836 and they will still run today...no date sapphire 'lug hole submariner' and ETA 2836 'Too Big' AK in 36mm cases with sapphire crystals and no hole cases. You can turn the AK into an explorer by changing the dial and hands. Next it was Paul for a few vintage submariners/sapphire submariners/GMT/Exp II plus a couple vintage '1655' and one '1675'. The 1655 and 1675 were not too hot because they were in submariner cases. All had new swiss ETA 2836 and were good quality except the vintage submariners had the rotating bezels shoved down over 'short skirt' crystals with a spring wire expanding between the crystal and case top to hold it in place rather than an inner bezel. Good movements/bracelets, fair dials, nice silver DW, oem spec case necks, case tube threads, and OEM spec He valves. Before and during the 'swiss replica' and Frankenstein phase, I had quite a few A21 jewel low ball replicas. Some good, some not so good. I burnt out on Frankensteins with rlx 15xx movements a while back and removed the 15xx and went back to slow beat swiss ETAs. Now if I drop one I am not afraid to pick it up (I've posted all this before). So what's new? In between projects I sometimes stick a 'grudge watch' together that I wear just to see how it holds up. A 'grudge watch' is basically a watch that gets no respect and has no future. This time it's a cartel '5513' with manual wind Seagull ST16 (a/w works removed). This is old news but the 'new' news is after maybe a month of abuse it has really surprised me. I wind it every morning and set it on Sundays...it might lose a little or gain a little depending on wearing conditions and how it lays at night. I did not set it last week and this week it was about 25 seconds fast. Pretty good for a grudge watch with a $35 movement...better than my $$ F-steins with rlx 15xx or swiss ETA.
  7. I too would vote for the Steinhart because of reliability. I usually end up 'overhauling' replicas that I wear for more that a few weeks because most of them are (I'm being polite here), Junk. Imho replicas are Ok if you are a half azz watch mechanic and can keep them running. For example...an MBK or cartel 55xx with a fresh ETA is hard to beat for a 'knock arounder' but they might cost as much as a Steinhart by the time you get one together. Otoh a genuine vintage 55xx, GMT etc is not worth a fidley damm for daily wear (imho) because of today's absurd prices and high service/parts cost, making replicas a viable alternative...if you can stand all the 'Fake people wear fake watches' BS. Ha! I know a lot of fake people and none of them wear fake watches. "BREITLING: New Pluton 3100" Bought a New Pluton 3100 in June 1990 from Alan Marcus & Co, Wash DC. Traded it for a Callisto and some $$ in 1998. Iirc my 3100 had a Citizen/Miyota Y652 movement. Seiko/Hattori H461 is the same thing.
  8. Here they are: eBay item number 123414447503 10 available Item location: Sydney, Australia Ships to: Worldwide
  9. " I'll pressure test after I finish thinning the case a bit and report back..." I pressure test some of my project watches and rigged a Bergeon 5555/98 so it can be pressurized with an air tank (posted this before). Usually start out around 20 or 30 psi and go to 100 psi (about 7 atm) if the watch will make it that far. I have had quite a few crystals blow off the case when plunged under water and the pressure released quickly...a good reason to test them without a movement. Do not know how much pressure the tester will stand but the 555/98 is supposed to be an improvement over the 5555 that was famous for cracked pressure domes. I have also made cases leak slightly so the case will pressurize and blow the crystal off to remove a crystal without prying on the bezel...gold bezel DJ etc. I find about as many leaks around the case tube where it is screwed into the case as crystal leaks, especially if the case tube to case gasket is not a good fit. If you look in a watch and rust is crawling up the stem, it is usually the case tube or crown leaking. The rust will travel and start eating on other bits in the movement before long. eBay has China made 5555 type testers for around $125. The 'swiss made' Bergeon is $700 or so. Ream. Apply lube. Gouge.
  10. "Both are too loose, but the Clark's is closer - it moves JUUUUUST BARELY around the case neck." If this is without the crystal retainer ring... It will be Ok because the crystal should not be a tight fit over the case neck. What matters is how it works with an oem spec crystal retainer ring. If the retainer ring feels too tight (like it might crack the crystal) when pressing it on, the OD is too big. It should feel a little bit tight at first then press on down without stopping. If the ring goes all at once with little effort, it is too loose. "...it moves JUUUUUST BARELY around the case neck." If this is after the crystal retainer ring has been pressed on and you can turn it by hand...it's too loose. You should not be able to turn it with your fingers. GS makes three or four different 5512/13 (T19) crystals. I used one on a DW case that has a 28.1mm crystal neck (should be 28.2mm). The oem spec crystal retainer ring squeezed it down tight enough to work. I do not remember which GS p/n it was. http://www.ofrei.com/page419.html GS crystals are precision made and all are very close to the same but many no name generic crystals may vary quite a bit so I gathered up a small collection of them and use the closest fit. "I'm just too cheap to drop $900 on a fake case." If you pay $900 for a case, it is a Reproduction case, not a fake case. Ha!
  11. "In the last 6 years, I am actually having a Hard time locating a stainless steel generic 5.5mm screw down crown as every source I have searched have plated brass ones!" If you can go with rolex spec 5.3mm parts, ST Supply has them: RP24-530W Generic Stainless Steel Crown without Emblem to Replace Rolex 24-530. Includes Stainless Steel Case Tube RP24-5320-SS with Gaskets. $17.95 http://www.startimesupply.com/merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=1&Category_Code=1D_Rolex_Crowns_Generic&Product_Code= They also have assortments: http://www.startimesupply.com/merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=1&Category_Code=1H-Parts-Crowns-ByType-Screw&Product_Code=AST530X If you need only a few of one type, order 'refills' for the assortment. Otoh I bought a few screw down crowns sold as 'stainless steel' that turned out to be plated brass. ST parts have always been what they say they are. Never owned a Vostok but had a few Poljot 3133 chronographs. I asked a Russian guy selling them at a watch show how to pronounce 'Poljot' and he said "Poley-oat" 'Oat' like in horse feed oats…but he had an accent. In my experience, a Poley-oat 3133 chrono was much like an eBay Alpha with an Asian 2813 of some sort...if it ran for a week, it would usually go for a few years.
  12. "Also.. 1680 subs used 1575 movements (marked 1570)." True. Most refer to them as 1570 no date or 1570 date movements. I have owned 40 or 50 watches with 15xx movements over the years and have never had one with 1575 stamped on the auto bridge. Bought a '1570' on eBay 7 or 8 years ago that turned out to be a 1560 with a 1570 auto wind plate or assembly...they turned the rotor to hide the 'curb feeler' over the hairspring. I paid $650 for it so looking back it was an Ok deal. From what I have seen on 15xx movements: No date serial numbers have no letters, numbers only...if original and not converted. Date movement serial numbers begin with D. Milgauss 1019 with cal 1580 serial numbers begin with M. Loose movements are few and far between. Day-Date serial numbers begin with DD and auto wind bridges have 1555 (18000 bph) or 1556 (19800 bph) on them...every one I have seen was this way. Seems they were more careful with DD movements being correctly labeled. Cal 1530 may or may not have a serial number from what I have read (do not know for sure). I have one in a 5501 tutone AK (dated III-62) and it has a serial number. Never saw a 1520 with a serial number...yet.
  13. MSM: "I have a genuine 1680 dial that was re-lined and shaved to 26 mm to fit a 5513 case. I have a genuine 1565 movement with original hooked 7 date disc as well." Nanuq: "My advice is to hurry up and wait." Good advice. I will add one thing to "My advice is to hurry up and wait." While waiting, read everything you can find about these projects to avoid making more mi$take$. The mi$take: You would have been better off if you had left the dial at 26.5mm because all oem spec '5512/5513' cases are made for 26.0mm dials (your shaved dial is Ok for this), and thinner no date 1520/1530 movements (1530/60/70 in 5512 -- same case). So...your movement is too thick for a 55xx case and the dial is too small for a 1680 case. If the dial was still 26.5mm an oem spec 1680 case would work. Q...What are the options? A...Not much using oem spec 5512/13 cases because of the date movement thickness. Q...What will work? A...A 5512/13 cartel case that is oem spec (correct case neck size/bezel set size/dial seat/case tube threads) but made for an ETA 2836 will probably work...or an MBW/MBK case. Note...Cartel cases can be hit or miss from one batch to the next, even from the same dealer. Read the sticky 'Building an MBW Sub' a couple times to find some of the answers to putting rlx movements/oem spec dials in MBK cases. Good luck with the project!
  14. "And one guy says it's a Seagull ebauche with 60% Swiss components." Could be. Seagull is probably the best Asian etaclone according to what I have read.
  15. "More competition for swatch????" It seems that way. Toot has geared up to make movements in what is becoming a shrinking market so they have to push the movements upscale...probably their plan all along. Otoh, for years swatch sold their high quality 28xx 'bread and butter' movements at very low prices to anyone who wanted them and now an ETA 28xx is seen as a movement in <$1000 watches. Toot can start out in a much higher niche than the ETA 28xx by selling their 'All New! Exclusive!' movement to high priced brands and still make $$ at a much lower volume. Looks like Swatch may have stepped on their weenie, especially since they are the main cause of all the etaclones that have watered down their B&B 28xx movement sales.
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