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automatico last won the day on February 5

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  1. Very nice Zenith Daytona project! I like the Zenith Daytonas best of all. My Zenith Daytona story: When I see these builds it takes me back to December 1992 when I bought my first new steel Daytona from an AD for $3825. Later on in 1996 I bought two more but by then they were $5120 each, the last one came in May 1998 and it was also $5120. All the prices are list prices but iirc I got a discount on one of the last three but can not remember which one or how much. I flipped all of them without ever putting one on because back then I could always get more. The AD got a few every now and then and when buyers on their 'reserve list' backed out they would call me. Time rocked on and I ran up on a like new tutone Zenith Daytona from a watch/diamond trader for $ 3300 in November 1999. I sold it in a flash. That was the end of the Zenith Daytonas for me. The prices I paid back then have always stayed in my mind, setting the price for the watches and I doubt I will ever own another one because of today's prices...but you never know what might turn up. I have stumbled on quite a few bargains in my time and it always seems like I run into the best deals when I am not looking. I snagged a lady rlx 69173 a few weeks ago for $500 so all the bargains are not gone yet. The 69173 is a 'ruffy' but it's a good runner. Maybe a deal in a Zenith Daytona will turn up. You never know. Daytona 500 today at 230PM Eastern
  2. "Tell me about it! Taking about .007" per pass gets pretty long and old real quick!" Fer sure. All I have is a Sherline lathe and milling machine and it is slow going. They are precise but small and slow. Many big lathes have more slack in them than the tolerances needed for watch projects so I would probably end up finishing them in a small lathe anyway. I have a friend with a machine shop and he bored the ID and sized the OD of about 15 blanks cut from some heavy seamless tubing down to 38mm X 29mm and it made it quite a bit easier. Iirc he cut about 5 or 6mm off the OD and about the same inside, can't remember. They are all 2.8mm thick because another friend already sawed them to size at another machine shop before he carried them out. Cutting them down to the smaller size took about an hour off making a bezel from the larger blanks. It still takes at least 2 hours not counting final polishing. That is why I use ST smooth sapphire bezels to begin with if I can but they are a hair too small for '1016' bezels...about 34.5mm as stated above. The ST bez (RSMSS) is only $15. A good price if they will work on a project. A machine shop out the road was charging $80 an hour plus material 3 or 4 years ago for walk in jobs. Good thing all my machine shop friends work free...or for I bought quite a bit of stuff from this outfit because they sell in small quantities. They are a first rate company to deal with. https://www.onlinemetals.com/en/buy/stainless-steel-round-tube
  3. "are any of the swiss fakes still out and about? that is some great provenance." I never saw any figures on how many got out. They may have disappeared into the population of genuine gold Daytonas. The article mentions 250 and that 'much more were produced' so no telling how many actually escaped...another 'rolex secret'.
  4. "You might want to check your math on the price increases of the subs. I figure in 2025 that the sub will be worth $13,334. And at 8.3% increase it takes around 8.67 years to double- that's called the rule of 72!" Ah yes, the rule of 72. I got the figgers off a genuine rolex forum.
  5. "This is more like trivia overload!" Yeah. I can't carry it around in my head so I keep notes. I used to remember a bunch of Yamaha and Suzuki part numbers so I would not have to look them up. That was in the 1980s and I still have part number flashbacks now and then. I have quite a bit of watch trivia and I'll put more up later.
  6. "found some quality control pics from jmb in my inbox, and the bezel is shaped like the gen. i've always wondered why his bezel was praised so much, now i know why." JMB did a very good job on the 1016 bezels, no question about it. "imo, if you're that adamant about the details, i'd just buy a gen." I bet many of the 'genuine' loose bezels for sale today have been made in someone's basement or garage and artificially aged. Q -- Why would I say that?? A -- Because I can crank one out in a few hours. Some of the bezels on '100% genuine' watches are probably garage projects too. Q -- Why? A -- Because it is the nature of the high $$ vintage watch hobby/busine$$ (and 'human nature'). Q -- What is the problem with making a few? A -- The ST smooth bezels are about 34.5mm in diameter and afaik the genuine is closer to 35.0mm. The JMB bezel is 35.0mm and If the .5mm difference really matters to someone, the bezel would have to be made from scratch out of a blank made from a slice of seamless stainless steel pipe etc and that takes longer because much more metal has to be removed compared to the ST bezel. Otoh it is very hard to tell a bezel with 34.5mm OD from one with 35.0mm OD mounted on a watch because the difference when looking down at the watch is only .25mm on each side. Very hard. I never measured a genuine 1016 bezel when I had the chance because back then there was no need to know. "you can find them (1016) for around $20k, which is not a lot of money if you consider how much you'll be dropping towards a watch that is at the end of the day a rep." I remember when you could buy a new 1016 for around $400 and later on, very nice used examples when they were getting 'hot' were going for $1000/$1500 at watch shows...so $20k for one today is not in my small realm of reality. Besides that, there is No Way I would consider paying very much for any overpriced (imho) watch today unless I had a buyer standing by with their $$ in my hand. Q -- Why their $$ in my hand? A -- Because watch buyers are infamously famous for backing out of deals. This is from experience as well as hearsay. For someone who can do the work, a good quality 'swisseta' JMB '1016' could end up costing around $600 to $700: JMB case $$?? can not remember exactly, guessing $250 to $300. Anyone know? Dial...about $100 to begin with but a good used example might be found for around $50. ETA swiss 2824/2846 'combo' mvt...about $100/$125 because you will still have another combo movement left from the parts. Hands...ST, about $15. Change the case tube from 5.3mm to regular 6.0 (drill/tap the case) with a used genuine crown...about $50. Oyster style or quality 'jubilee' with screws...$55 or $60. 580 hoods...$25 from WSO990 to go with the oyster bct. Spring bars, gaskets etc...about $20 Case spacer...$5 Labor...$0 This can be a big factor if you have to farm it out. Probably $300 or $400 for a project like this. The total...$600/$700 approx. Q -- So...what is it 'worth'? A -- At least the going price for the sum of the parts is my guess. Case profiles from: https://rwg.cc/topic/159773-1601-case/
  7. I made a few updates and reposted this because a lot has changed since it was first posted. It might be good to refresh memories on how RWC got where it is today (total peckerheads imho). Since there is not much going on in the forum, maybe it is not a waste of space. New additions are in italics unless noted. Posted April 30, 2011 https://rwg.cc/topic/132084-mythbusters/ Why did Rolex decide to control (buy) 100% of Beyeler dial company? In 2001 Jean Pierre Jaquet and his 170 employees used to work for various brands like Ulysses Nardin, Swatch group... and Rolex. Today Swiss Mister Jaquet, from La chaux de Fonds, as been put in jail by judge Sylvie Favre following a scam concerning 250 real/fake 18ct Rolex Daytona (it is said that much more were produced). Not going into much detail, for some reason Rolex asked the Jaquet Company to do some (let’s call it function work) on Gold Daytona cases. One day Swiss customs warned Rolex that they found a "strange" stock of presumably fake 18k Rolex Daytona’s, but to confirm that they were fakes they needed expertise from Rolex. The verdict from the Rolex Technical Department was frightening "It took me some time to tell if the watch was real or fake" said the Rolex expert. No other comment. So Rolex recently decided to buy Beyeler dial company and the other companies to avoid this situation again (fake Rolex created with real Rolex parts). Now that Beyeler works only for Rolex, they deliver finished products only to Rolex. "Real" Swiss Fakes: Nov 3, 2008 - 17:31 Counterfeit watchmakers sent to jail Watch-movement maker Jean-Pierre Jaquet will spend four and a half years in prison for his role in a counterfeiting scheme that rocked the Swiss timepiece industry. A court in the western city of Neuchâtel announced on Monday that Jaquet and two others were guilty of aggravated robbery, handling of stolen goods and forgery as part of a fake watch scheme. Fifteen people in total were implicated in the "Ulysses Affair" which began in 2003 when police raided Jaquet's firm in La Chaux-de-Fonds looking for evidence of a plot that also involved gold heists and stolen Rolex casings. Two people were acquitted. The court also ordered Jaquet to pay SFr750,000 ($643,940) in restitution. Others involved in the crime received prison terms ranging from three to nine and a half years. Some will pay fines instead. When news of the scandal broke five years ago watchmakers in Switzerland were outraged. Nicolas Hayek, president of the world's leading watchmaker, Swatch Group, remarked at the time: "It's like a bunch of cardinals getting together and robbing the Vatican bank." Rolex USA Can Service 30XX. Can service 1520/1570 depending on parts. Will not service 1530/1560. Do not know for sure about V72 Daytonas but doubt they will service them. Some say Yes, most say No. Rolex UK Can Service 1530/1560 depending on parts. Will have Rolex UK only warranty. Will not service 1030/1080. Rolex UK will no longer service 5508/5510 Submariners...no case parts. Rolex Geneva Can service 1520/1570 depending on parts. Can service 1580. Will not service 1530/1560. Heard they 'might' service V72 Daytonas but the cost is ridiculous. No BB service. No RSC will work on Valjoux 72 movements because the Swatch group refuses to supply movement parts. RSC will work on 1665. CRS (stamped in vintage case backs) stands for Charles René Spillmann...established in La Chaux de Fonds (CH) at the begining of last century and made cases and buckles for Rolex and other brands. CRS still exists under another name. H Stern dials...the family behind Cadrans. Stern did buy PP in the 1930's but they decided a few years later to dispose of their dial business, so the company that made the COMEX & Rail Dials was no longer related to PP. Stern remained in the dial business until the 1980s, when they sold the company to another dial maker. Stern dials are easily distinguished by the 5 pointed star on the back of the dial (Stern is German for 'star'). Q...What is the retail mark up on a Rolex? A...43% (may still be the same, some say it is now around 38%)   Trivia Additions 2-7-2020 (no guarantee of accuracy): In 2011 a new 93150 bracelet could be found for about $1000 to $1200. Now they are around $2000. There is one on eBay now 'same as new' for $1800, eBay item number 193200191801 and one on Chrono 24 for $1986. Do not know what the 'official' list price is. A complete 1570/75 movement in good condition could be found on eBay in 2011 for around $1200, now they are closer to $2000. Good used 5.3 and 6.0 steel crowns were around $40 or so, now they are $60+/- Good 7mm crowns were $50 to $60 then, now they are over $100. Good AK 5500, OP 1002, OPD 1500 etc cases were around $200 on eBay in 2011, now they are approaching $500. Rotted out examples are often priced as high as good cases. In 2011 there were quite a few rolex parts accounts held by independent USA rolex repair shops. After 7-1-2019 there are supposedly NONE. I heard there may be maybe 5 left. From what I have read online, the basic rUSA service charge is now $920 plus parts.   "The best customer service is no need for customer service." According to the Business Week tabulation of global brand value, Rolex ranked 71st – ahead of all watch brands, but one notch behind Kleenex. Virginie Chevailler, a spokesman for Rolex in Geneva, declines to say what evidence is available to confirm that the Wilsdorf Foundation makes charitable donations. 2007...What Le Temps has also reported is that Rolex is engaged in a programme of market manipulation ahead of launching a new volume from the Geneva factory. Unsold watches were being repurchased from retailers, the newspaper said, and contracts with traditional component manufacturers and suppliers were being terminated. In their place, Rolex is planning to control all parts of the watch production line, adding another 300 workers, and turning out "an even larger output of timepieces". Reporting a year ago by Le Temps, the leading business newspaper of Geneva, indicated that in 2008, an official check of Rolex’s production suggested 770,000 pieces per year for sales revenue estimated at 4.5 billion Swiss francs (currently $4.9 billion). That year, the production rate was said to be up by 33% from 1999. Rolex’s share of the Swiss market in production of timepieces was 16.1%, but almost all (95%) of the output was sold for export. Geographically, according to Le Temps, Rolex sales went one-third to Europe, one-third to the Americas, and one-third to Asia. It appears that growth rates in Russia for the European market and China for the Asia market are accelerating, but the details are guesswork. Watchmakers in Europe say that Rolex is preparing to put on the market one million watches per annum. That represents a jump of almost 30%. To sell this many, the company is aiming, not so much at taking market share from other luxury watch brands, but rather at existing Rolex owners. Across the world, watchmakers and jewellers, who have held licences to repair and service Rolexes for many years, report that their contracts are being terminated, and they are being cut off from the supply of certified Rolex spare parts and components on which the quality of the watch and its guarantee depend. (Remember this was in 2007/2008, it is much worse now) In their place, Rolex is promoting a reduced number of its own service centres. Trade sources say that Rolex has issued a global policy, requiring these centres to lift the price for servicing watches brought in by current owners, so that the cost of repair is at least half or closer to three-quarters of the price of a new watch. In Melbourne, Australia, for example, the estimate for routine servicing for a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Air King (circa 1970) is almost $1,200. In London, the price is the equivalent in pounds. By contrast, in a mid-size town in France, the licensed watchmaker still in business with a Rolex licence charges just €200 for the same job, including parts The licensed watchmakers of Geneva were charging an equivalent t price two years ago. But no more. The French watchmaker isn’t going to last long in the Rolex business, he says. That is because a flood of new Rolex timepieces is coming, and to assure that they will be sold, the Rolex strategy is to send as many old Rolexes to the scrap heap where they will compete with Asian-made replicas and counterfeits. Rolex clone movements, as they are called in the spam market, are currently priced at around $150. Full fakes or replicas can be bought for between $39 and $69. Rolex is managing its cut-throat marketing strategy in strict secrecy, and it is the secrecy which preserves the luxury cachet, at least for the time being Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/privatizing-rolex--the-fake-tells-a-truer-tale-2011-3#ixzz1xPnLG846   1675 bracelets and hoods: Oyster 7206 58 7836 258 78360 580 Jubilee 6251 55 62510 H 550 (555 is not correct - it is for thinner watches) - the correct bracelet will have 50 marked at the end and have 550 end pieces. These pieces accommodate a correct - thicker springbar as well. An american made jubilee with oval links would work as well. Old Rolex from 1960's or before used 304L stainless Later models used mostly 316L. Rolex started using 904L in their cases in the mid to late 1980s. The Sub-Date used 316 steel in all models up to and including the 16800. The 168000, introduced ca. 1988 was the first Sub-Date to use 904L. The change to 904L came later in the other models but it started in the late 80s with the Sub-Date. A watch with a case number of 8.5 mill. must be engraved at 12 "ORIG ROLEX DESIGN" and not "REGISTERED DESIGN" so usually watches with this case range have both engravings ("ORIG ROLEX DESIGN" at 12 and "STAINLESS STEEL" at 6). The lack of both engravings is a bad clue...furthermore the fonts used for reference and case numbers are NOT absolutely consistent to others seen in the same case range for various models ( GMT/explorers).   Some of the original 5512 dials are smaller than later models...on an original 5512 pcg chapter dial there is often a correct and original gap....if there is a service dial there is no gap. 8xxxxx 5512 all require LARGER dials. Any regular 5512 matte dial will have a gap in those cases. Thus for a service dial to fit correctly, it must be of a larger diameter. Early 5512 cases were made to accommodate larger dials (large dials = no gap, small dials = gap). So if a service dial on an early case does NOT have a gap...it's a larger diameter dial which was made specifically for this case. Silver Date wheels did not come on red Subs during the late 1960's or early 1970's (they were white). 1016 springbar p/n...23-9293 1680 springbar p/n...23-9291 5512/13 Bezel retaining ring pn 319-5512 Crystal retaining ring part numbers... 1675 = 319-1675 5513 = 319-5513 etc Star Time Tall Bezels (sapphire) for Men's Rolex DateJust: OD: 34.56mm ID: 30.42mm Thick: 2.75mm Smooth bezel : OD: 34.58 mm ID: 30.40 mm Thick: 2.8mm Weight: 14060 - 127 grams 16610 - 135 grams 16613 - 148 grams 16618 - 175 grams 1680 - 117 grams From the 'net... 1530/60/70 cal Rolex movements... For what it's worth, the rotor bridges on all 15xx series movements are all interchangeable. It's possible to see a 1530 with a 1570 rotor bridge, or a 1520 with a 1555 rotor bridge, or any other strange combination. In this instance, the movement is actually a 1575 (for which the 1570 rotor bridge is correct), and it's there because something unfortunate happened to the original (probably rust). The "D" prefix in serial numbers of 15 series movements, indicates that the movement was equipped with a date mechanism (the 1575 is the "date" version of the 1570). "President" day/date models (1555, 1556, etc.), have movements with serial numbers that begin with "DD," which means day/date. chronometer movements intended for standard Oyster Perpetuals, etc., which didn't have dates, have serial numbers with no letter prefixes. Milgauss movement serial numbers begin with the letter M.   Is the genuine watch list price really justified...or are even Replica watch prices overcharged? A genuine watch IS overpriced at list price if none or very few will sell at list price while the exact same watch will sell in quantity for 20%, 30% or 40% etc less than list price. Example...try to sell an Invicta at list price. They will fly at 70% or 80% off though. A watch is not overpriced if the entire production or most of it will sell at list price. Some buyers will pay list price for a watch and others will not buy without a discount, that's just the way it is. Some buyers believe list price is Ok because it makes the item seem to be more valuable (to them) while others will not pay list price because the watch is not worth as much as list price (to them). I remember reading on one of the watch forums a few years ago about a guy who had his mind set to buy an omega SMP and had found one at an AD for $1700. He was going to buy it the next day. That evening he and his wife went to Costco and while the wife was shopping for groceries, the guy went to look at watches and found a new in box omega smp for $1350. Which one did he buy? The one for $1700 because he said the lower price at Cosco tarnished his image of the SMP. The minute he sized the bracelet and put the watch on...then he owned a $1000 watch no matter how much he paid.   What Watch Did James Bond Wear? Dr. No……………………………………......……..Rolex Submariner From Russia With Love ……………...….Rolex Submariner Goldfinger.………………………………………..Rolex Submariner You Only Live Twice ……………………….Rolex Submariner Thunderball ……………………………...…....Rolex Submariner and Brietling On Her Majesty's Secret Service..…Rolex Submariner and Rolex Chronograph Diamonds Are Forever …………………..No watch seen The Man With the Golden Gun ……..Rolex Submariner Live & Let Die ………………………………….Rolex Submariner and Pulsar The Spy Who Loved Me ………………..Seiko For Your Eyes Only ………………………..Seiko Octopussy …………………………………..….Seiko A View to a Kill ………………………..……. Seiko The Living Daylights ………………..…..Rolex Submariner License to Kill …………………………… ...Rolex Submariner Goldeneye …………………………………...Omega Seamaster Professional Tomorrow Never Dies ………………..Omega Seamaster Professional The World is Not Enough …………..Omega Seamaster Professional Die Another Day ………………………....Omega Seamaster Professional Casino Royale……………………………...Omega Planet Ocean and Omega Seamaster Pofessional Quantum of Solace……………… …….Omega Planet Ocean STAINLESS SUBMARINER DATE USA retail prices 1973 $385 1975 $470 1977 $585 1978 $875 1980 $950 1982 $1175 1984 $1325 1986 $1575 1988 $1975 1989 $2500 1992 $2850 1996 $3350 2004 $4250 2005 $4525 2006 $5175 2008 $5850 2009 $6000 2010 $7250 2010 $7375 2012 $8500 2019 $8550 2020 $8950 8.3% AVG INCREASE PER YEAR Price projections based on 8.3% annual increase... 2025 $24388 (!!) 2030 $36335 (!!!) T? or F? Not everyone will stare at your Rolex with envy. I'd worry more about spontaneous human combustion than watch envy. Rolex watch: It takes a year to make one. Rolex buyer: There is one born every minute. History lesson: The two most important events in all of human history were the invention of beer and the invention of the wheel. Once beer was discovered, it required grain and that was the beginning of agriculture. Neither the glass bottle nor aluminum can had been invented yet, so early humans stayed close to the brewery. That's how villages were formed. The wheel was invented for humans to get to the beer if they did not live close to the brewery. And there you have it.   Comments welcomed. Is anyone out there?
  8. "How can i get hands for TC sub? Are they superlumed?" I bought some crowns etc from TC when he was active but no hands, maybe someone on the forum knows the source of the hands he used. I have used hands from a few different suppliers...ST, Clark, Yuki etc and honestly none had very impressive glow in the dark. Hands... One thing that keeps hands looking new from the original packaging to mounting them on the watch is to handle the hands with 'Rodico' or a similar watch putty if possible and use 'Rodico' etc to hold them during installation. Touching them with bare fingers can leave hard to remove smudges and if you smudge the lume it is usually done for. Do not use tweezers to handle or position them and invest in a hand press or a set of plastic tipped hand pushers and put a layer of 'Saran Wrap' or a small section of a plastic bag etc between the tool and hand when mounting them to prevent scratches. Scratches on hands detract from the overall appearance and are near impossible to remove. Be careful if you have to bend a hand for clearance because the lume can easily crack. In short...watch hands are a royal pain to deal with.
  9. "Nobody cares about the 5513 other than collectors- it went out of production in 1990- 30 years ago." The BIG watch craze seems to be losing steam. Smaller Retro models are making a comeback. Many classic styles have reappeared on new models. Tooter for example. I bet there would be a lot more vintage rlx around if they did not cost so much and parts were not so scarce and expensive. Probably a lot of ref 1500, rough 16xx DJ etc parted out. "One important thing to remember is Startime isn't in to replicas- they're a supply house." Maybe so but they still stock steel submariner cases after 10 years and solid gold DJ etc cases after 20 years. Someone is buying them. An 18K DJ case from ST in 2001 was $825 ($270 gold) and now they are $3975 ($1500 gold) but they must still sell one now and then. As long as the patents/copyrights have expired and the cases are unsigned, they are not really replicas. Replacements maybe. All imho. "Even if I had the money to purchase all original 5513's, I would still want to build one that I can wear in the saltwater where I spend many of my days fishing, paddleboarding, and scuba diving." Me too. I put my Accutron II away for a while and started wearing an MBK '5512'. I keep it dry though, mainly because I know the dummy who stuck it together. BTW, anyone watch the Harry Bosch series on Amazon Prime? Good series. He wears a late model no date submariner. The Harry Bosch books by Michael Connelly are good too. Imho.
  10. The extended outer ends on later bracelet end links are supposed to keep the last link from turning up under the hood too far and scratching the top of the link on the hood.
  11. There is nothing special about the rlx 15xx and the main thing is not to lose or break anything because of the parts $ituation. Plan on replacing the mainspring and maybe a worn part or two if it has been used for a long time without service. Generic swiss made mainsprings are Ok because most of them are made by the same outfit (Générale Ressorts). Many other generic replacement parts are Ok too but the purists go nuts when they are mentioned...even when their watch contains a few that they are not aware of. Take note how the MS is installed (direction of the coil winding) and be careful not to load the new one in 'bassackwards'. Load the MS using the frame it comes in and be sure it does not creep out of the barrel at the outside edge when installing it or you will need a MS winder to get it back in the barrel. You can keep the MS arbor from flying away when putting it back in the barrel after the MS is installed by putting a tap 10 (.9mm) screw in the threaded hole in the arbor to hold it by...a stem etc will work. Q...What wears out? A...Parts under the most stress such as the auto weight axle and intermediate wheel pivots in the autowind assembly and a reverser now and then. Look closely where the mainspring arbor passes through the main plate on the dial side and be sure the hole is not worn out of round because this will allow the MS barrel to run out of level, drag on the plates, and rob MS power reserve. The back side has a bushing and does not cause much trouble. Q...The fix? A...Peen around the hole with a three corner punch to shrink the hole (a shortcut, not a good fix) or install a bushing...a hassle. Hopefully this is all Ok and nothing will be needed. Get a few small storage cups to put the various parts in along with the screws that attach them to the movement and keep them separated...auto wind parts in one, train wheels in one, bridges with screws in one etc. Pay particular attention to the screws, especially the smaller screws like the two that hold the autowind assembly together, the two that hold the set bridge in place, the two that hold the date jumper to the main plate etc as they all look alike but are different in detail. Make sure the two short screws that hold the crown wheel in place do not get mixed up with any other small screws. Keep the sweep second tension spring screw with the tension spring. Be careful when removing the sweep second wheel before disassembly to not bend the wheel or pivot it is pressed down on...it's a light press fit and will come off easily. Put paper or something under the wheel when removing it to keep from scratching the plate. Be extremely careful with the hairspring, pallet fork, PF arbors, and escape wheel. Be sure you r/r the 'Duofix' escape wheel jewels the correct way (the keepers do not come out of the setting). Etc, etc. Send a pm with a mailing address and I'll send a parts list, oiling chart, and service tips. https://watchguy.co.uk/service-rolex-1601-calibre-1570/ https://onatelier.co.uk/rolex-calibre-1570-oyster-perpetual-date-1500-service https://mb.nawcc.org/threads/1530-60-70-cal-rolex-movements.774/ https://www.acrotec.ch/en/companies/generale-ressorts/
  12. "Very nice! OP, what is the total cost for the build? If you dont mind sharing. I have build 16233 with the roman irovy dial and it cost me almost a gen price! Considering most of the materials are gen, ie gen bezel, crown, crystal, hands, dial, crown tube." I sold an all original 16233 in about 80/85% condition April 2019 for $2800 to a watch trader...the last remaining quick set rlx. No more modern rlx for me unless a real bargain falls my way. I paid $1000 for it January 2008 and never wore the watch. At $2800 there was $200 to $500 profit left in it for the next guy. I see them priced for $3500 and up on eBay but it can be a den of crooks and you might never see your $$ or the watch again. Besides that, someone can swap rusty/worn out parts from their watch to your watch and return the watch for some reason, maybe claiming it was rusty/worn out when they got it. It would be very, very hard to prove what happened and the seller almost always loses these cases. After the fees (if everything went Ok) you still need to sell the same watch for $3000+ to get $2800 on eBay. I figure it would cost $1500 to $2000 to put a tt sapphire dj together now with swiss eta, aftmkt case, used gold bezel and dial, aftmkt ss/14k bracelet etc. You can use a genuine or aftmkt 3135 date disc for a DWO on eta projects as the 3135 date turns the right way for an eta but you can not use a date disc made for a rlx 15xx or 3035 on an eta 28xx. You will need to trim the teeth out of the inside of the 3135 date disc. In reality, having $1500 or $2000 in a tutone swisseta DJ with solid gold bez/mid links is not too bad if you wear it 5 or 7 years. Compare that to RWC's $900+ fee plus parts to fix a genuine watch if it needs service, is dropped, or gets wet inside. Drop an eta 28xx and it is usually Ok. Otoh I pressed a rotor weight back on the bearing (swisseta 2836) last week from a drop of about 4 feet onto a hard tile floor and that was all it needed. Modern rlx might not be as rugged. Why no more rlx QS? Because of the parts situation and absurd watch/parts prices. No genuine rlx for me unless they are about 35 or 40 cents on the dollar of the current selling price. Bought a 90% 14000M for $1000 (no b/p) a while back but imho I paid too much. Tried to get it for $800 but no go. Imho 90% = full length bracelet with no bracelet screws damaged by r/r, no scratches deeper than hairline, no crystal chips etc...basically looks new on the arm...or lower leg.
  13. "...buying a VN caseback probably will cost more than your JKF cost. There's probably other improvements that you could make to improve your JKF that would give you more bang for the buck than changing out the caseback." "The caseback does seem to be an odd area of the watch to spend serious money on." Agree. Many of the cartel submariner/SD casebacks are made for cases with the gasket mounted in a groove in the case. This is correct for a 1665 but all genuine spec 5512/13, 1680 casebacks have the gasket mounted in a groove in the caseback. All six (6) of my Raffles submariner type casebacks have 30.43 to 30.45mm OD threads (measured with a precision digital caliper) and are made for cases with gaskets mounted in the case. All are 35.45mm OD or very close. Afaik the OD of a genuine 1665 CB is 36.9mm, do not know the thread size, probably the same but it's a guess. The CB gasket size is 32.5mm x 1.0mm, same as 5512/13, 1680, 1655, 1675 (oem spec 1655/1675 case gaskets are mounted in the case). Raffles site shows the thread size to be 30.3mm on their submariner type casebacks (30.3mm ??, all mine are 30.43 to 30.45mm). Almost all Raffles casebacks = cartel type parts. I used 'almost' as a disclaimer because I only have six. The main outer difference between oem spec casebacks and most cartel casebacks is the cartel casebacks are made for cases with the gasket mounted in the case and are a little thinner around the outer edge than oem spec submariner/SD casebacks. The outer profile can vary from close to oem to not so close.
  14. "have replaced some stems. I first mounted the crown on the stem then I put it in the movement then I measured the distance from the end of the tube to the crown all the way in that distance, I then cut the stem and always went well. i hope this is the correct way." Yes your method works fine. Some screw down crowns can cause trouble and the part about the crown 'declutching' is fairly important and much of the reason for my windy reply.
  15. "Install the crown to the movement stem- you'll need to get the stem to right length- not too long or too short." Good advice. I have to 'fess up. I admit to cutting quite a few stems too short over the years...but there is a quickie fix if it is not cut too short. If the stem is 1mm or so too short, you can stuff some solid core solder chips (not acid core) in the crown tube where the stem screws in to add length to the assembly. I would not call this a 'botch job' but more like an emergency fix...many pro repair guys do this trick but since it does not show, most will not say anything about it. You can cut slivers of solder off the roll with a razor blade. You can remove the solder with a small drill bit in a pin vise if needed later on but some usually stays in the threads and can cause the stem to get in a bind...but there is a fix for that too: Cut a tiny notch longways in the end of a spare stem and run it in and out a few times to clean the solder out of the threads like a thread tap does. The 'short stem' fix will always depend on the crown tube having enough threads to begin with, about one and a half or two turns is probably the minimum after the fix. 'Crown tube' = the little threaded tube sticking out of the crown, not to be confused with the case tube. If the stem is too long it can bind the crown when screwed down and could damage the main plate or slide the movement\dial over to one side. On glued on dials it can break the dial away from the calendar spacer etc if there is enough room for the movement to slide over. If there is enough room between the movement/movement spacer and case, the movement could slide over far enough to jam the hour wheel hub against the dial hole and stop the watch. All kinds of little mishaps can occur and many are hard to spot. Something else...be sure there is enough room between the case tube threads and the crown when unscrewed to allow the crown to 'declutch' when it is pushed in to start the threads. Otherwise the crown will be winding the watch when screwing the crown down making it hard to start, hard to turn, plus putting spring pressure on the stem pilot when it turns. The pilot is small and is not designed to turn under pressure. This can also wear the seating surface on the main plate. This is also why you should not push the crown in toward the case when manually winding watches. Pilot = the sharp point on the stem. I know all this is boring but it is better to know about it now than when something goes wrong and you have to start looking for the cause.
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