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automatico last won the day on July 19 2017

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  1. Some MBK case tube info...

    This is from a message I sent to 'bobandshawn' 12-13-17 pertaining to his post about MBK case tubes in the General Discussion section: I have 4 MBK cases made in the last 5 to 7 years and they all have the correct oem spec threads in the case (3.0mm x .35mm). 'The Catch' (there is always a catch with replica parts)...the MBK case tube gasket seat cut in the case was not oem spec on any of the cases so they either have to me machined to spec or an alternate gasket used. I used an alternate gasket because it was easier and I do not plan to put the watches in water. The MBK cases are 5512, 5513 and two 1680...they are all absolutely identical except for reference numbers, all have dial window openings made for 26.0mm 5512/13 dials and need to be cut a little bit bigger if a 26.5mm 1680 spec dial is used so it will not be shielded by the reflector (rehaut) because it can shave the outer tips of the minute markers off. Q...What is the fix to make an oem spec gasket seat? A...Cut the gasket seat in a milling machine or drill press to spec with the appropriate cutter bit. I have a milling machine and cutter but never took the time to machine any of the cases. I looked for the cutter in order to give the size but could not find it right away. As usual. note: I finally found the end mill, it is 4.0mm and the base of the oem spec case tube (ST) is 3.9mm where the gasket seats against the tube. I do not remember what the alternate gasket size was but it came from a miniature O ring assortment. What you need to be careful about is to make sure the gasket is not cut or squeezed too much when the case tube is tightened down. I use case tubes from Star Time as they are high quality and oem spec. Something else...another member sent his case to me a while back (not an MBK case) to have an Athaya 'no dot' 7mm replica crown and tube set fitted. The threads in the case were oem spec (3.0mm x .35mm) but the Athaya tube was not oem spec at all (where it screwed into the case) so we ordered three aftmkt 'no dot' case tubes from WSO990. The WSO case tubes were oem spec except ('The Catch' again!) the threads on the tube where it screws into the case were the correct pitch and depth but the outside diameter was a hair too big to screw into the case without the chance of binding or breaking. Q...What is the fix? A...Polish the OD of the threads down with Simichrome polish using a stiff 1 inch buff wheel on a Dremel tool, it did not take very much. Q...So...What's 'The Catch'? A...The Athaya crown fits the WSO990 case tube just fine after polishing the tube but the 'telescope' clutch in the crown was not sealed to the crown cap and the crown cap gasket did not do its job and allowed water to flood the case. Imho aftmkt crowns are not always good to use if you plan to get the watch wet. Case tubes are an exception and many of the current aftmkt tubes are as good or superior to oem, especially aftmkt stainless 5.3mm case tubes compared to oem nickel silver tubes...imho. Also...the 'no dot' Athaya crown will not work with a standard 'three dot' modern type triplock case tube even after 'serious modification' because the 'three dot' tube is a lot taller. I have not tried to shorten one at the top but after you cut the top down to the threads, the base of the tube below the threads will still be too tall because of the space needed to cut a gasket groove on the lower part of the tube for the 'dust and grit' gasket. A genuine 7mm 'no dot' case tube should have worked just fine with the Athaya crown but like the cutter bit, I could not find one at the time. Still have not found them.
  2. Fake Yes or No?

    Slow times for the forum so I wrote some fodder to ponder: Interesting... http://www.mwrforum.net/forums/showthread.php?81296-Rolex-1680-5513-1675-mid-cases-with-erm-big-problems&s=307e5c82219e956072b42b2a59284afb I would say the cases are probably genuine but without legible serial numbers it does not matter a whole lot as most buyers will claim Fake! just to get the lowest price. I have seen a lot (and owned a few) old rolex watches with the serial/reference numbers worn away by the hoods and it is usually easy to tell the watches were original to begin with. Now that 'near perfect' replica cases are being made, this is much more of a problem. Would a high grade unsigned vintage style replica rolex case be worth a lot less that the same supposedly genuine case with no numbers? I would say 'No' (in the real world) without absolute proof of some sort that the 'no number genuine case' is 'genuine' for sure...and absolute proof would be very hard to come by. But...just the hope that the no number case could be genuine can boost the value. Something else to think about...take a 'naturally aged' low mileage YukiPhong 5512/13 case with a 1970s serial number, genuine dial, movement, crown with crisp bevels, thick lugs etc and many 'experts' will bust it as Fake! right off the bat (naturally aged = aged by use, not by attacking it with hammer and tongs). Why? Probably because of the excellent condition. They can not help it because they are conditioned to do so. Take the same YukiPhong watch, aged and all with a '444' serial number and many of the same 'experts' will pass it as a genuine rolex recased watch. Why? Because it is a '444'. Detail differences can be explained because "New '444' cases are not 100% the same as they were in the 1970s, everyone knows that." Perception is reality in the watch biz. How else could the swissies get $25k for a $2000 watch? Why is perception reality? Because it is all we have.
  3. Nostalgia...

    Found this internet forum 'For Sale' ad (can't remember which forum) from March 7, 2000 when looking up my WLD deal info: "A watchmaker friend of mine has about 50 or so empty Rolex watch cases. The movements were gutted for Hong Kong made all gold Presidents. Most of the cases are ref 15000. If you email me with what cases you are looking for, I can try to see if he has it & then email you back with info. I will only choose good quality cases. I can have them buffed for $30 each. I would sell these for around $120 to $150 buffed. The cases come with bezel & crown & crystal." I bought some cases for similar prices around this time at watch shows (w/bezel, crystal, no crown) but I got 162xx DJ type. The watch buyer/case seller guys used the base movement (either 3035 or 3135) and converted them to Day/Date models using non genuine (China made?) DD conversions and dials. I saw some of them for sale at watch shows and they looked pretty good. They went for $4000 and up depending on the bezel and dial. Similar watches with ETA 2834 were $2000 to $2500 at the time. Gold was around $270 per troy oz in 2000. I bought a steel sapphire lady DJ case from a case seller on the 'net back then and the case was $80 for a quick set model with bezel, sapphire crystal, no crown...delivered. The first case was not as good as described and the guy said to keep it and sent me another one (free) that looked like new...a two-fer. They were making 18k lady models too. Lady 18kyg rolex watches always looked to me like a quartz lady Seiko. Ladies would probably be better off with a Seiko because it will still be running the next morning...but it ain't a ro-lex. Ha! Never had much luck with lady rolex watches. How come? 'Cause there ain't enough rotor to crank the motor.
  4. Longest you have waited for a rep?

    "Automatico wins." I lied. I looked it up and the WLD fiasco started December 5, 2002 at 8:37am est so it has only been about 15 years. I'll return the prize.
  5. Longest you have waited for a rep?

    Seventeen years. Still waiting on WLD (watchloverdavid) to send a couple watches. 😂
  6. Anyone ever wonder...

    ...why vintage rolex Frankensteins are now a 'viable alternative' to the genuine article? Maybe this has something to do with it: Rolex Historic Restoration department Has anyone dealt with Rolex Historic Restoration Department in Geneva? If so, any suggestions? I need a dial for an early datejust, and I will be in Geneva at the end of the month. So, I called Rolex. I was told: 1) I can talk to the watchmaker at the front desk to verify that the watch is real (no big deal, as I know it is) 2) An ESTIMATE costs 1000 CHF ($1,000) - just for an estimate! (1000 CHF = $1000.03 USD) 3) Restoration will probably run between 15,000 and 30,000 CHF And all I need is a DIAL - I don't want anything else to be touched. I really had my heart set on having Rolex help me, but, honestly, for that much money, I can buy a mint early 4467 and pull the dial. No Parts For You! Q...Getting a GMT of mine serviced and my watchmaker has informed me that Rolex has stopped supplying GMT specific parts to parts account holders. Can anybody else confirm? A1...Both Omega and Rolex have stopped supplying parts to third parties. Companies like Startime and Otto Frei no longer sell any Genuine parts. Both companies are also tightening up the parts supply chains to AD's and Private Watchmakers. They have closed the supply chain to many small watchmakers and AD's. Not all AD's and not all Privates, but the ability to get parts has become significantly more difficult in recent months and only going to get more difficult... A 2...I am told no more movement parts for GMTs along with Daytona, Oysterquartz ,Sky Dweller or Yachmaster II. For Sale: A NOS never installed 1675 GMT tritium hand set. No corrosion or missing paste. $775.00 shipped world wide   Up for sale tropic 22 Superdomed for Explorer 1016, Nos and sealed, $450. Up for sale early pair of 50 endlinks for 1675 PCG GMT, Mint used conditions, $390. Up for sale 1655 Explorer II Bezel, Service Type, Flawless, $490.-   FS: very nice faded MFF-insert for 1675. 5Up for sale is this nice faded MegaFatFont insert. 1. My price is 1800 EUR net to me, incl. worldwide shipping. 2. Faded Fat Font bezel for 1675 16750 - $1600   FS: Beautiful faded fat fonts Rolex GMT 1675 insert. Asking $2,250 net by wire shipped worldwide.   FS : R O L E X 1675 GMT Date Wheel US $350.   A Rolex MK4 bezel and case back for Explorer II 1655. Both are in nice used condition. BEZEL PRICE $750.00 shipped. (case back sold, price deleted in listing)   FS: Cal.1520 Auto-Wind Module, Complete. Near Mint. Recently serviced and in near-mint condition, this auto-wind module is fully functional and ready to be installed. $525, including domestic shipping in the US. For sale is a Rolex 1520 movement. Very clean. Movement is complete except for one part (small part that clips the rotor on from the inside). Price is $790 Firm. (not bad at all compared to the AW assembly alone...different sellers) Genuine Rolex leather bracelet (strap) and 18k solid gold buckle - $700.   You are looking at a very rare set of ref #1019 milgauss hands. Beautiful mellow patina. $2300.   FS: SuperLuminova Submariner 1680 Dial for sale. PRICE: $990 with free US shipping.   FS: Mint 1016 tritium dial + hands - 1300 EUR shipped worldwide.   FS Rare Big Logo First type Oyster rivet 6636 SS ,12 link, bracelet marked 1.59 with 65 end link in good conditions! My request is 4500 euro shipped WW.   I have for sale this rare early elastic(spring load)Rolex rivet bracelet from 1957(inside clasp stamped 4 57) with 65 end pieces. Just back from refinishing/polishing/tighten. 5+7 links in total. The links are tight, very nice overall. Asking $5,000 by wire transfer.    FS: Extra rare Rolex straight end Rivet bracelet from 1950. 19mm Rolex straight end spring load Rivet bracelet. Asking $3,750 by wire shipped worldwide.   For sale is a 1969 7206 rivet bracelet. Price is $1,290 firm.   FS - rolex 7206 in straight ends - 20mm, clasp in 67's - 10 links with normal stretch - $2800.   Rare 9315 rolex pat. pend bracelet, 11 links with limited stretch, end links in 285, specially for early 1665 mark 1/2 models. 70s on clasp code, offer $2900 include shipping. All postings are from VRM, a few edits for clarity/typos, none on prices. Italics are my comments.
  7. Lowered expectations...

    I have spent the last 10 years away from doing hardly any work at all on genuine rolex watches belonging other people because of the 'no parts for you' situation but have recently been talked into working on some 'outsider' watches with cal 15xx movements purchased by 'watch friends'. (With friends like this...Ha!) Have also looked in a lot of genuine watches lately. So...what's new? 1...There is a lot more junk now than there was 10 years ago. 2...A lot more botch jobs are showing up, probably due to high repair prices. 3...A lot of worn out movement parts are still being used in a lot of watches...reversers, rotor axles etc, probably because of 'npfy'. One example: Looked at a 1601 DJ with the hands out of correspondence (hour hand at 12, minute hand at 30 minute mark). It had been dropped, hit on the back, and the minute hand fell down a little bit. The owner cranked the time around later on trying to set it and moved the minute hand out of whack. He also said he had to hand wind it (before the drop) because it would no longer auto wind. He bought it a few months ago and the seller claimed it had been 'recently cleaned'. It looks clean and the balance has good motion so that is probably true. There was a screw jammed between the winding rotor and the case back. Q...Where did it come from? A...It was one of the lower autowind plate screws. Q...How did it get out? A...The whole a/w assembly was loose on the movement along with every other screw I checked from the back side except for the two casing screws. Q...How come? A...Either whoever put it together did not tighten the screws enough or the owner has been mowing, riding his H-D (Ha!) or doing something with a whole lot of shakin' goin' on. Who knows? I'll ask but they never know...or tell. My takeaway from seeing the junk and botch jobs is: 1...If you have a nice genuine vintage rolex or Frankenstein with a good genuine movement...keep it because the pickings are getting very slim and much more expensive. 2...Some of the work is not as good as it used to be, maybe because so many of the better repair guys have left the trade. Maybe they left because of 'npfy'. 3...There ain't no mo affordable vintage rolex parts.
  8. Case closed. Now reopened...

    A few answers: "Are you doing this because of stem height?" Yes. Thought about machining the dial seat a little bit deeper but it may make the case deck too thin so I will try this first. "Why don't you just use a felsa 4007?" Do not have one and am familiar with eta. I have put a few Frankenetas together and they usually work Ok. Most of the time. Thought about an eta 2450. May try one later on but they are 10.5" and the 28xx is 11.5" so I would need to whittle out another spacer. "So, you gonna make a "low beat" 2824? I've never gotten that bored..." I refuse to be outsmarted by a case. This time. The last 20 times do not count. This is all JMB's fault. Having to use a movement no one ever heard of...eta 282446. Btw...the combo movement is together and running.
  9. NEW rep Daytona with 904L steel and a 4130 clone movement!

    There is a lot of mystery about 904L. It goes for $900 to $2500 per ton depending on how much you buy so at $2000 a ton it would make the metal in one watch cost about $2 or so allowing for waste. The more you buy, the cheaper it gets and 904L is nothing special at all. I have some seamless 904L tubing that I had cut for making bezels and a foot of it was a couple dollars. It costs a lot more to machine it than to buy it.
  10. Case closed. Now reopened...

    The JMB '1016' case that is. Finally got around to putting one together. Here is what I decided to use (by trial and error): Swiss eta 2824 plates Swiss eta 2846 (day/date) balance assembly, escape wheel, pallet fork and all train wheels. Remove all D/D parts. Put 2846 balance complete in 2824. Use taller Swiss eta 2846 cp and hour wheel. Standard calendar spacer if needed. I'll take them apart and put one combo movement together and see how it goes and post the results. It will take a while because I have other things to do. PS: Somebody post something, it's getting awful quiet around here.
  11. Oris goes back in time well................

    "IMHO a bit pricey @ $1499 USDs for SW200 but I like!" "Me likey but not enough to spend that kind of coin on it. For that price it's competing with Glycine, Tissot, Waltham and Fortis Marinemaster Super Compressors. Those are dangerous odds." "can't get my arms around the price point as we all agree but this look on the nylon strap well I could get stupid one night..." Yep. I can not climb on their bandwagon, they cost too much...that and the fact their name begins with the letter O. When I think of Oris, I remember all the pin lever junk they cranked out for so many years. Maybe they could come out with a similar watch in a pot metal case with a 1 jewel movement for $79.
  12. Is it is or is it ain't?

    Saw this 1675 for sale on VRF and the bleacher bums bombed it. The rounded lug tops, third class sandpaper job on the lug tips, and no wear on the mid case between the lugs do not help authenticity imho but I can not help but wonder who is this bird referring to when he said: "Well known fake font. I'd like to have better pictures but I got my own idea..." I assume he is referring to the numbers/letters between the lugs. I am not well versed on replica cases because 'close enough' is Ok for me but the remark made me curious.
  13. "I have seen a pair of these at 80usd on Ebay !" ST and a few other USA supply houses have swiss made spring bars identical to oem for less than $2 each. They should be available from watch material supply houses in France too. Your watch probably had lower quality China made spring bars...they are $29.95 for 90 assorted sizes from ST. Rolex does not make their own spring bars. http://www.startimesupply.com/merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=1&Category_Code=1D_Rolex_SBars_Asst&Product_Code=RP23-16613S
  14. Three of my watch-fixer friends were Accutron specialists from the 1960s up until they started disappearing from wrists. All three used the same method to clean dirty index wheels on old 'Rattytrons' without taking them apart (me too): Run a small drop of hairspring cleaner (One Dip etc) down a needle or small oiler onto the index wheel a time or two to rinse the dirt away (do not touch the index wheel teeth if at all possible). If it hums and just will not run, this may get it going. If it does not hum, check the batt (making sure it is 'upside down'), contacts, coils, and circuit. If the watch runs up until the date is changing and stalls out but the second hand still moves (218), it is usually the canon pinion...turn it over. How? remove the hands and dial, then remove the hour wheel and look at it...easy to see how to do it. The 218 quick sets the date, many do not know it and this is why so many canon pinions are loose. Do Not turn the sweep second hand backwards with a brush, tool etc when working around the watch with the movement out of the case or the crystal removed, it might/will bend the index and pawl jewel springs (the springs were supposedly made from hairspring material). Do not leave a running 218 'hacked' for long. If you do much work on them, you will probably need a microscope...and lay off coffee and energy drinks. A regular 214 can be turned into a pretty good Spaceview using Clark's crystal and hands. Sometimes you will need a 'skeletonized' minute chapter ring though. I learned enough about A-trons to get by but will not fool with one now unless I have to. Trivia: Remember what Crocodile Dundee said: "That 218 is not an Accutron. This 214 is an Accutron!" Don Johnson wore a steel 214 Spaceview on 'Nash Bridges'. http://members.iinet.net.au/~fotoplot/acc.htm
  15. Second chance...

    I have posted a few times about the old DW submariner cases with the rounded sides as being 'Pot Belly' cases because the sides are slightly rounded like a DJ making them not as popular as better cartel or MBK cases. Things change but cartel cases are still hit or miss from one order to another, MBK cases are hard to find, and Yuki/Phong cases ain't cheap and ain't getting any cheaper. Well...it turns out DW cases may not be so bad after all. I have been seeing a lot of genuine 5512/13/1680 watches with Pot Belly sides caused by wear and not-so-pro polishing and most are being priced waaay up there now. Examples: http://www.network54.com/Forum/207673/message/1501595158/FS-+Rolex+Submariner+ref.+5513+‘Meters+First’ http://www.network54.com/Forum/207673/message/1454128322/fs-+meters+first+1680+tropical+red+sub+with+box+and+papers+-+%2426%2C000 ($26,000 Shaaazam!!) So...if you have a DW case hidden away in a drawer it might be worth a second chance to make a 'high mileage' project watch or to put up for sale. Matter of fact they would make a very good 'aged' project watch without much aging at all. Pros: high quality finish reasonable prices (usually) case back stamping usually Ok, some have no stamping at all good fit with genuine rlx 1570/75 date movement and 26.5mm dial Cons: case neck usually a hair too small but by using an oem spec bezel kit and swapping aftmkt crystals around, a fix can usually be found case back threads may be oem 30.9mm or non oem 30.4mm, both having the same stamping all cases (all I have seen) are 1680 spec even if stamped 5512/13 (26.5mm dial opening) case letters/numbers between lugs can be from Ok to awful to none at all originally came with spring wire bezels (all I have seen) crown guards aka 'rat ears' need a little attention lug holes need to be drilled