Jump to content


VIP Member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by automatico

  1. "I can't even afford the fakes." Everyone knows many things are overpriced in life. Imho one is 'fine whiskey' and another is Patek Philippe watches. Proof? Not 100% proof, but after a few drinks of 86 proof 'fine whiskey' a bartender could mix 40% mulepizz with the whiskey and the person partaking of the spirit would probably not know the difference. So...maybe going from 86 proof to about 50 proof is proof enough. Patek Philippe watches are known for two things in modern times: 1...Being pricey. 2...Being fragile. Proof? For argument's sake, let's say appearence is 50% and reliability is the other 50% of the difference between a genuine Pat Phil watch and a replica. Everyone already knows they are expensive. Not 100% proof of course, but the drunk mentioned above could have his genuine PP Nautilus swapped in the bar for a high grade replica. He would probably not know the difference until he drops it on the sidewalk while staggering to an Uber and the winding rotor is still attached and the watch is still running when he picks it up. A genny would probably sound like a Diamondback Rattler. So...izzat proof enoof ?
  2. "Do you think is it possible to cut the caseback and solder it again?" Possible but not worth the trouble and expense. It would need to be cut, laser welded, and refinished...probably more $$ than the whole project would cost using another case.
  3. "I'm doing a fun franken project, it is based on a 1601 Rolex GEN dial. I've already done a franken 16014 Datejust with the Raffles 2836 case." The main problem when using the 'pie pan' 1600 dial is finding a thin 1600 type case. Because the dial is raised around the edge it allows the movement to sit higher in the case and uses a thinner case than when using a flat dial. This was a sign of the times (1950s/1960s) and the rlx 1600, some omegas (pie pan Constellations), and many other brands did this to make their watches appear to be thinner. Thin Was In Back Then. Case profiles from 'ogladio': https://rwg.cc/topic/159773-1601-case/ http://i.imgur.com/QEQCRl.jpg "So, for the raffles case there is no aftermarket possibilities?" I only listed the sizes of a few cases that I have, no telling what else is available. If the Raff case is made like a 16200 you might look into a thinner case because the 16200 cases have high 'shoulders' looking at them from the side where the 1600 cases are slim and streamlined. Example: I tried a '1016' project using a 36mm tudor type case made for an ETA 2824 and ran into two problems: 1...The low profile case back rubbed the autowind rotor on a thicker, lower beat ETA 2846. 2...The dial window and seat were too big for a 27.9mm oem spec dial. The dial window was 28.0mm and the dial fell through the front. Two good things: 1...It had the right profile when viewed from the side. 2...It had properly centered lug holes that could be enlarged. The project was abandoned and later came to life using a JMB case.
  4. I needed a thinner case back on a DJ type case and used one from an old replica DJ from 12 or 15 years ago. It was 4.4mm thick overall measured from back side flat machined center to the front edge. Many of the 16200 replica case backs are a little bit thicker than that, I measured one and it was 4.75mm, not much but the outer contour makes it look thicker. It was .9mm thick in the flat center of the back so it could be thinned down a little. 'Front edge' = the outer edge of the case back that faces the front of the watch, not the gasket seat. Some of the exact same case backs had 1680, 1655, 16200 stamped inside them. Evidently there is no rhyme or reason to what was put on what back then. FYI... A genuine 1600 case back is 4.25mm thick overall and 2.65mm thick from gasket seat to the flat top. A genuine 16000 case back is 4.45mm thick overall and 2.75mm thick from gasket seat to the flat top. Genuine 16200 case back sizes next time I dig one out. A JMB '1016' case back is 4.25mm thick overall and 2.75mm thick from gasket seat to the flat top. All measurements are plus/minus a hair or two depending on machining tolerances and wear/polishing.
  5. Thanks! That is some good info.
  6. "So, I'm interested to hear some more feedback on those 1016 hands (and as always, learn a little bit more about vintage Rolex minutiae). From earlier research, I found that 1016 service hands (like the ones on this watch) are slightly shorter than original hands. Also found examples of original 1016 hands that are flat and don't quite brush the edge of the minutes track." I have some nos trit 1016 hands and remember they are a hair longer than 5512/13 hands and came with a 'short tube' second hand (no date works to rise above). Also have some nos 5512/13 hands and they are a little bit shorter than 1016 hands but in reality it does not really matter very much, to me anyway. Can not remember if they are flat on top or slightly curved. Many 1016 examples probably have 55xx hands on them by now anyway. On my 1016 project watches with ETAs I just use 55xx hands from ST etc. My '1016' with ETA 2824/2846 combo movement has hands that pass through the 3-6-9 numbers and just barely touch the inner ends of the minute markers. The dial is aftmkt oem spec (diameter, font etc) that is very similar to earlier 1016 dials. I just now looked for the 1016 hands but gave up after a short while, I do not want to start digging through it right now. I'll bookmark this thread and post about the hands if they turn up later. I did find two (2) nos sets of trit 1655 hands (24H, H, M, SS) that were forgotten so it was worth the effort. I have quite a bit of this stuff put away here and there and it is a hassle to dig through it without damaging or losing anything so it is basically forgotten until a part is needed. I never thought it would ever be worth much back when I bought it and since I hardly ever work on a genuine rlx now, all the parts that have been stored for years have sort of faded into the past...along with me. Ha! Update 1-8-21 I checked through some hands and the nos hands for 55xx watches are in glassine envelopes sealed inside the original plastic bags so I can not tell if they are flat or curved. I did not want to mash around on them and take the chance of cracking the lume. Did not find any 1016 hands this time around. I looked at a couple sets of older tritium take-offs from 15xx calibre submariners and the hands are flat, no curve at all but it is unknown what year models they came from. Also looked at a set of used tritium 1675 GMT hands and the H and M hands are flat...no hack, made 1968. I paid $325 for it in 1997 from a pawn shop.
  7. "Why does the case neck size matter for the crystal? I thought that just sits in the bezel, in which case the bezel ID would be the relevant dimension here?" On oem rolex... Acrylic crystals need to be a very light press fit down over the case neck. Next, the bezel is pressed down over the crystal to clamp the crystal to the case neck for a water tight seal between the case neck and crystal inner sidewall. Submariners with an O ring under the bezel need a bit of extra care to be sure all surfaces are clean and any corrosion is removed and smoothed out if possible. If an acrylic crystal is a bit too loose on the case neck, maybe the bezel can squeeze it down enought to seal it without cracking the crystal...maybe not. If the crystal is too tight on the case neck to begin with, it may crack when being pressed over the case neck or crack when the bezel is pressed down over the crystal. Success depends on the proper fit of all the parts...ony a few 1/100 of a millimeter plus/minus. If the bezel seems too tight when being pressed down over an acrylic crystal, look straight down around the outer edge of the crystal with a 10x +/- loupe under bright light to see if it has cracked between the case neck and bezel after the bezel has been seated. Cracking may not show from the side, that is why you need to look straight down at it. If it is Ok, check it again in a few days. Sapphire crystals are mounted in a crystal gasket that lightly presses down over the case neck with the lower half of the crystal pressed down into the gasket. The bezel is pressed down over this two piece assembly and compresses the gasket against the case neck and outer edge of the crystal to seal it all together. This all sounds simple but the process if full of gremlins...wrong case neck OD, wrong bezel ID, bezel or case neck out of round (I have seen both), all kinds of variations in crystal sizes, improper bezel pressing tools, bezels getting out of level when pressing them down etc, etc. Never use sealer etc between the ID of the crystal sidewall and case neck, it may crawl over to the dial or act as a lubricant to allow the crystal/bezel combo to get smacked off. I will admit to using Dawn dish detergent 'a time or two' to lubricate the ID of a bezel so it will slip over an acrylic crystal with less friction. After it dries, it basically disappears and does not remain slippery. You did not read that here.
  8. I give it a nine on a scale of ten. It gets a nine only because there are no tens. "A single domed acrylic crystal would be period correct right?" If the case neck is oem 16000/16200 DJ spec (29.5mm) and the ID of the bezel is also standard DJ spec (30.4mm), a crystal made for a rolex 1018 should work...number 25-21. A 1018 is basically a no date DJ. I do not have a GS part number for the 118 crystal but it should be on the 'net. Another good crystal brand is Sternkreuz and the 118 crystal p/n is 498/47 afaik...check to make sure. A 1016 bezel is 31.0mm ID because the crystal sidewall is thicker than a DJ. A 1016 crystal is number 25-22 and I would go with generic, not oem because they cost too much. For 1016 projects I use a GS 464-64C but they have the sharp top edge. You will have to shop around for a 1018 crystal because they are not as common as crystals for 1016 Explorers. If you end up going with a 1016 crystal and have the ID of the bezel cut to fit, try to find a crystal with the rounded top edge because most newer 25-22 crystals will have a sharp edge. You can round them off a little if needed because they are quite a bit thicker on top than a DJ crystal.
  9. "Can the internal threads of crown that mates onto tube be reconditioned on the inside?" The short answer is probably not. It would be hard to do unless you have a very short 'bottom out' tap/thread cutter of some sort...or handy at making gravers and cutting threads on a lathe. 'Bottom out tap' = made to dead end, they basically cut full sized threads all the way to where they bottom out. Besides that, you would need to remove the telescoping clutch in the crown first, or have a special hollow tap. It could be done but not without a lot of hassle, providing there is enough 'meat' left on the threads inside the crown to begin with. On 5.3mm crowns you can sometimes run the crown down on a stainless steel case tube and straighten the threads up. I have a few steel 5.3mm case tubes but no steel 6.0 tubes. The steel 5.3mm tubes came from ST and I do not know if they have 6.0mm steel case tubes or not...or even if steel 6mm tubes are being made. They do make steel 7.0mm case tubes of course but the crown threads are too big for dress type crowns. First thing to do is clean the threads inside the crown as good as possible with a toothpick etc and see what's what. The case tube can be changed fairly easily and this along with cleaned up threads may give a year or two more service. "My understanding is that they are gold capped with a normal metal sleeve that contains threads!" Right, old style crowns have the internals made of something else, usually nickel silver with a cap crimped over it like a bottle cap. Later 'monoblock' crowns are solid one piece...steel, gold, platinum, pirate skulls etc.
  10. Agree with freddy333 and Mr Sm. It looks (to me) like a DD case from china. DD cases are 'partially hooded' like the one in your picture. "The seller says that is a Vietnam one." Never saw a Vn case with a green sticker on it...that's a chi 'trademark'. Maybe the mail plane flew over Vn. Replica Builder Rule 1: Learn More. Buy Le$$.
  11. Franken 1601 'pie-pan' dial build - clearance issues - The Rolex Area - RWG
  12. You might try 'Mary'. If it is on her sales site it is usually still available and it is still on her extended list. Here is what to ask about: Rolex vintage GMT Stainless Steel Blue/Red-bezel Jubilee bracelet Swiss ETA 2836
  13. "Now THAT'S a good one." Thanks! Some may wonder why Tonto did not use the arrow in the Lone Ranger's hat for his last shot. It was a different caliber...
  14. Lone Ranger and Tonto are surrounded by hostile Indians. Lone Ranger is out of bullets and has an arrow through the top of his cowboy hat. Tonto is out of arrows. Lone Ranger says: "Well, looks like we have finally had it old friend." Tonto says: "What you mean...'we' paleface?" Five inches snow, 21 degrees here. Merry White Christmas!
  15. "Thanks mate, so more like 1mm rather than 1.2mm?" I went out into the garage this am and dug out a genuine 93150 clasp and measured the F/L rivet size needed...1.0mm. That seems pretty flimsy but that is what this one takes. It is an older model but has the later 4/4 set of holes and has the crimps to hold the bracelet in place. Mid 1980s or so. Something else...the rivet head size needs to be correct so the flip lock lever will not slip by the rivet heads.
  16. This is not much help but my ST replacement F/L repair kits have 1.12mm OD tubes. Do not know what the oem parts are. Also have 1.1 and 1.2mm OD tubes in assortments. The 1.12mm tubes in the F/L kits are oddballs so maybe they are oem size. RMOSS-FK Oyster Band Flip Lock Repair Kit for Submariner Buckle Store Price: $9.95 The kit comes with one tube, two rivets, two washers, and a F/L flipper. The flipper may or may not fit depending on year model. "one of our experts." I am an expert in searching for truth in the blatherings of experts. Ha!
  17. "You are in unicorn territory..." For sure. Used to be these projects could be put together for $2k or less. Not now, because of 'rolex insanity' and the fact that the $250 'go to' David Wong case has been MIA for years...along with DW. Also, V72 movements were put in many 'no name' watches that were selling for $300 to $500 back then. Not now. They have all been scooped up. Something else to consider...at today's prices it would be easy to sink $5k or $6k in a watch with your specs even if you went with an aftmkt dial. Imho that is a lot of $$ for a watch that anyone other than us (RWG etc guys) would not pay much more than $1000 for just to get the movement. I learned this with 1570/1520 powered 5512/13 Frankensteins. There are exceptions of course. If I wanted to 'scratch the itch' for a while, I would buy a cartel '6263' with a Seagull ST19 from 'Mary' or someone and wear it while I searched out the options and prices of putting one together. I recommended 'Mary' because my last purchase was a few 'foldoyster' bracelets...easy and trouble free. The other TDs are good too but I have not purchased anything from them in a while. Another option is to keep a lookout for one with V72 etc in the Trading Zone. Good luck!
  18. All genuine 160xx and 162xx case necks are the same OD...29.5mm. Bezels for both have the same ID...30.4mm. The difference is that bezels for 162xxx sapphire models are made taller so they will reach up far enough on the crystal gasket to hold the crystal in place. The 160xx bezels are not as tall and made to work with acrylic 135 crystals. They do not need to be as tall because they can still clamp the acrylic crystal sidewall to the case neck securely. So...a 162xxx case with a 135 crystal and 16000 bezel will work Ok and look good. The 162xx bezel will work but like I stated above, it is taller. I do not know the Raffles case neck OD and bezel ID. Aftmkt cases and bezels may not be oem spec so a bezel for a 162xx case may not be as tall as a genuine bezel.
  19. "Who has the best?" Do not know much (if anything) about 6 digit models but for five digit models... Back when we were young, the WM9 and F520117 Noob were The Kings. Owning a WM9 and F520117 makes us past servants to Long Gone Kings. Then TC shot them down ...and was catapulted ...to Top Dog. Then TC left in a hurry, like a rock shot out of a trebuchet... ...rumored to have landed on the 'Isle of Genault'. News : A Horological Detective Story - Ginault And The Curious Case Of The Counterfeit Rolex Watch Factory - Scottish Watches The watches are not for rent... ...it looks like they are for sale. --In a Rush
  20. B-T...been a while. Check in more often! 'twist an arm to lower prices...' I do not keep up with replica prices very much because I stopped buying anything except from a member now and then, nothing from a pro seller. I have more than enough already. Imho, the best way to cope with high replica watch prices is to stop buying them and change direction. Besides being pricey, replicas are not known to be overly reliable and parts are hard to find or N/A. I still keep a lookout for bargain priced vintage diver watches but usually not on eBay because of high prices. There are a lot of them out there and when I find one for $50 or $75 and get it back in presentable condition for a few more bucks, they are a good value and will sell for more than they cost, sometimes a lot more. The snags are: Finding an affordable watch in good condition to begin with. Finding someone to do the necessary work or being able to do it yourself. Locating needed parts. As usual, parts can be a problem. This reminds me of the time I got revved up and went on a hunt for a Zodiac Sea Wolf, in a couple days I had one for $85, one for $75, and one for $0. The one for $0 has an off white with orange markers acrylic bez insert and black dial with white H and orange M hand. Not bad for $0. Like this one: hodinkee.com Otoh, used replica watch prices tend to drop like a rock outside of forums like RWG etc because the Average Joe assumes all replicas are basically the same and sell for $50. Two exceptions being carefully assembled project watches and Frankensteins using quality parts. Imho the high prices now being asked for replicas depend on the current market value and popularity of the original. The latest models of genuine rlx submariners etc are hot right now and commanding premium prices as are replicas of the same. Vintage dive watches do not seem to be falling out of favor and oem makers are cranking out vintage types trying to cash in on the trend. There are also some very nice private label vintage style dive watches for sale now, Dan Henry, Baltic, Steeldive bronze SD1965S etc.
  21. "VN dials are getting better..." I agree. A dial like the tudor dial above would be hard to replicate. My guess is VN and some other origins of simple vintage rlx 'redials' could be made with 95% accuracy (front and back) for around $125/$150 or so retail...if they wanted to. I make this statement because I have a few 'redials' from 10+/- years ago that are very, very good even if they were made back then. For example, my three IG44 dials are the best I have seen up close and I do not even know for sure where they were made. Also have two or three from Yuki that are very good...standouts from 15 or 18 dials purchased over the years. All the others except for two were above average. Only two were duds (both '1680') but they would be Ok for a low buck project. 'Above average' = fully acceptable with good lettering/paint/markers but would not pass for genuine under experienced examination. Otoh, the 'standout' Yuki dials might pass for genuine...maybe one time out of 25 depending on the examiner's experience. Maybe not. Always 'Plead the Fifth' on dials you do not know about. Have a few '1016' redials of unknown origin from 10 or 12 years ago that look as good as anything I have seen lately and they were not very expensive back then. They are good enough for project watches and the watch would probably be called out for having only 6 adjustment holes in the clasp before the dials. A slightly scratched crystal helps too. Ha! The catch is and always will be 'aging' of the dials. A new dial will not look 40 years old. The case, bracelet etc also has to look the part but you can usually get away with a like new dial with a beat up case/bracelet if they are accurate to oem to start with...just an old watch with a good dial. Guessing on the ages of the dials above. Tempus Fugit.
  22. All my gold watches are vintage models and the only 'polishing' any of them ever had since I have owned them was done with a 'Fabulustre' cloth or a 'Selvyt' cloth. The two ply Fabulustre cloth has red rouge embedded on one side and the other side is a very soft cloth. The red side is used where there are light scratches or tarnish to be removed, then the item is buffed with the smooth side, all done by hand. Deep scratches would be left as is. Thankfully none of my watches have deep scratches. The Selvyt cloth is super soft on one side only and is used to remove fingerprints etc. You sometimes see them in jewelry stores. Otoh, I have seen idiots (being very kind here) hold a 14k or 18k case up to a 1750 rpm 8" buffing wheel loaded with 'polishing compound' for 20 or 25 seconds and lay it down because it got too hot to hold. When it cools off they wonder why there are uneven spots in the case. I had a gold rolex case laser welded where some (fill in the blank) wore it with a Speidel Twist-O-Flex 'case eater' bracelet and it dug a little ditch inside the lugs where the spring loaded spacer rubbed the lugs. You can not tell at all where the case was welded...$100USD well spent imho. The work was done with the acrylic crystal etc still in the case because the case does not get hot except where the laser is aimed. "Any time you polish electro gold plating, you loose some of the plating. Not so on the new gold watches that have the “hot plating” process." I have had some experience with newer Citizen Ecos and they are plated with a super hard goldtone that is probably plasma coat of some type. It is tough but does not stand up to very much machine buffing if scratches are very deep because it is so thin.
  23. "I like many or all of you have a liking of wrist watches because we all have a special taste in the traditional watch as it has been known since the very wrist watch hit the market some two centuries ago!" My two all time favorite watches are a steel 214 Accutron that I bought new in 1971 and a steel 1950s Elgin Shockmaster 'Streamline' that my Dad wore. All the others are just watches. I bought a rlx DJ not long after the A-tron 214 but never wore it very much. From that point on I traded Longines, rlx, omega, Zodiac, etc because they were good trader watches. I like Longines and Zodiac, still have a few. Fast forward 40 years and I can look back at all the rlx watches I have owned/traded/sold and very few stand out. I like the 55xx models better today than most others and that is probably why I stuck a few 55xx projects together. The problem is I can not stand to wear them...maybe a couple weeks and that takes an effort. Why? The main reason is I strongly dislike automatics. I'm Ok with hand crankers but automatics burn me out in a hurry because I am married to them. No watch winders for me. Besides that, the auto winder stuff is where a whole lot of mechwatch trouble comes from...along with date works. 'Snob' watches... I've had a couple gold rlx for 20+ years but no longer care much for them because of the F-U turn the company has taken, they used to be Ok. I came close to scrapping the cases when gold went over $2k a troz a few months back. Problem is there is not much gold in one compared to what the complete watch will sell for. 'Streamline' Sold/eBay...313231700137
  24. "I’m in the middle of a 2 year long quest to build a 1655." I started on mine in mid 2011 when I got the Phong case and a rlx 1575 in a trade with a member. The movement had about half of the nos parts with it to make a GMT and it took 5 or 6 years to find the rest of the parts at a reasonable price. By then I had basically lost interest and the project is still in a box. When I got the case and movement in 2011 the rlx 1575 also had the 'shortcut' GMT conversion parts with it and this is where they came from. I had another 1575 and put the shortcut parts in it to make a GMT after getting a genuine GMT canon pinion, hour wheel etc so the hands would not be jammed together. When I discovered the shortcut movement would work in the cartel case using the cartel dial I started to finish it up. It is not finished yet but getting close. I need to clean and oil the balance and escape wheel jewels because the movement has been stored a while and then put the date wheel and 24H parts back on it. I used all standard rlx 1575 parts except for the GMT CP, hour wheel and shortcut GMT parts. The standard 1575 calendar spacer was also used in the shortcut GMT but a genuine spec GMT has to have the thicker calendar spacer because the oem 24H parts need more space under the dial. "I have everything now and the movement now doesn’t fit in my phong case..." A rlx 1575 GMT fits Ok in my Phong case. The shortcut 1575 GMT does not fit correctly in the Phong case...the movement is thinner because of the standard calendar spacer so the stem is not centered in the case tube. The shortcut 1575GMT fits Ok in the cartel case, it had a DG 3804 to begin with. After almost 10 years on this project...looking ahead and looking back, I may: Stick a swisseta 2846 with a China 24H conversion in the cartel case and call it a day. I have all the parts needed. The jury is still out. Finish the all genuine 1575GMT movement and put it in the Phong case for now. Since a genuine rlx 1575GMT movement is now going for $3kUSD+/- I doubt the Phong '1655' case with a genspec 1575GMT movement would sell for much more than that. This means the Phong case may end up as a 'storage case' for the genspec GMT movement until the movement is sold or put in a genuine case. Long shot on finding a genuine case. Put the shortcut GMT movement in the Pong case or put the shortcut GMT mvt back to original and back in the 1603 case it came from, depending on the 'Jury decision'. Lessons learned: There is a huge difference between a Frankenstein 5512/13/1680 and a F-stein 1655 or 1675 if you do not already have a 1675GMT movement or GMT parts for conversion...probably $2kUSD+/- more, especially now with almost all rlx parts being cut off. There is also a huge $$ difference between a Frankenstein 5512/13/1680 and the same case etc with a swisseta. No one can tell the difference anyway. A converted 1575GMT is exactly the same as an all genuine 1575GMT as long as genuine parts are used and none are left out. There is no difference at all. Never saw a genuine 1655 that did not have a 'hack' movement. Do not know if 'nohacks' exist in any '100% original' examples or not, I just never saw one. Be Happy! Wear a quartz watch. Ha!
  25. I use ST spring bars on my projects and just now measured 10 of them and all the end plugs are 1.18mm in diameter. I tried 1.25 holes on a few projects and some spring bars did not want to go through because of misalignment of the hoods and bracelets. I settled on 1.3mm because with it all being replica parts it was a little easier to put it all together. Sometimes I had to curve the spring bars a little to make them work and the larger hole diameter helped quite a bit. I have worn an MBK '5512' quite a bit lately with WSO hoods/'Mary foldoyster' and with everything having some slack, it went together Ok. I ended up removing the soldered tubes from the hoods because the lug hole location did not agree with the hoods even after quite a bit of filing on the hoods. I usually wear a quartz watch but I felt sorry for the MBK. Besides, with the sloppy fit of the hoods and bracelet it reminds me of the high mileage genuine rolex watches from my past. Since the old genuines are now unaffordable, I'M going to Be oK with this one. Ha!
  • Create New...