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jimcon11

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jimcon11 last won the day on December 31 2018

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About jimcon11

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    Starting to like this place...

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  1. jimcon11

    Where have all the franken 6538’s gone?

    Of the 4 rep boards I'm aware of, I stumbled upon this one last, which is unfortunate because it's far and away the best community and best knowledge base, IMO. My understanding of vintage builds took off once I found this place, even though it's the one forum without a vintage section
  2. jimcon11

    Winter 7922 / Reflections

    Maybe just try on some scrap hands first to get a feel for the technique.. After you get the commando hands right, I know your A/6538 is screaming for some flat Mercedes hands . For reference I used the JK hour hand and Raffles 6204 minute hand. For the second hand you're on your own.. I'm not aware of a perfect one besides the old HR big ball that isn't really available anymore.
  3. jimcon11

    Winter 7922 / Reflections

    Thanks guys. Honestly, I think you will find the shaping of the hands very easy. I can barely lume a dial and my attempts to cut lug chamfers have been disastrous. I didn't even use magnification doing this... there's a lot of room for improvement. The JK hour hand has the perfect outer dimensions, it's just too fat everywhere The hardest thing for me, besides lume, has been getting a deep, even bronze finish on the hand surface. I have a bad habit of working by lamp light and it totally masks the luster of the hands and convinces me they are uniformly the right tone, then in natural light I realize they are half polished and half dull, mottled between brass and almost silver color, and usually way too bright and shiny, overpowering the gilt dial. Most of the gen hands I've seen have a tone even with the chapter ring or are even darker/more tarnished. I found one method that kind of works, using ammonia fumes, but the effect was pretty uneven. Anyone know how to darken and dull the hands without them just going silvery and rusty looking? I added this absurd early-style second hand after noticing a couple gen Tudors with them. It's a bit too long, and I don't think it was ever original, especially for the early military 7922s in the big crown case, but it looks hilarious to me and the little dot way out there helps to emphasize the low beat movement. A luminous second hand is now an ISO standard for dive watches, so I'm told, and it's funny how these early tool watches met all the modern standards but in such a stylized and barely-functional way, i.e. the Rolex way
  4. jimcon11

    Winter 7922 / Reflections

    Looking at this watch.. something still wasn't right. I thought: I finally have hands that are the correct length and general proportions, but they nonetheless look off. I looked around at some gen flat hands, and what I noticed is how incredibly thin they are structurally. Compared to mine: 🎳 Gen is on the left. I knew what must be done.. The thought of trying to thin out tiny, delicate hands while somehow maintaining their perfect lines seemed like it would end in disaster, but I had to give it a shot. I started with the minute hand. After removing the lume, I simply held it by the post hole and scraped a #11 blade at about a 45° angle against the interior of the two columns that hold up the pointed tip. After about 20 passes of shaving off small bits of metal, making sure to remove material evenly from the entire interior of the lume plot, I stopped to check the work. Before long, I had nice, thin columns. I thought: this is great, but surely the complex curves of the hour hand will be a different story. I noticed that just about everything on the hour hand needed trimming: the interior of the point, the whole ball of the Mercedes logo, and the rectangular plot at the bottom, which needed to be lengthened all the way to the post. I set to work, and soon realized that curves are even easier and more forgiving than straight lines. The hardest part was extending the bottom plot and keeping right angle corners square.. even the tiny tip of the #11 blade starts to round them out if you're the slightest bit imprecise. After about an hour of work on each hand, I was able to get a satisfying result: They aren't perfect, but overall, I was really surprised how easy and forgiving it is to alter these hands, and I'd recommend to anyone that they order some spares and give it a shot. It was a lot easier than luming my dial 😓. I'm sure that someone skilled with a rotary tool could get better results in less time. My big ball second hand was an unfortunate casualty in this experiment; it was just too thin and flimsy to work with after I've over-sanded it trying to get an even finish, and I mangled it trying to shave down the tip. So this was a two steps forward, one step back sort of endeavor, and my nice looking hour and minute have to endure being stationed with a crummy generic sweep second hand for now.
  5. jimcon11

    What is a Frankenstein watch?

    I think not all gen parts and replica parts are created equal. There are some extremely nice watches here, like the Daytonas and big crowns.. builds that cost thousands, yet do not meet the criteria for "Frankenstein", although they are in many cases more beautiful and more accurate than builds with >50% gen parts. In my view, the selection of parts, modding, fitment, and the aesthetic eye to maintain balance and pull everything together in the finished watch, is far more important than counting the number of gen parts. In the end, it matters very little to me if it's classified as rep, franken, genstein, etc.
  6. jimcon11

    Where have all the franken 6538’s gone?

    Attention: the watches in this thread are Unsatisfactory in their finish, strap, and magnetic character. As a service to the community, for a limited time you may send me the unsatisfactory item and I'll dispose of it free of charge
  7. jimcon11

    Rolex Wristies thread

    Mate you need to consider our ocular safety before posting a Submariner torching that brightly
  8. jimcon11

    Rolex Wristies thread

    ^Wow you even reproduced the Rolex box and guarantee card, impressive
  9. jimcon11

    rolex 630 question

    Here you go http://rubyswatch.com/Products/watch-cases/sub-c6204 Stick hands from raffles, dial from MQ or make your own. Gen 6mm crown. Phong 6200 insert. Would be a killer build, good luck. And go easy on the attitude around here.
  10. jimcon11

    Where have all the franken 6538’s gone?

    What do Chuck Yeager, Jacques Cousteau, and Elvis Presley all have in common? . . . . . . . . . . . . No, I'm not trying to goad anyone toward hemorrhaging obscene amounts of cash into a grail 6538 build..
  11. jimcon11

    Winter 7922 / Reflections

    I appreciate it guys! Valentin- I've seen Bart and Nanuq's watches... it can get better
  12. jimcon11

    Decals print dials

    That looks good to me, is the text sharp enough for you? My printer does those vertical pinhole marks on the decal too and they're a pain in the ass.. they basically leave a weak point where brass can start showing through. I researched it some and there's no easy fix, but if you're brave you could try removing those ninja star wheels from your printer. I found that after a few coats of lacquer and some careful sanding and polishing I could make them disappear.
  13. jimcon11

    Phong case not fitting gen movement !!?

    I've actually had the exact same issue on my 6538 case from Ruby taking a FEF390. I don't find it too egregious since very few Tudor subs were put into 6538 cases and it's possible that the movements were specially machined. I think just shaving down the slots where the movement tabs screw in should solve the problem.. kinda kills the resale value of the movement though.
  14. jimcon11

    Winter 7922 / Reflections

    I've made some progress on this build so I thought I'd update the thread. As nice as the Vietnam dial is for this watch, its typographic style resembles the later 1960s text in the 7928, which is subtly different from the earlier Submariners. The only thing to do is print your own dial, so that's what I did. The text on this one is lifted straight from a front-on pic of a gen dial. It's interesting to note that there's some variation in the text and especially the exact position of the two text blocks in different examples of the 7922 and 7924. After a while of looking at gens I realized that the text on the Tudor subs isn't negative relief gilt, it's printed-on gold ink. Similar to how some Rolex gilt dials have the depth or chronometer information printed on later, Tudor seems to have done this with all of the text, probably a cost saving measure. For my dial, I let the brass surface show through on the chapter ring and swiss text, and covered the middle area with a thin layer of gold paint. The result is pretty interesting; in some light the Tudor rose and calligraphic logo jumps out in bright gold, and at other angles the inner text disappears almost completely and the chapter ring shimmers instead. I'm really happy with that result. The lume on the other hand.. I need to get better. I also replaced the hands with the closest things I could find to the 50s flat style hands. Still not perfect but much improved. I've saved many pics of gen 50s Tudor subs and about 75% of them are found with a later service bezel insert with serifs and hash marks, so I went with the awesome, recent fat font insert produced by slay. I'm pausing to enjoy it for a while now, but still in the works for this watch: -Fleurier 390 movement -dial gold electroplated rather than brass relief, with better lume work -case engravings to make this a crossout 6538 case with the correct range serial number -gen Tudor hands, although this one is more like wishful thinking Any other ideas? Thanks for looking, and thanks to several people in particular who have really helped me with this project: @Bart Cordell @Alan72 @hologramet @JSebWC @slay
  15. jimcon11

    Tudor 94010, a Snowflake for Christmas

    I just noticed that people often post Tudor stuff here and not in the Rolex section.. doh! First off, it's a really nice looking build despite the issues you had. I like the kind of gunmetal coloring which is complimented perfectly by the eggshell lume. I think interest in Tudor subs is on the rise after that cool Talking Watches episode with the Navy SEAL talking about his issued Tudors. I wasn't aware that HR can do dials like this; that makes this reference a pretty economical build, aside from the snafu with the MQ case. Speaking of which, I also had a pretty negative experience with MQ recently. I was looking for an MKIII insert with nice serifs and they were the only one I could find, so I payed the exhorbitant price and prayed. MQ originally insisted they didn't receive my money transfer for several days, to the point that I had to open an investigation with Western Union, at which time the funds magically appeared and he apologized for the error. It was kind of suspicious to say the least. Then the insert arrived and it was faded far beyond what was shown in the QC pic I was sent, to a light blue color that doesn't match my watch at all. I decided it wasn't worth the effort to return it and I'm just going to try to darken it myself. I am definitely through dealing with this guy, especially now that slay is producing his inserts, which are comparable quality and far less expensive. I always assumed MQ was the highest quality since the prices he quoted me were so outrageous, like $700 for a dial, but I'm starting to doubt that now. It certainly feels that way. I think that they just find us to be a nuisance. Most of their business is probably done with tourists or people with more money than brains who just throw a few grand in their direction for a finished replica. The guys that do their own modding and go for low cost builds probably hassle them a lot about exact details and they've just decided it's not worth it to go above and beyond for us. I get that there's a cultural barrier but sometimes it's just miserable to do business with these people. That said, I've had decent experience with Phong and very good experience with Ruby, who would be my default first choice for parts in the future.
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