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Bart Cordell

Decals print dials

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Hi friends !

After reading jelliotz last build & JoeyB advices, I want to try dial decals print by myself.

Rolex 6536 custom build

http://rwg.cc/index.php?/topic/182539-Rolex-6536-custom-build

Bought decal paper, micro set and Sennelier gloss acrylic varnish. I can't find Krylon Crystal Clear spray in France.

Found a good high res 6538 pic and worked it on photoshop.

a2b58799a1f5481bc5d413f0713c185a.jpg

It's a very long pixel by pixel work, and many high quality printing test on photo paper.

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First decals test printing is good, better than I expected.

c96f30402aec95396de97305af4d1706.jpg

Bubbles are due to some dust on decal paper sheet.

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The varnish spray remove the ink from bubbles, leaving holes in print. It's not serious for a first test try. I'll clean sheet before print next time.

Here is the result on a dial plate. I think it's sharp enough.

80ef5150bcda97bd3385a552a7ca50e0.jpg

More soon...

Thank you for reading

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Even with the holes in the print it looks great. Can't wait to see it in your modded cases:)

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Well done! :good:  Much better first effort than mine! Dust will make for headaches. The spray decal sealer I first used made the ink bleed. The Krylon Crystal Clear does not make the ink bleed, even when spraying an hour after printing. Krylon was suggested to me by the guy who makes the decal paper. I do not know how a regular watch dial lume bond agent would react with the sealer and decal. That's why I first tried the water based acrylic glow paint. That not only worked well, but it gave the grainy look desired, and when I mess it up it wipes right off with a wet Q-Tip. I love do-overs! 
 

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New prints this morning.

Tried to had red depth line with no success.

4d3266e31756bcf8e6cd0aef6df04172.jpg

Well, keep it gilt.

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2a56e5b7ba8cbc3774d5bd22d30383f0.jpg

a65121eb2de2b7e61b578d56e6a0e822.jpg

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Great work! Would love to be able to do this...

Thanks !

Test in my spare silix case.

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Looks great!

But I think the only way to get really good quality prints is finding/drawing a vector-based version with vectorized fonts etc..

 

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Looks great!

But I think the only way to get really good quality prints is finding/drawing a vector-based version with vectorized fonts etc..

 

Yes ! Vector drawing would be better.

Do you know where I could find not painted dial for ETA and DG ?

I'm searching a good high res picture of a 5513 gilt dial. Without success for the moment. A Bart coronet would be nice.

Center hole cutted

c5ea87e6fd76bb0b9ef4955317235ac2.jpg

Hands on

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I did this for date wheel overlays several years ago. I still have the digital files. The magnification was so large the entire number filled the monitor. Something like 1200x

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It looks fantastic! Well done. Your first effort is way better than mine was. My first dial corroded underneath the decal within 24 hours. Practice only makes them better. You will refine your process until it becomes second nature.

Again. Great work!!!

Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

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19 hours ago, Bart Cordell said:

Yes ! Vector drawing would be better.

Do you know where I could find not painted dial for ETA and DG ?

I'm searching a good high res picture of a 5513 gilt dial. Without success for the moment. A Bart coronet would be nice.

c5ea87e6fd76bb0b9ef4955317235ac2.jpg

I would recommend you to learn to draw with vectors in Photoshop.

  • Make a circle with a correct border for the chapter dial. Then the thick and thin markers. Then the circles, rectangles, triangle.
  • Then super-impose fonts "above the" pixels.
  • When you are finished you should be able to hide the "original" pixel layer and voila... You have a vectorized form, without having to learn Adobe Illustrator.

 

Check my Tempus Machina thread, I did a similar thing when "reverse engineering" the 300 / 1000 - dial. You will also find some fonts and Rolex logo to start with.

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Circles, rectangles and triangle are drawed with vectors already. Markers, text and coronet are pixel retouched. I have to find good Rolex fonts and coronet.

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1 minute ago, Bart Cordell said:

I would recommend you to learn to draw with vectors in Photoshop.

 

  • Make a circle with a correct border for the chapter dial. Then the thick and thin markers. Then the circles, rectangles, triangle.
  • Then super-impose fonts "above the" pixels.
  • When you are finished you should be able to hide the "original" pixel layer and voila... You have a vectorized form, without having to learn Adobe Illustrator.

 

Check my Tempus Machina thread, I did a similar thing when "reverse engineering" the 300 / 1000 - dial. You will also find some fonts and Rolex logo to start with.

 

Circles, rectangles and triangle are drawed with vectors already. Markers, text and coronet are pixel retouched. I have to find good Rolex fonts and coronet.

Ok, I see...

Then I'm wondering wether it's the paper or the printer that isn't ultra-high in the DPI as it's quite unsharp in the details.

How big is the dial-size you've retouched the dials in?

1200 DPI = 1200 (dots)/25.4 (mm per inch)* 28 (mm dial) at least 1300 pixels x 1300 pixels. If I would work in pixels Id be working at a minimum of 2 x the necessary resolution. So the canvas size at 2600 x 2600 pixels.

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I don't know exactly. I'm not a drawer. It one of the first time I use photoshop to draw something.

I will look at this

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Thank you !

MQ pics are good but not enough with 830x830 96ppp

I used this one 1024 x 997 300ppp

 

l_6538-2l-glossy-1-ORIGINAL.jpg

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The dial above is good but the coronet, fonts and distances are off...

t6538.jpg

Try patching in parts from this, and then do the superimposing of a coronet and fonts with this as reference..

I can clean it up for you at home this weekend maybe... Otherwise, rotate it, then use lens correction to remove the angled tilt in it.. 

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Will try

I have to learn to use photoshop before. There is so many possibilities I don't understand for the moment.

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I use a Canon Pixma MG6120 printer, which is now a few years old, that cost me $100 brand new. It is supposed to be capable of printing as high as 9600dpi. At the highest setting printing on decal paper it made ink puddles. I then backed it down until it made the best clear, crisp print. In the area where the script says 'Submariner', the look on gens I've seen is more 'gilty' than the rest of the script. Use a fine scotchpad on the rest of the bare brass dial, and use a coarse sandpaper in a swirling motion just where the script will be. The coarse swirls will have that 'gilty' look through the clear decal paper.


 

dial decal.JPG

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Some of you guys have immense talent. My hat is off to you. It's amazing how you figure out how to do things. I guess the old saying, " if you want something done right, do it yourself " applies here.

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I use a Canon Pixma MG6120 printer, which is now a few years old, that cost me $100 brand new. It is supposed to be capable of printing as high as 9600dpi. At the highest setting printing on decal paper it made ink puddles. I then backed it down until it made the best clear, crisp print. In the area where the script says 'Submariner', the look on gens I've seen is more 'gilty' than the rest of the script. Use a fine scotchpad on the rest of the bare brass dial, and use a coarse sandpaper in a swirling motion just where the script will be. The coarse swirls will have that 'gilty' look through the clear decal paper.

 

56b0dde3a511a_dialdecal.JPG.839da02dd0a8f3b66d79e71cceb341bc.JPG

I use an Epson XP 620 5.760 x 1.440 DPI. My best print settings choice for decals is optimal quality + premium semi glossy paper.

Do you know where I can buy bare brass dials ?

Some of you guys have immense talent. My hat is off to you. It's amazing how you figure out how to do things. I guess the old saying, " if you want something done right, do it yourself " applies here.

Thanks !

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42 minutes ago, mymanmatt said:

Some of you guys have immense talent. My hat is off to you. It's amazing how you figure out how to do things. I guess the old saying, " if you want something done right, do it yourself " applies here.

For me, whether the dial, 6542 insert or coin edge bezel, it all emanates from being cheap. :whistling:
 

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I've sourced dials from any place I could find them. Otto Frei has blank dials that will fit ETA movements, painted but easily sanded down to bare brass. Those with date windows are in the ETA position, so they will not line up correctly with the date magnifier on a Rolex crystal.

The cartel Explorer II can be used to build a 6542 by grinding the crown guards off, or as a 1675 with reshaping the guards. I used the dial that came with the watch and the movement, again sanding the dial to bare brass.

I bought a genuine Rolex Submariner dial on Ebay that was really trashed, and sand that down to bare, soldered on dial feet to fit ETA.

And I've taken bare brass sheet from a hobby store, rough cut a circle, drill the center hole and used a bamboo shish-ka-bob skewer as an axle to spin the dial on a bench grinder to round and size. Using metal, like a drill bit, makes the center hole bigger and ruins it. Then attached dial feet for a DG movement.

 

Most of my work was with building the 6542. I had a gen dial from a friend of a friend, good price, in my first build. The problem is that Rolex used a 'capped' dial to fit it to their movement. That made for a lot of modifying to fit it to the ETA movement I was using. Eventually, several builds and re-builds later, it was flattened front and back, dial feet and decaled, and is in my ETA 6542.


 

dial.JPG

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