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Expensive 1675 Experiment in Laser Welding CG’s

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A “budget” 1675 project is a sadistic thing - the Cartel case as a basis for modifications leaves so many issues for rework, resolution, replacement, and tweaking. The latest in my never-ending endeavor to make this watch 200% genuine has been adding material to the stumpy, odd shaped crown guards. 

I found a local craftsman who would laser weld 316 stainless steel material to the CG’s for me at his hourly rate ($90/hr here in the Pacific Northwest). I gave him detailed drawings indicating where and how much material to add - making sure the material is overbuilt. This was important, I wanted to be able to reshape and cut the material away. 

Here’s what I learned through the process: 

- The color matching and seams of laser welding 316 stainless to the case worked out great. After filing, grinding, sanding, and polishing, I don’t see areas of addition differentiated against the rest of the material. 

- I decided this was a good excuse to install a new tube and 5.3mm crown

- A 5300, 5320, and 5330 tube screws right in to a Cartel case. No retapping required! 

- The 5320 was the best fitting tube when paired with the 5.3mm 530 crown I purchased of eBay (eBay said it was Gen, so it must be)

- I used a 1/4” end mill milling bit on a milling machine to re-bore the crown opening in the crown guards. In my estimating, I thought this would come pretty close to hugging the crown with about .5mm space. I was unfortunately wrong or off in my estimate - I think it created a bit too much space. Next time I would use a slightly smaller end mill bit. Oh, an end mill bit is important since it ends with a flat edge, not angled. This allows the hole to have a flat bottom. 

- I notice the location of the tube is lower than ten on a Cartel case. This means not matter what CG reshaping done, the crown will never, ever sit as high as a ten does. Unless…I laser weld the tube hole, re-drill, re-tap…no, no, no just buy a damn Vietnam case if you’re about to go through all that. 

- I’m very satisfied with the shape and thickness of the CG’s otherwise. 

Well, that’s it for now - I’m not shelling out more money to re-laser weld and re-mill the crown opening. I’m going to enjoy it as is - a 199% gen, heavily reworked Cartel 1675. 

Here’s some pics, thanks for looking! 




























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Fantastic work.


Most 1675 reps look like shit because the crown guards are so blatantly wrong looking. This is NICE. They're supposed to be "boxy" like this.


PS: Funny that the rep factories can never make them look even remotely like the gen but this quartz homage has nice 1675 cg's, haha.



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Amazing work!!!!..i tryed to find someone here can make the same add...but nothing...;(

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