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Albino Explorer


JSebWC
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Putting together a parts order the other day for a few projects and came across the albino dial that raffles offers for the 1016

add to cart and it arrived at my door.

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was initially concerned about the lume colour - from the site as it looks very yellow but when it arrived it was a decent workable colour.


decided it looked too new out of the box so I added some patina with some some dry brushing techniques using air brush translucent paint and some dry brush paints from tamiya Wanted to give it the radium burn appearance that my Tudor 7909 has

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the hands aren't a perfect match but within the realm of possibility .

Have been inspired by what seems the springing up of 6610 albinos in the gen community lately. Since there is no rep dial available the 1016 would have to do.



This is the Ruby dial I considered it but for some reason my eyes dont like the color of the lume on the dial it looks pinkish to me. that and its 10x the price of the raffles.

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The raffles dial does have an outline around the 369 similar to a 6610 where the ruby doesn't have it..but its not a dealbreaker for me considering these are like hens teeth in the wild and its a supposed prototype print testing on a blank so its plausible there was some variety in the samples

The numerals are similar in shape .

 

still need a few tweaks but overall I am happy with how it turned out.

The printing on the dial is very well done I really like it.

I'm still undecided if I like the radium burn on the dial I may remove it or redo it. probably should just leave it alone ..
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Thanks for looking ! Comments and questions welcome.

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but for the radium burn I would suggest you to use transparent color and dye pigments.

(citadel shades are perfect for that plus AK patina pencils).

radium burn on a dial is a very slow process and quite homogeneous if the watch hands were in motion for long so replicating it will require a radial approach and less of staining.

Staining usually happens in the lacquered layer.

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Just now, madasboot said:

but for the radium burn I would suggest you to use transparent color and dye pigments.

(citadel shades are perfect for that plus AK patina pencils).

radium burn on a dial is a very slow process and quite homogeneous if the watch hands were in motion for long so replicating it will require a radial approach and less of staining.

Staining usually happens in the lacquered layer.

5C2CD91B-034A-4576-9D64-32DA611B1BF1.jpeg

In this example most probably the watch was kept for years in the position it has stopped, at 8.05

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@madasboot

 

Thanks for the reply

 

Yes I used a translucent "candy" airbrush paint  and dilute it.  they are water based paints. and then used the dry detail paints to age the rest of the dial slightly.

 

on the wrist it is alot more subtle,   I blame the photo editor app that I tried tweaking the lighting in  .  its not as drastic irl 

 

I agree that your example is a watch that sat for ages in one spot.  were my tudor has a bit more wear around the center  mine had been stopped a few times it appear but it created a larger burn pattern and thought it was unique  almost like a star burst of sorts  due to the pointed hands ..

jJqK2b.jpg

 

 

Here are a few more examples that inspired this attempt   Is it age,  water damage, uv damage, radium burns or a combination of all 4 in a 50+ year old watch  I like the look .

 

 

 

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especially on the last example  the 6610   you can see where the paint had faded away and its in line with the sweep of the hands  . or it might be lighting 

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  • 5 months later...

The dial looks very good!

You can't beat an 'old rolex'.  :thumbs:

 

I have a 6430 Speedking, new from an AD in 1972 ($125US), worn only a couple times shortly after I bought it.  The watch would probably pass for nos and I always thought I paid $130 for it but I looked it up just now and it was $125 OTD (out the door).  I never paid any attention to the markings on the dial and always figured it had tritium lume, but the dial developed what appears to be 'radium burn' where the hands were left in the same position for over 40 years. 

I have not looked at it in a while and I'll take a picture of the dial next time I run across it, according to my notes it was made in 1969.  If it does have tritium, could trit also cause dial burn?  I never heard of it. 

 

Have a nos 6694 serial 88xxxxx ($925 OTD from AD), parked since 1989 and it shows no trace of 'dial burn' on the tritium lume dial.  The $925 figure was probably list price because I bought it on 'The Rolex Plan' where you paid for the watch in 12 equal monthly installments.

At least they knocked the sales tax off.

 

Q...Why would I buy two new watches and put them away?

A...Because they were manual wind oyster case rolex watches...the end of an era. 

A fellow who worked at RUSA NYC back then told me the 6694 was from the last run.  

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On 10/17/2022 at 8:04 PM, oldtools said:

Looks great! Is that another attempt on a Raffles dial?

 

No  a parts seller on instagram (whos name escapes me - I think tick tok watches )  posted this dial for sale and stated that it was refinished.  It does look accurate but seeing the dial itself the "burn marks" look pretty obviously done with an air brush.   in two strokes... by the time I contacted him about it it was sold     I told him to reach out if he "finds more"  

 

 

Further thoughts on the Albino.:  There seems to be an abundance of 6610 albinos popping up recently.  real , fake , franken..who knows..but realistically speaking  I can see the 6610 albino existing  but I think every 1016 is a fake.  why?  because if rolex was in the product development stages to see if this dial color would work as an option to the product line.  they made a few , tested them  , tested the pad printer....and then didn't proceed   why?  too hard to read?  white dial and white lume with silver hands.    Wearing my aged albino  with contrasting lume markers.  its still tricky to read under certain light conditions so if the consensus was that it was not functional and dropped it.  why would they revisit the idea in the 1016?  its not like anything changed .  So I think the 6610s were potentially a genuine attempt at creating another dial option but the 1016 was a pad print test only.   

 

 

 

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On 10/18/2022 at 3:01 AM, madasboot said:

Now looks like a proper burn instead of a pizza stain

but still too yellow for old radium

 

damn dude...pizza stain   tell me how you really feel about it  LMAO 

 

So that was 5 months or so ago and as time passed I felt that I went a bit overboard on the ageing. , on the wrist it looked good however when you get it close it just didn't have the believable look that I Was after

 

So I pulled it apart and removed the radium burns using some iso propel and foolishly didn't dilute it and it removed some of the print on the dial . D"UH!! At first I was [censored] because the print on these dials is soo crisp and clean that it was a shame to damage it. but how it did end up damage does look like legit wear and age.

Not all is lost I aged the white dial to an attractive ivory tone with some dry detail brushes from tamiya and this is what you get. a prototype build that looks old and worn but not abused.

 

The story of the albino explorers is that blank dials were used to test the print pad and then were meant to be destroyed but somehow a few missed the bin and ended up in the world and now fetch a premium. The appearance I settled on was one of a dial that had a poor pad print and then was kicking around a watchmakers parts bins for a few decades until it was dug up and used.

 

I got the urge to mess with it the other day , thinking that I would put it back together and sell it on but damn...I really like this thing right now....so its not for sale yet...but perhaps one day

 

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Re:  "You can't beat an old Rolex."  Posted above.

"I have a 6430 Speedking, new from an AD in 1972 ($125US), worn only a couple times shortly after I bought it.  The watch would probably pass for nos and I always thought I paid $130 for it but I looked it up just now and it was $125 OTD (out the door).  I never paid any attention to the markings on the dial and always figured it had tritium lume, but the dial developed what appears to be 'radium burn' where the hands were left in the same position for over 40 years.  I have not looked at it in a while and I'll take a picture of the dial next time I run across it, according to my notes it was made in 1969."

 

Looks like I was wrong.  Again.

I dug the 6430 Speedking out of hibernation and the dial is slightly faded but shows no sign of burn from the lume material. 

It is a tritium signed dial, the marker dots are faded, the lume in the hands has turned dark and is eating on the hands, but no 'burn streaks' appear anywhere.

 

 image.thumb.jpeg.791d91ed518a0282f0c99bb0c4d2e45b.jpeg

 

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For what it's worth, this is what a watch might look like after being stored 50 years in a dry, heated safe...the age shows mostly on the lume and dial.  It still runs, keeps good time, and the lizard strap is not cracked or brittle...unlike myself.  Ha!   

 

Something else...

While digging through 'old Rolex watches', I ran across two more that are about the same age (mid to late 1980s), one nos while the other one has been worn quite a bit.

They are close to the same age, have the same reference number (6694), and the worn example shows what sunlight etc. can do to a dial.  The nos example (without bracelet) still has the same dial color as it did when I bought it new in 1989.

image.thumb.jpeg.391d9cde871edb7f7c4e97f44a59ac71.jpeg

The nos watch also came with an Oyster bracelet and it is stored with the watch.

No signs of tritium corrosion on either watch, just dial fade on the used one.  The lume looks the same on both watches, no lume fade on the used one.

Both have the same pointed hands and neither one has ever been apart or polished.  Both have 21600 bph cal 1225 hand crank movements.

 

My conclusion:

After looking at my tritium lume watches and literally hundreds of pictures, plus reading a LOT over the years...I can say I have not seen dial finish (paint etc.) damage directly caused by tritium. 

Tritium damage to hands...Yes.

Tritium damage to markers...Yes.

Tritium damage to the dial finish...Not yet. 

But I could be wrong.  Again.

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