Questions about micro gas tube lume

Thread: Questions about micro gas tube lume

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  1. #1
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    Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Ball say that the luminous gas tubes in their watches last for 25 years..

    What happens after that time? Do they simply seise to glow? Or are they replaced during servicing?

    If any Ball owners here could help me out! Im considering buying myself a Storm Chaser

  2. #2
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    After 25 years, it's on your dime. if anything happens during the warranty period, they replace.

  3. #3
    Member Chronohound's Avatar
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    If you search this forum under half life. You will find several discussions.
    Here is one that answers most of your questions.
    Tritium (Hydrogen-3) Life of?

    As JPT111 stated, replacement is on your dime.
    In short, the half life of Tritium is 12 yrs. So every 12 yrs. the lume is half as bright as it was during the last 12 yrs.
    Therefore in 24 yrs it will be 1/4 as bright as it was new. I am certain superlumnova will likely decline signif. by 24 yrs. The question is at what percent of orig lume will it still have. If it is greater than 1/4, then it will noticeably last longer in YRS, but, I am sure the duration of which it holds its max. lume in HOURS will be appreciably shorter. Where as the tritium will have the same lume at all time.
    Other than the expense of tube replacemnt. I only see tritium coming out on top after 24yrs.
    JMO
    Last edited by Chronohound; December 13th, 2009 at 21:03.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    I think 25 years is the max life of usable service. I also think they will be 50% of original glow at 12.5 years. Marc Ofte recently told me that he thinks the cost to replace the tubes (once it begins to happen to people) could be about $125 - $150.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckMiller View Post
    I think 25 years is the max life of usable service. I also think they will be 50% of original glow at 12.5 years. Marc Ofte recently told me that he thinks the cost to replace the tubes (once it begins to happen to people) could be about $125 - $150.
    Chuck, that seems to be a very reasonable cost if it is true. Especially as a percentage of what we actually paid for them, it is miniscule.
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  6. #6
    Member Tomaski33's Avatar
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Will the cost of tube replacement $125-$150 applys to per tube of the watch or the total tubes of watch ??
    Some Ball watches have bigger tubes than the rest
    Any idea ??

    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckMiller View Post
    I think 25 years is the max life of usable service. I also think they will be 50% of original glow at 12.5 years. Marc Ofte recently told me that he thinks the cost to replace the tubes (once it begins to happen to people) could be about $125 - $150.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    I'm also very interested in this. Could be a factor on whether or not I go with Ball.

    Later,
    Chrome...

  8. #8
    Member Chronohound's Avatar
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Quote Originally Posted by Tomaski33 View Post
    Will the cost of tube replacement $125-$150 applys to per tube of the watch or the total tubes of watch ??
    Some Ball watches have bigger tubes than the rest
    Any idea ??
    The answer will be interesting. But I cannot imagine that is a per tube cost. At that rate it would be cheaper to buy a new watch for most of the Hydrocarbon series.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Quote Originally Posted by Chronohound View Post
    The answer will be interesting. But I cannot imagine that is a per tube cost. At that rate it would be cheaper to buy a new watch for most of the Hydrocarbon series.

    my sm glow has 80tubes
    $150 x 80 = $12.000
    wow
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  10. #10
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    Re: Questions about micro gas tube lume

    Quote Originally Posted by sunatmasal View Post

    my sm glow has 80tubes
    $150 x 80 = $12.000
    wow
    I believe that cost was quoted once upon a time in the watch community, bcs there was some distributor, at some point, selling tubes at an astronomical cost.

    A per-tube costing approach wouldn't make sense, though. Tritium tubes aren't that expensive. You can find novelty tritium tube key rings for a tenth of that cost. You can buy a tritium illuminated exit sign with at least ten times the amount of tritium in it than your watch for under $200. So, they're *regulated, but that doesn't mean they're expensive. The barriers to entry have more to do with regulation than fabrication. Who wants to jump through all those hoops.

    It's the labor that governs cost. The labor involved in mounting a would be akin to the labor required in removing & re-applying chapter rings. Is the cost of the applying the 10th marker $150 more than the 9th? Really, the costs are much more accurately associated to the workflow, or activity-based costing...disassembly, dismounting, mounting, refinishing, etc.

    However, 80 markers...I would not be surprised if it cost somewhere in the order of 4 digits to mount 80 markers, whether it's tritium or not. :)

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