Urgent question

Thread: Urgent question

Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Member HazChrono's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Budapest/Merseyside
    Posts
    258

    Confused Urgent question

    Hi guys, does anyone think that radium or another radioactive lume type has been used on the dial of the buren feature in my previous thread?

    the only reason i ask this is because i removed the crystal and bezel to scrape off the degraded 'lume' from the hands and indices. Some of it came off as a fine powder which i may have inhaled. This is the first very old 'lumed' watch i have worked with myself, and i just didnt give it a thought.

    sorry for the trouble,

    Hazchrono

  2. #2
    Member igorRIJEKA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Fiume/Rijeka/EU
    Posts
    1,368

    Re: Urgent question

    I think that old watches have phosphorus as lume so I think that you will be OK

    ...and that should be very small amount of lume powder and it could do no harm to you

    regards

    igorfiume

  3. #3
    Member jedanzoom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    1,037

    Re: Urgent question

    Well,you survived Chernobyl.....
    “Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings - always darker, emptier and simpler.”

    Friedrich Nietzsche

    http://www.portalsatova.com/forum/

  4. Remove Advertisements
    WatchUSeek.com
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Member JohnF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Oberstedten, Germany
    Posts
    9,650

    Re: Urgent question

    Hi -

    YIKES!!!!

    Get yourself a geiger counter and find out if it is radium: if it is, you should talk to your doctor about this ASAP! While you probably don't have much too worry about - few of the Radium Girls who were older when they came into contact with radium developed any major side effects from low dosages, but rather it was the younger women who developed radium jaw from ingesting it on a constant basis - any serious contact with radium isn't a good idea. None of the watchmakers I use will touch older watches without first checking for that, but for them it's an occupational risk that can be easily taken care of (by refusing to work on any watch with a radium-based lume!). I'm not a specialist in this, nor am I a doctor: for that reason, talk to your doctor.

    Take the watch with you in case he has a geiger counter or an x-ray machine on the premises: If you lay the watch movement face down without the crystal on x-ray film for a few minutes, it should expose the film. That might be a quick test barring access to a geiger counter.

    Radium in and of itself is not toxic (unlike, say, plutonium), but is assimilated into the body like calcium and ends up in the bones: this is where the damage is done. Alpha radiation disrupts DNA and can cause mutations in cells, leading to cancer. See this.

    EVERYONE: Never assume that old lume is anything BUT radium, especially if the watch is pre-WW2. If you want to collect watches of this vintage, get yourself a geiger counter (I bought one off eBay for less than $15, didn't have a dosimeter, but told me if the counts were high, and that's enough to find out if it is radioactive or not!) to ensure that you are NOT dealing with a watch that uses radium.

    Only a few watches were marked as using radium with a small "R" next to the country identifier. Most were not.

    You do have to remove the movement + dial from the case, but that is fairly harmless, unless you see a lot of dust on the dial. Another fairly good indicator of radium are radiation burns in the crystal or dial, if the radium was applied thickly (for better lume). The crystal will otherwise stop the radiation.

    If you are in doubt, assume that the lume on the dial for any pre-WW2 watch is radium. It is simply safer to assume that than to assume that it is not.

    JohnF
    Last edited by JohnF; February 15th, 2010 at 21:02.
    コスト下げ やる気も一緒に 下げられる


  6. #5
    Member Beau8's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Sunny California
    Posts
    23,401

    Re: Urgent question

    I would get a second opinion from a licensed professional~Better safe than sorry, cheers!

  7. #6
    Member HazChrono's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Budapest/Merseyside
    Posts
    258

    Re: Urgent question

    thanks for advice guys, i think Im ok. I really do think we should have a sticky thread in the sub forum explaining the dangers of these old lumed watches to beginners and collectors that do some maintenance and cleaning themselves.

    Thanks

  8. #7
    Member JohnF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Oberstedten, Germany
    Posts
    9,650

    Re: Urgent question

    Hi -

    I will take that seriously under consideration...

    JohnF

    PS: Glad things are okay...you have checked to see if you glow in the dark, right?
    コスト下げ やる気も一緒に 下げられる


  9. #8
    Member waruilewi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    sf ca us
    Posts
    1,979

    Re: Urgent question

    Quote Originally Posted by HazChrono View Post
    thanks for advice guys, i think Im ok. I really do think we should have a sticky thread in the sub forum explaining the dangers of these old lumed watches to beginners and collectors that do some maintenance and cleaning themselves.
    Well the human body contains about 0.0000000000000015259 percent that is radium, so you just moved the decimal point over by a digit or two I think.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •