How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

Thread: How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

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  1. #1
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    How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

    Maybe it's crazy, but there is a beater of a Seiko 6139 that I'd like to be able to wear for rough and tumble stuff, including getting wet. Original WR was 70m, so that would suffice. I'm not looking for a diver's watch. So the question is whether it's possible (with reasonable cost) to restore the WR.

    If so, I'm willing to take a chance. If it ends up not working out, I won't be heartbroken. And Seiko fans shouldn't either. It's a beater and has a replacement dial.

    Thanks,
    /K

    PS Also looking for suggestions on a watchmaker that would be able to do this kind of work.

  2. #2
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    Re: How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

    If this were my watch that I wanted to wear, I would have no problems with having the gaskets replaced and having it pressure tested. If it passed I would be fine with getting it wet.

    Most watchmakers should be able to handle this. Replacing the seals on a 40 year old watch isn't much different than replacing them on a newer watch. I suspect most wouldn't want to guarantee their work, but if it passes the pressure test I personally would be fine with that.

    It's up to you do decide if the watch is durable enough for your "rough and tumble stuff." Are you going to scratch up the crystal too much, or damage the insert? Are the pushers going to get pressed while the watch is submerged? If I wanted a beater sort of watch I don't think I'd get a chronograph, but that's just me. If you're comfortable with it - go for it. Wear the watch and enjoy it, don't keep it hidden in a drawer some where...

  3. #3
    Member W123's Avatar
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    Re: How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

    Very feasible, as long as all the mating surfaces (between the metal and rubber seals) are not corroded.

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  5. #4
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    Re: How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

    Thanks everyone. This is what I expected, but I wanted to see if there might be any factors I had overlooked.
    /K

  6. #5
    Member Popoki Nui's Avatar
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    Re: How feasible to restore a vintage watch's water resistance?

    My favourite watchmaker is a wizz at this. A couple of years ago he did all the seals and gaskets in my 30yr+ old Eterna KonTiki. He even managed to replace the gasket inside the crown and the o-ring in the case tube.
    It passed wr testing in excess of its 20atm rating with ease. As long as you can find seals that fit the watch and the case/crown aren't damaged there should be no problem resealing a vintage watch.
    Oh yeah, cost. total overhaul of the (chronometre) movement, new gaskets and crystal, regulation and pressure test: $125. This guy is a gem.
    Last edited by Popoki Nui; August 31st, 2009 at 02:58.
    PM is not working for me. If you need to contact me, please email. Thanks! popokinui1(at)gmail(dot)com






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