Sapphire Questions?

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  1. #1
    Member Tictocdoc's Avatar
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    Sapphire Questions?

    Sapphire is just about the toughest watch crystal options today, but I keep noticing that my watch develops new scratches almost every week.
    These are tiny microscratches, they arent really noticable unless you view the crystal at an angle, and in strong light. have you notticed this on your sapphire crystals??

    I have a polishing cloth (the kind given to you for free at a lenscrafters) and it might have gotten a little dirty, I had some pennys in the same place where I kept the rag, and I was using this to polish smudges off the crystal (most likely the source of all these tiny scratches)

    Is Sapphire supposed to resist these types of scratches?

    Also for bonus points does anybody know if the orient CFT00004b has the antireflective coating on the outside or inside of the crystal? (I think I heard somewhere that its applied to the inside of the crystal but so far I havent been able to confirm or even find that reference again)

  2. #2
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    A Sapphire crystal is very hard, so you should not be able to scratch is as easily as you describe. The AR coat is much softer,( unless one of the hardened ones). Are you sure it does not have the AR on the outside too?

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    Member dpj17's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    It is possible to scratch the sapphire crystal as well as possible to buff it out with modern abrasives, despite what my watchmaker told me. If it is the AR coating then that is also very succeptible to scratching as well as easily smudging. If you want to remove the AR I have done it with a combination of Polywatch and Toothpaste. If you want to buff out the micro scratches on the sapphire then you must invest in diamond paste and a dremel handheld rotary tool.
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    Member igorycha's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    Thanks for the post.
    I was wondering - how really hard is AR coating on sapphire? And does it tolerate everyday wipe with tissue?
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    I have had my Omega SMP for about 8 years & every time I have seen a "scratch" on the crystal, it wipes off with a cloth. I have examined it under magnification & it is clean. Sapphire crystals are very high on my list of good things. IMO A watch can't look new with scratches on the crystal. I though that this one had AR on both sides, but maybe it's only on the inside, unless it is very, very hard, as I am rough on watches. Most of my mineral crystal watches have scratches on the crystal.
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  7. #6
    Member shera's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    I don't understand why watchmakers put an AR coating on top of a sapphire in the first place. Makes absolutely no sense.

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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tictocdoc View Post
    Sapphire is just about the toughest watch crystal options today, but I keep noticing that my watch develops new scratches almost every week.
    These are tiny microscratches, they arent really noticable unless you view the crystal at an angle, and in strong light. have you notticed this on your sapphire crystals?
    No, haven't noticed that on any of my watches with sapphire crystals. While sapphire can be scratched, just wiping it with a cloth really shouldn't be scratching your watch.

    Like others have suggested, it may be an outer AR coating that you're scratching. Usually the AR coating is on the bottom/dial side of the crystal, but there are some watches that have both sides coated. It works very, very well, but the coating certainly can be scratches.

    However, is it also possible that your watch has a mineral glass crystal and not a sapphire crystal? Which watch do you have?

  9. #8
    Moderator Public Forum John MS's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tictocdoc View Post
    Sapphire is just about the toughest watch crystal options today, but I keep noticing that my watch develops new scratches almost every week.
    These are tiny microscratches, they arent really noticable unless you view the crystal at an angle, and in strong light. have you notticed this on your sapphire crystals??

    I have a polishing cloth (the kind given to you for free at a lenscrafters) and it might have gotten a little dirty, I had some pennys in the same place where I kept the rag, and I was using this to polish smudges off the crystal (most likely the source of all these tiny scratches)

    Is Sapphire supposed to resist these types of scratches?

    Also for bonus points does anybody know if the orient CFT00004b has the antireflective coating on the outside or inside of the crystal? (I think I heard somewhere that its applied to the inside of the crystal but so far I havent been able to confirm or even find that reference again)
    Does the watch crystal have anti-reflective coating applied on the outside? If so that material is relatively soft and easily scratched if the watch is simply stored in a drawer or box with other stuff.

    There are unfortunately more than a few watchmakers who push the look of their fully coated sapphire crystals but fail to warn owners about the downside.

  10. #9
    Member danielk's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by igorycha View Post
    Thanks for the post.
    I was wondering - how really hard is AR coating on sapphire? And does it tolerate everyday wipe with tissue?
    Well, I guess it depends on the watch, but I clean the crystal (I use a lens cloth, not a tissue) on my Sinn U1 whenever I wear it (it gets wrist time quite often) and I do not notice any difference from when it was new (I've had the watch 8 months).
    Daniel


  11. #10
    Member poboxw's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire Questions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tictocdoc View Post
    Also for bonus points does anybody know if the orient CFT00004b has the antireflective coating on the outside or inside of the crystal? (I think I heard somewhere that its applied to the inside of the crystal but so far I havent been able to confirm or even find that reference again)
    If you can see that characteristic bluish purple AR reflection all the way to the very edge of the crystal, then it's likely that there is an outer edge coating

    i clean my Damasko incessantly, often with just my shirt sleeves, it's been 3-4 months and i haven't seen a scratch of any size yet

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