Trying to remove some links on a Hamilton bracelet. This is the (presumably) pin & collar variety, where there are no arrows indicating which direction the pin can be removed. So I'm guessing it doesn't matter which side I pull out the pin from. (First time I've seen this variety - most of mine are screws, or they're the split-pin variety that are pushed out along with the arrow indicators).
And man, are these things stuck. Maybe my watch sat on the shelf for a while and the pins have seized, or maybe it's today's weather, or climate, or something, but man I am vexed here. Been doing this for about 30 years with great tools and never once had this issue.
I can use my punch and pin removal tools to get the pins out about half way, and I saw on YouTube a guy who just grabbed some pliers and yanked them out the rest of the way (on a Hamilton bracelet, no less...), but I tug and tug and cannot get them out. I fear I'm going to bend them or ruin the collars or something.
I thought of buying a super long punch with an extender that is longer than the width of my bracelet but online descriptions for long punches in the < 1mm caliber are vague or not descriptive. Not even Esslinger has one that I think will work (without spending a fortune on a new punch kit).
I've thought of heating it, putting it in the freezer for a bit, putting a dollup of WD-40 into the pin holes, etc. etc. But before I do something unorthodox or "crazy" I thought I should ask. I'm guessing someone here has had this same issue and figured it out successfully without messing things up permanently.
Any suggestions? I'd go to a jeweler but I'm pretty far from one I trust.
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