[Q] Protecting vintage lume - Seiko & Citizen Watch Forum Japanese Watch Reviews, Discussion & Trading
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:09 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default [Q] Protecting vintage lume

Was just wondering, is there a type of permanent protective coating/seal that can be applied on a vintage tritium lume? Has it been done? I figured if ever the seals went bad at least the moisture/heat combination won't create a discoloration.

Edit: going over some Rolex forum, it seems this method is not so uncommon. It's often referred to as "Stabilise lume".

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Old 07-08-2019, 09:46 AM   #2 (permalink)
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It's possible, but raises a few points. The first being how will the lume react to the clearcoat. Second, especially on a printed dial it would have to be applied as neatly as the lume so as not to spill out onto the dial. It would be easier to apply to a 6105 type dial with raised borders on the indices.

I'm guessing it could be done, though.
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Old 07-08-2019, 04:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Mask off the dial and spray with a fine matt lacquer. I wouldn't bother tho. Sometimes these have moisture trapped that starts to sweat upon uncasing. This has just happened with a 7548 for me. It has been seen a number of times by others I think.

But I would say a spray of a decent lacquer would secure it fairly well, dry quick and leave it as is. The question would then be what types or varnish: oil, water based, polyurethane etc, would protect it whilst keeping the original colour tone....

I'd leave it...or try it...
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Old 07-09-2019, 12:18 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Mask off the dial and spray with a fine matt lacquer. I wouldn't bother tho. Sometimes these have moisture trapped that starts to sweat upon uncasing. This has just happened with a 7548 for me. It has been seen a number of times by others I think.

But I would say a spray of a decent lacquer would secure it fairly well, dry quick and leave it as is. The question would then be what types or varnish: oil, water based, polyurethane etc, would protect it whilst keeping the original colour tone....

I'd leave it...or try it...
Got a 6105 dial to spare? lol
I figured with the raised/bordered indices on something like a 6105, a tiny drop of varnish would do. I would think an oil based would be a better option since the water would pull salt crystals? Hmmm I got some old rusty 6309-704x hand set I could try on.

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Old 07-09-2019, 06:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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You would want it to be very fine, so as to just create a thin layer. Oil might discolour over time...no idea. These, some anyway, have lasted 40 years. Seals and casing in a not too moist environment would be the best solution, and although I'm sure are fine to submerge, well I'd avoid it if the goal is to keep them as they are without any risk no matter how small..
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:34 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyJ View Post
You would want it to be very fine, so as to just create a thin layer. Oil might discolour over time...no idea. These, some anyway, have lasted 40 years. Seals and casing in a not too moist environment would be the best solution, and although I'm sure are fine to submerge, well I'd avoid it if the goal is to keep them as they are without any risk no matter how small..
Something I stumbled upon while reading on lume stabilization.

http://www.rolexforums.com/showthread.php?t=278180

I see super glue and nail polish glue as suggestions lol. But you're right a good seal and dry environment is really the safest way to go. One wrong move with glue and I could end up stripping the chrome plating.

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Old 07-09-2019, 05:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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So most lume kits come with a resin binder to mix with the lume. Why not use the resin binder by itself to paint the existing lume to seal and protect it. Seems like it would work to me.
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Old 07-09-2019, 08:10 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i really wouldn't worry about it. once you touch that lume, the watch is no longer original and since you've altered the dial which is the most important part of the watch, value declines by 50% in my eyes.

buy, wear and enjoy.....=) take care of the watch the best you can, but otherwise, don't worry about it.

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