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Discussion Starter #1
I recently got a 6138-0011 in a trade here. It clearly has some aftermarket parts on it (Dial and bezel. Hands look like they have been repainted.) but I'd rather not get into the age old discussion about use of aftermarket stuff here :) I'll just live with that unless I find some real replacements. I should say that the aftermarket (branded) seiko bracelet that it came on was of the lowest quality, when I finally pried it off it went straight in the trash :mad:

The case gasket completely disintegrated when I took the back off so I bought a set of gaskets (case, crown and pushers) on ebay and they just arrived.

While I've got the movement out to replace these things I thought I'd fix the one bit of aftermarket stuff that I can't live with: the polishing. As seems to be the norm with "HHC" watches the factory brushed finish has been polished out.

So on to my questions:

1. How do I restore the radial brushed finish to just the front of the case?
2. What's the best way of removing the bezel? It looks like there's an indentation on the underside to pry it off. Just use that?

Thanks
 

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The factory finish can be difficult to achieve, but it's certainly not impossible. I wrote a little bit about how I accomplished it on a 6139-7039 a while back.

http://www.thewatchsite.com/21-japa...storation-attempt-6139-7039-a.html#post379186

Above all else, the key is taking it slow and remembering that less is more. You are removing material when sanding, so it's best not to overdo it. One thing that helped me quite a bit were these sanding sponges.

 

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In the beginning I experimented with power options but came to the conclusion doing everything by hand was the way to go because it's too easy to overdue it.

Once original case lines are rounded off there's no going back.
 

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In the beginning I experimented with power options but came to the conclusion doing everything by hand was the way to go because it's too easy to overdue it.

Once original case lines are rounded off there's no going back.
Very strong advice given Sir. That is a lot to consider when doing a lot
of things to get them accomplished in many areas of work.
Many over-see the importance of the ( little things ) but only see the big things
seen.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Agreed. I'm not sure I want to involve power tools.

Would those sanding sponges be best, or would this be a use for one of those fiber-glass pens?
 

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I'm of the don't polish the case at all school, especially if you're not worried about aftermarket parts in the watch. clean, wear and enjoy.

<* shark >>><
 

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I'm of the don't polish the case at all school, especially if you're not worried about aftermarket parts in the watch. clean, wear and enjoy.

<* shark >>><

I agree with this principle but I have refinished a lot of cases/case parts because I buy a lot of damaged watches. The stuff I like does not come along mint at a price I can afford.

Some cases are harder to do than others and I use hand tools due to that is all I have but careful use of the correct support, a feel for the files/emery sticks 'attack' along with a keen eye and patience work acceptably well.

I have used a lathe to apply radial brushing in the past, this requires practice to establish the grade of paper to achieve the desired finish, anywhere between 240 to 800 grit. The proper factory finish is lapped so using paper gives an approximation of the finish but its better than over polished.

Just recently I have experimented radial brushing using a file, following the bezel lip (with the blunt side of the file) as a guide, don't laugh, after a little practice it was OK and looked more like the original finish. This would be a bugger to do on a 6138-0011 though with the brushing being so extensive and running down the side if the case.
 

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Just recently I have experimented radial brushing using a file, following the bezel lip (with the blunt side of the file) as a guide, don't laugh, after a little practice it was OK and looked more like the original finish. This would be a bugger to do on a 6138-0011 though with the brushing being so extensive and running down the side if the case.
This is a variation on what I have done, but instead of a file, I used a square wooden dowel and I attach the sandpaper to it. It's also worth mentioning that it doesn't take a lot of pressure to effect change on the surface. I refinished this one using the method I mentioned.

 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'm of the don't polish the case at all school, especially if you're not worried about aftermarket parts in the watch. clean, wear and enjoy.

<* shark >>><
I'm coming around to this perspective more as I look at the shape of the case. There's a lot more to it than a lot of the examples of refinishing that I can see here.
 

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If it's the finish you see on the side of say a 6138-0049 Bullhead watch then that is done with a small flapper wheel easily in a pillar drill.

The same goes for your 0011 Yaughtsman watch but you'll get away with a couple of grits of wet & dry or scotch bright pads and a spinning thing such as a lathe or chuck on a decent electric motor as the flapper wheel concept will be hard with that without building a jig of some type first. It won't look right to someone who knows the correct finish but it'll tidy up a badly polished case.

The bullhead sides are done with the flapper wheels and it's lots of tiny short scratches that you will not replicate with scotch type abrasive cloth easily. I'll take a photo when it brightens up (serious thunder and lightning at mo) and post it so you can see what I mean.

Personally If it is the top of the case and it's not already been polished to a super shine I'd leave it alone with a few scratches as it's still original and that to me is more important than anything but then I know that's not the American way and as a rule America would prefer it restored than original with a few historic scratches.

Nice job Chevere!
 

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This Bullhead Seiko had been polished on the sides but with a few brushes against the flapper wheel it looks 100% better. I did not sand it down first and I did not remove the dings and scratches from the parts of the case that are meant to be polished as I like my watches to look as original and untouched as possible.

 

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The UFO is finished differently to the Bullhead Tony... But you are correct on that.

Ah, darn have to do some work...will pop back later...
 

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The UFO is finished differently to the Bullhead Tony... But you are correct on that.

Ah, darn have to do some work...will pop back later...
Really? When I looked close at mine it seemed to be brushed with a super fine flapper wheel then spun and touched with a scotch pad to dull off the final finish? I can defo see a brushed touch lerking beneath mine... dag nabit mines off being worked on! Hurry up and put those dorito's down!

One things for sure due to the case shape it will be a tricky one to get spot on!
 

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This is a variation on what I have done, but instead of a file, I used a square wooden dowel and I attach the sandpaper to it. It's also worth mentioning that it doesn't take a lot of pressure to effect change on the surface. I refinished this one using the method I mentioned.

Stunning result. That is quite a looker. Love the lume too. Congrats !
 

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Really? When I looked close at mine it seemed to be brushed with a super fine flapper wheel then spun and touched with a scotch pad to dull off the final finish? I can defo see a brushed touch lerking beneath mine... dag nabit mines off being worked on! Hurry up and put those dorito's down!

One things for sure due to the case shape it will be a tricky one to get spot on!
Only going off the ones I have seen....but we all know that it's damned hard to tell exactly unless you have one that is nos...but then, maybe it was just refinished by someone really good and sold as nos...argggh

One thing is for sure; to hand finish a watch is hard.
To get good results you need consistency, you need hard flat surfaces and steady control. To do it in the hand with a torn of piece of wet and dry does not give good results!

The ufo's I've refinished I did by placing the case on a cup holder, (stackable movement cup holders), I found one that is the perfect fit to sit where the case back goes. Now I can spin the case freely, but it is very stable.
I then find something very flat that I can tape my sand paper too, and hold that against the case making sure it does not tip/tilt with respect to the surface I'm finishing. Then rotate the case as you please, always making sure the paper stays flat to the surface you are working. This will get those near vertical sides of the ufo lookin great. The top surface is done the same but now you can tilt the flat paper to match the contour of the case as you rotate it.

Btw, I agree 100% with the flapper wheel and the Bull. (We use flapper wheels for regraining stainless work where it has been welded together).
I think another (scary) alternative for that effect is a grinding wheel...a good one. I see cousins sell a Bergeon one for exactly this ;)
 
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