How To Fix A Broken Watch Crystal

Need to know how to fix a broken watch crystal? Basically the only real fix to a broken watch crystal is to replace it. This is not something that most people will be prepared to do, it takes special knowledge and tools to perform, and perform well. Specific, detailed instructions would take much more room than we are able to give here. What we will do here is to give a brief overview of the process and the user can then decide if they wish to move on further and investigate it deeper. Most of the time the watch movement will need to be removed in order to clean the case and install the crystal properly, so this is what we will assume in our case.

Items which may be needed:

  • Watch crystal
  • Gasket
  • Watchmakers watch crystal press
  • Watchmakers crystal lift
  • Watch crystal ultraviolet glue
  • Ultraviolet glue curing lamp
  • Calipers
  • Watch crystal epoxy
  • Watch crystal epoxy dissolver/remover
  • Tools needed to open the watch case and remove movement

The process would go something like this:

  1. Open watch.  Using the correct tools for the watch remove the case back of the watch. Take care to not damage any gasket it may have. If you damage the gasket purchase a new one when you buy the new crystal.
  2. Remove movement. Use the correct tools and remove the movement from the watch. Sit it aside in a safe location.
  3. Remove old crystal.  Remove the old crystal using the proper method. Some will simply pop out, some older plastic crystals will need a crystal lift, and some will be glued in place. Glued crystals may need to be boiled free, or have a special epoxy dissolver used to free the crystal.
  4. Clean case.  Use glue removers and clean the case to remove all traces of glue.
  5. Measure old crystal. Use the calipers and measure the old crystal or case.
  6. Determine and purchase new crystal. Determine what time of crystal you have. What options it may have such as domed crystals, cyclops date viewer, and what material it is made of. It may be plastic, mineral crystal, or sapphire crystal. The crystal may be round, square, rectangular. It may be domed or flat. Once  you determine the crystal specifications, purchase a replacement.
  7. Fit new crystal. Use the appropriate method to replace the crystal. Some crystals will require a crystal press, some will use gaskets, and some will be glued in place. Different glues even have different uses and cure methods and setup times, Make sure you study the glue instructions well before use to insure best results.
  8. Replace watch movement.  Once the new crystal is installed you will replace the watch movement in the appropriate method.
  9. Replace watch back.  Use the appropriate method to replace the watch back.

That is the basic process. As will be obvious this is a very basic overview. If you still wish to attempt it you will want to study the process in more depth. For most people it will be obvious that taking the watch to a qualified watch maker is usually the best idea.

 

 

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