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    Assembling a Replica Watch from eBay parts

    This post is targeted at those who love watches, like working with their hands, and are looking for a project. If you just want a watch, buy one from a Trusted Dealer. It will be cheaper, look better, and probably be faster than building your own. If however; like me, you would feel pride in wearing a watch you have built yourself, then I am here to tell you it is not as easy as the YouTube videos make it out to be.

    The videos tell you to select a movement, in my case this was a genuine eta 2824 I already had, then go to eBay and buy a 2824 case with crystal, a 2824 dial, 2824 hands, and a bracelet, and then they go through how to assemble the parts.

    This is what I ended up with after following their advice:


    You can see right away that my first build has problems:

    1) The dial window is in the wrong place and the date does not show properly. Also the dial feet are in the wrong place and they are too thick in diameter. Just because a seller says the dial is for a 2824 movement does not mean that is true. This dial turns out to be a 3135 movement specific dial. Luckily I have an extra 3135 movement and this will spawn a side project as I do like the dial. I have ordered a new dial for this project.

    2) The dial diameter is too small for the case and is loose at the top. Don't buy a dial that does not have a stated diameter and make sure the dial diameter matches the diameter of the watch case you buy. My dial, nice as it is, turned out to be 28.5mm and my case needed 31mm.

    3) You can see there is no hour hand. It turns out a new from the factory eta 2824 movement does not come with the hour wheel assembly attached to the watch movement. It is in a separate little bag with the dial ring. Luckily it is a simple drop fit onto the centre pinion of the movement, but watch out for this.

    4) You can see there is a crown but what you can't see is that there is no watch stem. The watch stem that came with the movement is not long enough to reach the edge of the case. I had to buy a longer stem. You can also buy a stem extender. I purchased mine from Esslinger.

    5) You can see there is no watch strap. I bought a beautiful solid end link stainless steel bracelet with replica glide-just clasp to find that the spring bar holes on the case do not match the spring bar position on the bracelet. The holes are not far enough out towards the end of the case lugs. I have ordered a new case as I do like the bracelet.

    Pretty much everything that could go wrong did on this first project. Be aware this is not as easy for a beginner as the you-tubers make it look. There is some trial and error involved. Buying a ready to assemble kit would have easier, but I have benefited from the learning experience and will be better off for it on my next build.

    If you are wearing a replica watch enjoy how well the parts fit perfectly together!

    It takes about a month to get anything from China so it will be a while before I can post a photo of my final build.



    #2
    Welcome to the wonderful world of watch building bro! This is how we end up with full parts drawers, haha. There is much to learn and the lack of standardization among even same model reps makes it even more challenging. But if you persevere, each build should be better than the last.

    Good luck!
    We are all related in time since time is relative to us all.
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    Double Nine Gonzo!

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by 40mm View Post
      This post is targeted at those who love watches, like working with their hands, and are looking for a project. If you just want a watch, buy one from a Trusted Dealer. It will be cheaper, look better, and probably be faster than building your own. If however; like me, you would feel pride in wearing a watch you have built yourself, then I am here to tell you it is not as easy as the YouTube videos make it out to be.

      The videos tell you to select a movement, in my case this was a genuine eta 2824 I already had, then go to eBay and buy a 2824 case with crystal, a 2824 dial, 2824 hands, and a bracelet, and then they go through how to assemble the parts.

      This is what I ended up with after following their advice:


      You can see right away that my first build has problems:

      1) The dial window is in the wrong place and the date does not show properly. Also the dial feet are in the wrong place and they are too thick in diameter. Just because a seller says the dial is for a 2824 movement does not mean that is true. This dial turns out to be a 3135 movement specific dial. Luckily I have an extra 3135 movement and this will spawn a side project as I do like the dial. I have ordered a new dial for this project.

      2) The dial diameter is too small for the case and is loose at the top. Don't buy a dial that does not have a stated diameter and make sure the dial diameter matches the diameter of the watch case you buy. My dial, nice as it is, turned out to be 28.5mm and my case needed 31mm.

      3) You can see there is no hour hand. It turns out a new from the factory eta 2824 movement does not come with the hour wheel assembly attached to the watch movement. It is in a separate little bag with the dial ring. Luckily it is a simple drop fit onto the centre pinion of the movement, but watch out for this.

      4) You can see there is a crown but what you can't see is that there is no watch stem. The watch stem that came with the movement is not long enough to reach the edge of the case. I had to buy a longer stem. You can also buy a stem extender. I purchased mine from Esslinger.

      5) You can see there is no watch strap. I bought a beautiful solid end link stainless steel bracelet with replica glide-just clasp to find that the spring bar holes on the case do not match the spring bar position on the bracelet. The holes are not far enough out towards the end of the case lugs. I have ordered a new case as I do like the bracelet.

      Pretty much everything that could go wrong did on this first project. Be aware this is not as easy for a beginner as the you-tubers make it look. There is some trial and error involved. Buying a ready to assemble kit would have easier, but I have benefited from the learning experience and will be better off for it on my next build.

      If you are wearing a replica watch enjoy how well the parts fit perfectly together!

      It takes about a month to get anything from China so it will be a while before I can post a photo of my final build.

      Congrats on building your first unit!

      I have never any doubt that it is never as simple as videos make it to be. It is one of my genuine goals in life, to learn about watch assembly and building one for myself one day. I have always had my eye on a 16610LN with a spider dial, tritium hands and champagne datewheel but I probably would want to practice a bit more before I take the plunge with costly parts.
      WTB: VC Overseas Blue

      Comment

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