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  1. papercrake

    papercrake Aug 24, 2016

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    How important is an authentic crystal? I took my 1950's chronometre in a few days ago and although everything is working well, the shop(Central Watch in NYC) recommended I think about switching out the crystal at some point in the future since there are hairline fissures that could allow moisture onto the dial. Any thoughts on wether this is a good idea?

    I'd like to keep the dial etc intact, is there any danger I should be aware of?

    Thanks!
     
  2. dx009

    dx009 Aug 24, 2016

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    I think you mean the original crystal that was installed in the factory.

    An authentic crystal is important to me (when talking about an Omega, at least) but I wouldn't mind replacing it with a brand new correct crystal if the previous one has issues.

    If we're talking about installing non-Omega crystals then that might be a bad idea in my opinion.
     
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  3. ulackfocus

    ulackfocus Aug 24, 2016

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    I can't think without pictures. :(
     
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  4. Tony C.

    Tony C. Ωf Jury member Aug 24, 2016

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    While it's nice to have an original crystal, and especially one that is signed, I wouldn't lose a wink of sleep over a replacement as long as it is essentially the same style.
     
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  5. gatorcpa

    gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Aug 24, 2016

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    Let me add..."for most watches".

    Several brands (Omega, Universal Geneve and Eterna, I'm sure there are others) actually sign their crystals. For those watches it is always better to have a signed crystal.

    In the case of Universal Geneve, there are no replacements available, so that's how you know that the crystal is original.
    gatorcpa
     
  6. voere

    voere pawn brokers are all about $$$ Aug 24, 2016

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    Not All Omega crystals are signed I recently purchased a original Omega crystal for an older Omega No Horse shoe in the center for case ref 2364
     
  7. gatorcpa

    gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Aug 24, 2016

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    If it was old stock, that is true. Omega started signing crystals around 1950.

    Also, if the crystal is made of anything other than Hexalite (plastic), it would not be signed.
    gatorcpa
     
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  8. JimInOz

    JimInOz "Helpful Hints from Heloise" of bracelet cleaning. Aug 24, 2016

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    If there are fissures in the plastic (and not scratches) I'd change it ASAP with an OEM item.

    The fissures indicate a breakdown in the molecular structure of the plastic, possibly caused by UV light and age.
    The structure and integrity of the crystal is severely weakened and could break and damage the dial if bumped hard enough.
    A new crystal would more than likely just shrug of such a bump.

    PS: You can see fissures better by looking from the side of the crystal in good daylight, sometimes looking straight on they just look like scratches.
     
  9. Syrte

    Syrte Aug 24, 2016

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    Grateful for the info, I have recently acquired a watch with a fissured crystal and wasn't in a particular hurry to switch, especially since I wasn't sure I could find the same shape.
     
  10. Canuck

    Canuck Aug 24, 2016

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    Many models of Omega require a specific genuine Omega crystal. I refer the crystals with a reflector ring (often called an "A" type, or armoured type crystal), particularly. While generic reflector ring crystals are available, only genuine Omega crystals have the required "shelf" for the outer edge of the dial machined into the reflector ring.. If you use a generic type, the movement usually sits too high in the case, and this can cause the rotor (on an automatic) to drag on the case back. Spend a bit more and use genuine.
     
  11. Clibka

    Clibka Aug 24, 2016

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    My .02 ...

    While some might find the patina of a "barn find" appealing, the one thing that can easily be and should be switched out is the crystal. The beauty lies in the dial/hands etc... If you leave it covered you miss out on that. One thing worth noting, if you get it replaced, retain the old one, if it ever changes hands to a new home they might like the extreme patina look/attention to detail you maintained. Example:

    [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  12. DON

    DON Aug 25, 2016

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    Original vs. generic depending on the model I was restoring.

    Average (although fully restored models) got generic crystals. These might include simple bumper models, however small second Seamaster models got signed as they were one of the more popular models.

    Gold capped with with new hands got signed. Most De Ville models got generic unless at least 8.5/10 or higher.

    More popular at the time got the added expense of a signed crystal as they were 5x the price of generic at the time (original $25.00)

    DON
     
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  13. Archer

    Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Aug 25, 2016

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    There are people out there who may not know any better who will tell you it makes no difference, but in some cases (with tension rings) is certainly does.

    [​IMG]

    Using a generic crystal can certainly cause problems, and I would seriously question leaving a watch with someone who tells you there's no difference...
     
  14. papercrake

    papercrake Aug 29, 2016

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    Thanks so much for all the feedback folks. Is an OEM crystal something a decent watch maker will have access to, or is that something I will have to source myself and provide?
     
  15. GuiltyBoomerang

    GuiltyBoomerang Aug 29, 2016

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    Watch makers will either have them on hand (if it's a commonly serviced model,) or will find out the part number from the watch caseback and order it. Usually they can be had from Cousins or Otto Frei; otherwise eBay; failing that, they would need an Omega Parts account.
     
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  16. voere

    voere pawn brokers are all about $$$ Aug 30, 2016

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    Original Crystals if you can obtain one. For me are the only way to go. I just had a new Omega crystal installed on a vintage Omega the transformation was huge. The watch as purchased was wearing a generic crystal that had the wrong profile now all is well
     
  17. Nobel Prize

    Nobel Prize Sergio Aug 30, 2016

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    So much great advice in this thread, I can't offer anything of much relevance.

    So instead I'll just say I got a great Crystal set for our wedding a few years ago. All original.
     
  18. voere

    voere pawn brokers are all about $$$ Aug 30, 2016

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    Depends the watchmaker I deal with could not source the correct crystal for an Omega from the 1940's. I tried several supply houses in the US with no luck. They all replied that crystal is discontinued and did not even have the part number. They all told me on their books it just mentioned discontinued. I had to source the crystal from the UK from Cousins supply house. So if the watchmaker or shop can not supply the part you will have to hunt the part down on your own The watchmaker I deal with has no issues with using customer supplied parts. However some watchmakers will not use customer supplied parts. I figure if it is an OEM new part no harm no foul just charge me a little more to install the crystal.
    Good Luck
     
    Edited Aug 30, 2016
  19. Archer

    Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Aug 30, 2016

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    The concern with using customer supplied parts is not about some imagined profit on the purchase price of the part - it's not that simple. For me, it's about who takes ultimate responsibility for the final outcome, and what avenues of recourse are available to me as the person who will be held responsible. Each watchmaker has to decide for themselves how they approach this situation, but if I buy the parts myself, I know where they came from and know for sure that they are genuine.

    The vendor you mention has their own line of replacement crystals "for Omega" that by all accounts are pretty terrible. I doubt they would sell you something as OEM that wasn't, however not every supplier has such scruples...

    Cheers, Al
     
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  20. papercrake

    papercrake Aug 31, 2016

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    Thanks again folks, just sent it off to get serviced. Watchmaker is going to source the replacement crystal for me. Will post some photos when I get it back :)
     
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