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My first foray into Seiko modding...

  1. DJG2645 Mar 10, 2021

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    I still very much consider myself a noob in watch collecting, with only a few years under my belt so far. I wanted to learn more about the movements and mechanics and thought the best way was to try and build a watch (not the entire movement of course thanks to the NH36). Did a lot of research and opted for Namoki parts.

    I really enjoyed it, took me 6 hours all in all, took my time, made plenty of mistakes and learnt a fair bit (I think). My top learnings were:
    - I could never be a watch maker, those that are have an incredible talent.
    - I should have ordered a magnifying glass before starting.
    - Attaching that seconds hand nearly beat me. The other half was amazing at finding it in the carpet when it flew off, only took 20 mins before she said "doesn't it glow? Let's turn the light off". Absolute legend, I was sat on the floor near defeated feeling so close, yet so far.
    - The moment I could see the dot/pip needed on the arm to release the crown & stem was a massive highlight :thumbsup:
    - Definitely should have not missed the Chapter ring off the order, but it only took me 10 mins to pop the glass off, remove the movement, it the chapter ring and re-assemble.

    Now it is all working, keeping time and date I am really proud of it and would definitely do it again :D some pics of the finished model. I also love the blue lume!

    P.S hope Seiko mods are allowed on here :whistling:

    pre build.jpg

    completed.jpg

    Lume.jpg
     
  2. MCC Mar 10, 2021

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    Well done, I think it looks great!
     
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  3. RealFire Mar 13, 2021

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    That looks fantastic!
     
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  4. Walrus Mar 13, 2021

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    Very nice job I’m often amazed by what I see people do with these seiko mods very impressive
     
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  5. omegaswisst Mar 13, 2021

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    Looks great.

    It's amazing how many things pop up to test you in watch making and tinkering, but the experience gained will mean the next one goes that little bit more smoothly.
     
    DJG2645 likes this.
  6. pascs Mar 13, 2021

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    Great job and I can tell you it can become very addictive.

    I've been modding Seikos (and other watches) for several years but the huge number of companies now selling great aftermarket parts for Seiko mods make for an amazing choice of parts.

    You definitely need a magnifying glass (Loupe) its absolutely essential, you can not do without one.

    For the seconds hands there are some techniques to making this easier, I used to cut a very thin piece of masking tape and stick it to the back of the seconds hands, this makes positioning it very easy. I use a hand fitting press (I see you have one in the picture) and I find these have much more accuracy and control, however many modders seem to like the individual hand fitting tools and I started using these when I first started, but these can slip when installing the seconds hand if its very tight, so a lot of care is needed. I would also suggest using a dial protector when fitting or removing hands.
    Hands can also be easily scratched when fitting so it can be beneficial to put a small piece of clear plastic over the center of the hand when installing to help prevent the hand fitting tool leaving any marks.

    Above all enjoy the process :thumbsup:
     
    marco, DJG2645 and omegaswisst like this.
  7. Scarecrow Boat 5000 Candles in the Wind Mar 13, 2021

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    I can confirm that it can be addicting and expensive... especially when you buy OEM LE parts. But, it’s a lot of fun. I did all of these early/mid 2019. The dark brown leather strap on a few of those was just a placeholder until the bracelets showed up.

    66ABF44F-AA02-4C24-A50C-531C8D0E9F81.jpeg
    51084F63-1D45-4390-9755-55A5F5B4B614.jpeg 0EE2D9A1-D1ED-4ADA-B80B-2694C6FD528D.jpeg 7D48396F-B4E6-4324-8586-1A9BFD7F07C6.jpeg 89B3BCBB-D6D2-4FFE-ACDB-1A200DEF03A0.jpeg
    C59B9A93-9DEC-4563-B3E1-94F51B1992E0.jpeg 772B7E29-4CB8-41C0-9188-ECE3A5EB685C.jpeg 4B5FF264-C0B9-4537-A7B1-9DFBAB1BDDF6.jpeg 4C124BD7-A054-46B0-85C3-14F9AB11F5B6.jpeg
     
    Edited Mar 14, 2021
    johnborsellino, marco, Walrus and 5 others like this.
  8. DJG2645 Mar 15, 2021

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    @pascs thanks for the tips - I have now invested in a Loupe to help me next time! For the seconds hand i used a similar approach to the above, dial protector & some blu-tac but will try you approach next time so I make sure I protect the hands! :thumbsup:
     
  9. DJG2645 Mar 15, 2021

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    @Scarecrow Boat those look amazing! I can definitely tell how addictive it is, I am already pondering whether to buy more bezel inserts so I can change them around every now and then, and then I see a different dial I like so I think it is hair to say this won't be my one and only Seiko mod :D
     
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  10. Walrus May 25, 2021

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    I am strongly considering getting into seiko mods. I’m curious about the tools you acquire. I read it doesn’t pay to get the really cheap stuff off the rip but I also don’t want to go crazy in case I find I don’t have the time to properly get into it. After three years of recovering from a hand thing I’m finally able to play guitar again but I’m a bass player at heart so making the switch back to an acoustic six string regular guitar is slow going. Anyway, too much info, tools. Yes that is what I’m curious about. I pretty much need everything but a strap changer. Of which I got the cheap set and wish I hadn’t but it’s fine I just learned to use them carefully. I see so much nice work people do on them I’d really like to give it a go. I would also just be doing it for my own enjoyment not like a business proposition which I see a lot of people doing which again would be another reason why I would not need top tier tools but would want reliable things I would not to replace often.
     
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  11. tikkathree May 26, 2021

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    I spent a happy couple of years experimenting with watch modding, I started with Vostoks and moved into Seiko, mostly Sumos as they were what I wanted to wear at the time. Dials, handsets, chapter rings, crystals, movement holders, rotors, stem/crowns.

    Loupe? Definitely and you might want to think about something which you can either fix to your face or hold over your work using a stand or something: why? For me it was the sweep second hand and needing to use both hands just to hold the movement and press the little stinker into position. You've had the "ping - she flies!!!!" experience and we understand each other. FWIW the technique which worked best for me was to fix a small blob of blutack on the end of a short stick and pick up the sweep second hand right over the pivot point and then press it into place. My blutack had to be small enough to align things visually and once you've pressed the hand home it releases easily enough from the blutack.

    Tools? Well, blutack, a set of cheap brass tweezers, a pukka hand-setting press, a crystal press for removing and replacing. Oh and a shallow tray to hold my work in and a large smooth cloth to cover my workspace and hopefully avoid those flying hand moments. Here's a real "pro" tip. If something pings off into space your first step is to not move, not drag your chair about but look down, check your lap, check your shirt front, work your eyes down your legs, down the chair legs. Or maybe you'd like to learn about mashing a second hand with the leg of the chair? No, don't do it!

    You can have a lot of fun, you can chase designs and see how you like them "on the wrist"
     
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  12. DJG2645 Jun 1, 2021

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    I concur with everything @tikkathree has said...I also found when any of the hands flies off onto the carpet then turning the lights off speeds up finding the missing part :D I have done a few Seiko mods now and found with each one experience has improved.

    I bought some loupe glasses with a touch and they are a godsend for fitting that seconds hand.

    There is definitely a couple of routes you can go...buying all component parts and do a "proper" and full build or you can buy a case from eBay where it is mostly assembled for you (case includes chapter ring, case back, crystal, date magnifyer, bracelet).

    Most importantly have fun with it :)
     
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  13. Jkbenn02 Jun 2, 2021

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    Awesome photos