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Thread: Elgin Crystal

  1. #1
    bigfritzcat
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    Default Elgin Crystal

    I just picked up my first two pocket watches at an auction last week. I was very pleased and carrying one or the other every day since I purchased them.

    Here is my problem. I noticed some smudges under the glass (crystal) of the Elgin and in an effort to clean it, the glass (crystal) popped out of the ring. Being new to pocket watches, I need some advice on what to do. I assume that the crystal was somehow held in with adhesive. I do not have a trusted watchmaker to take it to and I believe that I could fix it with the right advice. Thanks

  2. #2
    bigfritzcat
    Guest

    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    I just picked up my first two pocket watches at an auction last week. I was very pleased and carrying one or the other every day since I purchased them.

    Here is my problem. I noticed some smudges under the glass (crystal) of the Elgin and in an effort to clean it, the glass (crystal) popped out of the ring. Being new to pocket watches, I need some advice on what to do. I assume that the crystal was somehow held in with adhesive. I do not have a trusted watchmaker to take it to and I believe that I could fix it with the right advice. Thanks

  3. #3
    dnh
    Guest

    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    Yes, there is an adhesive holding the crystal in place. I use an adhesive called G-S Hypo Cement. It is common to find it at a craft store. You just need a small amount of manual dexterity to apply, being careful not to use too much. If you do put too much on, it is easily removed.

    Dave

  4. #4
    Registered User Greg Davis's Avatar
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    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    When replacing a glued in crystal, consider the following:
    1) clean away the old glue from the bezel AND the crystal. It is probably black and ugly.
    2) consider replacing the crystal with a new one that fits. People glue crystals in because they didn't have a properly fitting crystal. Besides, old crystals that were glued in are often discolored plastic crystals, and the watch would look better with a good glass crystal.
    3) If you MUST glue the old one back, avoid the temptation to put glue around the entire bezel. You will just make a big mess and waste a lot of glue. Three or four tiny drops is all you really need unless the crystal is seriously undersized (in which case all the glue in the world won't keep it in place long).
    4) When gluing a crystal in, separate the bezel from the movement. As much as you might think you're using too little glue, you're probably still going to use too much. You don't want the glue dripping on the dial, especially if the dial isn't porcelain.

    - Greg

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    Ch.149 member #77

  5. #5
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    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    A correct fit snaps in.

    Fit the crystal while the bezel is in place on the case.

    Rotate the crystal as you snap.

    Using glue simply means that you don't have the correct crystal and it probably will fall out again.

    Avoid plastic all all costs!

    Jon Hanson, NAWCC #8801
    Founder and President Chapter 149, The Early American Watch Club


  6. #6
    dnh
    Guest

    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    You should check for additional damage while removing any old glue. You may be better off replacing the crystal with a better-fitting one. Jon is right, avoid plastic!

    Dave

  7. #7
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    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    Since you live near Upper Sanduskey, you might want to look up a guy named Scott Eckleberry there. He should be able to take care of your crystal problem for you (and most anything else you want done on the watch).

    Harvey J. Mintz

  8. #8

    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    Big Fritz, Here is a hint for cleaning crystals. When you clean and polish the inside of the crystal, place the bezel with the outside against your pantleg. This gives a solid surface for you to rub against. If you try to polish without the crystal against a surface, you will pop the best of them.

    Tom

    Tom Huber

  9. #9
    bigfritzcat
    Guest

    Default Elgin Crystal (RE: bigfritzcat)

    Thanks for all of the great advice. I believe that the existing crystal is glass and not plastic. For some reason, I thought that the crystal should snap into the bezel, but it does not. Thanks to Harvey for the lead in Upper Sandusky. It is very close and I will look Scott up. I will let you know how this goes.

    Fritz

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