Should I replace this Maximus dial?

Jerry Treiman

NAWCC Member
Golden Circle
Aug 25, 2000
6,747
2,889
113
Los Angeles, CA
Country
Region
I have had this 16-size lever-set Riverside Maximus for almost 50 years and have wrestled with this question for almost as long. It has a proper Maximus dial but, as often happens with lever-set watches it has a chip at the edge of the dial where the lever snaps back in. It is not a bad chip, only nicking the point of the “5”. The photo shows the watch with the bezel closed and, in details, the exposed dial and an oblique view where the reflections reveal the extent of the chip. It has dial wax filling the chip and, as I recall, the copper was not exposed. All in all, not very noticeable in normal use.
16sMaxDial_chipped.jpg

In some aspects it seems normal to have a chip like this on a lever set watch. I have an identical replacement dial with no chips (for now :rolleyes:) but since lever-set Maximus are not very common it might be tough to find another home for my chipped dial.

I am inclined (as I have been for several decades) to leave the chipped dial on this lever-set Maximus where it at least seems appropriate and reserve the more pristine dial for a pendant set model. ... What would you do?
 

Ethan Lipsig

NAWCC Gold Member
Jan 8, 2006
2,428
2,263
113
72
Pasadena
Country
Region
I'd replace the dial and buy another pristine dial. I don't think one would be that hard to find, but perhaps I am mistaken.
 

Maximus Man

Maximus Man
NAWCC Member
Jan 1, 2011
180
139
43
Country
I have had this 16-size lever-set Riverside Maximus for almost 50 years and have wrestled with this question for almost as long. It has a proper Maximus dial but, as often happens with lever-set watches it has a chip at the edge of the dial where the lever snaps back in. It is not a bad chip, only nicking the point of the “5”. The photo shows the watch with the bezel closed and, in details, the exposed dial and an oblique view where the reflections reveal the extent of the chip. It has dial wax filling the chip and, as I recall, the copper was not exposed. All in all, not very noticeable in normal use.
View attachment 654227

In some aspects it seems normal to have a chip like this on a lever set watch. I have an identical replacement dial with no chips (for now :rolleyes:) but since lever-set Maximus are not very common it might be tough to find another home for my chipped dial.

I am inclined (as I have been for several decades) to leave the chipped dial on this lever-set Maximus where it at least seems appropriate and reserve the more pristine dial for a pendant set model. ... What would you do?
I would replace it as they are all interchangeable, but only if it really bothered me and if it was my only example.
 

John Cote

Director
NAWCC Member
Aug 26, 2000
4,454
889
113
Midwest USA
www.johncotephotography.com
Country
Region
I struggle with the same issues. I collect dials and cases and rarely use them...they just stay in the drawers of an old Gerstner tool chest. I guess the only time I use a dial from the collection is if I have a watch as my reference example in my "permanent" collection.
 

musicguy

Moderator
Staff member
NAWCC Member
Sponsor
Jan 12, 2017
7,600
4,124
113
New York State
Country
First, I'm not unhappy when I get a Private Label with a small flaw because
I never think about this quandary that Jerry has proposed above.
I always leave them as found. When I get a damaged
"common" dial(Elgin has many easily found and always for sale under $30)
I have no problem replacing them
but it must be an exact swap for me to be happy.
I do not like to see a repair on a dial I usually avoid buying them.

The question is where does it end. Are you swapping dials, swapping
hands, swapping cases, and always striving to create a "perfect example".
I know that on a few watches I've done this because I found
an orphaned movement and it needed everything. Or a watch
that should have had moon hands, or Ball hands or had the wrong dial
wrong time period for the case, etc then I have no problem switching them back.

I do think it's a slippery slope. As people can see I do like
watches that you can see have been used(and clean ones too) but not ones that
have been abused. I replace all plastic crystals but rarely
the glass ones unless I can't see through them.




Rob
 

topspin

Registered User
Dec 14, 2014
1,551
318
83
Country
Region
I vote for - it's more than fine as it is, so leave it.

If you or a friend come into possession of a watch one day which really does need a replacement Maximus dial, then you will have a pleasant choice as to which one to donate.
 

musicguy

Moderator
Staff member
NAWCC Member
Sponsor
Jan 12, 2017
7,600
4,124
113
New York State
Country
I have had this 16-size lever-set Riverside Maximus for almost 50 years and have wrestled with this question for almost as long.
This is something that has bugged you for 50 years.
Jerry change the dial and/or come over to my house for a glass
of wine or beer and we can talk about it.



Rob
 

klokwiz

NAWCC Member
Feb 4, 2009
1,425
89
48
Annapolis, MD
Country
Region
Jerry, If you can find an IDENTICAL dial change it. the crack at 5 o'clock is as big an issue for me. If the movement is not scared and deserves a perfect dial go for it and move on. Joe.
 

MrRoundel

Registered User
Dec 28, 2010
1,403
265
83
So. Cal., USA
Country
Region
Tough call. I can see why you're grappling with it. That said, being that you have the other dial, why not make the watch closer to perfection? Now if you didn't have the "chip-less" dial in your possession, it may be another story. If I were in similar shoes I wouldn't be spending a lot of time looking for a dial to replace the one with the lever chips.

BTW, I know someone with an '88 Maximus that has dial with much bigger problems, i.e. chips around center hole, as well as chips around the seconds bit. On that one I'd switch in a heart-beat. Even your lever-chipped dial would be a big upgrade. Good luck. Cheers.
 

Kenny S.

NAWCC Member
Apr 12, 2020
235
370
63
56
Not far from South Park CO
Country
Region
Since you've been wrestling with this for so long I'd say go ahead and swap it out. It will beautify the watch, you'll feel better and you can sell the chipped dial to someone who has a worse one like MrRoundel pointed out. Win, win.
 

Dr. Jon

Moderator
NAWCC Member
Dec 14, 2001
6,483
877
113
New Hampshire
Country
Region
Whether you replace it or not, that wax has to go.

I use titanuim white acrylic paint in a tube I get at art supply shops. Wet, it's like toothpaste. It dries to a hard rubbery feel and from a feet away the repair is unnoticeable. Like the wax it is removable. You can do the "repair" quickly and easily and do not have to remove the dial to do it.
 

Jerry Treiman

NAWCC Member
Golden Circle
Aug 25, 2000
6,747
2,889
113
Los Angeles, CA
Country
Region
Thanks to all for offering your perspectives.

I think my quandary developed because of my perspective about watch collecting. In many instances I will try to improve a watch with identical and original replacement parts, but I don’t like to do this to the detriment of other complete watches. Regarding a dial with a chip like this it really should only be on a lever-set movement (which apparently are not too common). Otherwise a lever chip on a pendant set movement is a glaring sign that it is not original, much like extraneous case screw marks in watch cases. So, in the end I will save my better dial for a pendant set model. I will leave the chipped dial on my watch, but I will try to make a better patch along the lines suggested by Jon.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
166,251
Messages
1,448,537
Members
86,766
Latest member
Dmvalente
Encyclopedia Pages
1,057
Total wiki contributions
2,910
Last edit
NAWCC Online Structure and Operation by Tom McIntyre