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Thread: Reason and or cure for a hazy sapphire

  1. #1
    Master
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    Reason and or cure for a hazy sapphire

    Old omega f300, straight on it looks absolutely fine, but at an sharp angle the dial becomes almost I visible. Just a cloudy haze.


  2. #2
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Condensation?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    Condensation?
    Possible although doesn't look like condensation I've experienced in the past on watches, and it's permanently like this regardless of temperature etc.

  4. #4
    If it's on the outside, application of something like wax polish should minimise the effect.

  5. #5
    Grand Master Foxy100's Avatar
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    I had it on the inside of one of my watches, I think it was oil rather than water but I may well be wrong.
    You can live in your car but you can't drive your house.

  6. #6
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    If it's on the inside it could be oil vapour - a watchperson worth his salt will clean that for a tenner - it's a quick wipe around after the movement is de cased.

    More seriously though, it could flag up need for service and oil change. Some oils give off vapour as they age.

    B

  7. #7
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    I’ve worked on lots of watches over the past few years, some of which were grossly over-oiled, and I’ve never seen anything like this. Oil wouldn’t vapourise and condense like this inside a watch, I can’t see how this is feasible. Lets be clear, the oil used in a watch consists of very small drops applied to the pivots of wheels, it remains in the bearing, it doesn’t float about. When a watch is over-oiled the oil spreads away from where it was applied, but that wouldn’t give rise to generation of oil mist.

    Its a strange one, assuming the haze is on the inner surface and it isn’t water I don’t know what its caused by.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    Iíve worked on lots of watches over the past few years, some of which were grossly over-oiled, and Iíve never seen anything like this. Oil wouldnít vapourise and condense like this inside a watch, I canít see how this is feasible. Lets be clear, the oil used in a watch consists of very small drops applied to the pivots of wheels, it remains in the bearing, it doesnít float about. When a watch is over-oiled the oil spreads away from where it was applied, but that wouldnít give rise to generation of oil mist.

    Its a strange one, assuming the haze is on the inner surface and it isnít water I donít know what its caused by.
    It is most certainly something to do with the inner surface (given the cleaning I've done on the exterior). It is due a service anyway if i can find someone who'll get back to me, but i' just rather intrigued. Certainly wasn't this way when I bought it a couple of years ago, and it's neverbeen submerged etc, in fact only worn a handful of times in that period due to it not quite fitting my slim wrist. Love the thing, but have just noticed another reason that makes me want to wear it less :(

  9. #9
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    Would love to see a follow up when it's sorted.

  10. #10
    Grand Master Dave+63's Avatar
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    My guess is that battery acid vapour has etched the underside of the glass at some stage.

    Looking through it straight on doesnít cause enough refraction to be noticeable but looking through at an angle does.

    If that is the card then itíll take a polish with polywatch or similar to remove rather than just a clean.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave+63 View Post
    My guess is that battery acid vapour has etched the underside of the glass at some stage.

    Looking through it straight on doesnít cause enough refraction to be noticeable but looking through at an angle does.

    If that is the card then itíll take a polish with polywatch or similar to remove rather than just a clean.
    Does polywatch work on sapphire?

  12. #12
    Grand Master Dave+63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingstepper View Post
    Does polywatch work on sapphire?
    Itís an old Omega f300, probably from the seventies so Iím assuming that itís not sapphire. I could be wrong though.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave+63 View Post
    It’s an old Omega f300, probably from the seventies so I’m assuming that it’s not sapphire. I could be wrong though.
    Okay, I've no knowledge of what it is, just going by thread title!

    Acid etching is a good call though.

  14. #14
    Grand Master Dave+63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingstepper View Post
    Okay, I've no knowledge of what it is, just going by thread title!
    Whatever it is, my suggestion is that itíll need more than a wipe over with a cloth.

  15. #15
    Master murkeywaters's Avatar
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    I have had this on several older quartz models, crown out, movement and dial removed and clean inside film off the crystal, very easy to remove as itís just a cloudy residue that wipes off, not sure why it happens though?

    One of my Tag Heuerís when I first bought it, donít look too bad until you turn it sideways or remove the dial/movement-



    See the misty inner glass after I touched it.



    All cleaned up.


  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    I’ve worked on lots of watches over the past few years, some of which were grossly over-oiled, and I’ve never seen anything like this. Oil wouldn’t vapourise and condense like this inside a watch, I can’t see how this is feasible. Lets be clear, the oil used in a watch consists of very small drops applied to the pivots of wheels, it remains in the bearing, it doesn’t float about. When a watch is over-oiled the oil spreads away from where it was applied, but that wouldn’t give rise to generation of oil mist.

    Its a strange one, assuming the haze is on the inner surface and it isn’t water I don’t know what its caused by.
    It has happened, but not as bad, to two of my seikos that I had serviced in the far east which my UK watchman assured me was due to crap oil being used or that the oil was old.

    Looking at the face straight on there was just a hint of mistiness but side on it was more pronounced.

    I didn't suggest over oiling.

    Of course oil vaporises under specific conditions; with animal/vegetable oil, the lubricant eventually gums up due to natural occurring substances.

    On the other hand synthetic oil literally dries up and evaporates.

    Evaporates - there's the clue.

    B
    Last edited by Brian; 9th December 2018 at 11:38.

  17. #17
    Grand Master JasonM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by murkeywaters View Post
    I have had this on several older quartz models, crown out, movement and dial removed and clean inside film off the crystal, very easy to remove as itís just a cloudy residue that wipes off, not sure why it happens though?

    One of my Tag Heuerís when I first bought it, donít look too bad until you turn it sideways or remove the dial/movement-



    See the misty inner glass after I touched it.



    All cleaned up.

    Exactly my experience with a couple of my vintage quartz divers, i never found out the cause, but a simple wipe off removed the residue.
    Cheers..
    Jase

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave+63 View Post
    It’s an old Omega f300, probably from the seventies so I’m assuming that it’s not sapphire. I could be wrong though.
    My mistake. It would appear it is mineral glass not sapphire.

    Thanks murkeywaters

  19. #19
    Grand Master Dave+63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hafle View Post
    My mistake. It would appear it is mineral glass not sapphire.

    Thanks murkeywaters
    Iím glad I appear to be wrong about the vapour etching it too!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave+63 View Post
    Iím glad I appear to be wrong about the vapour etching it too!
    Now I just have to work out how to take it apart..

  21. #21
    Master IAmATeaf's Avatar
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    I had something similar on my Seiko 5, thought it was pretty strange but you could see the dial perfectly straight on. Back in September I opened it up and gave the inside a clean which sorted it out but until this thread never even thought what it might be. It wasnít moisture or anything like that as I left the watch in an airing cupboard to see if it was moisture related.

  22. #22
    Grand Master JasonM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hafle View Post
    Now I just have to work out how to take it apart..
    I think the back case movement and bezel come out of the main case as a sort of module if I remember correctly.
    Cheers..
    Jase

  23. #23
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    One possible cause with quartz watches is a leaking battery.

    As for synthetic oils evaporating the condensing on the inside of the glass, Iíve never seen this happen and I have a couple of watches that havenít been opened up for 10 years.

    If I could turn the clock back 9 yrs to the time when I worked as a devlopment chemist I would have the equipment to test this Ďsynthetic oil evaporationí theory and see what really happens, itís an intriguing question.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    One possible cause with quartz watches is a leaking battery.

    As for synthetic oils evaporating the condensing on the inside of the glass, I’ve never seen this happen and I have a couple of watches that haven’t been opened up for 10 years.

    If I could turn the clock back 9 yrs to the time when I worked as a devlopment chemist I would have the equipment to test this ‘synthetic oil evaporation’ theory and see what really happens, it’s an intriguing question.
    I have two watches that this has happened on but many that it has not but my watch man assures me that he sees it quite often - as to the "evaporation theory" google "why do watch oils harden"

    Could have been cheaper oil used on the last service, maybe.

    B
    Last edited by Brian; 10th December 2018 at 14:01. Reason: inserted quotes

  25. #25
    Craftsman
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    I've seen the same on plenty of watches but never as bad as the op. The last one where it was noticeable was a Citizen auto but it's more common on quartz, something I put down to quartz watches being able to run for 20+ years with only battery changes and hence longer for the oils to evaporate and fog up the crystal.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonM View Post
    I think the back case movement and bezel come out of the main case as a sort of module if I remember correctly.
    It does indeed, pretty cool although I don't know why it's designed like that. The case back can be removed without doing this tjough. Just a case of working out which screws inside would have to be undone to remove the crown and the movement so I can get access to the crystal, or whether more work is involved.

  27. #27
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    I once forgot to screw the crown down on my SMP whilst on holiday in Turkey. Went for a swim and noticed condensation on the inside of the crystal. Left the watch out in the sun to dry out which it did, but it left a film on the inside of the crystal which could only be seen from an angle. Watch ran ok so I just left it.

    A couple of years later again on holiday I jumped into the water on a boat trip. The water was ice cold as it was run off from the mountains, later that day I noticed the film had disapeared. I presume it was the shock of going from 30c to about 5c!!!!!

    It may be that the watch has let in a small amount of water like mine and this has dried out.

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