No matter how strong the material on the watch crystal is, it’s not indestructible. I’m pretty sure you have broken a few watch crystals if you use your wristwatch regularly.
I surely can’t be the only one here!
So, let’s say, you have broken or cracked you watch crystals. What would you do?
Go to a watch repair guy or a buy a new watch? Well, if you are a DIY enthusiast, you can remove the broken watch crystal all by yourself.
First, it’s quite a fun project as repairing your watch will give you a techie feel. Plus, you can save a lot of money too.
So, let’s take a look at how to remove watch crystal all by yourself at home.
What Will You Need?
First things first, you can’t replace the broken watch crystal using your hands. You’ll be welcoming a bad case of injury! The mineral or glass shards will fly around all over the place.
Let’s get prepared first!
Here’s what you’d need –
- Watch Case Press
- Flat Surface Die (2x)
- Concave Surface Die (1x)
- Vernier Calipers
- Screw Drivers
- New Crystal
- Safety Gloves
- Safety Goggles
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Remove Watch Crystal
Step 0: Safety First
As you’re removing a mineral or a glass crystal, it might shatter and shards of crystals will fly around. That’s why wear a safety gloves and a goggle before you proceed.
Step 1: Separate the Bezel that Houses the Watch Crystal
All the parts of the watch are very delicate. A wrong pressure here and there will permanently damage the parts.
So, you’ll have remove the bezel that holds the watch crystal. You might need the proper screwdriver to disassemble the watch.
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Step 2: Prepare The Watch Press
Watch presses come a number of dies. To remove a watch crystal you’ll need two different kinds of dies. One should be a flat surface die that is slightly smaller than the crystal in diameter. The other one should be sync with the size of the bezel and have a concave surface (with depression).
Now, you’ll place the concave surface die at the bottom clip of the press. Then, put the flat surface die on the upper clip of the press.
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Step 3: Remove The Crystal From Bezel
Now that your watch press is ready, you can remove the crystal. Place the watch bezel in the right position in the press.
After that, press the handle of the watch press. The flat surface die will apply pressure to the crystal. With enough pressure, the crystal should come out.
Try to be gentle otherwise, the crystal will crack and break.
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Step 4: Take Measurements Of The Crystal
You need to use an exact replacement of the crystal. Any mismatch will bring catastrophe! Use the vernier scale to measure the diameter and the height of crystal disc.
I would suggest you to round off the measurements.
For example, the vernier scale reading says that the diameter of the crystal is 29.76mm. You should round it up to the next integer and order a 30mm disk.
First of all, you can’t find a replacement with the exact 29.76mm diameter. Second, you can smudge off the edges to make the crystal perfectly fit the bezel.
But if the replacement crystal has a smaller diameter, it’ll slip through and would become useless.
Step 5: Order A New Crystal
Okay, it’s time for some shopping! There are many options available in the market right now!
You can get a mineral, glass, or even a sapphire crystal as the replacement.
I would suggest you to go for the sapphire one if your budget allows. The sapphire crystal is the hardest one and resistant to scratches and shattering.
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Step 6: Install The Crystal
Okay, get ready as this is the hardest part!
First, take the new crystal and put it on the bezel. Obviously, it won’t fit instantly. You need might to scrap off a bit of crystal from the edge.
Now, that the new crystal fit almost perfectly, you’ll ready the watch press again.
This time use a flat surface disk that fits perfectly to the crystal diameter. It would go to the bottom clip of the press instead of the concave one.
Then, align the dies, bezel, and crystal properly on the press. After that, gently apply pressure. Make sure that the crystal is getting equal pressure in all points.
With the right pressure at the right angle, the crystal would fit properly.
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Step 7: Reassemble The Watch
So, you’ve successfully removed and re-installed a fresh crystal. Congrats!
What are you waiting for now?
Go ahead and assemble the watch parts.
That’s it, you’re done.
You can check this tutorial video to get a better idea.
If you have the right tools and the right attitude, a broken crystal won’t bother you much. Now that you know how to remove watch crystal, why don’t you give it a try?
Let me know if you have any question regarding the process. I’d be happy to help.
Just ping me here in the comment section!