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i know where the search button is in case you need to point it out.

i have had the great luck to have purchased some amazing watches. i do not always receive them in amazing shape but within 10 minutes of removing them from bubble wrap, they are almost a completely transformed watch.

i was buying, cleaning up and selling watches to fund both a road rally and a new watch addiction. i have an amazing plastic polish that i used to use on my pinball machines' playfields that can seriously take an almost whited out scratched up write-off and make it clear again. sans the deepest ones, the scratches go away.

that said, i recently bought 2 (3rd on way) vintage diver watches. the newest one at my house was badly scratched and hazy but really good now. the original diver polished up beautiful but it seems as if i look at it wrong it scratches.
the watches all probably date from the 60's and 70's.

i work in a medical environment and with patients all day long. on occasion during a procedure i may scrape the crystal with a suction or an operatory table may get glanced off of and that means i'll be polishing it out tonight. every night.

were the crystals THAT poor? OR does time have something to do with it? and this leads me to a real possible stupid question as well.. one of the dentists i work with gave me a diving casio that has a real glass crystal and it has scratches like every other glass watch i bought used. i do not have the means to fix glass. plus i am afraid to ruin any film deposition. so here is the stupid question. let's say you have an omega or rolex diver. would the crystals have the same risk of easy damage? i had a goal of a 60's submariner. i would wear it every day but i am afraid now. with my old cheapies and new hand-me-downs' scratch prone-ness i am wondering if that would just be a bad idea. do you get what you pay for in materials and asthetic longevity?

what is the average crystal replacement on average price? because my one diver might be getting polished so much it may be just thin and tired.
thanks all.
 

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in a working enviroment i tend to use a quartz tissot, nothing to do with whats inside it just as sapphire glass which is really hard to scratch. I own a speedy and i hit a door today with the hesalite front and now it as a mark, i will like you polish it out. I would never ever wear it for work as i will be doing this every day. so not even your expensive watches avoid scratches, unless it as sapphire glass, but then again sapphire can shatter and is more expensive to replace.
 

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Its all a question of relative hardness. Plastic isn't very hard, so anything harder then say wood is liable to scratch it. The advantage of plastic is that its easy to polish, and for the very same reason. Glass is much harder then plastic, but if it comes into contact with something harder (like steel), it's going to scratch too. Sapphire crystals are harder then almost anything, but nowadays you find sythetic crystal fragments hidden in lots of "modern" materials (like building facades), so even those are liable to scratch. And increases in hardness correspond to increases in shatterability.

Glass cyrstals can be purchased in bulk for less then a buck each, depending on qty. Most stores charge significantly more to actually install one. The problem with installing them is that anything with a "waterproof" rating will likely have a crystal gasket that also needs to be replaced.
 
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