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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Public Service Announcement!

While oil filling your quartz watch can really make the readability of the face look incredibly great while it is underwater, or it can make the watch be able to go deeper than ever since the oil really cannot be compressed anymore, DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT oil fill a watch where it has operation buttons and can only go to 10 BAR / 100 METERS. In fact, don't do any that are under 100 METERS. The buttons in the watch are not sealed when they are depressed in, so oil will leak out of them and cause many air bubbles inside of them. Plus, your wrist and fingers will get covered in oil.

Casio themselves actually state that under 200M should not have the buttons pressed under water. Degree of Water Resistance | CASIO

I was un-"lucky" enough to find out for myself that you shouldn't do it. The sad part is, I should have known better. I was having issues with the second hand skipping every so often on my Casio WVA-470. I watched the procedure being done on a few other watches, and thought that maybe the oil would help lubricate the motor in the watch and the second hand would work better. I did ask one of them about doing a solar powered watch and they stated that they had and it was working pretty well. So, I thought "why not?". Well, that is when I got to spend 2 days fixing one of my favorite watches.

I filled the watch and everything was looking good, except the second hand was still skipping, in fact worse than it had been. Pressing the buttons I noticed the oil coming out on my fingers. So, that is when I decided to drain the oil out of the watch and clean out the case and the module the best I could and put it all back together.

After I got the module out of my watch, oil sticks to everything, so I spend a lot of time cleaning with paper towels around the module and found that compressed air worked really well at taking oil off parts too. I worked on it for about 2 hours before it was bedtime last night and thought that I would let it rest on its side and hope that gravity would help the remaining oil come out.

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Here is the module laying on the side for the night. You can see the darker spots under the face there where the oil still is.

When I got up in the morning, the oil was exactly the same. So I tried with more compressed air to clean it out. Well, more and more oil kept spraying out from under the face and going right back underneath the face. UGH! At some point in there the CTL1616 capacitor decided not to make connection anymore and the hands stopped turning all together. So, yep, you guessed it, complete tear apart.

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It took a lot of high percentage of rubbing alcohol and Q-Tips to clean all the parts off. The hands, the capacitor (battery), leaf spring, all of it had to be cleaned.

After about 3.5 hours of cleaning and drying I have it all back together, and might I say tighter than it was when I pulled it apart. The second hand is no longer skipping, even tested by going to Hand Set mode and holding down the button to let it spin and spin to make sure that it is no longer skipping. Then I let it perform a time sync to make sure the antenna and module are still working. I even let it run without the capacitor in under a bright light to make sure that the solar charging did not go bad.

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I am happy to say, the watch is working GREAT again! And no second hand skipping can be seen at all! :cool:

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So, my word of advice is PLEASE DO NOT try to Hydro-Mod a quartz watch that is rated for less than 100 METERS of water resistance! Thank you for reading all this!
 

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I closed all the windows in my 560SEC and filled the cabin up through the sunroof with Robert Mondavi Cabernet. Problem is I get loaded before I hit the street so I can't locate the head light switch, Help!
 

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10bar = 100m

What type of oil did you use? If it was mineral oil, you may want to soak the disassembled case in a solution with dish soap. Silicone oil, well, nothing seems to clean that stuff up.

Also, how old is the watch and when were the seals last replaced? Are you certain the seals in the buttons were still watertight before filling?
 

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Now add some red wine vinegar, maybe some fresh herbs and dry mustard, and turn the watch into a salad dressing dispenser.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
10bar = 100m

What type of oil did you use? If it was mineral oil, you may want to soak the disassembled case in a solution with dish soap. Silicone oil, well, nothing seems to clean that stuff up.

Also, how old is the watch and when were the seals last replaced? Are you certain the seals in the buttons were still watertight before filling?
There never were seals on the buttons when you press them in. That is why they state to NOT press the buttons when the watch is submerged. I was able to clean all the oil out without an issue. It was mineral oil and dish soap did really well on the case of it, but the electronics could not be submerged in water or ran under the sink so all is well. The watch did not leak oil until the buttons were pressed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Could post this in r/tifu ("Today I Fawked Up") ;-)
Except it gave me a good opportunity to really fix the second hand skipping considering the PCB board and the leaf spring were actually loose and not making good contact.
 

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I don't understand anything that's happening in this thread.
tl;dr:

Don't fill a watch with oil when it's not designed to be watertight ("oil-tight") when its buttons are pushed. Otherwise each button press will "pump" oil out.

"Why fill a watch with oil??" Sometimes, you'd see oil-filled dive watches for two main reasons. 1: Unlike air, fluid is not compressible, so extreme depths won't crush a fluid-filled watch. 2: Adding fluid under the crystal helps with legibility under water; there's no more reflection at moderate angles like there is with air-filled watches.

"But... OIL???" Oil doesn't ruin electrical contacts or corrode metal.
 

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Depth gauges can be supplied as oil filled, not watches. Drag will affect the motion of moving parts in a timing device.
This youtuber put an oil-filled Pulsar into a deep sea pressure chamber and ran it down to almost 300 bar (3000 meters). Seemed to run okay.

(he broke the Vostok that you see in the thumbnail, though)

 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Depth gauges can be supplied as oil filled, not watches. Drag will affect the motion of moving parts in a timing device.
Some watch manufacturers that are using oil filled are now putting in Fluorinert since the hands can really move freely in the oil that way. Before they were using Silicone Oil and they still moved fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
10bar = 100m

What type of oil did you use? If it was mineral oil, you may want to soak the disassembled case in a solution with dish soap. Silicone oil, well, nothing seems to clean that stuff up.

Also, how old is the watch and when were the seals last replaced? Are you certain the seals in the buttons were still watertight before filling?
Actually, according to Casio themselves, it should be rated for 200M (Divers) before button operation: Degree of Water Resistance | CASIO
 

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Depth gauges can be supplied as oil filled, not watches. Drag will affect the motion of moving parts in a timing device.
Quartz movements are generally fine. Sinn and some others have sold oil-filled quartz dive watches for years.
 

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i’m super impressed that you tore your watch down and reassembled it. amazed actually.

i’m confounded that you filled it with oil for no true apparent reason. amazed actually.

happy it’s running well, lesson learned and thanks for taking the time with photos, and for sharing. skipping second hand remedied!
 

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How do your rubber seals hold up to oil filling? I helped a friend build a oil-cooled desktop in the past and one thing we found out was not only is the oil a nightmare to work with (it gets everywhere and since it's oil it's a pain to work with), it can dissolve or seep through a lot of seals since both them and the oil are essentially hydrocarbons. Though granted a watch doesn't have the volume, flow, or the number of rubber/plastic parts as a desktop.

Also, what's the viscosity of the oil you use? I would imagine if it's to viscous it could damage the watch with the resistance against all the hands. Or mess up with accuracy. When we made the desktop we used industrial grade mineral oil to avoid impurities that could conduct. The damn oil started to eat away at the silicone sealant for the case and damaged the fish tank pump we used to circulate the oil around the system (couldn't use fans since too much resistance and the oil ate away at the drive belts).
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
How do your rubber seals hold up to oil filling? I helped a friend build a oil-cooled desktop in the past and one thing we found out was not only is the oil a nightmare to work with (it gets everywhere and since it's oil it's a pain to work with), it can dissolve or seep through a lot of seals since both them and the oil are essentially hydrocarbons. Though granted a watch doesn't have the volume, flow, or the number of rubber/plastic parts as a desktop.

Also, what's the viscosity of the oil you use? I would imagine if it's to viscous it could damage the watch with the resistance against all the hands. Or mess up with accuracy. When we made the desktop we used industrial grade mineral oil to avoid impurities that could conduct. The damn oil started to eat away at the silicone sealant for the case and damaged the fish tank pump we used to circulate the oil around the system (couldn't use fans since too much resistance and the oil ate away at the drive belts).
Sucks you had to go through all that! I know how messy oil can be! In my computer days I only did watercooled systems in computers and never got the chance to mess with any oil filled as those came out after I left the repair shops.

The seal on the back of the watch actually held up just fine. It was not leaking at all. I actually got the idea on this one after watching a Casio 200H analog quartz watch get the hydro-mod performed on it. Also, someone asked on the same video if they could do this Hydro-Mod to a G-Shock.

I was using just mineral oil like you can get anywhere else. It was holding up fine and the hands were actually moving quite smoothly through the oil. The issue I bumped into is that the Casio 200H is set by a crown only and does not leak through the crown whether it is screwed down or not. My Casio WVA-470 is the same water resistance as the 200H is, but mine is button operated. The buttons are sealed only when you are not pressing them, hence Casio water resistance stating not to operate the buttons underwater unless you have a DIVERS WATCH 200M.

Another issue I bumped into with this is that over time things inside the watch can get loose. Also, since mineral oil is non-conductive I believe that since some of the parts were not pressing tightly against each other is what was causing my second hand to start to skip more with the oil in the watch. The good part is about this repair is that I was able to really tighten down everything inside the watch after the complete tear down so now the second hand is no longer skipping as the leaf spring is now sitting really tight between the PCB and the gear module.
 

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This is the wrong watch to use for a hydro mod. Multiple buttons.


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Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day.
 
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