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Discussion Starter #1
I know this doesn't sound very exciting to a lot of you, but it is to me:

After my last trip to the jeweler to have a watch bracelet sized, I decided to take a chance and bought my own tools off eBay (a link pin removal tool and a springbar tool). One of my sons needed to have a link removed from his watch bracelet today, so I gave the pin removal tool a try...and it worked! :-! I had a little trouble at first lining it up to drive the link pin out, but once I had that figured out the rest pretty much fell into place.

Based on what I was charged at the jeweler, this one sizing paid for that tool. So, I figure from now on I should be able to save a little bit by not having to run to the jeweler every time someone around the house needs their watch sized.

Mike
 

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Good for you Mike! I also have a small tool box where I have link removal tools, spring bar tools, screwdrivers etc, for doing small fixes like batteries, band, links etc. It pays for itself after a couple of times.
 

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Ahhh....the feeling of accomplishment when we do something ourselves for the first time that others have taken our hard earned money from us for in the past.

I get the same feeling whenever I fix something around the house for the first time and it comes out right. Especially plumbing.:-!
 

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Good job! I was excited when I did it too! Makes me feel more involved in the hobby when I can now perform basic repairs/changes. The Monster bracelet was a little tricky but not bad, I was rejuvinated today when I got it right the 1st time.
 

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I know exactly how you feel Mike. Heck, I replaced my first strap just two weeks ago :D

I wanted to replace the bracelet of my Speedy Mark II with a strap. I figured I might as well give it a go... so when I ordered the strap, I also ordered some extra spring bars and a good tool.

It literally took me 30 seconds to get the job done. So this week I decided to try and attach a mesh bracelet and size that. Got that done as well. So now I'm looking through my watch case, seeing which bracelets would need re-sizing with the warmer weather :D

Before you know it, I'll be swapping movements on Pateks :D
 

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Yeah, good job.
Bracelet resizing is one of those things that once you do it, you wonder why anyone would even pay someone else to do such a relatively simple task. I think I paid a watchmaker $15 each time to resize my Omega on two separate occasions before I wised up and decided to do it myself.

If you search the forums, you can find plenty of horror stories in which an incompetent "watchmaker" badly scratches up or even damages the bracelet during resizing. I remember one guy who said he got his bracelet badly bent up by someone at Tourneau during a failed attempt at resizing!:-|
 

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Good job! Been doing the same myself lately.
 

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I need to obtain one of those tool kits. I use what I have around like paper clips etc. I have never damaged a watch but the tools would make it far easier. I also have a friend with a jewelery store for the tough ones.
 

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Congrats! I have only recently got into watches. I recently resized a Citizen which was a breeze since the bracelet was held together by split pins. I swapped out the orange Sumo for a stainless steel bracelet using a toothpick (since it had drilled lugs). However, resizing the Sumo bracelet was a maddening chore for someone who has never done it before. Pins and collars suck!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I started by buying a link pin removal tool and a springbar tool from Acetimer on eBay. He was selling them as a set for about $15. Looks like he keeps those listed pretty regularly out there, and I got great service from him too. :-!

The only thing I might have done differently is to get a link pin tool with a larger handle. The one I got is okay for starters, but it has a small knurled knob to turn to move the tool pin, and my fat fingers could have really used a larger handle (he now sells the ones with the larger handle...just my luck o|). There's also something called link pin pliers that work by lining it up on the tool pin and then squeezing the handles to push the link pin out.

They definitely made a difference to me - as long as I have access to tools, I'll do my own sizing from now on!

Mike
 

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Good for you Mike! I also have a small tool box where I have link removal tools, spring bar tools, screwdrivers etc, for doing small fixes like batteries, band, links etc. It pays for itself after a couple of times.
If you don't mind, could you tell us which exact tool set you have and where you obtained it from?

thanks.
 

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Yep, its the small victories that are really satisfying sometimes.

After realizing just how easy it is to size a bracelet, I felt stupid for paying $8 at Sears all those times. :-d
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
If you don't mind, could you tell us which exact tool set you have and where you obtained it from?

thanks.
I can't speak for Ed, but the first photo I've attached shows what I purchased from Acetimer on eBay. To put the objects in perspective, the link removal tool at the top of the photo is only about two inches in length, while the springbar tool below it is about five inches long.

There is another version of this link tool that has a larger turning knob, as illustrated in the second photo I've attached below (also courtesy of Acetimer). In retrospect, I would have purchased this tool instead of the first one, simply to give me a larger handle to grip and turn.

There is yet another type of link pin tool that looks more like a pair of pliers (third photo). I've seen them used before in a Fossil outlet store

All of these are available from several vendors on eBay (I just used Acetimer's photos because they are very clear) ... just go to the Jewelry/Watches/Wristwatch Tools section and start looking.

There are two other tools I am thinking about getting - one is a caseback removal tool (with adjustable pins to remove screw-down casebacks) and caseback pliers for reinstalling press-fit casebacks after removal (I found when changing a battery in my wife's Timex that it's almost impossible to press those things back into place evenly).

See what this group has done to me? Next I'll be doing my own COA's on automatic movements!

Mike
 

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I took my first Omega Bond to a local "watchmaker" who proceeded to lose all the friction sleeves. :rodekaart When the pins wouldn't stay in he replaced the pins with split pins and super glued them in place. :oops: I contacted Omega for new pins and sleeves, got a bracelet tool, assorted screw drivers and have adjusted all my own bracelets since. :-!
 

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To put the objects in perspective, the link removal tool at the top of the photo is only about two inches in length, while the springbar tool below it is about five inches long.

There is another version of this link tool that has a larger turning knob, as illustrated in the second photo I've attached below (also courtesy of Acetimer). In retrospect, I would have purchased this tool instead of the first one, simply to give me a larger handle to grip and turn.
I own both the smaller and larger "link removal tool." For me, the smaller one is actually more versatile. It comes with different length drift pins, including longer ones which are required to remove Omega bracelet pins.
You can get a Swiss made version of the smaller tool from http://www.mywatchmaker.net/bracelettool.htm if you want a higher quality piece.
 

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I can't speak for Ed, but the first photo I've attached shows what I purchased from Acetimer on eBay. To put the objects in perspective, the link removal tool at the top of the photo is only about two inches in length, while the springbar tool below it is about five inches long.

Pardon my ignorance, I am new to this stuff. So, if I understand this right, I need the pin remover tool (with the turnable knob) to remove links from a bracelet and the spring-bar tool to change bracelets, correct? The latter cannot be used to do the former?

For the pin remover tools, is just one sufficient for all the bracelets we can get? In other words, are all the bracelets the same width and thickness (more or less that they are doable with one single tool)?


thanks.
 

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So, if I understand this right, I need the pin remover tool (with the turnable knob) to remove links from a bracelet and the spring-bar tool to change bracelets, correct?
Correct. Either tool cannot do both jobs.

For the pin remover tools, is just one sufficient for all the bracelets we can get? In other words, are all the bracelets the same width and thickness (more or less that they are doable with one single tool)?
The tools can be adjusted to accomidate various bracelet widths and thicknesses. Again, see my post above about the necessity for a longer bracelet tool "drift pin" for Omega bracelets (only a concern if you own an Omega watch).

You might want to look over this great how-to with pics...
http://www.pmwf.com/Watches/WatchSc...n Bracelets/WS 14 How to Resize Bracelets.htm
 
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