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Discussion Starter #1
I've been asking about tritium on here and most people recommend not to purchase it as it dies down in about 10 years and some don't replace the vials. What other products are out there that will illuminate say for a night out (maybe 7 hours or more) and also last longer than 10 years?
 

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Superluminova. It will slowly fade during the night, but depending on the formula it should still be visible in the early morning. The benefit with tritium is that it is constantly glowing, so there will be no visible dropoff during the night. I've heard tritium lasts 20 years, but I may be wrong. To piggyback on your other thead: Ball lume is often described as not being as bright as superluminova, but lasting longer during the night.
 

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I've been asking about tritium on here and most people recommend not to purchase it as it dies down in about 10 years and some don't replace the vials. What other products are out there that will illuminate say for a night out (maybe 7 hours or more) and also last longer than 10 years?
No, Tritium starts to deteriorate after ten years, but can be usable for up to 24 years. I have a Davosa watch with Tritium, and to be honest it doesn't matter how good the lume is on other watches, it never matches up after the first hour or so. I highly recommend it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No, Tritium starts to deteriorate after ten years, but can be usable for up to 24 years. I have a Davosa watch with Tritium, and to be honest it doesn't matter how good the lume is on other watches, it never matches up after the first hour or so. I highly recommend it.
Highly recommend tritium?
 

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Any watch with Good lume should get you through the night with a good blast of light. i have no issues seeing the time on my hamilton khaki during the night without a charge.

but if you want the best Most Seikos, any dive watch with C3 Superluminova or BGW9 will be more than enough

Sent from my SM-N960F using Tapatalk
 

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Any watch with Good lume should get you through the night with a good blast of light. i have no issues seeing the time on my hamilton khaki during the night without a charge.

but if you want the best Most Seikos, any dive watch with C3 Superluminova or BGW9 will be more than enough

Sent from my SM-N960F using Tapatalk
Perhaps there is something wrong wit my eyes then. I have several watches with incredible lume, my Zelos Swordfish probably being the best, and far better than my SKX. After a few hours I couldn't hope to be able to tell the time with any of them. My one and only Hamilton (Khaki King) can't be seen after about an hour. On the other hand, my Davosa with Tritium tubes is on a different level all together. I am not saying your wrong, perhaps we have very different vision.
 

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I'm a fan of tritium and wouldn't hesitate to buy another watch equipped with it. The best luminova I have is on my Lüm-Tec, it glows like a torch after a charge and out lasts all my other standard watches.

That being said, nothing is going to beat out tritium for all night glow.
 

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I'm a fan of tritium and wouldn't hesitate to buy another watch equipped with it. The best luminova I have is on my Lüm-Tec, it glows like a torch after a charge and out lasts all my other standard watches.

That being said, nothing is going to beat out tritium for all night glow.
I agree with that, hypothetically if I could swap all te lume on my watches for tritium tubes, I would do it in a heartbeat
 

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What reputable manufacturer wouldn't offer replacement of tritium tubes on their watches? I know that Marathon does.

Also, tritium's half life is about 12 years, so it will likely be half as bright in twelve years. If it's not bright enough at that point, you just have the tubes replaced when you send it in for service.
 
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Perhaps there is something wrong wit my eyes then. I have several watches with incredible lume, my Zelos Swordfish probably being the best, and far better than my SKX. After a few hours I couldn't hope to be able to tell the time with any of them. My one and only Hamilton (Khaki King) can't be seen after about an hour. On the other hand, my Davosa with Tritium tubes is on a different level all together. I am not saying your wrong, perhaps we have very different vision.
How are you judging this? Trying to view the watch after an hour or more with your eyes closed? Or just "charging" it, then looking at it again a few hours later without your eyes completely adjusted to the dark?

I find that my lume isn't glowing visibly to my unadjusted eye after some short time, but when I wake up in the middle of the night and look, it's bright enough to read. Your eye's adjustment to the dark is key.
 

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Perhaps there is something wrong wit my eyes then. I have several watches with incredible lume, my Zelos Swordfish probably being the best, and far better than my SKX. After a few hours I couldn't hope to be able to tell the time with any of them. My one and only Hamilton (Khaki King) can't be seen after about an hour. On the other hand, my Davosa with Tritium tubes is on a different level all together. I am not saying your wrong, perhaps we have very different vision.
My experience is the same. I have a Zelos Swordfish as well and the lume is as good as it gets. Tritium is on a different level. The time when you really need your lume to work is in the morning when it's still dark and you need to know what time it is. No matter how good your lume is, it will be at its weakest at this point and even the best will be much harder to read than tritium.
 

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Tritium starts to deteriorate after ten years, but can be usable for up to 24 years
Tritium is constantly deteriorating... it emits radioactive particles which is what creates the glow inside the tubes, and it's a constant half-life over time. The half-life of tritium is about 12 years, so in 12 years half of the tritium will have decayed. And in 24 years, another half (75% in total) will have decayed. The brightness of the lume will diminish too, but I'm not sure if it diminishes at the same rate the tritium decays (i.e. if 75% of the tritium is gone, that doesn't necessarily mean the lume appears 75% dimmer).
 

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It's as much the crispness as anything with Tritium. In a thin vial you get clarity that copious amounts of BGW9/C3/LumiBrite just cannot duplicate in any way. Yes, my divers with regular photoluminescence are adequate throughout the night if they've had a decent charge throughout the day but after a few hours of no new charging the Tritium matches it easily for brightness while still having superior readability at any phase of the night. You will get at least 20 to 25 years of very usable light before needing to replace the vials.



My Marathon GSAR far right is obviously nowhere near as bright as some freshly charged divers like my Seiko Monster, but I think you can start to see how from the reflection on the aluminium shelf that they are sitting on there is a clarity to the tritium that you just don't get with the other watches. It is just the right amount of light, in any situation.
 

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Tritium-10-12 years half-life. emits radioactive isotopes that glow constantly. pretty cool stuff and usually more expensive. Top photoluminescent compound available on the market is SuperLuminova which replaced Luminova around 2008 and can still be found C1-C7. Lumibrite is another good one. Rolex makes secret stuff called Chromalite which gives off that ice blue hue. then there is this 'fauxtina' stuff I keep hearing about-proprietary mad scientist stuff the big leaguers are coming up with to mimmick vintage, aged lume.
anyway, the best time to see your lume really work as someone else already said, is when your eyes have adjusted to the dark. true, many times i've gotten up at night only to be marveling at the glow coming from my watch. get yourself a UV penlight or small flashlight. You can find them cheap on the net or at any auto parts store. use them to give your lume a hot charge. or let them sit under a lamp for a few to charge em up.
 

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In to clear up the usual misconceptions about tritium before the thread gets too messy.

The half life of tritium is about (just over) 12 years. So after 12 years it will be half as radioactive. That doesn't necessarily mean the phosphorescent tube containing the tritium will appear half as bright though. There are a huge number of variables. Firstly, there will be a point at which there is 'wasted' radioactive decay as the efficiency of the phosphorescent coating will depend on the amount of alpha decay, so the actual brightness emitted may not be 50% after 12 years. There is also the fact that some of the tritium may have escaped. A very very small amount. Then there is the fact the phosphorescent coating will likely deteriorate as well. And then we have the fact that we are interested in how the human eye persieves light and not how much actual light there is, and this will depend on ambient light, how well adjusted your eyes are, and a host of other biological factors. All of this means that after 12 years, you will perceive the tritium tube to be somewhere between 25% and 75% of the original brightness, and that percentage will be different for different manufacturers and in different ambient situations and contexts. Anyone trying to give a higher level of accuracy than that is making some large assumptions.

Anyway, I don't know of any current options except tritium, and variations of luminous paint which need to be 'charged' and which decrease in brightness the longer they are in the dark.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I ask specifically about tritium because I use it on my firearms, sights to be specific. I prefer it to anything that needs light to illuminate because lack of light, even in a safe is no issue. Not so for illumination that needs a temporary light source.
 

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What reputable manufacturer wouldn't offer replacement of tritium tubes on their watches? I know that Marathon does.

Also, tritium's half life is about 12 years, so it will likely be half as bright in twelve years. If it's not bright enough at that point, you just have the tubes replaced when you send it in for service.
You make it sound so easy and affordable.

I have some doubts about the value proposition of replacing tubes 15 years from now
 
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