OK,

Case,  Check

Dial,  Check

Hands, Check

Movement…. not so check.. I can’t put one of the bare non-decorated ETA movements in to this piece, I figure either geneva stripes or a spotted pattern would work nicely.  Having experimented with these patterning methods, I know that I will either have to use an abrasive material impregnated tool, or something like a piece of wood charged with an abrasive like diamond paste or similar, and I do have some silicon polishing bits that should fit the bill nicely.

To do Geneva stripes the movement plates have to be held in a vice that can slide backwards and forwards in  straight line, while applying pressure with the abrasive, for this there are dedicated machines available, though I don’t know if any of these are located in Australia, and I certainly couldn’t get one fast enough anyway.

I had previously experimented doing striping with a large milling machine and discovered that for the best results I needed to be able to control the pressure placed on the abrasive, milling machines don’t do this well.. A drill press would work nicely for this, but I don’t actually have one, not helpful..

I was able to jury rig up a combination of a jewellers hand piece (for drilling etc) attached using a variety of bits and pieces to a dial stamping machine, this machine has a sliding base, with a spring loaded handle to control the pressure, while my foot controls the speed of rotation.. Still not the ideal machine, but should work for one set of plates at least..

Machine of many parts

Machine of many parts

I place the plates where the dial would normally sit and do a few test stripes, but can’t make it all the way across the movement before I run out of room to move.. Unperturbed I turn the dial holding platform allowing me to do circular Cote de Geneve! with a few tests I get a pattern that looks good, and is repeated on the mainplate front and back, and the top of the bridges.

Round and round we go

Round and round we go

Where we stop,

Where we stop,

About here looks good

About here looks good

As the abrasive has ground off the rhodium plating that was coating the movement, leaving it a little messy..

All the bridges, freshly ground, plus a few spare...

All the bridges, freshly ground, plus a few spare...

A quick trip to the platers and it looks all golden and new (well mostly, theres a couple of spots that don’t look 100% but they’re mostly in spots that are not seen)

Freshly plated, ready to put back together

Freshly plated, ready to put back together

The movement is re-assembled and set back to ticking!

All the bits and pieces, ready to make into a watch!

All the bits and pieces, ready to make into a watch!

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