Simple Servicing Part 3

Want to Service your own TIMEX? Tips, Tricks, Advice, Tools and simple Primers. The Timex Watch Forum accepts NO RESPONSIBILITY for any damage or loss caused -- all advice is simply that, any use you make of the information here, you make ENTIRELY AT YOUR OWN RISK. (Currently Locked Pending Content)
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Simple Servicing Part 3

Postby Mel » Tue Aug 01, 2017 8:12 pm


Welcome back to Part 3. The picture above is of a different style of case opener - - a stubby. Me - I've never been able to get on with this style, I prefer the one that looks like an old type penknife. You can also find a foldaway type made like a penknife - - again, be careful in case the blade folds in during use.

Snap on backs may need a separate tool to snap the back on to the case if they are a very good fit, but thankfully, most early TIMEX don't need this and even finger pressure will do the trick.

The next bit is where I go against my own advice - - when you open the case and take out the innards you will see a few screws on the movements. You will need small screwdrivers to deal with these. To start with, buying a full set of jewellers/watchmakers drivers will set you back a fair few of your hard earned dollars, pounds or euros. In this instance, get yourself a reasonable set of “precision screwdrivers” whilst you find out the sizes you will eventually use, and gradually replace those sizes in the cheaper ones with proper drivers, high grade and made for watches. A set of Bergeon will be about £60, but cheapies will only be maybe £10, that'll be $70 against maybe $15.


A set of fine pointed tweezers is good to have, but maybe not totally essential, and if you are changing quartz watch batteries then a set of plastic tweezers is good - - stops “short circuits” when inserting or removing cells from watches.

You will need some manual dexterity, so a bit of practice would never go wrong. Spread some dry rice on a table and try picking up individual grains with the tweezers, remembering even this is going to be bigger than the small parts in many watches!


You'll need something to clean the movements with, and some oils to re-lube the innards after servicing. Watch oils are notoriously expensive, so don't be surprised at the small amount you get for your money. Fortunately, the standard (cheaper non specialist) watch oils on places like ebay or any watchmaker supply houses are fine and dandy for TIMEX watches. Remember also that you only use infinitesmal amounts per watch so a small bottle will last you for a long time.

Do NOT be tempted to use 3 in 1 type oils or WD40 type lubricants, they are NOT SUITABLE for such small parts, gears and fittings. They will run and discolor dials and anything else inside the watch case when you re-assemble.

For cleaning, you can use lighter fluid (Ronsonol type) to perform the type of service I'm about to describe, other fluids and mixtures exist. ;)

DISCLAIMER:- The type of simple service I'm going to describe (often called “swish dunk” ) was/is based on the recommended service sheets issued by TIMEX in the day. You should remember that these were intended to be performed quickly and minimally on watches that in turn were perhaps expected to have a lifespan of maybe five or ten years at most before being dumpstered and replaced with new models. We're now often 30,40, or 50 plus years down the line, and it's a tribute to the TIMEX design brief that they are still running at all, often NEVER having been serviced before.

Episode Four - - set out your stall and choose a watch to begin with.

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