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Old 7 March 2009, 02:52 AM   #31
pablofields
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Thanks for the info!
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Old 7 March 2009, 12:07 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mwillems View Post
Nothing wrong with Ra is you handle it carefully - the problem is not in the watch users, the problem is in the making. Read up on the "Radium Girls" (Google the term) - that was bad.

But today I think we could do it with little danger to user or maker. Only the political climate is against it.
It's not just the first buyer or Rolex, it's every person/organization involved in the supply, manufacture, repair and disposal of every watch dial for at least the next 16,000 years (10x half-life).

There's no good reason to be making consumer products out of highly toxic, persistent materials like radium if we don't have to.
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Old 30 March 2009, 11:52 PM   #33
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so of the best lume shots seen!
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Old 27 December 2009, 07:48 PM   #34
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very nice
good post thank you
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Old 27 December 2009, 08:36 PM   #35
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Superb piece of info here.
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Old 28 December 2009, 07:32 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ike View Post
One thing I find a bit odd is that my dad's DJ that he bought new in the 70's still glows in dark rooms and glows bright for several seconds when charged with a flashlight. It is marked T swiss T.

My DJ that I bought pre-owned is from the late 80's to early 90's from what I can tell. It is also marked T swiss T. It will not glow at all, even when it is left with a light source for several minutes.

They both probably rely on zinc sulfide as the phosphorescent material. ZnS requires a dopant to serve as the activator. A green glow comes from copper dopant and gives the longest glow time. Other metals give other hues, but shorter times.

It is possible that the one that doesn't exhibit glow is either degraded, or it contains an activator for a different color, but decays very rapidly. With a tritium energy source, it isn't important for the phosphor to glow very long, as it would be for an afterglow lume.

Try exposing the dials to a UV light sources, such as a UV LED flash light. That should cause them to glow and reveal their colors.
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Old 30 December 2009, 09:08 AM   #37
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Did Rolex use the SWISS T < 25 designation for a certain period of time and the "T SWISS T" for another period or did they overlap? I sent my Oyster Date to Rolex (model 15200 from 1991) for a service and a dial change. I can't remember which dial it had when I sent it in and I am wondering if either designation is a correct dial change. Is there anywhere I can look?
In case anyone is wondering it now cost $270 for the dial and $81 for all three hands.

Thanks
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Old 31 December 2009, 03:13 AM   #38
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You really explain this topic clearly and succinctly....i know Rolex do not use micro-gas tubes,but i would have enjoyed to read your comments on that concept/system also.
Thank you sir
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Old 8 December 2012, 03:21 AM   #39
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this is a conversion i did from dead tritium to super luminova
Rolex 3135


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Old 8 December 2012, 04:55 AM   #40
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Very cool. Would like to see more picts on how you do/did this...
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Old 8 December 2012, 05:17 AM   #41
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Old post, but still interesting!
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Old 8 December 2012, 12:21 PM   #42
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fully agree - thanks for bringing it back.
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Old 18 February 2013, 05:31 PM   #43
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The half life of the tritium was stated. What about the life span of the current luminova material? How many years will it glow strong?
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Old 23 February 2013, 09:44 AM   #44
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wow, a useful info, thanks
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Old 2 May 2014, 08:29 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike View Post
Here's a bit of a read on the subject,

http://www.oysterinfo.de/en/detailin...asse/index.php

It's sometimes hard to tell if a dial is luminova or superluminova on dial markings alone.

When Rolex made the switch to luminova circa 1998, dials were marked "SWISS". However; as Rolex already had a number of dials from the manufacture with tritium markings (SWISS T<25) these dials were painted with luminova and used.
The luminosity of luminova was said to be less than ideal and Rolex switched to a higher version--superluminova which of course are marked "SWISS MADE".

However: (again LOL!) Replacement dials are superluminova and only bear the marking "SWISS" at the 6 o'clock.

Man is that confusing! LOL!

The above is from another post on this forum whilst searching for lume differences...

Can "Tools" or anyone else confirm for sure there is no difference between the two luminova's?

Greatly appreciate the feedback as my '99 'A' Serial 16700 is "swiss" only. For years now I've thought it was just plain old fashioned luminova when it could be super! lol
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Old 7 May 2014, 11:46 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lobsterlee View Post
The above is from another post on this forum whilst searching for lume differences...

Can "Tools" or anyone else confirm for sure there is no difference between the two luminova's?

Greatly appreciate the feedback as my '99 'A' Serial 16700 is "swiss" only. For years now I've thought it was just plain old fashioned luminova when it could be super! lol
That has been my understanding; same material different naming.

The OP's post was extremely well done, concise and easily understood. I wish there was a good way to get Trit dials relumed without destroying their value.
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Old 15 May 2014, 05:39 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tools View Post
During the transition years 1998-2000, Dials were marked "Swiss" until Rolex finally settled on "Swiss Made" for Luminova dials.

Very early Radium dials were also marked "Swiss" until radium was outlawed in ~1960.

Rolex also continued using "Swiss" dials for several years as Service Replacements after 2000..

So, looking at a serial number that should be 1996, but we find it with a "Swiss" dial; would indicate a service replacement and not a "transitional"; likewise, models with "Swiss" dials that have serial numbers later than 2001 would very likely have had a service dial replacement at some point until that stock of dials was depleted..

Service Dials have been seen with some differences from original equipment dials, so I don't think that there is any evidence that a particular dial would stop being produced completely just because the stock of those with "Swiss" on them ran out.... However, at some point they would, indeed, no longer produce a particular replacement dial.

Perfect !
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Old 21 May 2014, 02:42 AM   #48
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Half life of radium is 1600 years, fwiw.
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Old 14 August 2014, 04:58 AM   #49
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Currently, if Rolex were to replace my 1993 Explorer II dial, will the new dial say SWISS or SWISS MADE?

Thanks!
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Old 14 August 2014, 05:13 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larryganz View Post
Currently, if Rolex were to replace my 1993 Explorer II dial, will the new dial say SWISS or SWISS MADE?

Thanks!
Almost definitely SWISS MADE nowadays I'd think, but you never know for sure with RSC.

Last year my wife's old Air King Date came back with a Luminova service dial that says "T SWISS MADE T" so go figure!
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Old 26 February 2015, 07:48 AM   #51
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My 59 datejust, is it correct

Just doing some idle reading of this older very interesting post and realised my 1959 (as marked in the case back) datejust is on the cusp re it's tritium dial, could this be just a year overlap or is it a replaced dial. Case ser #459***, what do you think troops, thanks.




I just found in Brozek's "The Rolex Report" that Tritium was replaced "around 1950" !!?, so a grey area
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Old 26 February 2015, 07:53 AM   #52
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Tank you Larry, very informative. As other vintage owners will attest, many still glow after 40+ years.

My 1967 5513 still glows
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Old 27 February 2015, 03:48 PM   #53
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I learned something, excellent article
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Old 23 March 2015, 12:51 AM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tools View Post

Here is a brief overview of the various Luminous Materials.

Radium:

Up until about 1960, Rolex used the radio-active material Radium to coat hands and indices of their dials. The Radium markers were extremely efficient where bright luminosity is concerned, but also much more radio-active than the successor, Tritium.

The dials having Radium as luminous markers would read "SWISS" at six o' clock.
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Thanks for this great article!

My 35mm 1961 (when bought on 26/6/1961 in Switzerland by my dad) 5504 Rolex Oyster Air King Super Precision (Serial Number 152844) does not glow any more.

It is marked "Swiss" at 6pm so must be the above Radium, maybe it was made in 1960?

Is there a way of (SAFELY!) making it glow again, I am not clear from the article?

Kind regards

Edward
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Old 23 March 2015, 11:30 AM   #55
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Is there a way of (SAFELY!) making it glow again?
Well, yes you could get the dial "relumed" by someone that specializes in dial restoration. It would be relumed with Luminova which isn't radioactive at all.

But I (and probably most here) would not touch that dial! No reason to alter its nice original state.
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Old 24 March 2015, 08:25 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by powerfunk View Post
Well, yes you could get the dial "relumed" by someone that specializes in dial restoration. It would be relumed with Luminova which isn't radioactive at all.

But I (and probably most here) would not touch that dial! No reason to alter its nice original state.
Cheers, good to know!
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Old 25 March 2015, 01:46 AM   #57
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I've yet to see a Rolex hold the whole 8 hour estimate, is that truthful or not?
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Old 25 March 2015, 05:14 AM   #58
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I have seen 8 hours +. It just depends on ambient light. All day on the Grand Canyon floor = glowing all night on the valley floor.
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Old 26 March 2015, 04:00 AM   #59
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I've yet to see a Rolex hold the whole 8 hour estimate, is that truthful or not?
I put mine on the nightstand when I go to bed. ~8 hours later, when I wake up (and it is still dark) I can still read the dial. It is definitely not as bright as it is when I am going to sleep, but there is still some glow in the morning. Enough to make out the time in a dark room at least.
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Old 1 April 2015, 01:49 AM   #60
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Very helpful and informative;
Thanks.
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