The Breitling Watch Source Forums

Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...
Page 1 of 1

Author:  chronodeco [ Wed Jan 01, 2014 8:44 am ]
Post subject:  Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...

I thought I would start off the new year with an explanation of one of my least favorite jobs - removal and replacement of the Pult crystal. Hopefully this will help anyone else who tries to do this on their own.
First off, this crystal is designed only for the Pult case and is impossible to find and no substitute will work. It is a cheap design to eliminate the machining cost for the bezel grove by making a lip in the crystal that holds the cheaply made aluminum bezel and a tension ring that goes underneath it.
The first time I tried to remove one of these several years ago, I tried prying on the bezel to get it loose but all I did was bend the bezel which is not very easy to straighten out. If you pry hard enough, you will crack the crystal and then you can just break it out. There is no way to use a standard crystal remover either or you will scratch the hell out of the aluminum bezel. Trying to push it out from the inside, something you can usually do with your thumbs, does not work either (I think Breitling had a special 2 ton press to install these). So, it has to be pried out gradually by some sharp blade between the case and the brass inner index ring. I have a modified surgical steel dental tool for just such a job. Tapping on it lightly will get it moving and continue by working all the way around until you have a pretty good gap. At that point, you should be able to pop it out with the tip of a back removal tool. See pics. Are we having fun yet? Too be continued.....

Author:  chronodeco [ Wed Jan 01, 2014 9:03 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal part 2....

Now that you have successfully removed the old crystal, you will be in for more fun when you try to install the new one. Note that there is a fairly long straight vertical edge on the crystal were it fits into the case. This means that the OD of the crystal needs to be about .01mm to say .02mm larger than the ID of the case where the crystal fits. This would not be so critical if there was no brass index ring - the crystal will give enough to fit. However, with the ring installed, there is no "give". It has to be PERFECT! The last one I installed was slightly oversize with the ring installed so I had to turn down the OD of the ring a few mm before it would fit. Now you are ready for installation. You get it in with the bezel and tension ring in place and install the movement only to find that the 100 mark on the index ring is about half a minute off from the second sweep hand. Now the real fun begins - how many times you will have to repeat this process before the 100 mark is perfectly aligned with the second sweep hand centered at 12. If you get this part right in 3 or 4 tries, you are doing good.
Well there you have it. I have tried to suppress my true feelings about this process as best I could. Happy New Year!

Author:  saabreit [ Wed Jan 01, 2014 9:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...

Nice tuto, Craig !
I shall try to keep my crystals safe from scratches on my 3 Pults ... The brown 7101 has been completed in Dec 2012 , the blue 7101 is awaiting its 7740 - complete set of spares to assemble - and the brown 2117 is awaiting its cal 11 ... to be sourced .

Author:  Dr J [ Thu Jan 02, 2014 12:13 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...

Didn't even begin to think they'd be so difficult!

Author:  WatchFred [ Thu Jan 02, 2014 5:11 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...

neither did I. The cracked crystal Craig had to deal with is a result of my stupidity.
thx, Craig for saving that pult.

Author:  Roffensian [ Thu Jan 02, 2014 5:25 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Removal and replacement of the Pult crystal...

Short sighed design by Breitling there with no consideration given to maintenance costs down the road. Great educational piece Craig, thank you!

Page 1 of 1 All times are UTC - 8 hours
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group