This blog post will explain the process of installing the dial onto your movement. If you are starting with this blog entry, i recommend before you start you take a quick look at our watchmaking tips & tricks section. We now also have a full video tutorial available:
Now to the dial: we will use a 28.5mm divers dial with two metal dial feet. Dial feets are by far the most common and best-in-class approach to install dials, while other methods (e.g. dial pads) are more of a temporary solution.
Dial feets are installed onto the back of the dial and match with corresponding sockets in the movement. The Seiko NH35 has its respective holes approximately at 2:00 and 8:00 (note that the position of the crown would be at the 4th on the dial disc.
If we want to install the dial we have to push the dial feet (red circles below) into the holes of the movement as seen above.
The Seiko NH35 uses no screws to hold down the dial feet, instead the holes are slightly tightening, which is sufficient to keep the dial safely in place.
When you have identified both, dial feet and sockets, pick up your dial (please ensure to always wear finger cots to avoid finger prints on your dial, which are very difficult to remove later). The date window should be directly aligned with your crown (both are supposed to be at 3:00).
Always check if the date is correctly aligned and looks "normal". Unless you are just between date changes, the date should be clearly readable through the window. If that is not the case, your dial is not sitting correctly.
Gently place the dial feet into the sockets, while keeping the dial parallel to the movement. If you start to push one dial feet all the way in, while the second feet is not in its socket, you will struggle to force it in and potentially bend it. Therefore always make sure that both feet are in their respective sockets before pushing the dial gently down onto the movement.
The NH35 has an integrated date ring, which keeps the dial above the date disc. You can therefore safely push the dial all the way onto the movement.
Once you have installed your dial check again if it sits evenly and flat against the movement. The hand pinions should be in the middle of the dial hole, without touching it on either end.
I hope this first instruction was helpful and in the next part we will show you how to install the watch hands onto your movement.