Watchmaking tools & tips

Watchmaking tools & tips

Hi and welcome to the Watchmaker blog. 

Before we start with the actual assembly of our watch, i wanted to give you a few quick tips and pointers. We will also shortly put together a short video on this topic, which will be uploaded here and on YouTube. 

For the moments lets take a moment at your tool kit, which is supplied with our full kits. 

Tool kit

Movement cushion

The central tool of your kit is the movement cushion. The black, upper side is soft and allows you to place the movement on the cushion without damaging any of the delicate movement components. You will additionally need the cushion to flip the movement into the case - a move we show you in our video instructions. 

Finger cots 

The funny looking little black finger covers or cots are in essence rubber gloves, but limited to your finger tips. As this is the only part of your hand that is likely to touch the watch, there is no need to wear full gloves. Which brings us to the first lesson - Always wear finger cots when touching your watch parts. Not only could you leave finger prints on your parts which will be difficult to remove later on it will also be extremely annoying if you spot one after you have cased and closed your watch. In your kit you will receive finger cots - just roll them over your finger and you are good to go. 

Dust blower

Your dust blower is used to remove any dust particles that make their way into your case or onto the dial. As general precaution, always place your case with the opening downwards or leave it closed until needed (Part 3 of our installation). However almost all your parts will at one point be exposed to the dust in the general environment. Your dust blower can quickly clean this up and leave you with clean parts ready to install. 


Rodico is premium cleaning putty, which is used to remove any remaining particles without leaving any residue. Just rip out a part of the putty, form it into a small pointer and press it on any visible particles to remove it. You can also use it to remove fingerprints, if no other means are available. 

Watch hand press

The installation of watch hands is a delicate process, but can be simplified by using the right tools. Watch hand presses are used to push the watch hand onto the respective pinions and cannons of your watch movement. You will notice that the presses have differently coloured tips, indicating the size of the opening. Your aim during the installation is to push the watch hand flat onto the respective pinion with even pressure around it to ensure the hands are parallel to the dial. Using the correct sized press ensures that you only exercise pressure on the hand not on the movement. Take a look at our assembly instructions for more info (Part 2 - Hands installation). 

Watch hands lift tools

The counterpart to the watch hand press is the watch hands lifting tool. Two levers which are used to evenly lift your hands if you want to exchange them or if you are not satisfied with the installation. Always use the provided dial covers when you use your watch hand lift tools to protect your dial from scratches. In the next days we will also upload a video showing you how to exchange your hands with the help of the covers and levers. 

Precision tweezers

The final piece of equipment - three fine precission tools that are used to lift the smaller pieces of your kit. 

Please note that these tweezers are very pointy and handle them with care. 

I personally prefer the bended tweezers, as it allows you to carefully place parts, e.g. hands, without scratching over the underlying surface. Always keep in mind that your tweezers are pointy and can scratch your dial, hands and movement if you are careless. 

General tips & tricks 

Now that we are familiar with the tools, some more general advice to make sure you have a great experience with your kit. 

Always work on a clean surface. While you have a movement cushion, you should still quickly wipe down the desk you working on to reduce the risk of dust getting into your watch. 

Before you use any force to install any parts, make sure you fully watched/read the instructions and that you are satisfied with the position. While you can remove most parts, you will eventually wear them out or leave marks - so always double check. 

Be very careful around any moving parts of your movement, never stick the tweezers or any other tools into the gears or the balance wheel. If you hold or lift your movement, do so on the plastic encasing as shown in the videos. 

Lastly, i highly recommend that in addition to the instructions you take a look at our page on the movement to make sure you understand how the Seiko NH35 works. 

I hope this post was helpful to you and if you have any questions or comments, please leave me a message.



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