It doesn’t happen every day, the chances of your expensive stainless steel watch getting scratches once you wear it are quite slim, but we’ve all had our fair share of unfortunate events. We’ve had to stop wearing our timepieces or even worn them with some shame hanging in the air because of scratches. And who can blame you?
Whether your beautiful stainless steel watch scratches against concrete or you have no recollection of how the scratches came about, it hurts to see those lines on the watch’s bevel. So, having gone through all the motions, we researched and found that the damage is repairable, with ease.
Yes, you can get rid of those annoying scratches with ease, and the best bit is that you don’t have to break the bank to restore that mirror-perfect shine.
Tips on how to remove scratches from stainless steel watch bezel
Just before we look at the ways of eliminating the scratches from the watch’s bevel, what causes the scratches?
Some of the causes of the scratches include:
- Scuffing during the watch’s normal use
- Rough contact against a concrete wall or surface
- Normal wear and tear
Regardless of the cause, a scratch on your watch’s bezel, regardless of the size/ depth, will make your heart sink, especially if you adore your timepieces. Knowing just how bad such scenarios make you feel, we explored the world of watches and their care and found a number of remarkable solutions to dealing with scratches on your watch’s bevel.
In our research, we identified a number of methods for dealing with and removing the scratches, and it’s important to note that these methods will depend on the extent of the scratches.
The removal method you will use when the scratches are not deep or when your fingernails cannot sink into the scratches will be different from the method used if the scratches are deep enough for your fingernails to sink in.
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Step-by-step Removal of Scratches from Watch Bevel
Dremelling is one of the most effective methods for scratch removal. Of course, you will need a Dremel (set to between 10 and 15, a cotton wheel, and your preferred cleaning compound.
Apply a small amount of the cleaning compound on the Dremel’s head then move it over the watch for a few seconds. Then polish the area you just worked on. S
Note that the cleaning compound might have a clouded effect on the cleaned area, which is why you need to use only a small amount. You can reduce the clouding effect by using a clean cotton ball on the Dremel, with just a small amount of the cleaning compound.
The Toothpaste Method
A few minutes spend scouring the internet will reveal a huge number of timepiece fans offering different ideas on how to remove scratches from your stainless steel timepiece.
However, it would appear that the general consensus when it comes to getting rid of scratches from your watch lies towards the use of toothpaste.
In fact, many timepiece fans swear by toothpaste, claiming that it works better than the traditional polish, especially when dealing with minor scratches on the timepieces.
But just before we look at exactly how the toothpaste method works, it’s important to note that you should not use anything grainy or abrasive to remove the scratches. Also, don’t use whitening toothpaste, gel toothpaste, or toothpaste with colored dyes.
At the same time, you need to avoid the now popular charcoal toothpaste since these could do more harm rather than good. In short, opt for the flavorless, plain white toothpaste with the smoothest consistency.
Note that the toothpaste method also involves the traditional hand polishing for scratches removal.
Besides the toothpaste, you need a painter’s tape and a microfiber cloth.
Traditional Hand Polishing steps
- Layout your working area and include a soft towel or soft piece of cloth to protect your watch.
- Take the painter’s tape and then mask off the rest of your watch. Doing this protects the rest of the watch from potential damage. Note that you don’t have to tape off the strap.
- Next up, apply a little toothpaste on the watch’s bezel. Don’t squeeze out a lot of the toothpaste from the tube. You don’t want the polish getting into unnecessary and sensitive parts of the watch.
- Using the microfiber cloth, buff the toothpaste around the watch bezel in small circles. Apply light pressure when buffing, and buff along the grain to avoid more scratches. The scratches should disappear within minutes.
- When done buffing, wipe off and then polish the watch.
- To ensure that you’ve removed all the scratches, scrutinize the watch’s bevel carefully and in different lights. Repeat the buffing process if you still see scratches.
If the scratches are deep enough for your fingernails to sink into them, you might want to use the Buffing method to remove the scratches.
For buffing, you require a buffer (preferably a bench buffer), or you could turn your bench grinder into a buffer if you have the right attachments. You will also need a painter’s tape, safety goggles, polishing rouge, and an organic cotton buffing wheel. You might also need latex gloves, and you definitely need power.
- Since you are getting rid of scratches from the bezel, you only need to tape off the case. You could also remove the strap to protect it from unnecessary damage. Remember to work on a soft towel/ microfiber cloth.
- Put on the safety glasses. You don’t want to deal with polishing rouge in your eyes or fine pieces of metal. The gloves are also important.
- Now, attach your buffer wheel to the buffer and then turn it on. With the buffer wheel spinning, apply a little rouge to your wheel.
- Start buffing moving the wheel from one side to the other gently, and along the grain.
- Be patient with the process. It might take more time than you imagined, and we also recommend that you take breaks in between the buffing process.
Keep in mind that if this is your first time buffing, you should start practicing on your less expensive pieces, and only buff an expensive timepiece when you are confident in your abilities.
The best tools to use
- A rotary tool like a grinder, buffer or a Dremel
- Buffering wheel (soft cotton)
- Masking tape
- Metal/ jewelry polish
- Heavy-duty scouring pad/ sponge
- Working area (cardboard) and a soft piece of a clean towel.
Don’t allow a scuffed-up watch to wear you down. Those scratches might look really bad, but they can disappear with a little time and the right tools.