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My Frankenstein project!

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Sully008

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My Frankenstein project!

Post27 Oct 2009, 00:34

Hello all,

I have to give credit where credit is due. This was an idea that Ed (retroleds) came up with originally and I just kinda stole the ball and ran with it.

I purchased a stainless steel Date/Command on Ebay under the assumption that it was working. It was not. So now I have a dead module (which will be sent off to be fixed or become a hybrid), and a half decent case w/a crappy non-original bracelet. What to do???

First, I wanted a different look to the case, so I darkened it and gave it an "industrial" look:
Image

Although the band looks original, it's not. I took it off one of my Space/Time Pulsar look-a-likes. I just replaced the clasp with an original Pulsar one.

Image


Now, I wanted a newer module to put into this case, but all the generic Chinese ones were well, crap. So I used the OLED out of a DKNY 1368 watch that I bought on Ebay for cheap. This is where I stole the idea from Ed. Thankfully, he was more than willing to help and gave me some tips on what to do. I used some old Pulsar reed switches from a completely destroyed module to graft onto the board. I had to glue the module togther since it's all snap fit. I took it apart once and had to figure out how to put it back together. I also needed to grind the corners down to fit the case. Here's the results:


Image

Image

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All in all it turned out pretty good. The hardest part was soldering the reeds to the board. I broke one of them doing that. Also getting the reed the right distance away was tricky. I had to move the switch millimeters to find the sweet spot for both sides. The piezo alarm is currently not working, although I had it working outsided of the case. I will look into that. But now I have a vintage watch with a modern module. :-D
Last edited by Sully008 on 29 Oct 2009, 16:48, edited 2 times in total.
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bruce wegmann

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: My Frankenstein project!

Post27 Oct 2009, 03:54

It's an interesting "look", and it's a sure thing nobody will ever mistake this for an original Time Computer module. Don't know if they're available, but if they are, you might have considered doing this in blue. Then, it would have looked virtually identical to the updated, but vintage, P3 seen in MIB II. BTW, in the world of eBay, unless you see convincing pics, I never assume an LED watch is working... ;-) Also, I seem to remember a thread about somebody doing a P4 Exec in black chrome...THAT was a spiffy-looking watch!
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Sully008

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Re: : My Frankenstein project!

Post27 Oct 2009, 06:47

I thought of doing it in blue, but the only watch out there with the blue OLED is the Apus Infinity Dark Force, which sells for 169Euros. :eek: At that price, I'd rather have an authentic Date/Command. Also, I'd have to buy one of those TX4 blue LED watches to get the blue crystal and file it down to the correct shape. And still it would be cheap plastic, not glass. I've seen a picture of someone that did that already, using the cheap blue LED module.

I could do it to an early Hamilton case, the glass from the Apus could be cut down to fit the rectangular hole of one of those. Hmmm.

I've also seen pictures of a gold P3 with the green module. That looked sharp.

bruce wegmann wrote:It's an interesting "look", and it's a sure thing nobody will ever mistake this for an original Time Computer module. Don't know if they're available, but if they are, you might have considered doing this in blue. Then, it would have looked virtually identical to the updated, but vintage, P3 seen in MIB II. BTW, in the world of eBay, unless you see convincing pics, I never assume an LED watch is working... ;-) Also, I seem to remember a thread about somebody doing a P4 Exec in black chrome...THAT was a spiffy-looking watch!
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abem

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: My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 04:22

Very cool and unique project!

There are a number of relatively nice Chinese made modern modules. In terms of blue OLED, you could get a Bench or Lucky rebranded version of the Dark Force watch for As low as about $45US (http://www.overstock.com/Jewelry-Watche ... oduct.html). Another option might be the Fossil OLED modules, which display the time using an attractive and readable bitmapped font.

My current favorite modern module is from the Aigo F029, which has a bright full color 160x128 pixel 1.3" display, a great MP3 player (sounds much better than my iPod or iPhone), photo viewer, AVI video viewer and a decent menu system. Sadly, it was only available (back in 2006) in a cheap plastic case.

It's too bad that nobody seems capable (at least economically) to combine technology with style the way Pulsar did. Maybe Apple could do it (iWatch anyone?)

I did see those photos of the lovely green P3. If anyone has a photo or link to a photo of that black P4, please post it!

-abe.
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: My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 12:19

I have looked everywhere, on this forum and the "other one", and I cannot find the relevant thread. This was at least two or three years ago, and I do remember there were pictures. So, I put out a call for help...if someone else remembers this, or is the person who invested the effort in a unique Pulsar, by all means, sign in please, and refresh our memories...
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Sully008

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: My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 16:43

Hi Abe,

Thanks for that link to overstock.com. I just bought one. :-D That was even cheaper than the DKNY I bought. There may be hope for the MIIB blue Pulsar still!

If Apple made an "iWatch" I'd be all over that. The nicest looking multimedia/phone watches in terms of design so far are the LG GD910 and the Samsung S9110.
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: My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 17:28

Here's a couple of images comparing my gun metal Pulsar to a gold Date/Command and a stainless Space/Time Pulsar:

Image

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abem

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: My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 18:54

Neat - those comparison shots really show the color.

It looks like something Darth Vader would wear!

How did you blacken the stainless steel? Do you think the dark finish will hold up? It's too bad that stainless steel can't be anodized. Then again, for the sake of good taste, maybe that's fortunate.

-abe.
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Re: : My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 20:11

I used a product called "stainless steel blackener 370" from caswellcanada.ca. They say it can be used without the sealer they sell, but I'm noticing that the finish is wearing through in under normal use. I may buy the sealer and try again. It's okay for now, I like the beat up look.

As for the blue project, I found a website that has blue transparent plexiglas samples in 3mmx100x75mm sizes. I'm going to order a couple of those to play around with. Now, to buy another SS Date/Command case. Anybody got one for sale??

abem wrote:Neat - those comparison shots really show the color.

It looks like something Darth Vader would wear!

How did you blacken the stainless steel? Do you think the dark finish will hold up? It's too bad that stainless steel can't be anodized. Then again, for the sake of good taste, maybe that's fortunate.

-abe.
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Post28 Oct 2009, 20:44

I tried to make a men in black style one a few years ago, this was before we had blue LED watches, I used one of those cheap back lit red ones with the red LED's removed and replaced with blue ones. I can't find the photos of the watch, but I managed to find a photo of the thing I used to fashion a blue crystal from, it was a CD label spindle. There was a thread on here about it but it seems to have disappeared. I still have the watch, and it's not 100% finished lol

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Re: : My Frankenstein project!

Post28 Oct 2009, 21:43

bruce wegmann wrote:I have looked everywhere, on this forum and the "other one", and I cannot find the relevant thread. This was at least two or three years ago, and I do remember there were pictures. So, I put out a call for help...if someone else remembers this, or is the person who invested the effort in a unique Pulsar, by all means, sign in please, and refresh our memories...

Are you sure it was a P4?
I remember a black chrome Bulova by an Australian member (Andrew?) a few years ago.
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Re: : My Frankenstein project!

Post29 Oct 2009, 02:25

Richard,

Is this yours? (From diginut's photobucket):

Image

How did you grind down the plastic to the correct shape? Also, do you remember how thick the plastic was? I believe the plexiglass I bought will be anywhere from .09" to .125". It also looks like you needed to polish the lens, is that correct?

richard_uk wrote:I tried to make a men in black style one a few years ago, this was before we had blue LED watches, I used one of those cheap back lit red ones with the red LED's removed and replaced with blue ones. I can't find the photos of the watch, but I managed to find a photo of the thing I used to fashion a blue crystal from, it was a CD label spindle. There was a thread on here about it but it seems to have disappeared. I still have the watch, and it's not 100% finished lol

Image
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: My Frankenstein project!

Post29 Oct 2009, 02:53

Okay so I had to pull out my MIB2 DVD and get some screen captures of K's Hamilton. I'm so doing this with the blue OLED display and a SS Date/Command. It's funny, but the crystal looks to be red, I know they added the blue LEDs in special effects, but did they really make a crystal with the Hamilton script just for the movie?

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Post29 Oct 2009, 03:51

Yeah that's the one!

I don't remember but I think the plastic was the right thickness for the crystal, to get the shape I sanded out a rough shape then used double sided tape to stick it to an old crystal, then sanded down to that, then a bit of fine paper and some polish to get the polished finish.

As you probably know a blue display wont work behind a red crystal, so yeah the one in the movie was special effects, I'd imagine the Hamilton text was also effects.
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Post29 Oct 2009, 04:03

This is something I'd considered for the Hamilton lettering..

http://www.fredaldous.co.uk/shop-online ... ing-a5.htm
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Post29 Oct 2009, 09:29

Are you sure it was a P4?
I remember a black chrome Bulova by an Australian member (Andrew?) a few years ago.


Nope, wasn't me.
I do remember a fellow Antipodean doing something strange to a watch, but can't remember what he did, or who it was.

Rgds.
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Re: : My Frankenstein project!

Post29 Oct 2009, 16:51

It was andyz4000 that did a black chrome Bulova Drivers watch. The only picture left is his avatar. It looks cool though.

charger105 wrote:
Are you sure it was a P4?
I remember a black chrome Bulova by an Australian member (Andrew?) a few years ago.


Nope, wasn't me.
I do remember a fellow Antipodean doing something strange to a watch, but can't remember what he did, or who it was.

Rgds.
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Post30 Oct 2009, 05:54

This is the black chrome P4 I remembered. Someone in the thread said it was only painted with black enamel, but I am sure this was an exotic [and expensive] plating job...there was a series of pictures going step-by-step showing the prep of the case, removing the buttons, etc. Like I said, a striking-looking watch. Not sure if it was on a leather strap, or if he did the entire solid-link bracelet. Image here http://yfrog.com/b6p4blackchromej
Last edited by bruce wegmann on 31 Oct 2009, 00:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Post30 Oct 2009, 06:19

Dang, that's wicked! Thanks!
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: My Frankenstein project!

Post17 Nov 2009, 00:08

Well, my SS Date/Command case from Ed came in today (Thanks Ed!) and the Lucky Brand watch had come in last week. Just a reminder here is the original MIB2 as seen in the movie:

Image

Here's the results so far (I'm finally getting better at taking photos):

Image

Image


It was easier this time around in getting the reed switches to work because of the lessons I learned with the red one. I also got the module more centered in the case. I'll probably go back and redo the "Vader" model because it's a touch low. I'm still torn on what color blue to use for the crystal. I have a dark blue and a lighter blue piece of plexiglass to work with. I think I'll make one of each and see which one looks better. The lighter one will keep the color closer to the movie, but you'll see the insides more. The darker one obviously makes the LEDs look darker, and hides the insides.
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: My Frankenstein project!

Post17 Nov 2009, 01:02

Mike:
Awesome work! :O`~ You are(or should be) a real inspiration to the hands-on collectors, new and old. That DKNY module is "killer", glad I could help out. Hey, you didn't show us how you maxed it out some of the other details...I'm not telling, that's your baby. :-)
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Post17 Nov 2009, 01:42

How about making a black mask around the display to hide the internals so you could use the lighter crystal material.

like this...

Image

Looks very 8-) by the way...
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