Casio LCW-M100DSE: small problems in a great watch.
In today's article we will see how to solve small problems detected in this Casio LCW-M100-DSE, a magnificent watch with great features.
A few days ago, browsing ebay, I found in a German seller, this interesting second hand casio model for sale for a very interesting price. As the seller indicated, the watch had some problems, but they were fixable. I bid without much hope, but for a ridiculous price in the end I managed to win the auction.
Upon receiving the watch, the first thing I do is an inspection to see what problems it has. As this model was bought on ebay from a German seller and the description had to be translated to see what problems it might have. More or less, I had an intuition that it had problems with the buttons that were stuck, but little more.
When I open the box I see that the first thing the watch is "stopped". The led display of the digital part of the watch does not show any digit and the hands of the analog part do not move either. It is usual in the solar watches that arrive with little load or even with the discharged accumulator.
I start to check the buttons, and indeed 2 of the 3 buttons fail. They are sunken and do not make the game to press, so it may be due to two causes: accumulation of dirt that prevent the button to move or, stranger case, the movement has moved inside the box, releasing the metal tabs that make the spring, so the buttons do not return to the initial position.
It was clear that it would have to be opened to check what the problem was.
Opening the case
To open the case made entirely of stainless steel, we must loosen the 4 screws that secure the cover to the body of the case. We remove them in the shape of a cross, being careful not to get any of them stuck and break when applying too much pressure.
Once the 4 screws are removed, I discover that at some point the watch has been opened. It is characteristic of these models that under each screw hole there is a small gasket. In this watch, these 4 rubber gaskets are missing.
Once the case was removed, I could see that the problem was really simple, although strange: the movement had moved laterally, leaving the metal tabs of the module that push the buttons above the axes of the buttons, so that was the cause of both not working.
Carefully, we remove the plastic coat that fixes the position of the module, we move the buttons out, to their position without pressing, and finally, we place the metallic pins at the same height of the axes of the buttons. Now the buttons have their usual movement, they are pressed and return to their initial position when released.
Checking the accumulator
As we are already with the watch with the guts in the air, I take the opportunity to make a small check. In previous cases I had found that the accumulator had been replaced by a non-rechargeable battery.
To be on the safe side, I remove the "supposed" accumulator to check that it is a Panasonic CTL920F, which is the model used by this module. I check it, and indeed, it is an accumulator and it is the correct model. Before closing the watch, I take the opportunity to do a "reset": with the tweezers I connect the AC connector to the negative pole of the accumulator (as indicated on the cover of the watch on the inside).
There I check that the watch "wakes up", the second hand is displayed and the digital display shows the digits. I proceed to close the watch, but first I grease the gasket with silicone oil.
Now we come to the second problem, and that is that the watch has too little charge in the accumulator and starts to deactivate functions. This behavior is common when the energy level of the battery drops too low and does not even reach the "low" level of the clock indicator.
The solution is very simple, place it next to a window where it has plenty of light, but not direct sunlight, and once the "low" level is reached, take the watch out for a few days, taking advantage of the fact that although it is cold, it is sunny.
When I reach the "mid" value of battery charge, take the opportunity to put it in time and date. And continue to use it to get plenty of light and charge the battery.
But not everything is perfect...
Unfortunately, after a few days, I have been able to verify that the accumulator does not go beyond the medium ("MID") charge level no matter how much light it receives. It probably spent too much time without light and with a very low charge and it has affected it. Fortunately, the "mid" level has not dropped, so it is fully functional, if later I see that it degrades more and does not hold the load, I will proceed to change its accumulator.
After a few days of use, it has become one of my favorite watches, as it combines a number of very interesting features:
- Case completely made of steel. No painted resin to make it look like metal, in this case only stainless steel. We forget about the problems of the threads with the screws of the back cover.
- Radio controlled. Allows the clock to always show the exact time, by synchronizing several times a day with the stations of Mainflingen (DCF77) and . This synchronization will depend on the place in Spain where we are and the surrounding buildings that surround us, which can cause a greater difficulty in the synchronization by radio control.
- Solar. It allows us to forget for a few years (10 or 15) to change batteries as long as we maintain some maintenance guidelines. The most important is not to leave the watch abandoned in a drawer or box in the dark for a long time, as it can damage the accumulator prematurely. Just by occasionally leaving our watch next to a window with light, we will not have problems with it.
- Sapphire crystal. This type of crystal, very resistant to scratches, will allow our watch to look like the first day.
- Analogic-digital. Its analog dial includes a digital display that allows us to control the alarms, battery level, stopwatch, time signal and countdown. It also has multiple time zones to adjust the watch when traveling around the world.
All these features in a small case of 40 millimeters in diameter, which makes the watch very light and comfortable to use. If we want even more lightness, we can opt for the Casio LCW-M100TSE model, made entirely of titanium both the case and the bracelet, which ensures that we will not feel it on our wrist.
In addition, we have other models with Arabic numeral dials instead of indexes as the Casio LCW-M100-1A2ER made of titanium or its equivalent in stainless steel, the Casio LCW-M100DSE-2AER.
Undoubtedly, Casio has succeeded with this model, little more can be asked of it.