Monday, January 31, 2011

Intermezzo #33: First battery change of the year!

I was fishing in my collection for a nice G-Shock this morning. Unfortunately, I had a dead battery. I took the watch and a fresh battery with me to school, but I had no time for the battery change. I did the change after dinner. A nice plus is that I could take some photo's of the procedure. I know I made a few of these battery change posts before. I have a new camera and I wanted to see how much details I could show with new photo's. Replacing batteries in a G-Shock is for the most models the same procedure.Most use a CR2016 battery, but other batteries are also used. The battery locks can differ a little bit. Some G-Shocks have a screw case back, most have a 4-screw case back.
The lucky victim of today is a DW-9005V. First I remove the buckle from the strap, before I can remove the strap from the adapters. I know my service centre actually removes only the strap adapters (including straps), but personally I prefer this way.
Before the case back can be opened, two back protectors need to be removed.  After removing these protectors the screws of the case back can be removed. 
When the case back is removed, you most of the time find such a rubber protector. When the case is open like this, I recomend not to turn around the watch. There is a small spring. It might easily fall out when the watchis turned over. It is part of the floating module construction. Sometimes you find a white plastic plate or a metal protection ring. In all cases it needs to be removed, so you can reach the module.
There it is. Take a look at the battery lock. It is hooked behind two notches. With a sharp tweezer or another sharp object, like a sewing pin, you can easily pry open the lock. If it does not open easily, you are clearly doing something wrong. Some locks are not opened in the middle, but on the side. In that case, you'll find a small tab on the side of the lock mechanism.

Here you see the tweezer pry open the lock. It will just jump open.
So, the battery is out, so time to get a fresh one. Try not to touch the battery with your fingers. Best is to use a plastic tweezer, but a piece of clean cloth will work too.
Just put the battery in the holder and push the lock back in it's place. On this model there is a big sticker about the reset procedure. I can recommend to do this after every battery change. Possible indications that the reset procedure is forgotten are: strange digits,  the EL stays on or sometimes the module works but suddenly dies within a few days. For the Reset procedure you need to locate the AC contact. 
You need to short circuit the contact and the back of the battery (+). Best to use your sharp tweezers, but if you are inventive, you can use other metal objects too (two watch screwdrivers, fold open staples, paper-clip, etc).
Now the rubber protector can be put back in place. If you forgot how to put it back, just look at it's shape. There is a hole for the spring and a piece is left out for the tab.
I always put a little bit of silicon grease on the seals. This is best to keep the watch waterproof. Notice the little bump. It fits in a cut-out in the case.
Now put the back plate back and fasten it cross-way with the screws. I always first fasten two screws and test the watch. There should be a normal display, the alarm sound and EL backlight should work. If something is not working, or only weird digits are visible, the Reset procedure needs to be done over again. It sometimes happens, but in the past seven years (and about +200 battery changes) it has only happened to me about 5 or 6 times. Sometimes it is not possible to bring the watch back to life. It happened to me twice and I have helped about two times people with similar symptoms.
The symptom: display dead, after reset display dead or only strange digits, even after several Reset procedures.  If you have this problem, do not panic. Take out the battery again and leave the watch for about 24 hours. Strangely the watch will reset in one attempt after such a rest.
 A new problem can occur if you have a similar model as I used for this battery change tutorial today. It happened to me the first time too. "How do you put back the buckle on the strap".
I think this picture tells more than thousand words. You start with sticking the strap through the left part of the buckle (in the picture). The rest is pretty easy, as long as you keep the strap a little lose in the buckle.
Now you only need to set the time of the watch. An atomic timepiece is of course the best way to set your watch. Yeah! I revived another G-Shock today! A big shout out to Ivan of Horology Crazy weblog. Thanks to him I can add some new battery change nomenclature to my vocabulaire. Thanks!


James Goetz said...

Excellent post. Many thanks! I was confused about the whereabouts of the AC contact, but your clear explanation and photos solved that for me quickly. You might add that it it is recessed, on the circuit board.

James Goetz said...

Excellent post. I was confused about the location of the AC contact. Your clear description and photos quickly got me on track. You might mention that the contact is on the circuit board, and recessed from the casing or what ever horologists call that thing. My horological vocabulaire is weak. cheers - jeg