Apple Watch Paint Damage Repair

Nikiforidis

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 1, 2017
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Any ideas on how to fix/paint this? I have few in mind but I am not sure if they are going to work.

IMG_1546.jpg
 

iMacDragon

macrumors 68000
Oct 18, 2008
1,827
334
UK
Due to it being a factory anodisation process nothing you can do at home will probably create a seamless patch up sadly, though might be worth querying with Apple as it shouldn't really be doing that easily
 

Nikiforidis

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 1, 2017
125
47
I have sent it to the Apple authorised service provider and the provider sent it to Apple. Apple checked it and replied to them "Its physical damage - not eligible for free replacement". I asked the provider if they can repair it for me and they told me that there is no such a procedure and that there is no part that can be replaced. They only offered to replace the whole device for €300+.

I totally agree with you that it shouldn't be doing this. The dot you saw in the pic above is not the only one. There are 2 more defects, one dot and one line, in a spot that it's clear that this is not damaged by the customer but something went wrong during the painting procedure in the factory (check pic bellow). But what can I do? They do not accept my facts.

I know that the result wont be perfect, but I am willing to paint it, I want this white dot to go away, it looks very bad.

I want to try to cover it with some black nail polish, what do you think?

IMG_1548.jpg
 

justiny

Contributor
Jul 28, 2008
604
1,499
Bubbletucky
I know that the result wont be perfect, but I am willing to paint it, I want this white dot to go away, it looks very bad.

I want to try to cover it with some black nail polish, what do you think?
I think it would look far less noticeable, but probably not the perfect shade of gray. If I were in your shoes, I’d give it a try since you really have nothing to lose (as long as you are completely beyond your warranty).
 
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Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
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Any ideas on how to fix/paint this? I have few in mind but I am not sure if they are going to work.

View attachment 762537
Being an Apple is not willing to replace the watch being that they consider it damaged, you could also try some type of automotive touchup paint that might have more durability in sealing the chipped area’s. Ultimately the problem with anodized aluminum, is once it’s chipped, it continues to spread. So I definitely would touch it up if you can and If you’re comfortable with it.
 
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Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
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I want to try to cover it with some black nail polish, what do you think?
I think that instead of an ugly shiny aluminium spot, you'll have an ugly blob of nail polish on your watch. Also, since the ding is so close to the side button you risk messing up during the application; you might glue your side button permanently stuck, especially if you ever try to remove your improvised repair; acetone will dissolve the nail polish, which will then wick in between the side button and case, right up to the button seals where it can then re-set (and possibly also dissolve the seal as well making it gum up that button real good.)

So I would be super duper extra careful if I were you. Is it really worth it? Maybe just live with the damage. See it as a 'beauty spot' for the duration you have that watch...
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
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I think that instead of an ugly shiny aluminium spot, you'll have an ugly blob of nail polish on your watch. Also, since the ding is so close to the side button you risk messing up during the application; you might glue your side button permanently stuck, especially if you ever try to remove your improvised repair; acetone will dissolve the nail polish, which will then wick in between the side button and case, right up to the button seals where it can then re-set (and possibly also dissolve the seal as well making it gum up that button real good.)..
I think you’re over exaggerating and making this more difficult than it needs to be. A simple swipe of a little bit of paint or nail polish is not as drastic your making it sound. Also for the record, by _not_ touching up that area, the anodized aluminum will continue to chip if it comes in contact with anything else, would likely worsen. I certainly would touch it up with a minimal amount of paint/polish as possible, because once the 7000 series aluminum is Chipped, it’s known to spread. Plenty of threads on this topic.
 

Nikiforidis

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 1, 2017
125
47
You are both right, if I **** it up with the nail polish I may damage the side button. On the other hand Relentless Power is also right, if I don't cover it it will continue to spread.

I have to paint it starting from the opposite side of the button and slowly-slowly get close to it. Now how I am going to do this without gluing the side button, I really don't know. It's risky.

What about permanent marker instead of nail polish or automotive paint?
[doublepost=1527068740][/doublepost]
Being an Apple is not willing to replace the watch being that they consider it damaged, you could also try some type of automotive touchup paint that might have more durability in sealing the chipped area’s. Ultimately the problem with anodized aluminum, is once it’s chipped, it continues to spread. So I definitely would touch it up if you can and If you’re comfortable with it.
Apple does not consider the device damaged. Apple considers this as "normal wear and tear".
Check my post here: https://discussions.apple.com/message/33431275#33431275
 

Abazigal

macrumors G5
Jul 18, 2011
12,658
10,644
Singapore
I have sent it to the Apple authorised service provider and the provider sent it to Apple. Apple checked it and replied to them "Its physical damage - not eligible for free replacement". I asked the provider if they can repair it for me and they told me that there is no such a procedure and that there is no part that can be replaced. They only offered to replace the whole device for €300+.

I totally agree with you that it shouldn't be doing this. The dot you saw in the pic above is not the only one. There are 2 more defects, one dot and one line, in a spot that it's clear that this is not damaged by the customer but something went wrong during the painting procedure in the factory (check pic bellow). But what can I do? They do not accept my facts.

I know that the result wont be perfect, but I am willing to paint it, I want this white dot to go away, it looks very bad.

I want to try to cover it with some black nail polish, what do you think?

View attachment 762543
You have to assert that the paint job on the watch is chipping off by itself without you having done anything to it, and you believe it to be a flaw with the batch of devices.


This was my watch last year.

Leave the watch alone and don’t try to repair or modify it in any way.

My advice is to keep trying with Apple. I had a similar experience with my Apple Watch, and it was only on the third try that the guy at the Apple store agreed to take it in. I got a replacement watch a week later. First two times, they have me the same response - surface damage which doesn’t affect the functioning of the device is not covered. Which is nonsense when you consider that part of the function of a watch is to look good and there was clearly something wrong with the QC of the device.

It can be frustrating (because you have to make multiple trips to the Apple store) and irritating (because the blemishes on the watch make it an eyesore), but I believe that the best outcome is to keep trying till Apple replaces your watch for a new, non-faulty version.
 

Nikiforidis

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 1, 2017
125
47
You have to assert that the paint job on the watch is chipping off by itself without you having done anything to it, and you believe it to be a flaw with the batch of devices.


This was my watch last year.

Leave the watch alone and don’t try to repair or modify it in any way.

My advice is to keep trying with Apple. I had a similar experience with my Apple Watch, and it was only on the third try that the guy at the Apple store agreed to take it in. I got a replacement watch a week later. First two times, they have me the same response - surface damage which doesn’t affect the functioning of the device is not covered. Which is nonsense when you consider that part of the function of a watch is to look good and there was clearly something wrong with the QC of the device.

It can be frustrating (because you have to make multiple trips to the Apple store) and irritating (because the blemishes on the watch make it an eyesore), but I believe that the best outcome is to keep trying till Apple replaces your watch for a new, non-faulty version.
Well, when you are lucky, you got an Apple store nearby. When you are unlucky like me, you gotta pay €44 for shipping and for diagnostics each time you send the device from the authorise service provider to Apple. I already payed that amount just to get that lame answer "normal wear and tear damage no repair needed", paying again €44 is pointless.
[doublepost=1527071233][/doublepost]Btw thanks for sharing your thoughts Abazigal, I have the "do nothing" option in mind as well, regarding the paint.
 

Abazigal

macrumors G5
Jul 18, 2011
12,658
10,644
Singapore
Well, when you are lucky, you got an Apple store nearby. When you are unlucky like me, you gotta pay €44 for shipping and for diagnostics each time you send the device from the authorise service provider to Apple. I already payed that amount just to get that lame answer "normal wear and tear damage no repair needed", paying again €44 is pointless.
[doublepost=1527071233][/doublepost]Btw thanks for sharing your thoughts Abazigal, I have the "do nothing" option in mind as well, regarding the paint.
Well that just sucks. I guess I was lucky that an Apple store finally opened in my country last July. Else, I would probably have been similarly out of luck.

I think trying to paint over the problem is just going to make it look even worse. Leave it as is or maybe put a case around it?
 

Nikiforidis

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 1, 2017
125
47
Well that just sucks. I guess I was lucky that an Apple store finally opened in my country last July. Else, I would probably have been similarly out of luck.

I think trying to paint over the problem is just going to make it look even worse. Leave it as is or maybe put a case around it?
You are lucky indeed.

Apple watch is a very beautiful product and after all it's a watch. Putting a case around it...hmmm, nope. :p
 
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Kerry78

macrumors regular
Sep 14, 2016
175
43
Anyone know where I can get matching paint to touch up a S1 Silver Aluminium Watch it has a slight scuff on it near the display I’ve ordered a body case for it but it may take ages to arrive China :|
 

KarimLeVallois

macrumors 68020
Feb 22, 2014
2,191
1,353
London
Anyone know where I can get matching paint to touch up a S1 Silver Aluminium Watch it has a slight scuff on it near the display I’ve ordered a body case for it but it may take ages to arrive China :|
Perhaps take it to an automotive shop and ask them to colour match it?
 
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SDColorado

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Nov 6, 2011
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Highlands Ranch, CO
I know you are asking about the Silver Aluminum and KarimLeVallois answer is probably as good a bet as any.

But something worth trying on the Space Gray models is Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black. Despite "Black" in the name, it actually takes a few applications to achieve black. First applications will achieve shades of gray. When I used it to blacken scratches in anodized black aluminum motorcycle panniers, it took me 4 or 5 applications to match the black.

That said, being a rather thin liquid, you would also have to use an abundance of caution to watch where it goes. A problem I didn't have to deal with. But with a watch, especially depending on where the scratches are, you would have to watch excess liquid.

The advantage of Aluma Bllack over paint is that it is a chemical that, when in contact with aluminum (not oxidized aluminum) will cause a chemical reaction that turns the surface of the aluminum black. So it is more permanent.

But I have never tried it on an Apple Watch, so I can't speak for the results. Use at your own risk :)
 

Kerry78

macrumors regular
Sep 14, 2016
175
43
I know you are asking about the Silver Aluminum and KarimLeVallois answer is probably as good a bet as any.

But something worth trying on the Space Gray models is Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black. Despite "Black" in the name, it actually takes a few applications to achieve black. First applications will achieve shades of gray. When I used it to blacken scratches in anodized black aluminum motorcycle panniers, it took me 4 or 5 applications to match the black.

That said, being a rather thin liquid, you would also have to use an abundance of caution to watch where it goes. A problem I didn't have to deal with. But with a watch, especially depending on where the scratches are, you would have to watch excess liquid.

The advantage of Aluma Bllack over paint is that it is a chemical that, when in contact with aluminum (not oxidized aluminum) will cause a chemical reaction that turns the surface of the aluminum black. So it is more permanent.

But I have never tried it on an Apple Watch, so I can't speak for the results. Use at your own risk :)
Hmm not sure about doing that lol sounds a risk but thanks the watch isn’t that bad it’s just the mark nearer the top that where the display is that could do with a touch up! ;) I might see if I can get a model paint they come in an assortment of colours ;)

Thanks btw :)
 

SDColorado

macrumors 601
Nov 6, 2011
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Highlands Ranch, CO
It could be, though model paint comes with its own risks, being sticky and also non-permanent. But also because it’s sticky it may be easier to control the flow.

That said, the Aluma Black is made for gun collectors to repair scratches, but I have found other uses for it :)
 
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Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
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Perhaps take it to an automotive shop and ask them to colour match it?
I don’t know that they can, because this is not technically ‘Paint’, it’s anodized aluminum. And even trying to use automotive paint, it would have to use some type of clear gloss, which the aluminum silver is more of a matte finish. If a paint shop were able to color match, I think it would be very costly and difficult.
 
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KarimLeVallois

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Feb 22, 2014
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I don’t know that they can, because this is not technically ‘Paint’, it’s anodized aluminum. And even trying to use automotive paint, it would have to use some type of clear gloss, which the aluminum silver is more of a matte finish. If a paint shop were able to color match, I think it would be very costly and difficult.
This man raises a good point! lol
 
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Beachmusic18

macrumors member
Oct 28, 2018
50
46
St Petersburg
We had a graphite (dark grey) Mercedes that got keyed all down one side. Until we got it repaired, I covered it using a plain soft pencil. It will be somewhat lighter than the color of the case, but at least not white. It did a pretty good job on the car, except of course if you looked, you could still see the gouge. The white won’t glare at you anymore tho. Give it a try.
 

Kerry78

macrumors regular
Sep 14, 2016
175
43
It’s a good job these watches come with a lot of accessory options (bodycases) etc ...I think those are prob best rather then using a paint on them!
[doublepost=1548907381][/doublepost]
It could be, though model paint comes with its own risks, being sticky and also non-permanent. But also because it’s sticky it may be easier to control the flow.

That said, the Aluma Black is made for gun collectors to repair scratches, but I have found other uses for it :)
I don’t know whether to risk it or not just think using it as it is and shoving a body case on it when it arrives will be the right thing to do!

I know it’s one if the older series watches but I bought it to get a test run out of it before deciding to get a newer one lol
 

paulr1234

macrumors newbie
Jul 15, 2019
1
1
I know you are asking about the Silver Aluminum and KarimLeVallois answer is probably as good a bet as any.

But something worth trying on the Space Gray models is Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black. Despite "Black" in the name, it actually takes a few applications to achieve black. First applications will achieve shades of gray. When I used it to blacken scratches in anodized black aluminum motorcycle panniers, it took me 4 or 5 applications to match the black.

That said, being a rather thin liquid, you would also have to use an abundance of caution to watch where it goes. A problem I didn't have to deal with. But with a watch, especially depending on where the scratches are, you would have to watch excess liquid.

The advantage of Aluma Bllack over paint is that it is a chemical that, when in contact with aluminum (not oxidized aluminum) will cause a chemical reaction that turns the surface of the aluminum black. So it is more permanent.

But I have never tried it on an Apple Watch, so I can't speak for the results. Use at your own risk :)
~~~

This is an old post now but as I was still searching for ideas on this, I am sure others will be too and maybe the following might help. I damaged the corner of my Space Gray iPad Pro and would really like to make it less obvious. The damage is not so bad but it has smooshed the corner a little and grazed the finish and the underlying aluminum, so it will need to be sanded down and refinished, and that will expose the silver aluminum under the original dark anodized finish of course.

I bought a bottle of the Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black (nasty stuff, so be careful) and did a test of a sheet of aluminum, first preparing it with 3000 grit paper, then polishing with Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish, then wiping the surface clean with a wet tissue. Others have suggested rubbing alcohol at this stage and that may also work or work better. It is important to get the new polished surface really clean, as the Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black will react with surface debris (I could clearly see this adjacent to my clean test area, where the compound had reacted with small traces of the polishing paste and fine aluminum powder, bubbling and changing color to a brown color).

Preparation is everything of course and I was surprised at how much material 3000 grit paper will remove. During the sanding and polishing, the surface will turn quite dark with the aluminum that is being removed, and you will need to keep working it with a clean cloth or tissue to get back to a clean aluminum finish. I'm lucky because the area to be repaired is quite small. I would NOT try this on a large flat area on the rear of an iPad or iPhone. It will always be best for small touch-up repairs on corners etc.

After sanding, cleaning and polishing, I applied one coat of the Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black. The solution is very thin and doesn't adhere naturally to the aluminum (it beads and runs off) but the color after one application was indeed gray and not black and looked like a good match for Space Gray. It probably won't end up 100% the same but I feel like it will be really close.

I looked into other option such as expensive anodizing touch-up pens but am still left feeling this will be the best.

Your mileage my vary of course and any use of this information is entirely at your risk and responsibility (the Birchwood-Casey Aluma Black is corrosive and toxic).

Let me know how your get on: paulr1234@yahoo.com

Paul.
 
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perezr10

macrumors 65816
Jan 12, 2014
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Monroe, Louisiana
I don’t know that they can, because this is not technically ‘Paint’, it’s anodized aluminum. And even trying to use automotive paint, it would have to use some type of clear gloss, which the aluminum silver is more of a matte finish. If a paint shop were able to color match, I think it would be very costly and difficult.
Yeah there is no paint on the aluminum watch.

Anodization means they soak aluminum in a liquid solution that has an electric current running through it. This causes the Aluminum to change color as it soaks up the dye. I used to work for Alcoa and used to walk by these big vats all the time.

I think any actual paint would easily flake off quickly if it’s bumped or scraped. That’s why they use the anodization process.
 

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