Getting a Broken Stem Out of Your Watch: 3 Simple Tips

There are times that watch owners accidentally drop their watches. Sometimes, they bend the crown the wrong way. As a result, the crown stem gets snapped off midway, and it eventually gets broken.

If this happens to you, don’t worry! In this guide, you will learn how you can remove the broken stem from your watch yourself. Don’t let the broken stem stop you from having a fully functional and efficient watch. 

Check out our tips to help you extract a broken stem from a movement. 

Tip #1: Use a Tweezer

Using a tweezer is one of the first options you can have to extract the broken stem out of your watch. Since the stem is really small, using your hands to pull it out is very difficult. However, the tweezer method will only work if the stem is still visible or somehow accessible.  

You can do this by placing the movement face down. Put something to support the movement and prevent the other hand post from receiving any pressure. You can also apply this process if you have a dive watch. In dive watches, you must put the chapter ring underneath the movement so that the chapter ring will be the one to support the movement. However, if you have a bare movement, an ordinary movement holder will do. 

Next, press down on the crown stem release spot. While keeping it depressed, use your tweezers to grab the broken part of the stem and pull it out. Remember, the tweezers should go into the movement through the hole where the stem goes into the movement. 

Tip #2: Try the Tap It Method

The tap it method usually works for broken stems that seem to be out of reach. But, you might need someone to help you when trying this method since it might be hard if you do it yourself. 

To do the tap it method, hold the movement in one hand. Then, place the movement perpendicular to the working space. The hole where the stem goes should be placed pointing down. After that, use your other hand to use tools to keep pressing down on the crown stem release spot. Since you’re utilising both your hands, ask someone to tap on top of the movement gently to dislodge the stem. Once the stem is loose, it should fall out automatically by gravity. It’s crucial to tap it gently because the shock might damage the movement. 

Tip #3: Use a Magnet

If the first two methods did not work, try using a magnet to get the stem out. It might be effective since the stem is made of steel. To do this, keep the stem release button depressed, then use a piece of a strong magnet to attract the stem. Make sure you also have a demagnetiser because you need to demagnetise the movement immediately for it to function again. 


While you can take out the broken stem yourself, it can still be quite an inconvenience when it’s time to put it back together. So, it’s best to have a professional watchmaker evaluate your watch. This way, you can ensure that the broken stem in your watch will be removed correctly, and your watch will function properly. 

If you have a Seiko watch, Seiko Mods offers different Seiko mod parts to make your watch as beautiful and unique as your one-of-a-kind personality. We specialise in the design and manufacture of sapphire crystals and custom parts for Seiko watches. Browse our shop and order your needed parts for your watch today! We ship worldwide.

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