Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part 3

Conclusion of the Navitimer project

This is the final chapter of the Breitling Navitimer Restoration Project which began in 2016.  As you’ll recall I had serviced the movement and repaired the damaged case; I had also repaired the hour and minute hands which were bent and needed new luminous paint.

At this point the biggest need was securing a replacement bezel. These old Navitimers have a notched bezel which is friction fit to a brass ring on the case. The ring is held in place with a spring and both these parts are hidden under the slide rule running the circumference of the dial. My bezel was long gone but I still had the brass ring (damaged) and the spring. Continue reading “Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part 3”

Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part Two

Continuation of the Navitimer project

Having finished the service of the Navitimer movement I needed to find a stainless steel case to house it, so I began scouring the internet for one of the right vintage. I deduced that the movement was from the late 1960’s from the flat hairspring, beat corrector, and general finishing so I was on the lookout for a case with a serial number in the 1130000 – 1350000 range (which would place production between 1967 and 1970). As luck would have it the first one available happened to fall right within range. Continue reading “Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part Two”

Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part One

A 1967 Breitling restoration project

In October of 2016 I purchased a second vintage Breitling Navitimer which I knew would be a long term project. The watch consisted of only a Venus 178 movement, dial, slide rule, and hand set. I would need to service the movement and find a case and strap for it before the project was complete. I’ve continued working on this project off and on now for a little over a year and although it’s not yet complete, I have enough documented to put up a blog post or two detailing the journey thus far. Continue reading “Navitimer 806 Restoration: Part One”

Ernest Borel Valjoux 23 Movement

Resurrection of a dead chronograph movement

This post pertains to a Valjoux 23 chronograph movement which was received in the same freezer bag from China as the Universal Genève Uni-Compax I recently serviced. The bag contained multiple chronograph movements which were all in bad shape. I actually received two Valjoux 23 movements, but this one had a working balance and Incabloc shock protection thus making it the better candidate for restoration. Continue reading “Ernest Borel Valjoux 23 Movement”

Universal Genève Uni-Compax

Service of a Martel chronograph movement

Here is what I consider to be a very special piece even though it’s missing some of its most important bits. This is a Universal Genève Uni-Compax chronograph from around 1942. The movement was most probably fitted in a solid gold case which at some point went to the smelter and may not be replaceable. Regardless, I was excited to get my hands on the piece because it’s a chronograph movement I’ve not worked on before. Continue reading “Universal Genève Uni-Compax”

Favre Leuba Chronograph

Service of a Valjoux 71 Chronograph

As I was flipping through a price guide published for watch collectors I halted on a picture of a timepiece with a very interesting complication. The watch in question was produced by Favre Leuba in the early 1960’s and in addition to the standard mechanical movement it also housed an aneroid barometer for the purpose of determining altitude. The watch is known as the Bivouac and is quite rare and prized by collectors. Continue reading “Favre Leuba Chronograph”

NASA Moonwatch Strap

Final outfitting for my Speedmaster project

If you scroll way down to the bottom of my blog you’ll find a link to the Speedmaster project that I completed many months ago. At the time I considered the job “done” even though there was a very important piece missing to the watch- the steel bracelet. Continue reading “NASA Moonwatch Strap”

Bradley Mickey Mouse Watch

Back in the day even children’s watches were mechanical

This is a Mickey Mouse watch made by Bradley from the 1970’s. Like most of the watches I’ve worked on it is a manual wind movement (quartz movements still being a bit pricey at the time of manufacture). The movement is a Baumgartner 134 which is Swiss made, but instead of using a Swiss Lever escapement, this movement utilizes the cheaper Pin-pallet escapement. Continue reading “Bradley Mickey Mouse Watch”

Black Dial Pierce Navigator

Restoration of another Pierce Navigator

As anyone who has invested a little time perusing this blog will know, I have a hard time passing up an affordable chronograph that is in need of some TLC and so it is that I found myself with another Pierce Navigator in less than pristine condition. Continue reading “Black Dial Pierce Navigator”