Sprint Chronograph

Reassembly of a vintage Venus 170 chronograph

This watch has been on and off of my workbench now for three years. In the beginning it was missing parts and that’s what kept it off the bench. Then it developed a problem which took forever to track down; I’d lose interest in fixing the piece and forget about it, then rediscover it at a later date. I have a lot of watches that have followed a similar path to completion, but this one is a bit special because technically it isn’t complete (but I’ll get to that later). Continue reading “Sprint Chronograph”

Omega Speedmaster Professional

Rebuilding an 145.022 Speedmaster Professional

Although this is another Omega Speedmaster chronograph, it’s a little bit different from Moonwatch I did back in 2016 and the Speedmaster Automatic from earlier this year. This is the modern version of the Speedmaster Professional which is powered by the Omega calibre 861 chronograph movement. In outward appearance it is no different from earlier Moonwatches, but inside you’ll find Lemania’s most up to date hand wound chronograph movement. Continue reading “Omega Speedmaster Professional”

Bulova A-11 & American Strap Co.

Adding the proper strap to the A-11

As I stated on my most recent post, I’ve begun searching for the proper bracelets or straps for each timepiece that crosses the workbench. Prior to the 1960’s most watches were sold with simple leather watch bands although some brands (Hamilton springs to mind) designed metal bracelets for their watches during this period and those bracelets were tailored to the timepiece. From the 1960’s forward, it was not uncommon for stainless steel watches to come with stainless steel link bracelets. Many of these bracelets have not survived the test of time and if you can find a 50+ year old timepiece with its original leather strap you almost certainly want to replace it! Continue reading “Bulova A-11 & American Strap Co.”

Favre Leuba Bivouac 53203

Service of a 1961 altimeter watch

Almost two years ago I placed a post on the blog detailing the service and repair of a vintage Favre Leuba chronograph  that I’d purchased from an antique dealer. I commented at the time that I had become aware of the Favre Leuba brand when I read about their “Bivouac” model which had the ability to inform the user of his or her altitude in addition to the time. Today I’m happy to be able to tell the story of my Favre Leuba Bivouac, which I’ve been working on for the past three years. Continue reading “Favre Leuba Bivouac 53203”

Gallet Multichron 12

Service of an Excelsior Park chronograph movement

Slowly but surely I’ve been working my way through the various chronograph movements from the Golden Age of Chronographs. I’ve worked on the Valjoux, Venus, Landeron, and Lemania movements and today I can strike the elusive Excelsior Park movement off the to do list. Continue reading “Gallet Multichron 12”

Omega Speedmaster Automatic

Service of an Omega 176.0012 Speedmaster

It’s been a long while since I’ve worked on an Omega but fortune smiled upon me late last year when I found this 1979 Omega Speedmaster Automatic in need of aid. The seller stated the watch was non-operative on account of parts missing- specifically the Balance, Pallet, and Balance Cock. Continue reading “Omega Speedmaster Automatic”

Hampden Pocket Watch

Service of an antique American pocket watch

Here’s a pocket watch I picked up after having a day that was so bad it kept me up at night. Instead of a restful sleep, I found myself perusing the classifieds in the early morning for interesting antiques and stopped myself when I came across the advert for this fine piece. Continue reading “Hampden Pocket Watch”

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”