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”

Gucci Bangle Watch

Servicing my mother’s watch

This watch belongs to my mother; it was a gift from my father many years back- a Christmas gift I believe, although I may be mistaken. She delivered me the watch along with a few others for replacement batteries. Sadly, I didn’t have the needed power cell on hand and had to place an order for it. Instead of twiddling my thumbs while I waited for  the delivery I decided to give the watch a good clean. Continue reading “Gucci Bangle 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”

Kerr-McGee Accutron 2181

Service of a 1975 Bulova Accutron

Here is yet another Bulova Accutron 2181. This one came to me as a toss-in with a second Railroad Grade Accutron I purchased for restoration. The dial is customized featuring the Kerr-McGee logo and on the caseback is the engraving “Presented to Willard Lane 25 years of service 1976 Kerr-McGee”. I don’t know much about Kerr-McGee outside of the Silkwood incident so I’ll refrain from opining. Continue reading “Kerr-McGee Accutron 2181”

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”