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I'm a complete newbie and want to learn how to dismantle and re-build watches, specifically Seiko's. 

Any suggestions on what movement to use as my first independent project to practice on and make loads of mistakes?  Struggling to find recommendations on the different movements to use as a complete beginner and as my skills improve.  Should i stick to only Seiko's or broaden my horizons?

Cheers

Maz

https://www.instagram.com/timeformaz

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Hi,

I would start with a nice simple manual wind no day-date complication Watch, maybe something like an ST96.

I did four of those and they run very well now, in fact, I can now do those pretty much blindfolded.

Then build up to a day complication and so on.

You can get a Seiko NH35 movement when your ready for about £25 on Ebay which would be great for practice.

Good luck.

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Since all watches work in similar ways .I would tell you to get a few Russian movements.  Learn the ins and outs on something you don't mind breaking. I am in no way trying to diminish them but non working ones can be bought all day long for about one dollar a piece.

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Start with an old pocket watch many are very much alike to a watch movement just bigger. Learn what the parts are called, strip it right down and put it all back together, do this many times so you can do it in your sleep. This will help you in using you eyeglass, tweezers and watchmakers screwdrivers. Don’t get hold of any fusee pocket watch movements they are completely different. When you have achieved all with your pocket watch move to a simple Gents watch, just the movement, no calendar and certainly not an automatic.  

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Seiko 70xx series is a very nice watch to start with IMHO, because they do not have tiny springs that use to ping to the orbit to never been found again, and they are very very simple. Also there are many relatively cheap watches on sale, so you can buy some to repair and some donors if needed. Many of these movement parts are common to all the series, including the balance motion wheels, balance and pallet.

I would recomend the 7005 or 7025 movements, they are automatic and have date calendar, but they are really simple and there are a lot of information on the web, including the official technical guide and videos of how to disassembly and assembly them.

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I started out with Vostok calibre 2409 w/o complications. You can get them on eBay for next to nothing. Get "a bag of them" and you'll have plenty of spare parts and will practice a lot of disassembling in the process. If you do start out with this movement you will likely find my "Vostok 2409 Service Walkthrough" useful. The Vostok movements are IMO the best bang for the buck! BTW, just heard from Mark on YT that he's about to review some Vostok Amphibians, and I can't wait for it! The modern-day Amphibians house the Vostok calibres 2415 and 2416 but they are identical to the 2409 but add automatic winding.

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Anyway, a great and affordable way to learn about watch repair is to enrol on watchrepairlessons.com. The course movement is a pocket watch movement, Unitas calibre 6498 (base movement in many Panerais). The fact that all parts are about 25 % larger than in wristwatch movements makes it easier to handle when you're new. However, a good option for the course is the Unitas calibre 6325, and incidentally, I just recently serviced one of those!

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14 hours ago, Mazboy said:

I'm a complete newbie and want to learn how to dismantle and re-build watches, specifically Seiko's. 

If you like Seiko then that's what you should learn and do. Myself and many others did that without too many problems. Gradual, slow practice is common sense but it's not mandatory if the person has regular dexterity. If you want that and the associated benefit then consinder enrolling in the course by our Host Mark Lovick. 

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27 minutes ago, yankeedog said:

See what happens when you ask an opinion. all are valid. the choice is yours.

I know, seems i've definitely come to the right place, thank you everyone :-)

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18 hours ago, TheFixer said:

Hi,

I would start with a nice simple manual wind no day-date complication Watch, maybe something like an ST96.

I did four of those and they run very well now, in fact, I can now do those pretty much blindfolded.

Then build up to a day complication and so on.

You can get a Seiko NH35 movement when your ready for about £25 on Ebay which would be great for practice.

Good luck.

Thanks @TheFixer.

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9 hours ago, oldhippy said:

Start with an old pocket watch many are very much alike to a watch movement just bigger. Learn what the parts are called, strip it right down and put it all back together, do this many times so you can do it in your sleep. This will help you in using you eyeglass, tweezers and watchmakers screwdrivers. Don’t get hold of any fusee pocket watch movements they are completely different. When you have achieved all with your pocket watch move to a simple Gents watch, just the movement, no calendar and certainly not an automatic.  

Thanks @oldhippy, this is exactly what i did at a taster clock making class - we striped and re-built a Russian Sekonda pocket watch.  Plan to practice this a lot more.

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