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From ebay auction to cleaned, serviced and on the wrist in just over a week.

The latest 404 club offering. As expected it has a Soviet era  Raketa 2609.HA, and as is often the case, it arrived filthy and the crown wouldn't turn the hands.


It actually arrived a couple of days ago, but I hadn't had a chance to look at it.

Since it was raining today, I had a day off from trying to keep the garden under control, and  gave it a full clean both inside and out, and some home brew tractor oil and vodka mix and off it went.

OK that's a slight exaggeration, but I did decide to treat it to the witches brew neatsfoot and baby oil, rather than the good stuff,  so it also joins that unfortunate bunch, all of which are still alive, despite my dastardly experimentation.

It is now sporting a new old stock 18mm black leather Apollo band. 

The leather on this batch of Apollo straps was a little dried out when I grabbed them as a job lot of four (also for <£4.04)
Neatsfoot oil on its own was used to wake up the leather and it now actually feels really soft.

I wont bore you with my limited set of servicing pictures. Instead, I'll point you to Marc's full strip down and rebuild of an identical piece here. ->

Thanks for those, they have proved very useful with several of these 2609.HA pieces.

I rather like the look of these, in fact I have another one on its way, also picked up for a pocket money price of course. 

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$5 each at a yard sale today. The Omega has a 625 in it.  Both are running.

A dip in the ultrasonic bath, some lubrication, a new crystal and a pimpt up bracelet and it’s back to it’s 60’s bling bling shape. Not bad for a few dollars more, even Clint Eastwood would agree 😉

Think this should just about qualify?.. this job lot of 6 'dead' Accurist movements + 1 case was £12.85 including postage (so less than £4.04 with $10 postage for the whole 6), 4 of them were ETA 2390

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On 6/20/2021 at 12:56 AM, LittleWatchShop said:

Gots to me one of dem Russian watches!!  I was watching one a day or so ago and let it slip by.  Ebay is forever...so I will get one.

Well worth picking one up.

The most common issues are keyless work problems as described in Marc's servicing post. One or two I've looked at were so badly gummed up with junk and corrosion that it needed great care to free them up without breaking anything.

That and obviously the usual gummed up old oil and attempts by people with fat fingers to fix things, resulting in screwed up hairsprings.

Also watch out for the shims under the balance bridge. Sometimes there are none, sometimes one, and occasionally even two of them. They are easily overlooked when disassembling as they tend to stick to the back of the balance bridge or the main plate unobserved, only to then fall out later and get lost.

I think these USSR era watches are quite under rated and often overlooked, but with a little TLC they spruce up very nicely and if correctly serviced they run very well too. They are also pretty easy to service as there are not many parts, and no "gotcha" springs or weirdly constructed complications to deal with.

Edited by AndyHull
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After a handful of those symbolically jeweled pin lever movements, you start getting picky. I got one with that exact movement somewhere. Pretty sure I borked the hairspring. 404! (my watchmaking version of shouting "YOLO!")

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13 hours ago, LittleWatchShop said:

A little uninspiring.  It does run though...kinda.

2021-06-21 20_44_38-Photos.png

The EB 8800 is the first movement I serviced. It’s also the first one that I broke (balance staff). 🙂

I like them ok. Easy (quick) to service and solid runners. I have at least 10 of them (half in Chateau/Lucerne jump hours).

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10 hours ago, LittleWatchShop said:

@AndyHullwhat do you think about Vostok Russian watches? 

Well they can be a little bit "agricultural" in their construction, but they are generally very robust.


I have this rather natty blue dialled Bostok Командирские (Komandirskie) that I'm particularly fond of, which I paid a bit more for than the 404 club rules allow (although not that much more), and a couple of other  that are 404 club members.

There are some interesting examples here too -> https://mroatman.wixsite.com/watches-of-the-ussr/komandirskie

They are by no means luxury watches, but they fun, quirky, a little bit different,  and fairly well built, and certainly if the price is right, then get yourself one.

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I couldn't resist this, despite the terrible picture.


Yes I know. Madness. I just posted one of these a few days back, but it was three quid, (well three pounds and forty pence to be exact, no other bidders) and the other pictures in the auction showed that the second hand had moved, so it probably isn't a complete basket case.

Now I have three of them, one of which I am currently wearing (which is putting in a good solid +/- 10 sec/day performance).

Its fine. I'll just need to grow another arm, that's all.

Edited by AndyHull
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The latest candidate, a Rotary Quartz for a pound. 



Judging purely by the styling I would think it is late 1970s or early 1980s, but I could be entirely incorrect. If i is late seventies or early eighties then it might have an interesting jewelled quartz mechanism in it.

I'm hoping that the only issue is with the crystal, but given the price, even a complete basket case would not be a major disaster.

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Some of the 404 club USSR Sekondas.


I have a few more, including a number of USSR era mechanical watches, and some duplicates of the ones above.
I also have some Poljot, Raketa, Luch and Bostok USSR watches from the same era.

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6 hours ago, LittleWatchShop said:

That crystal looks like a real challenge to me.  Glass...not round...curved...ugh!

Lets see if I can find something suitable, otherwise I may have to try cutting one.

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I assume it is symmetric cushion. What are the dimensions?

I have an ambition to become the "crystal man" so I bought this one:





I have not tried it yet though. The drawback is that you have to have the original one to copy it.

"The glass and plastic lenses of today are termed "crystals" because of this seventeenth century influence."



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I'm attempting to divine how that machine works based on other machines I've worked with in the past...

Top flips up/down. The collet on the left somehow holds blanks, and the stylus on the right traces the original? Or, no... The motor turns the shaft on the right, so it'd have to be the other way around... The bases slowly turn in unison with the handle on the right, the cutter is on the right, the original and a stylus (not pictured) on the left. As the plattens turn, the top plate slides left and right to trace the shape of the original as the cutter cuts the new blank. I think that's it. That's what I'm going with.

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On 6/22/2021 at 10:43 AM, PinLeverPete said:

I like them ok. Easy (quick) to service and solid runners

I serviced this one today.  I did not realize how the mainspring was configured...!!!!!!  Jack in the Box.  Ugh

Nothing broke, but getting the mainspring reassembled was...uh...interesting.

It is running fine now.

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A couple of Kander 25 jewel Baumgartner 1582 automatics for for £1.60 each plus P+P


They currently look fairly terrible, and one is missing some parts of the automatic mechanism, however I am pretty certain I have a donor movement in the junk pile, so hopefully I can get them both working.

I posted about a Kander watch a while back, details below.


Edited by AndyHull
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1 minute ago, LittleWatchShop said:

I am filtering for US sellers only...I think you guys are seeing much better deals over there.

I need to filter out US sellers here, as the postage to the UK is generally eye watering.

Recent Brexit related changes mean that EU sellers items now incur additional tax at point of sale, which tends to push them out of the 404 bracket.

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