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Tissot 2403 Service Walkthrough - From Tip To Treasure

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Tissot 2403 Service Walkthrough


What is it with me and small movements?!  I seem to attract them in absurd numbers.

Oh well, here's another one to push my Zeiss optics to the limit, a Tissot 2403.




My brother's father-in-law found this at the local rubbish tip, thrown away and unloved :(  Upon initial inspection the condition looked dirty but not marked up, Canon Pinion felt good when setting the hands, and it seemed to wind smoothly.  But alas it wasn't running at all.


So to the bench I go, and de-case this little gem of a find.

It removes like many ladies fashion watches, with the movement cradled in the Caseback.




I removed it from the Caseback, and it looked remarkably clean.  So I gave it a close inspection to see if there was something obvious that was stopping the movement.




First thing that stood out, and is common on these types of movements, is the lack of a Crown Seal. 

As you can see there is a lot of contamination along the Stem, including nylon fibres ... perhaps from the sleeve of a sweater.




I continued to look and found more of these fibres near the Balance.




Continuing my inspection it was obvious that this watch was in desperate need of a complete service.

Note the condition of the jewels.




But besides a strip and clean, I couldn't see anything else wrong with it.  No rust, nothing bent or broken; just some contamination stopping it from running.

It's sad to see we live in such a throw away society today, 50 or 60 years ago this would have never been discarded on a tip.




Ok, time to bring this watch back to life.  First step as always, release the tension from the Mainspring, and remove the Balance and Pallets.




Now the Balance and Pallet Fork safe, we can remove the Keyless Work.

Start by removing the Hour Wheel, then the Setting Lever Spring.




Then remove the Yoke and Setting Lever.

Be sure to secure the Yoke Spring with Pegwood and note is orientation.




Then remove the Minute Wheel and Setting Wheel.  Then pull the Stem, and remove the Sliding Pinion and Winding Pinion.




Flip it over and remove the Ratchet Wheel and Crown Wheel.




Then you can remove the Mainspring and Train Bridges.

As you can see, even if this watch was running, it would have not been giving accurate time.

All the jewel holes are filthy!




Here is a reference shot of the train on the 2403.




Now, if you had good eyes you might have seen it.  The object that stopped this watch from running.

You guessed it ... a nylon fibre has found it's way into the wheels of the train, and gotten jammed between the Intermediate and Third Wheel.




So know the mystery is solved, it's just a simple matter of cleaning and re-assembly.



To Be Continued ......

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Tissot 2403 Service - Part 2


Tissot 2400,2401,2403,2404.pdf


All the parts are now cleaning and ready to be assembled.

I have to say that those Nylon fibres were everywhere!!  Took me a long while to remove them off all the parts with an old piece of Rodico before cleaning, and even then, I STILL found tiny fibres after cleaning that I'd missed ... so my cleaning solution is now contaminated and needs to be changed @!#*%^#  Arrgh!! :roadrage:




Ok, I've clamed down :P  ... on with the service.


Secure the Main Plate in your movement holder and replace the Train.




Then replace the Train Bridge and gently worry the wheels into their jewels.  Then with a piece of Pegwood to hold the bridge in place tighten down the screws.

Always continue re-checking that the train is running free as you secure the screws.




It's good to see those jewel holes are now nice an clean.




Once you've oiled with Mainspring and placed it back into the Barrel, replace it onto the Main Plate.




Replace the Barrel Bridge, and Click.




Replace the Click Spring, Ratchet Wheel and Crown Wheel.




Then carefully place the Pallet Fork and Pallet Cock back into it's respective place.

Once the Pallet is in place, give the Ratchet Wheel a few turns and check that the Pallet is operating correctly.




Next the Balance and Incablocs need to be cleaned in Lighter Fluid.




Once clean replace the Balance and Incablocs




Now give the Ratchet Wheel a couple of good winds and check the oscillation of the Balance.




It's now time to start on the dial side of the movement.


Oil up your Winding Pinion and Sliding Pinion.




Replace the Winding and Sliding Pinion, Setting Lever, Yoke and Yoke Spring.




Replace the Canon Pinion, Minute Wheel and Intermediate Wheel.




Then replace the Setting Lever Spring and secure it down.




Replace the Dial and Hands, and your done :)

Nothing left to do then adjust the timing and case it up.




I hope these reference photos help those looking at servicing this movement, and I must say that it was a lovely movement to work on.

Another watch saved from the rubbish tip.

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Another really good walk through Lawson & really nice watch. 

Cleaning really dirty watches/clocks is a real pain. To save the solution I now pre-clean any suspects before putting them through the cleaning machine. Watches with a de-greaser and clocks with warm soapy water & then rinse & dry.

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Great review, as always!

You made the remark that you washed the balance and jewels in lighter fluid. What did you use for the rest of the movement?



This is the watch cleaning machine that I use ... very basic, but does a good job.



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So why don't you wash the balance and jewels together with the rest of the movement?


I do matabog :)

Just as Mark demonstrates in his videos, I replace the Balance on the Main Plate for cleaning, as that's the safest way to do it.

Once the parts are cleaned, I remove the Balance, along with the Incabloc Jewels, and cleaning them again in the Lighter Fluid.

This makes sure that the pivots on the Balance and the surface of the Incabloc Jewels are perfectly clean.  As sometimes, even after going through the cleaning machine, very small particles or old oil residue can still remain on those enclosed parts.

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  • 2 weeks later...
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Hi Lawson, I have my mums antique tissot which has the same strap except it is not tapered as the face is square and white.  It runs intermittently and when it runs it runs fast.  Watchmakers here have rejected fixing it as they say its not worth it without really looking (it is sentimental).  The movement looks almost identical to the one you cleaned.  Can you tell me anything about the strap, ie is it gold?  Should I keep trying different watch repairers?  If you an help thanks :)  If not no worries

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I always cleaned the balance with Ronsonol lighter fluid. I found it better than any watch cleaner. I even tried what was on the market in my time as balance cleaner it came in a small jar, that stuff was useless. Nice post on cleaning a small ladies Tissot. Surprising even with a dustproof button the fibers from clothing still get in. 


I hope all you watch repairers/makers spend time in cleaning the cases and bracelets. 

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  • 4 months later...

So why don't you wash the balance and jewels together with the rest of the movement?


Cleaning fluid often leaves a slight residue on the hairspring so 'rinsing' it in Lighter Fluid generally will remove the residue and make it that much more clean.

Edited by perpetual92
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