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Introducing my vintage Glashütte watch cleaning machine. Video and Report included!

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Hi to anyone who is interested getting to know a  cleaning machine which is not a Elma or one of the other usual names!

since I`ve had my watch cleaning machine for about a year now, I wanted to introduce it since its not something that is seen very often!

Here's a short video for those who don't feel like reading through everything below where I summaraize everything and show its function, settings and the rest:


Watch cleaning machine from VEB Glashütte


1. View in its  lowered and raised state.


2. Name plate with the reference to the DDR Peoples watch and machine factory in today's Glashütte Sachs.


I acquired this beauty in Dresden from a former apprentice out of the German watchmaking town of Glashütte. At the time I had become interested in the profession and the cleaning machine was my first major investment in a machine from the profession. At its core this machine, just like many other vintage machines, is a hand-turning machine where you still have to manually lift and turn the upper disc, where the rubber sealing rings and the motor hang, from one one position into the next after each washing stage to change the cleaning jars and fluids

What I particularly like about the machine is its somewhat more "solid" construction compared to conventional vintage machines. For example, the machine has an external guide in the form of a rod that leads the upper plate into position. Another feature is the size and weight of the two disks that make up the main part of this tool. In addition, I must say that I also find the stepped shape of the cleaning glasses and the compact size of the cleaning basket very aesthetically pleasing.

The machine is in good condition and I have often started it up to clean the movements which I was working on. However, time has of course not left it untouched. In addition to the somewhat superficial defects such as the some painnt and lacquer peeling off, I noticed relatively quickly that the rubber washers on the upper plate do not all lie flat on the glasses when lowered, which means that the smell of the cleaning fluids cannot be isolated in their respective glasses. I have also noticed that the glasses are starting to have minimal hairline cracks in their shapes. I will probably have to buy a modern alternatives or invest in another machine in the event of a complete shattering. Ultimately, the only disadvantage of this machine, in my opinion compared to other vintage machines, is the lack of a drying system. Until now, I have always used a hairdryer to dry the cleaning basket after the three washes. Thats a bit inconvenient!

Overall though, I am extremely pleased with the look and function of this old watch movement cleaner and am extremely proud to be an owner of such a practical piece of history!

If you have any questions, comments of thoughts I would be happy to read and answer them in the comments!

Here are two more pictures:


3. View of the washers and the basket mount.


4. Size and aesthetics of the cleaning basket.


Edited by berlintime
minor phrasing change
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You could fabricate a dryer and locate it at that notched out portion of the base.  I made one from a 12V PTC car heater and a 3D printed stand and shroud (in ABS) for my DIY cleaning machine.  It has worked well and parts come out rather toasty.  The shroud may not be necessary, as the heater unit has a fan to blow the hot air up.



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