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Service Wurthner Cheapo Pin-Lever

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I was asked to have a look at this family heirloom just handed to me from a friend of a friend as it was not working and they thought it may have some value.  The quality of the movement did not inspire, to say nothing of the identity of the watch !!! 

As I had never done a pin-lever before I decided to have a go and get it running again.  On inspection I found it be in reasonable condition but very dry and the balance was very stiff and not working.  Once the balance and lever were out all ran freely, so I reckoned a good clean and lube would solve the problem. 


For those interested I have done a walk-through for the assembly as the strip-down is just the reverse basically.


After a good clean of all the parts in lighter fuel (I'm only a hobbyist) and a strip and relube of the mainspring, the assembly followed


First the gear train, block for stem gears and intermediate wheel were assembled and lubed



Next the barrel was installed (sorry for quality of pic)



Then the train wheel bridge/plate was added and checked for free running from barrel to escape wheel, and lubed



The keyless works are added and lubed, note the yoke also acts as a spring against the setting lever and action checked



The winding wheels and the unusual click spring are added and lubed and action checked.



I forgot to take pic of this next stage but the assembly can be seen in the dial fitting below.


The pin-lever was added and checked for kick  The pins and escape wheel where epilame treated and oiled with M941, and the fork was wiped with M941 on a wedged end of pegwood, this is because they are all metal to metal contacts. Even the balance table jewel is metal !! 


The balance was added, lubed and checked for function. There are no balance pivot jewels (in fact there are no jewels at all !!!) just holes in the main plate and balance cock.  The holes lie under the round plate on the mainplate and the regulator on the balance cock.  These were removed/lifted to lube with M9010, the cock plate being a bit tricky/delicate.


The canon pinion was added and lubed.  This is not a friction fit but is driven by the intermediate wheel.



The minute wheel and dial washer are added and lubed



The dial has split posts which are just spread open (what technology !!) so this was fitted very carefully so as to avoid damaging the balance or lever which are very close by as shown in pics




Stuck in on my timegrapher which showed a very noisy trace (not surprisingly) but managed to get it reasonably regulated despite iffy beat error and rates in some positions.  I aimed at a reasonable rate when worn and it actually keeps fairly good time within 1 minute a day on average.



The hands are fitted, and the movement put into the case-back and case-top/bracelet are refitted.







Yes its a really awful  1970's fake !!!! 

So no family fortune here then !!








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"Omega Costelletion" (sic) LOL!!!   :D


I agree with Old Hippy that it looks like a BFG movement but I don't think it actually is as BFG marked their movements with their logo and even the cheapy BFGs had a jewel on the balance wheel.  I reckon it's a Hong Kong copy of the BFG or a very early Tongji with no jewels, cased by the faker.

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Glad you all enjoyed it. 


The movement was made by Wurthner, Germany as the heading says.  It is commonly known only as Wurthner 10 1/2 ligne, beating at !8000 bpm

It was first made in 1959 with 1 jewel in the balance and was developed to this model of about 1970 with NO jewels !!!  Power reserve is about 33 hrs.


They did not make many of this model as they ceased production shortly after introducing it, so oddly it is a bit of rarity !!!


I agree it does look a bit like some BFG movements but there are differences (eg the shape of the click spring and balance position).  Similar movements were often fitted to some Newmark and Ingersoll branded watches of the time.


The watch is known as 'Highway Gold' and probably made in Europe somewhere rather than Asia.  This and other copies were sold by road-side chappies in southern Europe (like they do today at holiday resorts!) in the 1970's and spreading much wider later.  The case isn't plated but a polished brass-nickel alloy called 'pinchback' (ie probably made from metal scrap).


It is a seriously bad fake, can't even spell 'Constellation' (the 'n' is missing).

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Still, if the faker managed to get the spelling right it actually looks halfway decent.


No jewels means lots of trouble, time-keeping wise, with changes in ambient temperature and position, am I right?

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I agree, from a distance its not a bad looking watch.  I like to research such odd watches and provide the owner with a short write-up when I return the watch (working or not).  My final comment was   'Just Wear It If You Like It, as Most People Will Not Know It Is Not A Genuine Omega'.  :wub:


Timing is a problem as it varied between +140 and -80 s/day depending on position, dial down was the worst and very noisy.  Didn't want to mess about with hairspring etc to correct beat etc so timed in 3 positions for best average to be slightly +ve when worn on the left wrist for 14 hrs worn/10 hrs static.  It seems to keep ok time at this.  Whether this will be maintained is another matter!!  I would imagine wear of the pivots, pins and pallet fork would be the main problems as they are all metal to metal and would really need regular re-lubrication (unlikely cost effective in such a cheap movement).

Temps don't concern me as its nearly always cold & wet in the UK !!!!  :thumbsd:

You never know it may be a collectors item in another 100 years time. :D

Edited by canthus

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The watch is known as 'Highway Gold' and probably made in Europe somewhere rather than Asia.  This and other copies were sold by road-side chappies in southern Europe (like they do today at holiday resorts!) in the 1970's and spreading much wider later.

You're right on the money. I have distinct memories of fakes in the 70s and 80s being placed exactly like that. Maybe with a little perseverance you can get to know who in the family had been done, and where :)

Edited by jdm

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