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When to Service or Regulate


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I have an Omega Speedmaster 1861 which is gaining 55-60 seconds per day. How can you tell if the watch needs a service or just regulating? I have checked the watch for magnetism and it is not magnetised. The watch was originally purchased in 2010. I only wear the watch a few times per month.

I have made a short video of the watch on a Timegrapher .

 

Any suggestions / comments would be most appreciated.

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Have you tested with a compass or actually demagnetized?

If the first, please have the watch demagnetize anyway, and check again.

If the second, my opinion is that regulation will be enough.

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I would look first to the amplitude. The Omega service spec says the amplitude should be greater than 190deg in the vertical plane 24 hours after a full wind.  However, mine is about 10 months old, and I wound it about 12 hours ago; I just checked it on the timegrapher and the amplitude was 330 degrees, varying by +/-3 in the horizontal plane as yours is shown. In the vertical plane (crown right), this dropped to about 290 degrees, varying by +/- 7

Yours has a lot more variation in the amplitude and timekeeping so I would say it's time for a service.  It will be very difficult to regulate with that kind of variability.

How often you wear the watch is irrelevant. The oils will deteriorate with time regardless of use.  Servicing it now will save you from a bigger bill if you leave it till later.

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5 minutes ago, StuartBaker104 said:

Yours has a lot more variation in the amplitude and timekeeping so I would say it's time for a service.  It will be very difficult to regulate with that kind of variability.

I do not see a very large variance of amplitude and timekeeping. perhaps a bit more than ideal. but nothing terrible. What would have to be seen is how's behaving in different positions, which he video doesn't show.

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I agree with seeing variation in positions to learn more here.

I saw the amplitude vary from 247 to 267 and timekeeping from +55 to +65 - it's not very obvious as the timegrapher averages over quite long periods. I would love to have this performance on some of my vintage watches, but my speedy does much better!

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19 minutes ago, StuartBaker104 said:

I saw the amplitude vary from 247 to 267 and timekeeping from +55 to +65 - it's not very obvious as the timegrapher averages over quite long periods.

I'm very familiar with that machine. The measurement interval is 40-50 ticks (never counted exactly) and each of the four interval values is shown white on blue. The figure on the top right is not even really averaged but merely copies the last interval value. If there were instantaneous changes in rate one would see them as pattern "waves". Truly a basic instrument.

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Between 5 to 7 years you should have your watch serviced. As far as I'm concerned it depends on the type of work you do, how often you wear your watch, you might be the type of person who removes there watch at work. In other words how long is a piece of string.

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6 minutes ago, oldhippy said:

Between 5 to 7 years you should have your watch serviced. As far as I'm concerned it depends on the type of work you do, how often you wear your watch, you might be the type of person who removes there watch at work. In other words how long is a piece of string.

What do you mean? Which types of work would change the service interval? As mentioned above, oils dry up any, no matter if the watch is worn or not.

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With the types of oils these days, even if you don't wear your watch very often and just give it a wind once a month it will go on for years. If you work in a dirty job the watch is bound to get dirty quicker then if you have an office job. It stands to reason. The same as if you have a round watch case against a square case with two people doing the same job the square watch will get dirty quicker then the round one.

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If you work in a dirty job the watch is bound to get dirty quicker then if you have an office job. It stands to reason.

Nowaday most watches ike the OP's one are water resistant 5 bar or more No water or dust can reach the movement.
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A lot depends on the quality of the casing.

Oil suffers from air and dirt contamination. A new watch with good seals and new oils will be good for more than 5 years.. probably 10 years no problem. But once its opened and the seals are not changed it goes downhill. 

Also older will wear and oil will not be able to compensate for worn parts. That is why when you send back a watch to Omega and Rolex a lot of parts are replaced even if not much wear is apparent.

On older dress watches where the waterproofing is like my swiss bank account (ie.. non-existent) then you'd be lucky to see two years.

Modern synthetic oils do not really go 'off' like the older types.

Anil

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Watch purchased in 2010, service it.





 
Also older will wear and oil will not be able to compensate for worn parts. That is why when you send back a watch to Omega and Rolex a lot of parts are replaced even if not much wear is apparent.

Or it is because the center gets the parts with a large discount?
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Thank-you all for your comments, I'll make another video later today and post showing the watch in different positions. Hopefully it'll show some more information, and aid to the diagnosis. 

Regards

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As promised, here is the video showing the watch in different positions on the timegrapher. 

jdm - when i first checked the watch it was showing that it was magnitised (using a compass)  I then de-magnitised and checked again with a compass (which is showing now that it is not magnitised).

 

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I think this debate could run and run, but I think I saw everything from about +50s to +86s (ignoring for a moment the brief excursion to +100.  I wouldn't expect to see more variation than about 10s if this was running properly.

Also, it is hard to pick out the variation on individual beats when the timimg is that far out, but you should expect each beat to lie on nearly a straight line... to me the trace is too wobbly.

If you could find a watchmaker who would attempt to regulate this for you then you should be looking for someone who will pressure test it after resealing. After 5 years I would be surprised if you didn't need to replace the pusher and crown seals, so my guess is that you could be looking at between £50 and £100.

Anyway, as I said you will get many opinions on this one, but mine will be getting a service before it gets that bad.

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As promised, here is the video showing the watch in different positions on the timegrapher  

It behaves very good, since you have a timegrapher you can also regulate it yourself (let's remember this is a watch repair forum). All you need is a case opening tool, air blower and silicone grease for the seals.
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Thank you for the comments StuartBaker104I think its worth giving regulating a go first, but i do agree that the watch could do with a service and i will plan one in the not to distant future.

jdm I like your style. I have all the tools and equipment ready. The million dollar question is how do you regulate this movement? Would it be a case of simply turning the screw as per the picture.

Omega Regulate.png

 

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9 hours ago, R1C4 said:

jdm I like your style. I have all the tools and equipment ready. The million dollar question is how do you regulate this movement? Would it be a case of simply turning the screw as per the picture.

Yes, watch the wind and wait 10 - 30 minutes before doing that. The beat error is very small so I would not touch that.  

 

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Right I have been sailing :D .

I have made a few adjustments trying to get the best overall average.

MOV_1411.mp4

I have taken an average of eight readings for each position (letting the machine run for four readings between position changes to settle out) and then calculated the average of the six different positions.

Average Time.jpg

As this is all measured on the bench the real test will be how the watch performs on the wrist. I'll wear the watch for a week and see how it goes - Ill post the results in a weeks time.  

I'm going to calibrate the time with http://time.is/GMT .

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