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Should I lubricate the teeth of the reversing wheels?


I’m in the process of establishing a reassembly and lubrication plan for of what is basically my first automatic; a Vostok calibre 2416B, and I’ve come to the reversing wheels.



As can be seen in the above pictures from the strip down, the teeth of the reversing wheels have blackened. It looks to me like they have must have been lubricated, or could it be that the oil that was once applied to the jewels has spread out over the teeth?

So what do you think; should I lubricate the teeth, and if so what kind of lubrication do you think could be suitable?

This movement is about 25 years old and has never been serviced. I know this for a fact as I know the original owner who bought it new. The watch is in great condition and was only worn for about three years when the strap broke and was then placed in a drawer. There it had been sitting until I got in my hands. It’s a somewhat rare Komandirskie, and for anyone interested here are some pictures of it and how it got into my hands.


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It would serve no purpose to oil the teeth of the wheels and it would spread around the movement, the oil residue you see could be because when it was assembled the posts for the reversing wheels where over oiled or the jewels in the reversing wheels and it has spread,  You should oil the posts and one or two of the jewels in the reversing wheels.

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2 minutes ago, wls1971 said:

It would serve no purpose to oil the teeth of the wheels and it would spread around the movement, the oil residue you see could be because when it was assembled the posts for the reversing wheels where over oiled or the jewels in the reversing wheels and it has spread,  You should oil the posts and one or two of the jewels in the reversing wheels.

Well, that sounds like a very plausible explanation so I definitely will not be lubricating the teeth. Thank you very much! For the jewels, I have decided to try Lubeta V105 which was used in a video on the Watch Repair Channel. Again, much appreciated! :thumbsu:

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7 hours ago, nickelsilver said:

On those I'd elilame them and lubricate only the posts they ride on with D5/HP1000.

Did you misspell that word, or is it a watch repairer term? I've Googled it and I've tried to translate it, but no luck. Unfortunately, I don't understand.

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The wheels look worn. To eliminate as much friction as possible between the reversing wheels and the braces of the reversing wheels keeper (the brass looking retaining device), my plan is to polish it using 3M Lapping Film.

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So, in an attempt to eliminate as much friction as possible, without using any lubricant, I've now polished the arms of the reversing wheels keeper (the brass looking retaining device) to a near mirror shine using 3M lapping film, and I've cleaned the RWs meticulously. I've also lubricated the RWs using Lubeta V105 as shown by Mark Lovick in this video. I guess polishing is overkill, but I enjoyed doing it and being a hobbyist it's a luxury I can afford. Here are a couple of pictures:



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I think I just might have solved "The Mystery of The Blackened Reversing Wheels". After having lubricated the RWs with Lubeta V105 as shown @05:58 in this video, this is what they looked like...


Before lubricating, I had cleaned the wheels spotless, but as can be seen in the above picture there is now some oil residue on the wheels. I just bet this will blacken the wheel teeth over time, or what do you think?

I have no reason to believe the Lubeta V105 residue on the RWs will spread, and it’s a very convenient way to lubricate the RWs. I haven’t done any serious research about RWs, but looking at them it would seem to me that it probably is a good idea to make the lubricant spread evenly and entirely over each jewel as is the result of using Lubeta V105. I believe I read somewhere that Lubeta V105 was developed by ETA for their automatic movements. I wouldn’t be surprised if Vostok uses it too, or a similar product.

I was also careful to clean and polish the entire watch including the case, dial, and hands. This was my first successful automatic watch service, and it’s ticking along really well. Here is an after picture of the reassembled watch fitted with a new and in my opinion seemly strap :rolleyes:


Thanks for all your input and interest!


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On ‎8‎/‎21‎/‎2018 at 1:42 AM, rodabod said:

I would have expected the black residue to be metal oxide, but it's hard to prove.

You could very well be right about that. I'll take another really close look the next time I service a Vostok Cal. 2416B. A metal oxide is usually a little harder to polish away than oil residue, and as I remember it, it didn't take many strokes with my fibreglass scratch pencil to make them shine.

Edited by VWatchie

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