Service: Breitling TopTime / Venus 178

IMG_3688Paul sent this watch over from the US. He went over the handlebars of his bike whilst wearing it, and it stops intermittently. The crystal could do with replacing as well …IMG_3689

A first look at the Venus 178. Quite different from the 188 we have seen here before. It has a similar hour recorder construction to the Omega 321, e.g. the barrel drives the hour recorder constantly, but when the hammer stops it, a clutch slips. This means that the hour recorder doesn’t “jump”, but it continually moves.IMG_3690

Very low amplitude, and erratic beat rate.IMG_3691The winding stem is rusty, and I will replace it.IMG_3701

I work my way through the chronograph layer.IMG_3707

There is a fair amount of dirt everywhere, and no oil. So I don’t think there is any damaged from the bike accident, but just time for a service.IMG_3723

The bottom plate with the hour recorder mechanism.IMG_3725

Quite a bit of rust around the winding stem. This watch is by no means waterproof, and never will be. No case back gasket, etc., so it was never meant to be worn anywhere near humidity.IMG_3740

All clean and ready to be put back together.IMG_3743

Before I can put the barrel back in, I have to put the lower support with the hour recorder back in.IMG_3744

As usual, I put in a new mainspring.IMG_3745

In this photo, you can see the clutch wheel that is pressed against the barrel by a spring.IMG_3747

The base movement is back together and ticking.IMG_3755

Now that looks a lot better than before!IMG_3752

After a couple of hours, the chronograph is back together and adjusted.IMG_3803

The new winding stem has arrived, and I can cut it to size and fit it.IMG_3807

Lovely – now I want one 🙁

10 thoughts on “Service: Breitling TopTime / Venus 178

  1. Pingback: Vintage Navitimer movement question

  2. Hi Christian, wondering if you can help. I’m trying to attempt replacement of my missing crown and stem only to find that the retaining screw spins freely. I think there must be something missing inside as I can’t lock the stem in place. Would you know what could be missing under the operating lever? Thanks in advance.

  3. Hi Christian,
    Great watch. Just a small point, i notice after cleaning, you always put the balance wheel back on the top plate to start off. I tends to put the balance wheel last, only after fiddling all the gear wheels in positions in the jewel holes on the bridge. I always find the balance wheel obstructs my manoerving the escape wheel in position, then the pivot, wind the mainspring, making sure all the wheels move by me moving manually the pivot side to side, and the balance wheel last. Am i wrong in sequence in doing what I do? 😉

    • Hi Mun,

      I only put the balance on the plate for cleaning, and leave it there after cleaning to put the balance jewels back in. Once that is done, I remove the balance, and assemble the movement in the same order as you do.

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