Celeste from Hong Kong sent in her grandfather’s Jardur chronograph. On first sight, this doesn’t look too promising…
Even without opening the watch, it looks like the poor thing has seen some rough treatment over the years.
The movement is marked “Pilgrim Electric Corporation”, but it’s a Valjoux 71.
I expected worse, but let’s have a look with the microscope.
Look under the teeth at the top of the minute recorder – that’s all solidified rust.
Lots of rust here, too.
The movement has got quite a lot of water damage.Rust everywhere.
The bottom plate doesn’t look any better.
Before I take anything apart, I submerge the movement for a couple of hours in Horolene. This is extreme stuff, and you normally only use that on clocks. But for a movement in this condition, it’s perfect.
Some of the corrosion has already gone, and I can now safely take the movement apart, without too much risk of breaking anything. If you ever work on a rusty movement, make sure to soak it in acid or Horolene before taking it apart – it greatly lowers the chances of breaking off pivots.
The minute recorder jumper spring didn’t survive the Horolene and broke in two. Just a sign that is was already corroded and held together by rust. I find one for sale for USD 100, and I kindly decline. I will attempt to solder the spring later.
Not something you want to see!
The wheel bridge doesn’t look any better from the underside.
This is borderline. On a lesser watch, I would probably give up at this moment.
The bottom plate doesn’t look much better.
After a couple of runs in the cleaning machine, this does look a lot better.
The plates and bridges look pretty good, too.
The base movement is back together with a new mainspring and a new barrel arbor, and looking so much better!
Well, this is a lot better than I would have expected!
Hours and hours of cleaning have paid off.
The bottom plate with the hour recorder is looking pretty good, too.
Case, bezel, crown and the pushers are sent off to Peter at replateit.com.The minute recorder jumper needs soldering, and I save $100.The minute recorder jumper is back in place, and working nicely.
Now the hands need some attention.
They brush up quite nicely, but the bottom bit of the chronograph second hand is so rusty that it just disintegrates when I clean it.
The dial shows its age, but it would be a crime to restore it.
Peter at ReplateIt.com has performed his usual magic, and the case looks stunning.
Did I mention that the case looks stunning? 🙂 From the brink of death, pulled back from the abyss, what a watch!