Service: EternaMatic 2002 – ETA12824

IMG_1219This lovely EternaMatic made it all the way across the Atlantic from New Hampshire. Victor sent it in, and it’s in bad need of a service.

The watch has an ETA12824 movement, a reliable performer.

IMG_1220This does not look so good. Hardly any amplitude, and the movement is way too slow. The nice thing is that a new mainspring and a service will sort all this out.


The watch has a snap-on back, and this lovely tool easily takes it off.IMG_1222

First view of the movement. It doesn’t look too dirty.IMG_1224

A great looking dial and hands, and in very good condition.IMG_1225

The movement is in good condition – no rust, no scratches.IMG_1226

The auto winder gears.IMG_1227

I start taking apart the base movement.IMG_1228

The mainspring is a bit dirty, and breaks when I take it out.IMG_1232

Ready for the cleaning machine.IMG_1233

The parts cleaned, and relevant parts epilame treated.IMG_1238

The new mainspring.IMG_1239

And I can start putting the movement back together.IMG_1240

Base movement assembled and beating.IMG_1243

Now it’s time for the bottom plate.IMG_1244

Ready to put the dial on.IMG_1245

Yes, it’s the 24th 😉IMG_1246

I case the movement, and then put the oscillating weight on.IMG_1250

And this is the magic of a service, and the great performance of the 2824. It doesn’t get any better than this.IMG_1251Cased and gorgeous.



18 thoughts on “Service: EternaMatic 2002 – ETA12824

  1. Thanks for all the info on the Eterna

    eta 12824.
    Just bought one from Dublin and await delivery.
    Mine has a gold rotar and six adjustments plus temp.
    Paid 194 pounds for it.
    Looks in good condition.
    Thank you so much

  2. I have an 18ct gold Eternamatic 3000 from 1967, which was the slimmest automatic watch with a date in the world when first introduced in 1962. It’s so elegant and keeps wonderful time with the Cal 1500K, which I believe was the precursor to the ETA 2824.

    The mid 60s really were the golden years for quality watches and Eterna made some truly lovely watches. These are very underrated.

  3. Hi! The 12824 is a 2824 made to the higher “Eterna exclusive” standards.
    Parts are, as far as I know, completely interchangeable between a 2824 and 12824, however the higher finish and will also effect movement precision.
    The 12824 was available with various jewel count. The one here is a 17j, but it was (later?) equipped with 25j. Produced between approximately 1971 and 1980.
    I would like to recommend a visit to this site for more information on vintage Eterna watches:
    More EternaMatics should follow soon as Christian has one of mine in for service just now.

  4. Christian, thanks again for a nice job done.
    Now, after the service the watch performance is very impressive.
    Without any additional regulation, the instant rate as shown by my microset is:
    -3,-1,-1,-3,+2,+3 (s/d) in 6 standard positions d-up,d-dw,3h,6h,9h,12h.
    The amplitude in horizontal positions is 305-310, and in verticals around 275 degrees.
    The average rate (per 2 days, t=+22C, atomic clock reference, similar to cosc tests, total 2×6=12 days) for the same 6 standard positions is:
    – 2, 0, 0, -1, +3, +4 (s/d).
    Obviously it is well within COSC requirements, also it is better than the most recent production chronometer grade ETA 2824, 2892 in my collection.
    So it is a kind of confirm my small theory, that vintage 12824 was a better movement than current ETA 2824-2 even top grade. It is definitely not the same in some details, for example it uses Kif-Ultraflex, not regular Incablock.
    My other theory is that 17 jewels it has is sufficient, and additional 8 jewels of 2824 that seems to be used in auto winding module, are not really that necessary.
    It is based on some discussion with other watch collectors, and careful consideration of the construction of the winding module. But I am not professional, so any feedback/opinion on the subject would be very interesting.
    Regards, -Victor

    • Hi Victor,

      Thanks for taking the time to measure what the movement is up to, and it’s very impressive.

      ETA has always made different grades of their movements, so you can have difference balances and hairsprings depending on what grade the movement is. I wouldn’t say that the 2824 is generally better than any 2824-2, but a high-grade 2824 will be better than a low grade 2824-2.

      That said, most ETA movements in decent condition perform extremely well.



      • Just a short clarification.
        IMHO, this movement is actually eterna 12824, not eta 2824, and as far, as I know, it was never available as an “ebauche”. But of course, communality with eta 2824 is obvious, so both are often cross referenced, as the same movement.
        So my impression is that at the time of production 12824 was considered as a high grade version of 2824 build specifically for Eterna itself. Of course, any additional information would very helpful.
        Regards, -Victor

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  6. Eterna designed the 2824. Almost all ETA ebauches prior to the 80s derived from original eterna calibers. They are fantastically under-rated watches.

    • Couldn’t agree more – just look at the timegrapher image after the service. Incredibly well designed movement, and no wonder the 2824-2 became the workhorse of the Swiss watch industry.

      • Durable, highly accurate and well-made; it’s wonder you can get them in vintage watches for the ridiculously low prices they go for. Perhaps a victim of their own success? So ubiquitous are they that some collectors discount their greatness. I shouldn’t complain. More for me.

  7. Fantastic quality and very overlooked by many collectors.
    Eternamatics are really high quality in both design and finish.
    Any serious collector should have a few in my opinion!

    • I have four, which are about half my collection 🙂 A beautiful 1948 grande date chronometer, a 1973 Super Kontiki reissue, an Eternamatic from the 50s (don’t remember the caliber) and a lovely grey-dial Sahida I bought for my wife.

  8. Are you sure you plugged the timegrapher in? 😉

    I love an Eternamatic – and the dial on this one especially!

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