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Well, the title lies a bit, it took a lot of trying. But I digress, let's look at the costs associated with two very similar 6139s - one that was "cherry" and only required a regular service and another that had a lot of hidden damage lurking after digging into it. The purpose of this is to show what the possibilities are between a "good" restoration choice and one that is, well, not so good and the costs that should be expected for a complete restoration.

The protagonists in this story are two 6139s from my online estate auction exploits. One is a 6139-6000 PROOF blue dial from April 1970. The other is 6139-6009 RESIST blue dial from May of 1970. It's fascinating to me that I ended up with two watches that are only a month apart in manufacture.

Both of these watches were restored a couple of months ago. The PROOF dial went to Simon (sir Alan) and the RESIST went to Adrian at VTA. Both did stellar work and given fluctuations +/- in exchange rates to the USD they are within approximate costs with each other overall. This helps to normalize the outcome. Also, both watches were missing their crowns and had the stem jammed in the works. They also both have two-piece sweeps, notched cases and “A” movements. They are also both completely original, ran when bought, and were bought in the US. The PROOF was $360 and the RESIST was a bargain at $250. Both were well-loved in their day as seen by similarly faded tachy bezels.

The RESIST dial is first. Other than the missing crown, everything about it was right. The lume was even in great shape which meant that water had probably not found its way into the case. After Adrian’s inspection is was just a regular service, seals, arbor jewels (I almost always have this done), and a new crystal. That’s it, no surprises. Counting the cost of a new crown and stem that I supplied the total was about $420 US. So, the total for the watch comes to about $670 not counting shipping across the really big pond. Not bad at all.

Now let’s talk PROOF. I knew that there was a possibility of water damage based on the missing crown and the dark lume. There was also a problem with the hands – the minute hand was pretty mangled. But I was impatient looking for a good example and several other bidders and I drove the price up to $360. When Simon got into it, he found several components that were rusty enough to need replacement (e.g. the transmission wheel). The teeth on the inner rotating ring were a bit chewed in one place, but he was able to save it. It was also missing its diashock assembly (huh???). The worst issue was that the chrono wheel would slip occasionally, but Simon was able to locate a NOS one for the “A” movement fortunately. So here is the breakdown of the rabbit hole that this PROOF became:

1. Regular service with case component stripdown and rust removal
2. Replace minute hand and relume both H and M hands
3. Relume dial
4. Jewel arbor ports
5. Gaskets (seals)
6. New wavy dial spring
7. New pusher springs
8. New crystal
9. New crown, stem, gear and fitting
10. New barrel arbor (rusted)
11. New transmission wheel (rusted)
12. New crystal gasket
13. Diashock assembly and spring
14. New barrel and chrono bridge (rusted)
15. New chronograph wheel (worn/damaged)

The total cost for all of this? $670 USD. So, the total for this watch $1,030 USD not counting shipping.

The moral of this story is two-fold. One, buy the best example of the watch that you can that makes sense. Two, you never are sure of what you are getting so be prepared in case bad things are found. For those of you just getting into this hobby, these are the problems that you might encounter and expected costs for a “Pogue” variant. The single picture is the PROOF watch from the auction and the two pictures are the finished products side-by-side.

I hope that my continuous learning is helpful to others. This is great fun but sometimes a bit maddening. :)
 

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Well, the title lies a bit, it took a lot of trying. But I digress, let's look at the costs associated with two very similar 6139s - one that was "cherry" and only required a regular service and another that had a lot of hidden damage lurking after digging into it. The purpose of this is to show what the possibilities are between a "good" restoration choice and one that is, well, not so good and the costs that should be expected for a complete restoration.

The protagonists in this story are two 6139s from my online estate auction exploits. One is a 6139-6000 PROOF blue dial from April 1970. The other is 6139-6009 RESIST blue dial from May of 1970. It's fascinating to me that I ended up with two watches that are only a month apart in manufacture.

Both of these watches were restored a couple of months ago. The PROOF dial went to Simon (sir Alan) and the RESIST went to Adrian at VTA. Both did stellar work and given fluctuations +/- in exchange rates to the USD they are within approximate costs with each other overall. This helps to normalize the outcome. Also, both watches were missing their crowns and had the stem jammed in the works. They also both have two-piece sweeps, notched cases and “A” movements. They are also both completely original, ran when bought, and were bought in the US. The PROOF was $360 and the RESIST was a bargain at $250. Both were well-loved in their day as seen by similarly faded tachy bezels.

The RESIST dial is first. Other than the missing crown, everything about it was right. The lume was even in great shape which meant that water had probably not found its way into the case. After Adrian’s inspection is was just a regular service, seals, arbor jewels (I almost always have this done), and a new crystal. That’s it, no surprises. Counting the cost of a new crown and stem that I supplied the total was about $420 US. So, the total for the watch comes to about $670 not counting shipping across the really big pond. Not bad at all.

Now let’s talk PROOF. I knew that there was a possibility of water damage based on the missing crown and the dark lume. There was also a problem with the hands – the minute hand was pretty mangled. But I was impatient looking for a good example and several other bidders and I drove the price up to $360. When Simon got into it, he found several components that were rusty enough to need replacement (e.g. the transmission wheel). The teeth on the inner rotating ring were a bit chewed in one place, but he was able to save it. It was also missing its diashock assembly (huh???). The worst issue was that the chrono wheel would slip occasionally, but Simon was able to locate a NOS one for the “A” movement fortunately. So here is the breakdown of the rabbit hole that this PROOF became:

1. Regular service with case component stripdown and rust removal
2. Replace minute hand and relume both H and M hands
3. Relume dial
4. Jewel arbor ports
5. Gaskets (seals)
6. New wavy dial spring
7. New pusher springs
8. New crystal
9. New crown, stem, gear and fitting
10. New barrel arbor (rusted)
11. New transmission wheel (rusted)
12. New crystal gasket
13. Diashock assembly and spring
14. New barrel and chrono bridge (rusted)
15. New chronograph wheel (worn/damaged)

The total cost for all of this? $670 USD. So, the total for this watch $1,030 USD not counting shipping.

The moral of this story is two-fold. One, buy the best example of the watch that you can that makes sense. Two, you never are sure of what you are getting so be prepared in case bad things are found. For those of you just getting into this hobby, these are the problems that you might encounter and expected costs for a “Pogue” variant. The single picture is the PROOF watch from the auction and the two pictures are the finished products side-by-side.

I hope that my continuous learning is helpful to others. This is great fun but sometimes a bit maddening. :)
Your a caring person, thinking about Others. Sharing Experience and knowledge Is a great help and One reason this Forum and Hobby is so Special. So many newer Members and seems that most Folks are Very Found of 6139-600x. I enjoyed reading your Costs and parts needed/Used to make them Both Respectable Examples . Your Point About Buying the Best Example I agree with 100%. Maybe if I was able toWork on my watches ???But other than the rare Beat to Hell Crystal hiding a Beautiful Dial and hands 6139s can be a Challenge. You remind me of something I learned From Johnathan "Sweedfreak" he would make a point of Saying A Case can only be worked on ONCE I think The real bargain is as you Put it" Try to buy a Watch in Good Condition To Start with . Its just Safer and chances are The Cost and what is the Finished Value will be Grater in the Long run. The Chance Of SURPRISES will always be there but it is a better Chance of None whenwedo our work as a Buyer. Thank YOU for a Great Post. Russell
 

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Great story, interesting experiences and sound advice ! Thanks for sharing it all with us. Not to mention, I recently listened to your podcast interview. Kudos to you for branching out and sharing your knowledge throughout the internet. I truly enjoyed it !
 

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I have often bought a "bargain" knowing it would end up costing me double or more the buying price to sort it but all part of the"fun".

We are really fortunate that we have the guys who can do the work.
 

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Your a caring person, thinking about Others. Sharing Experience and knowledge Is a great help and One reason this Forum and Hobby is so Special. So many newer Members and seems that most Folks are Very Found of 6139-600x. I enjoyed reading your Costs and parts needed/Used to make them Both Respectable Examples . Your Point About Buying the Best Example I agree with 100%. Maybe if I was able toWork on my watches ???But other than the rare Beat to Hell Crystal hiding a Beautiful Dial and hands 6139s can be a Challenge. You remind me of something I learned From Johnathan "Sweedfreak" he would make a point of Saying A Case can only be worked on ONCE I think The real bargain is as you Put it" Try to buy a Watch in Good Condition To Start with . Its just Safer and chances are The Cost and what is the Finished Value will be Grater in the Long run. The Chance Of SURPRISES will always be there but it is a better Chance of None whenwedo our work as a Buyer. Thank YOU for a Great Post. Russell
Thank you Russel! I feel blessed. I normally don't like to talk too much about costs and prices this specifically. But, it was needed to make the points. But as others have mentioned, its great that we have so many folks doing the work to keep this watches going. Otherwise, they would just be interesting sculpture.
 
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Great story, interesting experiences and sound advice ! Thanks for sharing it all with us. Not to mention, I recently listened to your podcast interview. Kudos to you for branching out and sharing your knowledge throughout the internet. I truly enjoyed it !
Thank you! This post is a follow-on to the podcast in a way. Of course now we know that Seiko did release a 6139 (sic) re-issue. But is is a disappointment for the price in my opinion. Sam at the Casual Watch Review does great work. I like the way he structures his YouTube channel and his podcasts. Thank you again - and be leary of water. :)
 
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Simon had to throw everything but the kitchen sink at that Proof. Good outcome in the hands of a skilled watchmaker. Another one saved.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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That was a really interesting write up, and a lesson to us all. I adore posts like these when old watches that have seen better days are brought back to life. It is extremely satisfying that collectable watches can be brought back by members of this forum sympathetically, and as long as you enjoy it, it does not matter one bit if it costs more than what you paid for it.
 
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