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The 6139 chrono was a box that until recently had remained unticked and then in the space of a month or so, I found myself the owner of three, two of which variations on the 6139-600x theme. The first was a blue dialed 6002 which has since departed. The second was a yellow dialed 6005 dating from November 1973, purchased from Ebay in decent cosmetic condition but described by the seller as non-working. Anyway, £49 was enough to win the auction and it arrived a week or so later. Here is the original photo from the seller:



Looks ok, doesn't it? Anyway, I opened up the back to see if anything obvious was amiss with the movement and was greeted with the sight of a wobbly rotor assembly, the cause of which was one loose and one missing screw. So off came the rotor assembly:



and if we look carefully we can see why the watch isn't running. The missing screw is jammed between the barrel and the movement ring, preventing any power being transmitted from the mainspring to the balance:



So, with the watch equivalent of the Heimlich manoeuvre performed (simply turning barrel to get some power into the mainspring did the trick), the screw was free and the movement sprang into life. With the rotor assembly refitted, I removed the movement and fitted it temporarily to another case while I worked on cleaning up the original case.

Here is a shot of the dial, looking rather nice. Not perfect but it has a rather gorgeous vintage look to it.



Here's the rotor side, installed in the spare case:



Those of a nervous disposition may want to look away at this point. Here are a couple of shots of the case with the bezel removed, but exposing lots of lovely grot:



and with the crystal removed



we can see that plenty of elbow grease will be required to lick this into shape. Next we remove the rubber crystal gasket and gasket holding ring. We must remember to install this the right way up when it all goes back together:



Underneath the gasket ring we see the circular spring that sits between the inner rotating ring and the case.



So with everything out, first a good scrubbing with a toothbrush and toothpaste, a good working over with some pegwood sticks to remove the more stubborn regions of dirt and then the sanding pads and paper to sort out the worst of the scrapes and dings to the case. Here's the case post clean with the inner rotating ring and spring refitted:



The next job was to remove and replace the hardened gaskets on the crown and pushers. New gaskets are cheaply available from Cousins. Here is the crown and stem with the old gasket and some DNA removed from the reverse side of the crown:



In order to fit the new gasket, you need to unscrew the stem and gear for the rotating ring from the crown. With this now completed for the crown and chrono pushers we are on the home straight. With the movement refitted to the now cleaned case we are ready for the new crystal:



Here is a comparison of the old crystal with the new, a reproduction sourced from Jonathan Koch, with a slightly lower profile than the Sternkreuz I used on the blue watch:



Finally everything back together, and only two attempts to get the bezel properly aligned (which incidentally was not the bezel that came with the watch but the one originally fitted to the spare case)



Now for a few finishing photos of the watch on its new bracelet:







and one with the blue watch



Interestingly, the watch is running extremely well, with all functions working properly and keeping almost perfect time without any further attention required to the movement.

Martin
 

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wow martin!

now that is a cool post and we love to see these photos of projects and the finished product. that watch is simply stunning now and will make a proud member of your collection!

all the best from the deep tropics!

janice ;)

and PS noah... :-* hope your feeling better and see you again soon?
 

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Thank you very much for the informative photo essay. The SEIKO 6139 is an old favorite of mine (once had a blue-dial) and to see the steps you took to revive this gold-dial was fascinating. Three cheers for the amazing power of a toothbrush and good old toothpaste to shine up a case!
;)
 

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Very informational and inspirational. Many thanks for taking the time and energy to post this for the rest of us!
 

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Excellent, thanks - I love posts like this that teach us all a little more about vintage watches!
 

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Thank You School was in Session the 6139-600X Brought the World of SEIKO to me. Your post as was said INSPIRATIONAL


I love to be able to SEE as in your post, when I can see I am able to Grasp and retain some knowledge. ;D
 

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WOW! That is a beautiful timepiece! I'm working on an old 6309, my first attempt at one. I hope to find one of those in the near future after I've honed my skills.
 

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yep no more to say im looking for one. Nice seiko like the step by step strip.....clean.....rebuild....gives a novice like myself a goal....
 

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Superb restore :bravo_2: I just love seeing New Life being brought back into a very nice watch :great:
 

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A lot of interest in the 6139-600X lately...used this thread to refresh the crystal instal procedure...the prices on these 5 years ago were ridiculous.

Rob
 

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those are gorgeous examples and great work to get them back to 100% too...
 

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Superb post, isn't it great when you can resurrect a watch like that, an inspiration to all of us. :cool: (MUST take pictures when I do my next one! ;))
 
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