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Falcon1991

Broken Poljot Sekonda Tachymetre Chronograph

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Hi All, I'm new to this forum.

I would like some information on who may be able to repair the following watch:

2884kkn.jpg

It's a Poljot made chronograph sold under the Sekonda brand name in the UK. This was my dad's watch before it stopped working years ago. He was told that it couldn't be repaired so it sat in a drawer ever since.

Last week he was going to finally throw it out when I decided I would check ebay. I found a couple of identical watches had sold for over £100 in non-working condition. There was also a working one which made over £400. While I know that ebay is not necessarily an indicator of value, it seems like the watch would be worth repairing. I also find the watch itself interesting, so it would be nice to have it working again.

I was able to pop the back off with a knife to find the manufacturer's logo. According to some information I found online, the watch was made by the Poljot Watch Factory as it has the flying bird logo on the movement.

The winder appears to be broken, the watch does not tick at all.

Can anyone suggest anyone who made be able to repair this?

Thanks for any info.

Edited by Falcon1991

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a repair and service should cost about 80ish quid so for keeping your fathers watch going i personally dont think is to bad plus its a really nice looking watch

my watch man is in swansea if thats any good to you

Edited by chris.ph

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Your watch is called a 'Strela' (Arrow) which has a bit of a cult following amongst Russian watch enthusiasts. The movement (a 3017) was the first Russian made chronograph and the watch was worn in space, so has extra kudos. As you've discovered, they can attract really high prices if they're in good nick (whether branded Poljot or Sekonda). I'm no vintage expert, but you'd be surprised how good this might look (and how well it would run) if serviced and cleaned up well, and the crystal replaced.

There'll be others here who can give you a more authoritative view and maybe some ideas on who might be best for the work.

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It can surely be repair, in the extreme case by taking a new movement. Not an easy thing to find though, and I'm guessing parts are also a problem. A new crystal would make wonders to the cosmetics.

Well, other members pretty much said it all already. I would just like to point out that you need a real watchmaker, not a brand customers service. The Sekonda that exists nowadays has nothing to do with Poljot whatsoever.

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Excellent watches, well worth getting sorted :thumbup:

Here`s my trio...

Sekondas, Poljot cal. 3017 19 Jewels, circa mid 1960s

SekondaDSC_1021_zps4e5d5418.gif

SekondaDSC_1018_zps61ac634b.gif

SekondaDSC_1020_zps81396ad8.gif

:astro:

As has already been mentioned you could contact our host Roy Taylor or Steve Burrage at Rytetime on 0116 267 7673

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Thanks for the replies.

A few more questions about this watch:

What are the functions of the buttons and the small dials?

How do you use the Tachymetre and Telemeter scale?

What sort of strap was on them originally?

I will look into getting this repaired. Earlier in the week I contacted a London based watchmaker I found on the internet and asked about it. As soon as I mentioned that it was a Russian watch, their response was "we don't touch Russian watches, we can't get parts". I am hoping that it only needs a clean and service, and is not broken as such.

My dad said it lasted him 20 years. It has been worn a lot as can be seen by the scratches on the glass. The hands also appear to be slightly rusty. I think it is a good looking watch, and would wear it if he doesn't want it.

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What are the functions of the buttons and the small dials?

The buttons are simply to start, stop and reset the chrono functions. Left subdial is a running second indicator, like the main second hand on a 3 hand watch. The subdial on the right is the minute increment for the chrono function. The main chrono second hand is the big one that stays always at 12 when not engaged.

How do you use the Tachymetre and Telemeter scale?

Tachymeter:

Telemeter:

(text copied/pasted from somewhere else:) It is possible to measure the distance of a phenomenon which is both visible and audible using these scales. The chronograph hand is released at the instant the phenomenon is seen; it is stopped when the sound is heard, and its position on the scales show at a glance the distance and speed in kilometers or miles separating the phenomenon from the observer. (Calibration for the telemeter scale is based on the speed of which sound travels through the air, viz. approximately 340 meters or 1,115 feet per second).

What sort of strap was on them originally?

I don't think they had one. Traditionally, a Soviet watch factory made just that, a watch. You or the store would fit one latter.

I will look into getting this repaired. Earlier in the week I contacted a London based watchmaker I found on the internet and asked about it. As soon as I mentioned that it was a Russian watch, their response was "we don't touch Russian watches, we can't get parts". I am hoping that it only needs a clean and service, and is not broken as such.

Yeap, that's why I told you to use a real watchmaker, not a big shop that deals with the usual watches. It's always a problem to get spare parts for Russian movements, usually the best way is to go with a completely new one or spares salvaged from other broken movements. Poljot factory is long gone and that particular movement was replaced by them long before they went under. The watchmakers members told you about are not only cheaper but actually know how to go about these things. There's a chance that if a part is broken, they might have some broken movement from where they can take the needed part out. A big-shot street watchmaker doesn't store parts, he will prefer to deal with Swiss watches and order the parts from supplier... a lot less trouble and he can make money on two fronts: the work and his cut on reselling parts.

My dad said it lasted him 20 years. It has been worn a lot as can be seen by the scratches on the glass. The hands also appear to be slightly rusty. I think it is a good looking watch, and would wear it if he doesn't want it.

Just to cheer you up and just so you start having a notion of what Russian watchmaking is or used to be (because it's almost dead now), a Swiss watch "should" be serviced every three years. The unanimous servicing interval recommended by every Russian maker is 10 years. If you go through this forum section, you'll see watches with 20, 30, 40 years that came from some obscure place in Russia, that probably never saw any servicing in their lives (and if they did, certainly not a professional one) and they still run strong. Russians don't build beautifully finished things but they build them to last: watches, AKs, tanks... :lol:

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I'd recommend you send it to a guy on ebay called "fromukraine". He specialises in Russian watch repairs (a lot of UK repairers won't touch Russian watches) and is far cheaper than anyone in the UK. I've used him a few times always with good results. He doesn't seem to have his "watch repair service" advertised on ebay at the moment but it'll be worth sending him a message.

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I'd recommend you send it to a guy on ebay called "fromukraine". He specialises in Russian watch repairs (a lot of UK repairers won't touch Russian watches) and is far cheaper than anyone in the UK. I've used him a few times always with good results. He doesn't seem to have his "watch repair service" advertised on ebay at the moment but it'll be worth sending him a message.

Oh yeah, I was forgetting about that guy. Bought a couple of watches from him before and he has access to tones of them. If parts are needed, he'll have them :yes:

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the dials, hands cases buttons and movements sold individually could get you over £100 on a good day - running @£350 I would say - if you need any parts I may be able to help - though on ebay you can get the balance wheel which is the first thing to go

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The watch is now repaired. It looks a lot better with a new crystal.

It turns out that the problem was caused by water getting into it at some time and causing some rust.

A replacement setting lever, screw and winding button were also needed.

My dad said he was glad to have it back. It's a good thing I saved it from ending up at the tip in the bag of rubbish.

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The watch is now repaired. It looks a lot better with a new crystal.

It turns out that the problem was caused by water getting into it at some time and causing some rust.

A replacement setting lever, screw and winding button were also needed.

My dad said he was glad to have it back. It's a good thing I saved it from ending up at the tip in the bag of rubbish.

Any pictures?

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Yes, they were! Here's all (or virtually all) Strela generations...

strela-montage-new2-1.jpg

...note how none of the paddle hands versions has Cyrillic on the dial, strange as it might sound.

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Thanks for the reply Kutusov. According to the internet, Sekonda was a British distributor of Russian watches. It does seem odd that the Cosmonauts were issued with a watch that was marked for a British company.

I also saw some information that appears to have been poorly translated from Russian. It says that pilots and Cosmonauts had to hand in their watches upon return to civilian life. Is this correct? If so, how late did this continue? Presumably not while the watches were on sale to the public in the UK.

My dad's watch is the "Sekonda Low-brand black/lume". His parents bought it for him for his 21st birthday in the late 1970s. Apprently at that time it was seen as a cheap budget watch. He was very surprised to learn that they are worth anything today.

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It says that pilots and Cosmonauts had to hand in their watches upon return to civilian life. Is this correct? If so, how late did this continue?
It's still true today in the UK armed forces, so it was probably true for the Russians too!

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Thanks for the reply Kutusov. According to the internet, Sekonda was a British distributor of Russian watches.

I won't argue with that as I don't know what happened before but the Sekonda brand name was bought by a British company much later on. It had nothing to do with Poljot, it was all cheap quartz watches like the ones you have today. Maybe that's some source of confusion? And anyway, that same post-Poljot British Seconda was later bought by some Russian oligarch :lol:

As to handing back watches, that's the general procedure with military issued watches everywhere AFAIK. It's like a rifle, you use it only while you need it for your job with the rifle's owner (Army, Air Force, whatever) and once you're done, you give every piece of equipment back.

Also, I think the Strela, contrary to the Sturmankie, was never an exclusive Air Force watch, civilians could get it too, pretty much the same way NASA used the Speedmaster that was also available for the public.

Edited by Kutusov

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The information I read implied that the watch was some sort of piece of secret military equipment that those who were issued it were required to hand back. I was skeptical about this, it sounded to me like typical internet rumours.

So was Sekonda originally a Russian brand name, which was later bought by a British company to market Far-Eastern made watches?

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The information I read implied that the watch was some sort of piece of secret military equipment that those who were issued it were required to hand back. I was skeptical about this, it sounded to me like typical internet rumours.

Oh but it can be both! The military can acquire a bunch of watches that are also available for civilians and then it is military equipment that belongs to them. I believe this Citizen I own was a British Army diver's issued watch for a while and they had to hand them out once they leave service or operations where such a piece of equipement was needed:

BN0000-04H024.jpg

It is one of the oldest Ecodrive divers that is still on their catalogue and civilians like me could buy one before it being adopted by the military. Another example would be a run of the mill Land Rover Defender... everybody can buy one but the ones that belong to the armed forces stay with them, you don't bring one home :lol:

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Come up nice that has! As suggested, well worth the fixing and Service! My only chrono (I'm not a fan, the dials are too busy for me) is a Sekonda cheapo quartz one, but it's a nice piece ofkit for the very cheap price, cost me £2.99 off the bay a few years back. Clena and brush up and a new cell every two years and it runs fine, all functions working :lol: :yes:

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can anyone suggest where to get original technical specifications for the poljot sekonda? i’ve had issues with mine fogging up since a repair, but have been told by the repairer that its because these watches were made without seals. so even washing my hands is likely to cause it to fog up. 

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