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Hello All,

a few weeks ago I discovered a thread on Vostok Amphibia modding on a German forum (http://uhrforum.de/v...modding-t172217). I'd known about Seiko modding for quite a while but wasn't aware that there is also a nascent Amphibia modding scene. I was fascinated and, being a fan of Vostoks, immediately caught the bug.

After countless hours searching around, I ordered a few bits for a mod - bezels, inlays and the like - as well as a new Amphibia from zenitar on eBay. One by one, the parts arrived and, in my excitement, I also bought another Amphibia from this forum (thanks mcb2007!) as a mod base. This morning, I was ready to start.

The first mod attempt is my 100SE that I bought from meranom around a year ago.

Here it is as bought:

16418131080_45d73aeefa_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 100SE by wotsch2, on Flickr

I'd bought in a few bezels. An engraved (or etched?) one from Russia:

16419318649_57474cb1bc.jpg

Vostok Amphibia Bezel by wotsch2, on Flickr

Two similar ones from the Ukraine (left) and the USA (right) to take the inlays I'd ordered from Hong Kong:

16604522752_0d8be699f3_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia Bezels by wotsch2, on Flickr

Also two from Germany:

16419315089_63b5958b89_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia Bezels by wotsch2, on Flickr

(actually, these two don't fit a 100 case, but I'm showing them for comparison).

So, off with the original bezel on the 100SE and a photo shooting of the different options:

16604599002_b5106952bc_b.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 100SE Comparison by wotsch2, on Flickr

What a choice! One or two combinations were no-gos straight away, but I spent a lot of time back and forth trying to find my favourite. It turned out that my favourite was the Russian engraved bezel (far right on the above comparison pic), but I had other plans for that one that I hope to be able to post tomorrow.

After a good bit more humming and hahing and some patient advice from my better half, I finally settled on one of the above.

A bit of glue to fix the inlay to the bezel and, after a good hour and a half fiddling with the bezel wire to get the damn thing to fit properly, I was finished.

So, without further ado, I would like to present my first Vostok Amphibia mod.

(continues...)

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Excellent work! Did you find that the engraved bezel (was it from pers184?) was a complete ball-ache to fit? I know mine were....

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Yes (and yes, from pers184)! All the photos in the comparison were without the wire fitted to the bezels so that I could swap them around. When I got to my second mod (photos coming later), I fitted the pers184 bezel to a different Amphibia and that took me all afternoon to get right. However, after all that I now think I've truly understood how to best bend the wire. :smartass:

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It's amazing how a bezel can change a watch. It already looked good before the change but even better now. Keep up the good work!

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Here's the second one. An 090 case.

Before:

16424045779_85b4c53589_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

The shiny bezel isn't the best to start with, but on the matte case it just looks all wrong.

After:

16424070079_2f42616404_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

As soon as I tried the engraved bezel on this one, I know it was the right one. But I took a series of photos with the other bezels just to see how they compare:

15990097173_669fc21695_c.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

Here are a couple more photos:

16422872410_abc46bf4db_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

16424064609_1f06a21480_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

-wotsch

Edited by wotsch

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some good modifications there, the after shots look much better, the orange and black bezels from Germany look like Omega PO items, very nice enjoy :thumbup:

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Great stuff.

I have one of the Pers etched bezels that has never found the right watch (it's too wide for the 710 case and hits the crown inner edge, btw). I agree it looks perfect on the 090 and that dial version is a peach.

How did you find the quality of the German (Irena Maier/M-watches I assume) bezel? I've been tempted but at the price they sell them, they need to be good!

I think you need to get a bit of scotchbrite onto that NATO hardware now :wink:

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How did you find the quality of the German (Irena Maier/M-watches I assume) bezel? I've been tempted but at the price they sell them, they need to be good!

Yes, they're from am-watches. I'd say that the quality does seem pretty good. The good thing about them is the shape - the slope upwards towards the middle - so that they fit rather well on a 090 case, for example. However, I'd say that they are a bit over-priced, as they're more expensive than the Murphy bezels, which are a notch up in terms of quality, in my subjective opinion. On the other hand, I didn't find any alternative for a sloping betel with inlay.

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How did you find the quality of the German (Irena Maier/M-watches I assume) bezel? I've been tempted but at the price they sell them, they need to be good!

Yes, they're from am-watches. I'd say that the quality does seem pretty good. The good thing about them is the shape - the slope upwards towards the middle - so that they fit rather well on a 090 case, for example. However, I'd say that they are a bit over-priced, as they're more expensive than the Murphy bezels, which are a notch up in terms of quality, in my subjective opinion. On the other hand, I didn't find any alternative for a sloping betel with inlay.

Thanks. They certainly look a little more 'elegant' however, I suspect that it's the slightly more utilitarian/engineered aesthetic which attracts me to Vostoks and the other two bezel options, so I'm not sure I'll ever get around to buying one.

As regards price: I think to enjoy modding an Amphibia you have to 'let go' of all concerns about financial logic. I have spent more on a strap for an Amphibia than I spent on the watch in the past and the watch/mod price ratio is also quite scary if you care to dwell on it!

I think we had a Modded Amphibias thread here once? I can't search right now, but it might be nice to add yours to it - and other mods that are definitely lurking around here. :yes:

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Great thread.

You have inspired me. Until today I had no aspiration to own a Vostok. Now I really want one. Thanks (i think!)

Cheerz

Mark H

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Great thread.

You have inspired me. Until today I had no aspiration to own a Vostok. Now I really want one. Thanks (i think!)

Cheerz

Mark H

no aspiration to own a Vostok. :eek: Sorry but I will have to ask mach to take your name.

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As regards price: I think to enjoy modding an Amphibia you have to 'let go' of all concerns about financial logic. I have spent more on a strap for an Amphibia than I spent on the watch in the past and the watch/mod price ratio is also quite scary if you care to dwell on it!

Oh, for sure, where's the logic that a rock solid 200m diving watch costs under $60 and that with another about $60 on top we can end up with a watch that looks ten times the price? We can only be thankful that logic has nothing to do with it. :D

I think we had a Modded Amphibias thread here once? I can't search right now, but it might be nice to add yours to it - and other mods that are definitely lurking around here. :yes:

I'll see if I can find that thread.

-wotsch

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This one was supposed to be my first mod, but I had to order a different case opener to do what I wanted to do and that only arrived yesterday. In my impatience, I went ahead with the 100SE I already had and the 090 from mcb2007 that had arrived much more quickly than expected, with the results above.

However, this one was the one I had mulled over in my mind all the time I was waiting for it and the various parts to arrive. Here's how it arrived from zenitar (including protective film on the crystal):

16637418162_be9ba40830_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

I love the dial on this one, but I really didn't like the polished case, so I'd also ordered a spare matte case at the same time as the watch. First job was to swap cases, which (once the case was opened) turned out to be much easier than expected. Following that, the bezels left over after the first two mods were all tried until I settled on one of the am-watches ones. I am surprised that this one was my favourite, as I'd never have expected the colour to have matched the dial. However, it seems to work, somehow. Finally, the strap choice took a while, but I think I've picked one to match the dial and bezel. What do you think?

Here is the finished mod:

16638446675_85206a2521_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

16637431092_5e2d51740e_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

16016135274_0d61d0405a_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

16016130964_31aa24f070_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

And finally, the paltry lume (maybe it'll be the next modding challenge to do something about that...):

16637420562_fb8df96724_z.jpg

Vostok Amphibia 090 by wotsch2, on Flickr

So that's the first bout of Amphibia modding done. I'm sure there'll be more to come, as I've had a couple of other ideas along the way and this has been absorbingly fun, but not for a few weeks at least.

-wotsch

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