Following on from Ivan's UMF Ruhla last week here are some more. This post has watches, a bit of history and before and after.
First the watches and the history.
Berlin Morning Post - Wednesday 17th June 1953
Headline: Emergency crisis in the East! Soviets shoot hard - First victims. Unlimited indignation against SED government - Chaos in East Berlin!
These three black dial UMF Ruhla watches were all made about the time of the East German uprising in June 1953. These watches all contain Ruhla Start movements which were one of the main movements made by UMF Ruhla under the Soviet control of Avtovelo. Notice the three different case types. The one in the middle is a "Chronos" because of the central second hand.
Before and After
This first one was in quite good condition and I had not seen this case type before. The movement just needed a clean and re-oiling.
The Chronos required a little more intervention. The click spring needed replacing but once that was done along with a clean it functions perfectly. The watch is housed in the larger crab case.
The third UMF Ruhla is housed in a slightly smaller case with crab style lugs.
And here is the Start movement. You can see that this is a precursor to the famous UMF Calibre 24 which started production in 1963. However, the Start has a dual fixed balance cock bridge. The movement is also a heavier guage than the later calibre 24 and the dials are fixed to the movement with tabs rather than dial feet. All three case types have a fixed closed lug for the watch straps. It is difficult to find open end watch straps for this type of lug. So, conventional ones have been adapted to fit.
And now for a bit more history.
In the link below, you will see more photos of Berlin during the uprising of 1953. This was caused by the harsh post war conditions imposed on the East Germans by the Soviets and also by the unrelenting work requirement imposed on the people by the ruling SED party.
East Berliners against Soviet tanks. More photos in the link above.