The idea is that these "Tutorials" are placed in the Vostok Repair section, but due to technical problems this is currently not possible.
Matt will sort this out later.
For now, I like to share how I change hands, change a dial and change a date-wheel on a Vostok 24xx movement. It's my way of doing but as they say here in Europe: "there are many ways leading to Rome", meaning that there are many ways to achieve the same end result(s) . It may be far from perfect and may have lots of room for improvement, but for quite a few years it has worked very fine for me
Ideally, for clarity & readability, I would liked to have the text in between the pictures, but so far I haven't figured out how the WUS text-editor allows me to do so. Therefore first the text followed by the corresponding numbered pictures.
To start with the Hands and Dial change;
Picture #1: the tools & materials I'm using;
1) Fine-tip stainless steel tweezers (Stainless Steel = none-magnetic). A cheap set of (6pcs) tweezers can be obtained from eBay, search words: "anti static tweezers" "Stainless steel tweezers"; £5 - £7 including shipping.
2) A 3pcs set of hand setting pressers. Search on eBay for the words: "3Pcs Watch Repairs Hand Presser Fitting Tool Watchmakers Hands Fitter Press Set" costing about £7 including shipping from our friends in China.
Each presser has a different size hole in either end nylon tip. How to use them properly will be discussed further on in the walk-through (picture #25 onward).
3) Hand removers lever type. I have had other types of hand remover tools, but I found these levers to give more control & feeling. The lever type hand removers do come expensive or cheap. Bergeon charges £57 (add postage on top) for theirs and I'm sure they are perfect right out of the box. Mine are the "el-cheapo" Chinese version and cost about £5 including postage. Disadvantage: the lever tips were too thick for my liking and I had to ground them down, from the bottom up and polished the surfaces afterwards. A bit more work, but they work fine now and I saved £50 .... it's all up to you which tool to pick and your budget.
4) Watch case opener. There are many other openers on the market as well and they may work just as fine.
5) Magnification. I use relative expensive Sternkreuz eye-loups 2.8x, 3.3x, 5x and 10x. I started with the el-cheapo Chinese eye-loupes but through time and experiences, one starts to upgrade on the most essential tools ..... magnification is one of them, movement holders & screw-drivers are some of the others. There are many other magnification methods: Optivisors, microscopes, eye-glass loupes in case you wear glasses, etc. Pick whatever works best for you.
6) Universal movement holder; Bergeon 4040. This is the only one if your choice is an universal movement holder. If you value your movement, forget about the Chinese look alike, seriously ! ...... I've been there .....
7) Finger cots. Preventing finger-prints on movement and dial. From our Chinese friends, 50x for £1 or so
8) A decent set of screwdrivers. Ball bearing rotating heads and hardened tips: 0.6mm, 0.8mm, 1.0mm, 1.2mm, 1.4mm, 1.6mm and 2.0mm. Also a pair of brass tweezers.
9) A divider-tray to keep & store watch parts. I like to work organized & standardized; hence the marking-tape in the divisions.
10) A few pieces of peg-wood, ø 3mm. Make sure that you "freshly cut" the tips before you start. I use a pointed-tip on one end, a chisel type tip on the other end.
11) A movement "pillow". There are the "official", but I use an old stuffed Nokia leather telephone pouch stuffed with some foam
12) Dial protector. One can buy them or make them yourself. I cut one myself out of a 0.2mm plastic sheet. One can also use a clean plastic bag. Again; there are many ways to Rome.
13) A casualty ..... I used for this walk-through a CCCP "Tankist" in a 33 Komandirskie housing.
14) Not in the picture: a rubber hand blower ..... you will see & need this one at the end of this walk-through.
Best is to let the movement run out and set all the hands in line. Position the hands such that you leave space on either side for the hand-levers. Also handy is to set the hands not far away from the date-change before you pull them. This will later be handy when finding the point of date-change when the hands are off.
Remove back-cover and rubber-seal. I use some paper tissue underneath the crystal to avoid scratching.
Pull the winding stem by depressing the set-lever push-button. Some people find re-engaging of the winding stem later on easier when the setting the watch in the "time-setting" position before pulling the winding stem. To do so, pull the crown out in the time-setting position and then pull the winding stem. I have had no problems with the Vostok 24xx movements in either position and have no preference. There are some other movements however, like the Poljot 3133 chronograph, were it is a must to put the lever in the time-setting position before pulling the winding stem.
Winding stem + crown pulled.
Place the movement pillow on top of the movement / housing (which are laying upside down) and while securely holding the pillow & watch housing, turn / flip everything over so the movement rest on top of the movement pillow. Carefully lift and remove the housing, leaving the movement resting on the pillow.
Place for stability reasons the movement, which still has its movement spacer-ring, in a movement holder.
Picture #8 & #9;
Place carefully the dial protector on the dial. Take great care not to scratch the dial and / or to touch the fragile lume-dots at the hour-markers. The older the lume, the more fragile the lume becomes. Not only the lume hours dots on the dial, but also the lume on the hands has become fragile. Another problem with some of the older Vostok dials is that through time the paint may have become soft and therefor may stick to the dial protector. In that case the dial protector will cause some damage to the dial paint / surface and I haven't found a method / solution to solve that problem yet
Make sure that the dial protector is clean before placing.
Picture #10 & #11;
Slide the hand levers on either side underneath the hour hand. If required, use magnification to ensure proper placing of the levers. Once they are securely underneath, keep them "firm" and lift the hands until all the hands are off. Warning: hands of older watches, which have never been pulled since the watch left the factory, may be quite tight. Therefor make sure that the lever-tips are properly underneath the hour hand and hold some "pressure" to keep them firmly underneath while doing the lifting. If the hands are really tight, they may need a few lifting attempts to "soften-them-up". Use common sense, delicate feeling and adjusted / appropriate "forces"; these levers multiply your force quite a bit. Also the dial protector protects the dial only to a certain extent.
Tip: sometimes one doesn't get a good grip underneath the hour-hand. Sometime the hour hand was set too low in the first place preventing the lever-tip to fully slide underneath. This may cause that the edges of the hour hand bend upwards. One can straighten these edges again by placing the "eye" of the hand between the flat ends of some brass tweezers and apply (finger) pressure. Be careful when manipulating the hand, the lume may have become brittle.
Place & store the hands safe.
The following is for the extended version in case the dial has to be changed out as well.
For just the hands, continue reading from point #23
If you haven't already, time to put the finger cots on. Sometimes these finger cots are shipped in a plastic bag with some talc powder. Make sure your finger cots are clean before working on the movement / dial. Working and touching the dial has to done with care and caution. If the dial surface is firm and hard, one can touch it. If the surface paint has become soft, the dial has to handled only on the edges. Avoid as best as you can toughing the lume dots as they can be fragile.
Also take great care of you finger placement. Best is to hold the movement by the wheel train bridge (picture #16) or winding bridge. Avoid placing you fingers anywhere close to the balance.
In order to get to the two dial screws, the movement spacer ring has to be removed.
Undo the two movement spacer ring screws only 1 to 1-1/2 turn, enough so the spacer ring is able to rotate. One can also take the screws fully out, but it is more "fiddly" to get them back in later and would require more touching / handling of the dial / movement with you fingers.
Picture #16 & #17;
Once the movement spacer ring is able to rotate, rotate the "winding-stem-cut-out" in the spacer ring towards the screw and lift the spacer ring up.
Picture #18 & #19;
Unscrew the two dial screws with about a 3 full turns. No need to take them fully out, but one has to be sure that they are fully free of both dial feet.
Picture #20 & #21;
Remove the dial. Sometimes this is easier said than done. There can be various reasons why the dial doesn't come easy. Slightly bend or slightly damaged dial feet are common causes. Less common, but it does occur, is that a dial feet (or both) has (have been) broken off and the previous owner / watchmaker has glued the dial to the movement, using glue or double sided sticky tape.
The dial feet are located in the same line / spot as the dial screws. If the dial doesn't come on its own, a little prying may be required. The chisel-end of a peg wood is a good tool to start with. Pry between the movement and the bottom of the dial, carefully avoiding scratching the date-wheel. When the dial gives trouble, use magnification a study what the reason / cause may be.
In extreme cases, when a dial is glued to the movement, a scalpel or a razor-blade may be required to pry and separate the dial from the movement.
What ever you do: Take your time !!
Alternate prying between either side where the dial screws are located, slowly separating the dial from the movement.
Consult the forum when experiencing great difficulties.
When replacing the dial, or placing another dial, ensure that it is fully flat onto the movement before tightening the dial screws. Press the dial slightly onto the movement and tighten the dial screw. Same at the opposite side.
In this example the movement is a 2414 with a date complicatin. This is the same as an automatic 2416b movement whereby the hour wheel and washer are underneath a date cover-plate. With 2409 and 2415 movements, there is no date cover-plate and the dial keeps both items in place. With those movements, when the dial is off, the hour wheel and the washer are free to remove / drop off. Make sure that both (hour wheel and washer) are back in place before (re-)placing the dial.
Replace the movement spacer ring. First slide the ring underneath the spacer ring screw on the opposite side of where the winding stem sits. Make sure that the cut out slot in the spacer ring is positioned on top, where the other screw sits. Like the removal in picture #16 and #17, but now in reverse. Ensure that the cut out slot in the spacer ring lines up with the winding stem entrance in the main plate before tightening the ring screws.
Continuation for (re)placing the hands.
Insert the winding stem. One can have a firm grip on the movement spacer ring.
For stability and handling reasons I put the movement in a movement holder.
Pictures #25, #26, #27 & #28;
Time to select the right size of the hand setting presser for this movement. I use a set of 3x hand pressers, each of them do have different colors and differnt hole sizes on either end. Since they come cheap and I do have only one set, I don't know and can't compare if other sets do have the same combination holes on each color press.
For all the 24xx movements you only require two hole sizes. One which just slides over the cannon pinion and bottoms out on top of the hour wheel and one which goes over the seconds-pinion and bottoms out on top of the cannon pinion (picture #26).
Picture #27 shows that one end of my red presser fits nicely & tightly over the cannon pinion and bottoms out on top of the hour wheel. Since these ends are easy to mix up, one can put a little tape around or make a marker on the correct end.
Picture #28 shows the presser which has the smallest hole, fitting over the seconds pinion, bottoming out on top of the cannon pinion. This happens to be one end of the black presser on my set.
The reason why this is so important is that when setting a hand with the correct size presser, the top of the hand will sit flush with the top of the hour wheel or the cannon pinion respectively. This will place & space the hands correctly, leaving enough space between the hour hand and the dial for subsequent removal (either by you or by the next owner / watchmaker) and leaves the correct spacing between the hour- & minute hand.
By using the wrong pressers or method and setting the hand too deep, the hands may touch the dial or each other and subsequent pulling them could cause trouble / damage.
Picture #29, #30, #31 and #32;
Pull the winding stem in the time setting position and rotate anti-clockwise until the date changes. When the hands were set not that far away from the date-change, as described in point #2 , the date change shouldn't be far away. If the date change went too fast and you are too far over, do the 12-8-12 hour date change method and try again. Stop exactly after the date has changed.
When the date has just changed, place the hour hand exactly on the 12-o-clock position. Give it just a little press, just enough for the hand to stay in place.
Repeat the date-change to confirm that the hour hand is exactly on the 12-o-clock position when the date changes. Make small adjustments if required using peg wood (picture #30), carefully avoiding touching the dial. If the hand comes off while making the adjustment, give it a little press again. Repeat until satisfied. Press the hour hand fully down and check whether it is level / horizontal with the dial and flush with the top hour-wheel; picture #31 (small level adjustments with the respective presser can be made as described a little further in pictures #35 and #36). Perform the last checks for correct timing and seating.
Picture #32, & #33;
Place the minute hand on top of the hour hand. Again press slightly with the appropriate presser. Check if the date changes when both hands are in the 12-o-clock position. Adjust the minute hand with peg wood if required. Repeat until satisfied. Before pressing the minute hand on fully, perform the last check in the 6-o-clock position. Adjust if required.
It is far more important that the 6-o-clock lines up than that the date changes at exactly 12-o-clock. A date change a few minuted before or a few minutes after 12-o-clock is acceptable. Only when (unacceptable) far off the mark, the setting of the hour-hand has to be repeated.
Picture #34, #35 & #36;
Press the minute hand in place and check the whole 24hrs around that both hands do run free and horizontal. Small level adjustments can be made with the presser tool, as shown in picture #35 & #36.
On a hand winding Vostok 2414 or a 2409 movement, the seconds pinion has free axial movement and is pushed up by means of a leave-spring. If not supported, placing and pushing the seconds hand down will only result in pushing the pinion down against the small leave-spring load. Therefore the leave spring needs to be supported.
On a Vostok automatic 2416b or a 2415 movement the build up is the same, but by these movements the leave-spring is supported by the automatic gearing bridge and therefor points / pictures #38 and #40 are not required.
To support the spring, and thereby supporting the seconds hand pinion, I place the movement on a flat surface, such that the crown is free. The edge of my cutting mat does just that.
Picture #39 & #40;
Carefully place the seconds hand on the pinion and press in down. I used the tip of peg-wood, but a hand presser with the smallest hole will do fine to.
Now a bit more tricky method; If the hand doesn't go deep enough or sticks up to high, one can flip the movement over and support the seconds hand on a flat surface. Carefully press the leave spring down where the pinion is situated. Do this carefully and perhaps in increments with more checks. Pushing the pinion in too far and the seconds hand may make contact with, and run on top of the minute hand. The only way to correct this is the pull all hands and start all over again
Also, by placing the dial and hands on a flat surface may change the hands alignment or do damage to the lume dots ...... be very careful & gentle.
Picture #41, #42 & #43;
Check all hands for horizontal / level and free movement. If required small adjustments can be made as shown in picture #42 on either side of the hand. Be careful not to push the hand deeper onto the hour wheel or cannon pinion.
Check also the tail end of the seconds hand for free movement and space; picture #43.
Picture #44, #45 & #46;
When all is completely satisfactory, pull the winding stem, resting the movement on its spacer ring (#44). Blow the movement / dial and the crystal inside the housing clean from any dust or other fibers. Place the housing over the movement (picture #45), flip all (including movement-pillow) over. Make sure the movement drop nicely inside the housing. Insert the winding stem, install the rubber-seal and back-cover (all exactly the same procedure as dismantling, but now in the reverse order; #6,#5,#4).
Observe for proper running for a full 24 hours and if all is fine: ........ a job well done
Hope my write up is of any help
If despite of the above explanation you still have or encounter problems, please seek help on the general forum.
There are many capable comrades willing to help you further