Vostok From My Attic.
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  1. #1
    Member Kulprit's Avatar
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    Vostok From My Attic.

    Iíve been helping my parents in cleaning out their attic; part of my motivation was to find some of my old watches which have been packed away for the last 25+ years.

    My mom traveled to the former Soviet Union just after itís collapse. Russia, in particular, was in such financial disarray that military servicemen were selling their kit to western tourists to get western currency. I have always been a military-phile and we were a ďNuclear NavyĒ family (dad was one of Adm. Rickoverís handpicked submariners) so she brought me back several pieces of Soviet Navy kit.

    Included in that was this watch, which I initially though was a cheap trinket because it felt like cheap, tinny junk compared to my 6309 and the design on the dial just screamed ďmade for unsuspecting tourists!Ē The cheap leather strap, complete with Crackerjack-like compass, didnít help. It wasnít until years later, with the advent of the internet and the internet watch forum, that I came to suspect what the watch was. Being in the attic all these years I could only confirm it last weekend. A true Soviet-era Vostok Komandirskie Antimagnetic. Hereís a photo of it with a newspaper clipping about my momís trip which I also found.



    Iím trying to decide whether I want to get it serviced. The heat of 25+ Virginia summers has likely turned the lube into shellac. Itís not a watch Iíd ever wear but I hate the idea of owning mechanical things that donít run.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Member Odessa200's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing. If you do not intend on using the watch, leave it as is. Because in only a few years, w/o use, you will be back at the square 1. Each service adds a bit of wear (the lume may come off, paint on the dial, etc).
    frenchtreasure likes this.

  3. #3
    Member schnurrp's Avatar
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulprit View Post
    Iíve been helping my parents in cleaning out their attic; part of my motivation was to find some of my old watches which have been packed away for the last 25+ years.

    My mom traveled to the former Soviet Union just after itís collapse. Russia, in particular, was in such financial disarray that military servicemen were selling their kit to western tourists to get western currency. I have always been a military-phile and we were a ďNuclear NavyĒ family (dad was one of Adm. Rickoverís handpicked submariners) so she brought me back several pieces of Soviet Navy kit.

    Included in that was this watch, which I initially though was a cheap trinket because it felt like cheap, tinny junk compared to my 6309 and the design on the dial just screamed ďmade for unsuspecting tourists!Ē The cheap leather strap, complete with Crackerjack-like compass, didnít help. It wasnít until years later, with the advent of the internet and the internet watch forum, that I came to suspect what the watch was. Being in the attic all these years I could only confirm it last weekend. A true Soviet-era Vostok Komandirskie Antimagnetic. Hereís a photo of it with a newspaper clipping about my momís trip which I also found.



    Iím trying to decide whether I want to get it serviced. The heat of 25+ Virginia summers has likely turned the lube into shellac. Itís not a watch Iíd ever wear but I hate the idea of owning mechanical things that donít run.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Don't believe I've ever seen an antimagnetic komandirskie, a function usually reserved for the stainless steel amphibians. You could remove the back and see if the antimagnetic shield is in place.

    Also the hour and minute hands are usually painted black on a light dial like that and are lumed to match the lume dots at the hour marks.

    If I had to guess it is more likely a dial from this type 020 amphibian was combined with some komandirskie parts to "create" your watch.

    Name:  Capture1.JPG
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    There are two versions of this amphibian dial:

    Name:  Capture.JPG
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    Last edited by schnurrp; 1 Week Ago at 17:50.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    Also has an incorrect red calendar font which would indicate the movement is out of a much older watch, only a black font date wheel should be seen in a type 34 case...

  6. #5
    Member Kulprit's Avatar
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    Quote Originally Posted by schnurrp View Post
    Don't believe I've ever seen an antimagnetic komandirskie, a function usually reserved for the stainless steel amphibians. You could remove the back and see if the antimagnetic shield is in place.

    Also the hour and minute hands are usually painted black on a light dial like that and are lumed to match the lume dots at the hour marks.

    If I had to guess it is more likely a dial from this type 020 amphibian was combined with some komandirskie parts to "create" your watch.

    Name:  Capture1.JPG
Views: 52
Size:  104.7 KB

    There are two versions of this amphibian dial:

    Name:  Capture.JPG
Views: 50
Size:  59.2 KB
    Iím not very well versed in Vostoks, so my questions are true questions, not challenges to your info.

    You say youíve never seen an antimagnetic Komandirskie, and you say the dial appears to be from one of two Amphibians, but isnít the second photograph you posted of an antimagnetic Komandirskie? Or do some Amphibians say ďKomandirskieĒ on the dial?

    In poking around the web prior over the weekend (and poking some more after reading the replies to this post) Iíve seen several Komandirskies with the same dial as mine but in different cases (like the ones you posted, sans crown guards) and Iíve seen some with the same case and bezel as mine but with different dials.

    Iíd be very interested in everyoneís feedback and help in getting to the bottom of what Iíve got here. Thereís no question it was purchased in Russia by my mother in Ď92, and from the condition of the watch and strap (at that time) it appeared to be new (another reason I suspected it was a cheap tourist trinket). So obviously itís no modern frankenwatch. But from what yíall have posted it has me wondering if this was either cobbled together from whatever parts the factory had at hand (it being a bad economic time for Russia) it was indeed some sailorís watch that had been used and perhaps had parts replaced during its life.


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  7. #6
    Member Odessa200's Avatar
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    1992 was quite challenging in USSR economically speaking. Some factories could not pay salaries and instead were given some of the merchandise to the factory workers: ‘go sell it or exchange it’. Also people ‘borrowed’ things from work. Remember, before the USSR collapsed, all factories were nationalized. Meaning they all belonged to people. So people just took parts of what already, at least on paper, belonged to them. Watch repair shops would have parts and, theoretically speaking, could produce these watches to get the ends meet. All these are just speculations. All I know for sure it was a battle for survival for some folks. There would be minimum security and quality controls at the factories. All these probably lead to the appearance of these frankens. Remember, a few weeks ago I had asked a similar question: if a watch is built from genuine parts on the genuine equipment by the watch factory worker(s) but the watch is not an approved model: is this a franken watch? Same here as far as I can see.

  8. #7
    Member Kulprit's Avatar
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    I pulled off the semi-permanent bund-style strap to get a look at the caseback and the movement.



    There was no antimagnetic shield over the movement. I gave the balance a little encouragement and it did run (reluctantly) for a couple of minutes. The mainspring is fully wound.



    The case *could* be stainless, but it sure looks an awful lot more like chrome plating to me. The crown tube is brass.

    Thanks again for all your feedback.


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  9. #8
    Member Odessa200's Avatar
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    Oooo mama 🙂. As folks suggested by the calendar font, this is a much older movement. Also this is a 22mm movement 🙂. Basically, whoever produced this watch, took an old movement, new case and a new dial (that looks more appealing to the tourists cause it has a red star, etc) and made this. Personally I would keep all as is as a momento of your parents trip to USSR, etc. If you start services this and want a working watch then maybe it makes sense to put the right movement, hands, etc 🙂. Then what’s going to be left from this watch?????

  10. #9
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    You have to hand it to the Soviet/Russian people - they survived whatever it took.

    You should keep it exactly as it is as a tribute to the Soviet people after the fall of their corrupt and incompetent government. The people persevered - no thanks to their "leaders".

  11. #10
    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Vostok From My Attic.

    I agree with all the comments. This watch is a memento of a moment in your family's history, and an artefact of a significant moment in Russian history. That is the value of this watch. Apart from that, it is a 2214 movement in a Komandirskie case possibly designed for a 2414, with a 2214-compatible dial blank reprinted in the Antimagnetic Amphibia style. Please keep it as it is.
    Chascomm
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