Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

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  1. #1
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    Question Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Hey everyone. First post here. Just bought my first automatic, a Bulova m7, 11blacd movement.
    I have uploaded a crude webcam picture so you can get the idea.
    Name:  Snapshot_20110926_1.JPG
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    Anyway, there is a problem with it that I would like to resolve.
    Although the watch keeps very good time, the red second hand often gets stuck between the five and the six.
    If I give it a few light taps it will start up again. Any ideas about what I could do to resolve this? Thanks for any help given.

    Edit: Also, does anyone knows how to set the date?
    Last edited by [email protected]; September 26th, 2011 at 23:24. Reason: there was another thing I wanted to ask

  2. #2
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Hi there,

    here some informations about the movement, including date setting:
    bidfun-db Archive: Watch Movements: Bulova 11BLACD

    If the second hand always stops at about the same position, it likely touches the crystal there.

    Regards, Roland Ranfft

  3. #3
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roland Ranfft View Post
    Hi there,

    here some informations about the movement, including date setting:
    bidfun-db Archive: Watch Movements: Bulova 11BLACD

    If the second hand always stops at about the same position, it likely touches the crystal there.

    Regards, Roland Ranfft
    It's an inexpensive repair, unless you know the service history, it should be serviced (disassembeled, cleaned, oiled, and adjusted) a service should be good for 7 to 10 years.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    The seller told me the movement had just been oiled and cleaned, hopefully I can trust him.
    Work it needs done:
    - a bit of paint chipped off the second hand, needs repainting
    - dial needs to be cleaned
    - the acrylic crystal has a lot of scratches (can they be polished out?)
    - plus the problem I just mentioned about the second hand

    How much would all of this cost? Probably varies from place to place. I may make an attempt at the cleaning/painting myself if it is too costly. I only paid 30$ for the watch itself. I could polish the crystal by hand myself and I could probably bend the second hand a bit to solve that problem. Would I have a good chance of success?

  6. #5
    Member joeuk's Avatar
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    just take it to local watchguy to see to the hand and dont touch the dial, polywatch or as others have mentioned toothpaste will polish the acrylic glass

  7. #6
    Member AbslomRob's Avatar
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Another possibility is that there is a piece of dirt in the fourth wheel. The problem with attempting to clean it yourself is that you're as likely to let more dirt in. Watches use small drops of oil to lubricate the pivots of the gears (which are about the size of the end of the smallest needle you have), and if dirt or dust gets into that, you can't really clean it out without also removing the oil. Without oil, the watch will continue to run (and may even run well), but friction between the pivot and the jewel will slowly grind away at the pivot until it breaks off.

    As for bending the second hand, you want to be careful with that, because while you may be able to get it to not touch the crystal, you may end up making it touch the minute hand underneath it. There isn't a lot of clearance either way. Ideally, the had needs to be removed and examined to make sure it's straight (many have a bend at the end to avoid the curve of the crystal). This should really be done for all three hands.
    My growing collection of "affordable" vintages: http://www.abslomrob.com

  8. #7
    Vint. Forum Co-Moderator Mirius's Avatar
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    If the second hand only touches at one point then it may well indicate a bent pivot.


  9. #8
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Hi Mirius,

    Quote Originally Posted by Mirius View Post
    If the second hand only touches at one point then it may well indicate a bent pivot.
    Think twice: A bent pivot is never the reason that a hand doesn't turn in parallel to the dial (or crystal). Only if an arbor doesn't run perpendicular to the movement plate the distance between movement and hand-end depends on the hand's position. In conventional designs, like this Bulova, worn minute wheel bearings are the usual reason. In modern designs with indirect minute usually the center post is bent.

    Regards, Roland Ranfft

  10. #9
    Vint. Forum Co-Moderator Mirius's Avatar
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    Thanks Roland for the clarification


  11. #10
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    Re: Got a new (to me) Bulova. Has problems.

    If it were me . . . I'd send it to Mark Sirianni in Kane, PA. Mark was trained at the Bulova school, and has worked in the business for years. He's serviced an Omega and a few Hamiltons for me. I recommend him.

    Recently I purchased an M9 Sea King from him and it is a great watch.
    Name:  Bulova12a.jpg
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    Cost of a service is very reasonable, and you won't have to worry about the "service" the seller told you about. Did he mention the problem with the second hand?

    On the other hand . . . I can wear another watch!


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