Hamilton Spectra movement?

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  1. #1
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    Hamilton Spectra movement?

    I recently purchased a Hamilton Spectra for just a couple of dollars. When I opened the case, I found a leaked dead battery and corrosion to the parts beneath. To make a long story short, I would like to replace the works (although it runs), but am unsure as to what caliber movement is correct--most articles refer to a 500 movement, but this one is a 505. Were both calibers used? If so, what specifically should I look for in a replacement (i.e.--caliber, movement numbers, etc.) and where might I find one? I've tried eBay, have so far been unable to win one (I have been bidding on the 505's, but now I'm not sure if that is correct!) Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    i beleive the major difference between teh 500 and the 505 was the arrangement of the contact points. in the 500 it was easily damaged. but i'm not positive they are completely interchangeable.

    i'm sure i will be violating a board rule here, but i'm going to recommend you go to a different forum. watch talk forums. go to the hamilton forum. it's teh only place i know of where rene rondeau frequently posts. he is the foremost expert on electric hamilton movements. he literally wrote the book.

    my 2 cents.

  3. #3
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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Quote Originally Posted by sherwoodschwartz View Post
    i beleive the major difference between teh 500 and the 505 was the arrangement of the contact points. in the 500 it was easily damaged. but i'm not positive they are completely interchangeable.

    i'm sure i will be violating a board rule here, but i'm going to recommend you go to a different forum. watch talk forums. go to the hamilton forum. it's teh only place i know of where rene rondeau frequently posts. he is the foremost expert on electric hamilton movements. he literally wrote the book.

    my 2 cents.
    Thanks so much for this valuable information!--Hope you don't get in trouble for it!!! Jack.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Ah, the Spectra! It's a beautiful watch - I know, I used to have one! Sold it to a friend I knew would cherish it.

    The Spectra has a solid 14k case, so if you picked it up for a couple dollars, you got the Sale of the Century! It's not just the gold value - they sell for well beyond the melt price. According to Rondeau's book on the Hamilton Electric, the Spectra was discontinued in 1960 before the 505 was introduced, so a correct Spectra would have a 500 or 500A. If it's in a Gold Filled case, it's a Saturn, which is also a valuable watch. Since it was introduced in 1961 it it is likely to carry a 505 movement.

    They're expensive to service, and there are few who are competent to do it - especially the 500s. But in either case, the cost of service plus your initial investment will be well below the value of a complete working Saturn or Spectra.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Quote Originally Posted by GeneJockey View Post
    Ah, the Spectra! It's a beautiful watch - I know, I used to have one! Sold it to a friend I knew would cherish it.

    The Spectra has a solid 14k case, so if you picked it up for a couple dollars, you got the Sale of the Century! It's not just the gold value - they sell for well beyond the melt price. According to Rondeau's book on the Hamilton Electric, the Spectra was discontinued in 1960 before the 505 was introduced, so a correct Spectra would have a 500 or 500A. If it's in a Gold Filled case, it's a Saturn, which is also a valuable watch. Since it was introduced in 1961 it it is likely to carry a 505 movement.

    They're expensive to service, and there are few who are competent to do it - especially the 500s. But in either case, the cost of service plus your initial investment will be well below the value of a complete working Saturn or Spectra.

    Thank you so much, GeneJockey. You made me realize that what I have is indeed a Saturn--gold filled instead of solid gold. I guess that explains the 505 movement also! Thanks to experts like you and others, novice collectors like me learn something new every day! Thanks again! Jack. P.S.--the battery corrosion caused a couple of the gear teeth in this watch to be lost, resulting in erratic timekeeping. Do you know where I might get a correct 505 movement, or perhaps just replacements for the the damaged parts? So far I have been unsuccessful on eBay! Thanks again.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    I'm quite sure that Rene Rondeau has a web site, do a google search. He is the world expert on Hamilton Electrics. Expect to pay big bucks,parts for the Hamilton Electrics are hard to come by.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Quote Originally Posted by RON in PA View Post
    I'm quite sure that Rene Rondeau has a web site, do a google search. He is the world expert on Hamilton Electrics. Expect to pay big bucks,parts for the Hamilton Electrics are hard to come by.
    Vintage Hamilton Electric Watches By The Leading Authority - René Rondeau - Dealer of Other Fine Vintage Timepieces

    I've never tried him out, but from my understanding it is very pricey (but quality) service.
    I've got more Converse sneakers than watches, but it is a close race.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hamner View Post
    Thank you so much, GeneJockey. You made me realize that what I have is indeed a Saturn--gold filled instead of solid gold. I guess that explains the 505 movement also! Thanks to experts like you and others, novice collectors like me learn something new every day! Thanks again! Jack. P.S.--the battery corrosion caused a couple of the gear teeth in this watch to be lost, resulting in erratic timekeeping. Do you know where I might get a correct 505 movement, or perhaps just replacements for the the damaged parts? So far I have been unsuccessful on eBay! Thanks again.
    As others have said, contact Rene Rondeau. He literally wrote the book on Hamilton Electrics - interviewed the surviving members of the original research team, pored over Hamilton factory documents, and amassed an unrivalled collection of prototypes, etc - not to mention spare parts.

    He's also arguably the most skilled at servicing them. It DOES cost quite a bit - 2-3 times the cost of servicing a manual-wind mechanical watch. Still less than factory service on a Rolex, by a considerable distance!

    Rene serviced my Spectra when I got it. It has a Model 500, which is MUCH more finicky. After the service it ran so well I wore it as my daily watch for a couple years!

    I don't know for sure, but it's also possible that he charges less for the 505. It's much easier to work with than the 500.

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJohnP View Post
    Vintage Hamilton Electric Watches By The Leading Authority - René Rondeau - Dealer of Other Fine Vintage Timepieces

    I've never tried him out, but from my understanding it is very pricey (but quality) service.
    Thanks for your response! Jack

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    Re: Hamilton Spectra movement?

    Thanks again, GeneJockey....I think I will email him for a quote.

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