The next watch for service is a Breitling Colt, the movement, ETA 2893-2 is the same as the more commonly used ETA 2892-2, but with the added GMT function. This particular Breitling has been sent to me as its stopping randomly.
The Breitling Colt was first introduced in the 1980’s, primarily for the armed forces, however its entry price point and robustness made it a firm favourite with the general public. Interestingly, since 2011, the colt models only house quartz movements – I would imagine that was a move to clearly differentiate the entry level Colts to the more expensive Breitling models, not that any Breitling is cheap!
First things first, I open the back to check the overall condition of the movement. It looks pretty good, just in need of a service.
I remove all the case clamps and screws and drop the movement out of the case, readying the hands for removal by lining them up at 12 – makes it easier and a lot less likely any damage would be done. A protective cover will also be placed over the dial and hands before they are removed, this also helps prevent damage.
Dial and hands removed, we can now see the dial side of the movement. Again looks to be in pretty good condition, just dry of oil.
I begin by removing the automatic device and taking it apart, checking it for wear as usual. Any worn parts will be replaced. Also notice the small brass leaver to the top of the picture, this little component is what stops the movement from running when the stem is put into handset.
The train bridge comes out next.
Closely followed by the barrel bridge. The barrel bridge is particularly vulnerable to wear on this particular calibre, I check each part and the bridge itself carefully. Ive seen extensive wear to these parts, its reliant on regular servicing to ensure the oil doesnt dry out – if it does, the wheels literally start cutting into the posts of the bridge, once that happens its a new bridge.
There is already slight wear to this particular bridge, its being serviced just in time!
Once that side is complete I begin the removal of parts from the dial side. Keyless and shock settings still to be removed.
One stripped watch ready for cleaning.
All loaded into the baskets and ready for cleaning.
40 minutes later and im ready to start rebuilding and oiling. The following picture shows the bare mainplate, not even the shock settings are back in yet.
The shock settings are very small, ive included a 20p in the following picture to give an idea on the scale we are dealing with here. They have a bit of a habit of pinging off in any direction – made worse if its been oiled, then they stick to whatever they land on, making them very difficult to find! The liquid in the centre of the jewel is the oil. It needs just the right amount, too little and it will dry out quicker than it should, too much and it causes it to flood which actually moves the oil away from where it should be.
Back safe and sound in its rightful place. Its actually a critical piece to the running of the movement, if something is wrong here, the watch wont keep good time.
I continue on with the movement service, as said previously stated, the barrel bridge requires particular attention. I ensure its oiled correctly and generously to prevent any further wear to it.
Barrel bridge back in place.
Shortly followed by the keyless works.
Train and train bridge are next.
I then continue on with the dial side.
Movement nearly complete, time to fit the dial and hands.
Notice the circular pattern to the dial, attention to detail is what you are paying for with luxury watches.
So the service is nearly completed, time to case it back up. No shortage of case clamps and screws. (Also notice the hacking lever again, that will be fitted just before the automatic device, after final checks on regulation.)
Onto the timing to check the running once cased up.
Once im sure that it all looks good, I will fit the case back and gasket, 1 last shot before its closed up.
Water resistance checks next.
As with all watch services I complete, the final stage is the various tests to ensure its functioning within brand tolerances before being returned to the owner.
Thanks for reading.
The Watch Professional