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The Caliber UltraThin [message #16526] Mon, 25 April 2022 23:46 Go to next message
thesnark17 is currently offline  thesnark17
Messages: 574
Registered: January 2017
Gruen Master
Take two!

About 1,000 early UltraThins were made, between SN 41,000 and 42,500. They are impressively thin, and impeccably finished throughout. Some (perhaps half) are graded Extra Precision, like this one. It is unknown whether the later UltraThins in SN 148-150k and 185k are the same in all respects. There are also UltraThins at SN 13,7xx - another mystery how they compare.

Here's the dial. Showy, but understated.
/vgforum/index.php?t=getfile&id=9276&private=0

The first issue makes its appearance - the movement runs +5 seconds a day across three positions in this regulator position. Bad restaffing, tsk, tsk. The "stud" by the balance cock is also too long, because it is actually just a screw that's been driven partway through the plate.
/vgforum/index.php?t=getfile&id=9274&private=0

Ouch. Yes, that's epoxy, holding the balance jewel setting in place... who would do such a thing?! Both caps are messed up, and may not even be the right ones, or right screws... they sure don't seem to fit very well.
/vgforum/index.php?t=getfile&id=9273&private=0

Of interest, the dial is marked with the movement serial number, and also has light cursive engraving that says "Gruen Su-" (cut off into the center hole) and then some stuff I can't make out (Gp 421???). You can kind of see it in the photo.
/vgforum/index.php?t=getfile&id=9275&private=0

Don't get too carried away with this one - the delta across 5 positions is >250 seconds, and the beat error is so bad that it won't self-start, even at full wind. The dangers of shoddy watch repair... so much for Extra Precision!

[Updated on: Sat, 30 April 2022 20:08]

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Re: The Caliber UltraThin [message #16528 is a reply to message #16526] Tue, 26 April 2022 03:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Case is currently offline  Case
Messages: 1106
Registered: May 2019
Location: Cincinnati
Gruen Authority
Okay, okay, I’ll dial it back! 😁

Seriously though, thanks for sharing these. It’s a crime that someone decided to practice on this one.

The dial back markings are intriguing.
Re: The Caliber UltraThin [message #16529 is a reply to message #16528] Tue, 26 April 2022 15:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
JackW is currently offline  JackW
Messages: 1806
Registered: May 2013
Location: Denver
Gruen Authority
General pain in the rear
Site Admin
Such a beautiful movement to have suffered such butchery. A common feature as movements get older. Too often I see lead used for various repairs. Epoxy is more easily undone.

All I know is based on hard work & writing by others. I can only aspire to augment this body of knowledge. If I am wrong it is because of my own failings. -me

"If I have seen farther it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." - Newton
Re: The Caliber UltraThin [message #16544 is a reply to message #16529] Sat, 30 April 2022 20:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
thesnark17 is currently offline  thesnark17
Messages: 574
Registered: January 2017
Gruen Master
True, that.

Unfortunately, with the thickness of the movement plates, it may be impossible to repair the threads if they are bad. I assume that they were stripped, necessitating the epoxy; I suppose it's possible that it's the wrong screw and too small for the hole but it seems unlikely.

Re: The Caliber UltraThin [message #16545 is a reply to message #16544] Sun, 01 May 2022 00:07 Go to previous message
JackW is currently offline  JackW
Messages: 1806
Registered: May 2013
Location: Denver
Gruen Authority
General pain in the rear
Site Admin
thesnark17 wrote on Sat, 30 April 2022 14:13
True, that.

Unfortunately, with the thickness of the movement plates, it may be impossible to repair the threads if they are bad. I assume that they were stripped, necessitating the epoxy; I suppose it's possible that it's the wrong screw and too small for the hole but it seems unlikely.

I'd kindly disagree, that it is impossible. Just freaking difficult. Like doing a helicoil on an engine block. Except smaller. Granted, this is arm-chair quarterbacking at its finest.


All I know is based on hard work & writing by others. I can only aspire to augment this body of knowledge. If I am wrong it is because of my own failings. -me

"If I have seen farther it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." - Newton
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