WatchUSeek Watch Forums banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 88 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was asked Zoodles95 to tear down and compare these two movements during a routine service so we can see just what are the differences between these two movements:

(Note: the top,or right-hand image will always be the CL-888 and the bottom, or left-hand image will be the ST16.)

Here are the two movements in there respective cases, the CL-888 in a large black Swiss Legend; the ST16 in a smaller Seagull.





The first thing done was check the timing of the two:

CL-888:
Beat error - 0.9 ms
Rate - +6.00 (dial up), +21.5 (crown down)

ST16:
Beat error - 1.5 ms
Rate - -7.2 (dial up), -11 (crown down)

Both of these rates are acceptable, and should average within my preferred band of +/- 10 s/d.

Now we start withe the actual disassembly of the movements. For those who wish to see the actual steps taken I refer you to the WUS thread titled "Inside an ST16 (lot's of images)", where did a step-by-step on the disassembly of this movement.

I thought there would be some differences between the two, but, as you will see in the following pictures, there isn't.

Mainplates


Date wheels


Main Bridge


Auto Bridge


Rotors




Bridge for the 2nd Wheel


2nd Wheel




4th Wheel




3rd Wheel




Balance




Pallet Bridge

Pallets






Escape Wheel








Barrel




Auto-winding Reduction gear


"Magic Fingers" for auto-winding


Click/Click spring combination and hack lever


C-spring


Here is the only difference I found:


The CL-888 had two second hand pinion tension springs.

My comments in a moment, for right now, I'll let your modems cool back down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,616 Posts
(Note: the top,or right-hand image will always be the CL-888 and the bottom, or left-hand image will be the ST16.)
Finally a tear down...thanks for taking the time lysander

I haven't even looked yet, but the fact you HAD to put that...says a lot. :-d

Maybe its time to update the Chinese watch Wiki??

-

*post reading the thread - It doesn't take a watchmaker to see they are the same.
 

·
CMW & Sales Moderator
Joined
·
5,498 Posts
drum roll please .......... why the jewel count difference?

I am very anxious to hear what lysanderxiii has to say about this comparison!!

This thread has been posted in the reference section. :-!

Cheers,
gigfy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,616 Posts
drum roll please .......... why the jewel count difference?

I am very anxious to hear what lysanderxiii has to say about this comparison!!

This thread has been posted in the reference section. :-!

Cheers,
gigfy
I think we should state out front that regardless of lysander's pending thoughts...we all agree that due to whatever process done it Switzerland...the CL-888 is "Swiss Made"...BY LAW....beyond that its totally an ST16 :-d

I am also curious about the noted jewel counts
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Now, for my comments. These two movements are the exact same design, all the parts are identical and probably interchange (I had to be very careful not to mix-up the parts.)

One difference between these two movements was the finish. I have always associated heavy, shiny chrome or nickel plating with cheapness, as is it is often used in an attempt to cover small machining imperfections. The Seagull is heavily plated as opposed the the light satin finish of the CL-888. This, with the deep cut Geneva stripes, detracts from the rather utilitarian design of the movement. But, that is just my opinion. There are ST16 movements out there with the lighter satin finish and I prefer them, but that has a lot to do with how I feel a Geneva finish should be done, and how Seagull does it on this and more noteably the ST19.

The other visible difference was the addition of a second tension spring for the second hand pinion. This could have been an error during assembly, or it could be an attempt to ensure that the chances of second hand stutter are minimalized, right now, I don't know if it was intentional or not, but, if I see another one with two springs....

The hair, or balance, spring on the CL-888 was better formed and the timing shows this. The rate of all watches in a timing machine varies slightly and the quoted rates are averages over a short period of time, but the CL-888 varies less, about the same as the average Standard grade ETA.

Now, I know what some out there are saying, "So where do they get off saying that is a SWISS movement?"

Well, the rules allow of up to 50% of the value of the entire movement (not including labor) to be of non-Swiss origin and a movement to still be considered "Swiss." The hairspring was almost certainly Swiss, as Chinese one usually don't look that well formed, the mainspring probably (although the two were identical, as far as I could see), possibly the rotor and maybe the plating as well. These parts could very well account for over 50% of the value of the movement, as brand new Chinese movement can be had retail for 10 bucks, imagine what they cost if you order 100,000 direct from the factory, unassembled.

(By the way, for those who feel this is a rather loose definition of "Swiss Made", you should read what is required for the "Made in USA" label, while not as ridgedly defined as the FHS definition, it is a better definition.)

Other observations: The CL-888 was clean and tidy on the inside and properly oiled, the ST16 was relatively clean but the oiling was spotty, some pivot had a hint of oil, others did not have any.

From what I have seen the Claro-Semag "Triple-Eight" is an improved ST16, in that it has a better hairspring and is more consistant in its rate and lubricated for five to ten years of wear before it needs looking after. These aren't big, or really even noticeable to the average guy wearing watches in these price ranges (who don't plan on ever servicing them), but they are improvements. Whether, or not, you feel they are worth the extra cost of "SWISS MADE" is entirely a personal question.

In any case, the design is an excellent design, capable of hard use and good timekeeping.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jcp311

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I hope you didn't accidentally mix the IMPORTANT Swiss parts with the Chinese parts ;-)

Excellent Job as always :-!
I didn't mix any parts, important or otherwise. :-!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
drum roll please .......... why the jewel count difference?

I am very anxious to hear what lysanderxiii has to say about this comparison!!

This thread has been posted in the reference section. :-!

Cheers,
gigfy
The jewel count was the same, I think all the jewels are pictured. [EDIT: the CL-888 has 21 jewels, the ST16 has 20. The extra jewel is on the bottom pivot for the barrel arbor, the same useless (IMO) location as ETA uses. And, all of them are pictured]

The jewels might be of Swiss origin, that would also add to the Swiss value content.

But, how can you tell the difference between a Swiss ruby and a Chinese one? Is there even a noticeable difference?
 

·
CMW & Sales Moderator
Joined
·
5,498 Posts
Thanks lysanderxiii for the very informative write up.

... the CL-888 has 21 jewels ...
Very interesting! :think: Why all of the fuss and put 18 jewels all over the rotor and literature. And the EL-18 (even further refinished CL-888) states that they have 18 jewels. Don't you think they would have caught that mistake?

Not that it makes any difference with the added jewels. That is not my point. The fact that they put that on the movement & literature and it is not correct, says a lot, in my book. :-x

Cheers,
gigfy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,616 Posts
I find this whole subject to be really interesting

Thanks lysanderxiii for the very informative write up.



Very interesting! :think: Why all of the fuss and put 18 jewels all over the rotor and literature. And the EL-18 (even further refinished CL-888) states that they have 18 jewels. Don't you think they would have caught that mistake?

Not that it makes any difference with the added jewels. That is not my point. The fact that they put that on the movement & literature and it is not correct, says a lot, in my book. :-x

Cheers,
gigfy
 

·
CMW & Sales Moderator
Joined
·
5,498 Posts
BTW, I am REALLY enjoying wearing my Zodiac Oceanaire w/ CL-888 while reading this thread and watching it unfold! :)

Cheers,
gigfy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Jewel count:

Mainplate jewels: one in the center, one next to the oil stain on the CL-888 at 9 (for barrel arbor), two on in a line angled at 2 (3rd and 4th wheels), one at 3 (escape wheel), one just above the balance jewels and the two for the lower balance pivot. Eight (8) total, the ST does not have the one at 9, giving it seven (7).


Main bridge jewels: three (3) in the upper right, both.


Auto bridge jewels: one (1) at the top


2nd wheel Bridge jewels: two (2).


Balance and balance cock jewels: one impulse jewel, two for the balance pivot (underneath), for a total of three (3).


Pallet Bridge jewels: one (1).


Pallet jewels: two (2)


Magic Finger jewels: one (1)


Adding the numbers in parenthesis, we get 21 jewels for the CL-888 and 20 jewels for the ST16.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Thanks lysanderxiii for the very informative write up.



Very interesting! :think: Why all of the fuss and put 18 jewels all over the rotor and literature. And the EL-18 (even further refinished CL-888) states that they have 18 jewels. Don't you think they would have caught that mistake?

Not that it makes any difference with the added jewels. That is not my point. The fact that they put that on the movement & literature and it is not correct, says a lot, in my book. :-x

Cheers,
gigfy
There are laws against adding jewels that aren't there, but there aren't any about not counting those that are.

Why wouldn't you want to count jewels? Maybe because they want to be different. Maybe they are trying to convince you that this really is a different movement from all those 21 jewel Chinese and Japanese movements out there. Maybe they are trying to convince themselves the movement is different.

It's not like most people will crack one open and count red specks... Well, at least not those that aren't WISes
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,616 Posts
BTW, I am REALLY enjoying wearing my Zodiac Oceanaire w/ CL-888 while reading this thread and watching it unfold! :)

Cheers,
gigfy
:-! As you should...I got nuthin but love for the movement whatever its named
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,997 Posts
Many thanks for an outstanding post. It was really an eye opener. I don't know Claro very well. It's still rarely turns up here in Japan, so I have not had a chance to disassemble one yet. Is the Claro 88 and the Claro 888 the same movement?

Also, I heard it said that Zeno bought 5,000 Claro 88 movements and less than a year later tried to sell them all off because the quality just wasn't good enough. As you know, Zeno, which not a bad watch, is not in the front ranks of the Swiss watch industry either.

So, two questions: Are their quality concerns with the Claro 88 and is the Claro 88 the same as the Claro 888?
 

·
Mod. Russian, China Mech.
Joined
·
18,210 Posts
Thank you for that excellent review of these movements. :-!

The photographic evidence is unequivocal:

1. both the ST16 and CL888 ebauches are identical, so neither is a 'clone' of the other (newcomers here are encouraged to check out Lysanderxiii's other teardowns to see how cloning invariably results in machining differences)

2. the ebauche has been finished differently from each other including a probably Swiss hairspring, so the CL888 has been genuinely 'finished' by Claro to legally warrant the 'Swiss' label.


Add to that the following facts:

1. the ST16 appeared publicly years earlier than the CL888
2. the ST16 is a well-developed range of movements from Sea-Gull with an officially documented history, whereas the CL888 is a single model from Claro-Semag with only dubious anecdotal history.
3. claims of an earlier CL888 dating back to the 1960s have no evidence to support them and some evidence (the Seiko patents) to disprove them.

And you would have to conclude that Claro-Semag have been buying ebauches from Sea-Gull.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,505 Posts
Thank you so much for agreeing to take on this project and for your excellent job
putting this together. There is evidence here to support both sides of the argument:

-There is some upgraded parts and finishing which can justify the CL-888 being "Swiss" as per their rules.

-There can be no dispute now that the CL-888 is a modified ST16 with a Swiss hairspring, Swiss assembly and lubrication and their own finishing.

Claro should come out and admit that their movement is an improved ST16. These movements are good workhorses which are good timekeepers.

Again you did an amazing job and have done a service to all of us who want to know the real truth about these things. Thank you to Gigfy and others who helped me get the Swiss Legend watch so that I could source a watch with a CL-888 movement to get this comparo done. Took a few months to get the needed watches etc but frankly this was well worth it.



http://www.network54.com/Forum/650156/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,815 Posts
And now the interesting thing is, who'se going to confront C-S with this information and ask them to come up with the whole truth ;-)
 
1 - 20 of 88 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top