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Mod. Russian, China Mech.
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Discussion Starter #1
Yes you read that correctly. I did say "my" and I did say "Zvezda". And yes I am male, and I only buy watches to wear not just to collect.



But... you say. But... isn't Zvezda for girls?

Well today I want to challenge the notion that all Zvezda watches were made only for women.

My arguments are as follows:

1. The Lip T18 from which the Zvezda was copied was made for men.
2. The Zvezda is really not that small.
3. The solid-lug tank variant is significantly beefier than the other Zvezda models (tonneau, wire-lugs etc)

Argument 1 is an undisputed historical fact.

Argument 3 can be judged by searching 'Zvesda' in Mark Gordon's collection and making some comparisons.

Which leaves argument 2 which I admit is somewhat subjective. But please bear with me on this...

Part of the problem for those who have never seen a Zvezda is that its ancestor was called 'T18' and we know that the '18' means 18mm, so it is natural to compare the Zvezda with something like the Zarja 1800. Indeed Mark Gordon even uses the designation '1802' in his collection.

However this is actually a retrospective application of the standard classification system adopted after the Zvezda's demise (unless somebody can show me proof otherwise). The correct designation is 'K-18' (ref. papers shown with Mark Gordon #1491). Lip called their movement 'T18' because they measured the width of the movement (9 o'clock to 3 o'clock), but the Soviet classification measures the diameter of a circle encompassing the entire main plate. So a better classification of the Zvezda would actually be 2902!



Doesn't seem so girly when you look at it like that does it?

So what do you think? Can a man wear a Zvezda Tank and keep his dignity intact?



(supplementary argument 4: Mrs Chascomm loves the style of this watch and would like to wear it but feels that it is 'a bit too big')
 

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Very good condition for a ... is that 1954 I see....amazing, pity that they are no longer made as I had to get a T18 re-issue
LGIM0113.jpg
still keep looking for a Zvezda but only seem to find in poor condition though
 

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I have no idea if it was originaly made for men or women, but it looks fine, definitely.
 

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Thank you for showing this beauty! |>|>|>
I've never considered this watch a lady's one, and neither did LIP apparently, given the wealth of T18-based gentleman wristwatches they made in the '30es and beyond.
The T18 (or К18) is a beautiful movement indeed and one of my favorites too. Its very large balance wheel and excellent overall design makes it capable of remarkably good timekeeping performances.
For what it's worth, however, it should have been coded as 2602.
According to NIIChasProm's coding convention (see Popova Goldberg, p.17), the "size" of a non-circular movement is obtained using the following formula: D=SquareRoot(4ab/pi) where a=length, b=width and pi=3.14


In this case, a=28.55mm and b=18mm, thus D=26 (more or less)
Though the formula may look weird at first glance, D is just the diameter of a circle having the same area as that of the non-circular movement (the T18 is actually a "tonneau", that's where the 'T' comes from in the original LIP designation.)
// ocram
 

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That's a very classy looking watch. Is the caseback a little curved to fit the wrist? It really is quite big in length, especially for a Russian watch.
 

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Ya know, I think you can get away with it under certain circumstances. When I wear a suit, for example, I want something shiny but understated, and this watch fits that bill excellently. In addition, there are many gorgeous old Hamiltons I've considered, and they're from the 1930s and 40s, and plenty of men still wear those. Classic is classic, no matter what decade you're in.

Unless, of course, you're trying to impress those folks who like to wear dinner plates on their wrists... In that case, you'd be outta luck!! :)
 

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I was never of the opinion that that model was intended for women.
 

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Mod. Russian, China Mech.
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Discussion Starter #10
Two-tone! Awesome! :-!

The woven one-piece strap looks great too. I'm considering something similar for mine, but the Uglich Tank has angled inner lugs which are probably less well suited to a one-piece than the straight lugs of the Penza Tank.
 

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Mod. Russian, China Mech.
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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you for showing this beauty! |>|>|>
I've never considered this watch a lady's one, and neither did LIP apparently, given the wealth of T18-based gentleman wristwatches they made in the '30es and beyond.
The T18 (or К18) is a beautiful movement indeed and one of my favorites too. Its very large balance wheel and excellent overall design makes it capable of remarkably good timekeeping performances.
For what it's worth, however, it should have been coded as 2602.
According to NIIChasProm's coding convention (see Popova Goldberg, p.17), the "size" of a non-circular movement is obtained using the following formula: D=SquareRoot(4ab/pi) where a=length, b=width and pi=3.14


In this case, a=28.55mm and b=18mm, thus D=26 (more or less)
Though the formula may look weird at first glance, D is just the diameter of a circle having the same area as that of the non-circular movement (the T18 is actually a "tonneau", that's where the 'T' comes from in the original LIP designation.)
// ocram
Thanks for the correction. Excellent information. |>

In fact I think it is time we all adopted this system to measure case sizes, too. Occasionally we get somebody on this forum declare that they can't wear a Vostok Attache or a Slava TV because "I can't wear a watch less than ...mm wide" failing to consider how the watch will actually wear on the wrist.

e.g. my Slava is only 36mm wide ...



...but the 'calculated diameter' based on top surface area excluding lugs is closer to 42mm!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I like your band. How is that attached? Glued?
Folding tin tabs, like on the famous 'Juri Gagarin' strap. It's a vintage strap designed for fixed lugs.

I was lucky to pick up a packet of three of them from my watchmaker. He had all this odd stuff lying around and he'd offer it to me for peanuts and I'd find it hard to say no. If you're looking for open-ended straps, I've noticed that RLT watches have some good deals.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
That's a very classy looking watch. Is the caseback a little curved to fit the wrist?
Yes it is curved (slightly), which should mean that shnurrp's example (see below) should fit nicely with a one-piece strap.
It really is quite big in length, especially for a Russian watch.
The actual case dimensions are 22x32mm excl lugs (39mm incl lugs). 9mm thick.

22x32 gives a top-surface-area-excluding-lugs (tsaxl) equivalent to a diameter of 30mm. Add a little for the lugs and that's not too far from a Moskva or other small Pobeda type. So yes it is quite small, but not excessively so in an 'Art Deco' style watch.

(by the way, that's my new measurement for non-round watches; 'tsaxl diameter')
 

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I think it's wearable on a male wrist using a cuff strap. Reno has a Zvezda on cuff strap, if i'm not wrong.
 

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Yes you read that correctly. I did say "my" and I did say "Zvezda". And yes I am male, and I only buy watches to wear not just to collect.

Congratulations, Chascomm :-!

Mine says hi ;-)



I need to try one of those folded straps myself…

Mine is currently on a Cliffhanger strap :
 

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nice watches.................
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Congratulations, Chascomm :-!

Mine says hi ;-)

Very nice! Especially that embossed dial. :-!

I thought about using a cuff strap, but then I realized that in this town, the combination of tank case of about this size with button-down cuff strap is commonly worn by young women o| It's just one of those frustrating geographical/cultural quirks (like American men wearing 50mm 'dress watches').
 

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Looks likeva man's watch to me, especially after watching an episode of "Boardwalk Empire." Looks just like the small tank watches all the gangsters were wearing, and you can bet that none of those guys would have worn a ladies' watch!
 
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