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Hello everyone - seeking your expert opinion on this Sturmanskie 17j. I've been looking for a piece like that in not a terrible state, but have some doubts about this one:
- the hour and minute hand are either new or have been relumed (is it possible to tell the difference?)
- the case looks a bit too clean/polished compared with the condition of the dial
- most worryingly, the Geneva stripes appear to not be present on all plates

On the bright side:
- the crown looks the right shape
- the dial shows age (faded red, greenish edges, faded loom)

Finally, what's the going-rate for a watch in this condition (assuming it's mostly legit)?

View attachment 12636781
View attachment 12636785
View attachment 12636787
The hands, first of all, need to be blued. Since the Gagarin shares so many parts with the ordinary sportivnie sometimes non-blued hands are used from a sportivnie. Do the hands glow? If they do, it's been re-lumed. The color of the hand lume and dial lume should be fairly close. On that one they're not but the discoloration of the lume at the base of the hour hand indicates some age so it's hard to say for sure. I think it would be best, also, that the second hand be long enough to reach into the second marks on the perimeter.

It's hard to comment on the case without some more pictures but it's quite possible that the case was moved from a nicer sportivnie, impossible to say. These cases can be re-chromed but that would be obvious.

From what I can see, the movement looks fine. Since this is a common movement from that time any little differences could be chalked up to period repairs/replacement and could be reversed.

A positive for this one is that on the dial the red star on the "flying bomb" has not been re-painted as is often done by sellers "dressing" it up.
 

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I rarely dismiss a dial because it's too "clean". In this case I believe that dial and hands have been moved from one of the three watches on the right of the picture below taken from the '90 Vostok catalog. Vostok had a perfect opportunity to show this dial in a 320/470 amphibian since this '90 catalog has the most 320/470 amphibian dials, but it's not there. Also lume dot on bezel has been manufactured probably from a komandirskie bezel and the magnetic shield doesn't make sense on an amphibian whose dial does not state it's antimagnetic.

Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Strap Brown
 

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I rarely dismiss a dial because it's too "clean". In this case I believe that dial and hands have been moved from one of the three watches on the right of the picture below taken from the '90 Vostok catalog. Vostok had a perfect opportunity to show this dial in a 320/470 amphibian since this '90 catalog has the most 320/470 amphibian dials, but it's not there. Also lume dot on bezel has been manufactured probably from a komandirskie bezel and the magnetic shield doesn't make sense on an amphibian whose dial does not state it's antimagnetic.

View attachment 12638785
Also notice the crown stem showing at the edge of the dial.
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Hey!
I have become obsessed with watches made in the USSR over the last weeks, and I have been living on ebay and around the internet just searching for watches made in the USSR. I have found some watches that I love, and I am wondering if they are good to buy. I would love to get an opinion from you guys.

1:
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Brown
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Jewellery


2:
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Strap
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Jewellery


3:
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Strap Fashion accessory
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Strap

This last one has had new lume put on the dial and the arms.

To me, the clockwork in all of them look legit, but as I have no idea, and this is the first watch or watches I will ever buy in my life, and also because I hope it could be the start of a beautiful collection with great affectional value to me, it would be really nice not to spend my limited budget on something that does not have that Soviet authenticity.

I appreciate anything that can help me to make an informed first choice.

Best regards,
Yurij :)
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Hey!
I have become obsessed with watches made in the USSR over the last weeks, and I have been living on ebay and around the internet just searching for watches made in the USSR. I have found some watches that I love, and I am wondering if they are good to buy. I would love to get an opinion from you guys.

1:
View attachment 12638903 View attachment 12638905

2:
View attachment 12638909 View attachment 12638911

3:
View attachment 12638913 View attachment 12638917
This last one has had new lume put on the dial and the arms.

To me, the clockwork in all of them look legit, but as I have no idea, and this is the first watch or watches I will ever buy in my life, and also because I hope it could be the start of a beautiful collection with great affectional value to me, it would be really nice not to spend my limited budget on something that does not have that Soviet authenticity.

I appreciate anything that can help me to make an informed first choice.

Best regards,
Yurij :)
Welcome to the forum, comrade, I hope this hobby will be a lot of fun for you.

I would only consider the third one, a classic "sportivnie" or sports watch, so named because with its hacking movement one was able to time sporting events. That one was made at the First Moscow Watch Factory (Poljot) in 1957 according to the date on the movement. It looks all authentic except for the back which is not pictured. It's a personal decision but some serious collectors prefer that their watch choices have not been re-lumed even if the appearance is a little less good.

The other two did not leave any soviet watch factory looking like that. Somebody "constructed" them from various collected parts, so not good choices, in my opinion, unless they are very cheap and you need the parts.

Good luck!
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Thank you so very much for your reply! Even before I own a Soviet watch it is very exciting, and I drive my GF and my friends nuts talking about the history of soviet watch factories all the time.

This has been a great help for me, and I think I will definitely buy it then.

Here is the picture of the back cover:
Analog watch Watch Watch accessory Strap Fashion accessory


May I ask you opinon on this as well, comrade?
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

I rarely dismiss a dial because it's too "clean". In this case I believe that dial and hands have been moved from one of the three watches on the right of the picture below taken from the '90 Vostok catalog. Vostok had a perfect opportunity to show this dial in a 320/470 amphibian since this '90 catalog has the most 320/470 amphibian dials, but it's not there. Also lume dot on bezel has been manufactured probably from a komandirskie bezel and the magnetic shield doesn't make sense on an amphibian whose dial does not state it's antimagnetic.

View attachment 12638785
Cheers Schnurrp . I had picked up on the bezel and stem and thought it had the wrong seconds hand, evidently not. Was hoping it belonged in a type 34 case . Still a really nice dial but I really don't need another project at the minute so I'll leave it.
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Thank you so very much for your reply! Even before I own a Soviet watch it is very exciting, and I drive my GF and my friends nuts talking about the history of soviet watch factories all the time.

This has been a great help for me, and I think I will definitely buy it then.

Here is the picture of the back cover:
View attachment 12638991

May I ask you opinon on this as well, comrade?
The back looks authentic.

Were you told it was re-lumed because the lume does not look new to me.
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

The back looks authentic.

Were you told it was re-lumed because the lume does not look new to me.
Yes, it actually said in the description of this watch. Then I sent seller a message asking if there were more parts that were re-done or changed, and he said that it was all original except for the lume.

Now with your help i have found my confidence to buy, and I just placed the order. I am one excited mother bleeper, comrade schnurrp!

Again thank you for your help! I must say I am very impressed with the level of solidarity, friendship and understanding in this forum :)
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Yes, it actually said in the description of this watch. Then I sent seller a message asking if there were more parts that were re-done or changed, and he said that it was all original except for the lume.

Now with your help i have found my confidence to buy, and I just placed the order. I am one excited mother bleeper, comrade schnurrp!

Again thank you for your help! I must say I am very impressed with the level of solidarity, friendship and understanding in this forum :)
You are welcome. Wear it in good health, comrade, which, since the original lume may have been radioactive, will be easier with new lume.

Here is a picture of your choice in comrade Mroatman's massive collection which I had to visit to make sure there was a model made without place-of-manufacture on the dial.

Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Strap
 

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Re: Q&A Expertise thread: Is this watch legit or a franken?

Yes, it actually said in the description of this watch. Then I sent seller a message asking if there were more parts that were re-done or changed, and he said that it was all original except for the lume.

Now with your help i have found my confidence to buy, and I just placed the order. I am one excited mother bleeper, comrade schnurrp!

Again thank you for your help! I must say I am very impressed with the level of solidarity, friendship and understanding in this forum :)
Congratulations! You will be very happy with this watch. You definitely did the right thing by asking before buying!

If you want to wear this daily, you may want to consider replacing the strap that the seller appears to include. I can't tell for sure from the photos, but generally the ones I have received are pretty poor quality. Look for 16mm width, and keep in mind that this watch is small relative to more modern designs (33mm in diameter), so if you have bigger wrists, you may want to consider a bund or padded strap. There are some good threads on where to buy watch straps at a reasonable price.
 

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Rodkopf - there's one of these watches on the internet with documentation dated to 04 09 1990 https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/hockey-stars-ussr-watch-1691810698

In 1989 a number of important hockey players in the USSR were allowed to leave and join Canadian clubs, but were obliged to play for the USSR team in the World Hockey Championships. If the date is September 1990, it seems possible that this watch was part of the celebration of the April 1990 championship held in Switzerland (and won by the USSR) or made in advance for the 1991 championships held in Finland. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_Hockey_World_Championships

A related Slava quartz watch was made to commemorate the meeting of Bush and Gorbachev in Malta aboard the USSR Slava and USA Belknap ships in early December 1989:
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Strap Fashion accessory
 

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Hello everyone - seeking your expert opinion on this Sturmanskie 17j. I've been looking for a piece like that in not a terrible state, but have some doubts about this one:
- the hour and minute hand are either new or have been relumed (is it possible to tell the difference?)
- the case looks a bit too clean/polished compared with the condition of the dial
- most worryingly, the Geneva stripes appear to not be present on all plates
On the bright side:
- the crown looks the right shape
- the dial shows age (faded red, greenish edges, faded loom)
Finally, what's the going-rate for a watch in this condition (assuming it's mostly legit)?
I think you got it about right here. Everything looks correct (movement included), though the case is probably replaced, the hands are probably relumed, and the second hand looks a tiny bit too short. These are not dealbreakers on their own unless the price is astronomical. The going rate for these seems to be ~$350-600+.

I'd say it's a very nice, authentic example with just a few small compromises. Hard to find a watch this collectible without any of those, though.
 

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Everything's the same as the one you just bought except for the dial and hands:
Surprisingly not, comrade! Sportivnie were produced in two case sizes; you have the smaller one with two-piece back. The larger case has a one-piece back, just like the 17-jewel Sturmanskie.

You can also usually distinguish the two from the front, as the smaller case has thinner lugs and a dial with the '1MWF from Kirova' text. The larger model has thicker lugs and omits this text for some reason.

The 'swimmer' model was only produced in the smaller size, I believe. But many of the other models were produced in both sizes:

Watch Watch accessory Fashion accessory Jewellery Material property


I can't explain why, since they're so dang similar. Perhaps the two-piece back was released as a later development for better water-resistance.
 

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Surprisingly not, comrade! Sportivnie were produced in two case sizes; you have the smaller one with two-piece back. The larger case has a one-piece back, just like the 17-jewel Sturmanskie.

You can also usually distinguish the two from the front, as the smaller case has thinner lugs and a dial with the '1MWF from Kirova' text. The larger model has thicker lugs and omits this text for some reason.

The 'swimmer' model was only produced in the smaller size, I believe. But many of the other models were produced in both sizes:

View attachment 12645901

I can't explain why, since they're so dang similar. Perhaps the two-piece back was released as a later development for better water-resistance.
Thanks for that correction, comrade mroatman. When are you going to add more views of the watches in your collection so that we can help ourselves? Although I seemed to have looked right past the back view of my swimmer.
 
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