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HI All
I purchased a Rainbow Flyback (40mm version) in the summer. It looked excellent and has the Luminova dial. I had thought these dials were later than the Tritium ones...the watch has been out to my repairman and will be back soon. A few things that I noticed when he sent pics of the movement is that it is only marked 405, so I assume not a 405z, and there are numbers on it that look to indicate possible manufacture date of 3/93...can anyone shed light on this?

I appreciate your time in advance...thank you
 

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HI All
I purchased a Rainbow Flyback (40mm version) in the summer. It looked excellent and has the Luminova dial. I had thought these dials were later than the Tritium ones...the watch has been out to my repairman and will be back soon. A few things that I noticed when he sent pics of the movement is that it is only marked 405, so I assume not a 405z, and there are numbers on it that look to indicate possible manufacture date of 3/93...can anyone shed light on this?

I appreciate your time in advance...thank you
Can’t answer your question, but want to say congrats!! That’s a beauty!


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Hi there,

It does look excellent, congratulations. The first Rainbow Flybacks manufactured c. 1997 still had tritium dials and came on a leather band; by 1999 this had changed to luminova and cal 405 Z; so yours most likely dates to c. 1998. The number on the movement (100393?) is not a date but a serial number. With this number Zenith could perhaps give you more details if you purchase an extract from the archives.

Hope this helps,

HI All
I purchased a Rainbow Flyback (40mm version) in the summer. It looked excellent and has the Luminova dial. I had thought these dials were later than the Tritium ones...the watch has been out to my repairman and will be back soon. A few things that I noticed when he sent pics of the movement is that it is only marked 405, so I assume not a 405z, and there are numbers on it that look to indicate possible manufacture date of 3/93...can anyone shed light on this?

I appreciate your time in advance...thank you
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sempervivens,

Thank you so much for your information...it helps immensely especially with the dating of the watch. I am looking forward to getting it back in the next weeks and wearing it.
best
Robert
 

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Pages from the 1999 UK catalogue, £2195 on the bracelet.

I find it interesting that the size of the watches is never mentioned in this puplication, nowadays people are obsessed to the degree that if X is the minium size for you 1mm less is unacceptable.
Sorry about the quality of the images, they were taken in very poor lamp light.
 

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My ChronoMaster El Primero has a movement serial number of 92154 and was sold in September 1996 (to its first time buyer - I got it second hand). The movement serial number is of vital importance in my watch since it is COSC tested and the number needs to go on the certificate. But I think that Zenith may well be able to give you a precise date on the basis of that number.

Hartmut Richter
 

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thank you Longjean....it is really nice to have this information...I can hardly wait until I get the watch back...soon.
 

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Can anyone briefly summarize the difference between the 405 and 405z. I’ve got a 405z that i wear daily and would love to know.
 

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As far as I know, it's merely the exact size of the lever fork and the number of teeth in the escapement gear and the corresponding pinion (to make the seconds gear still go round once a minute).

Hartmut Richter
 

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As far as I know, it's merely the exact size of the lever fork and the number of teeth in the escapement gear and the corresponding pinion (to make the seconds gear still go round once a minute).

Hartmut Richter
Just saw this now Hartmut...many thanks for the input. Curious what the lever fork modification was intended to provide? Additional clearance, reliability, balance? Fact (or speculation) welcome.


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I think they raised the number of teeth in that gear rather than lowered it. That means that the speed of rotation of this gear was lowered (although the pinion was of course adapted so that the seconds hand gear still went round once a minute). I suspect it would lower wear marginally since the force at which the lever pallet is going in would also be reduced.

Otherwise, it's anyone's guess. :think:

Hartmut Richter
 

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FWIW, I found an explanation to my 405 vs 405z question sifting through an old TZ review from 2000:

An interesting technical change also has occurred in recent times: Since fall 1999 all newly produced Zenith chronographs have movements designated 400Z (or 405Z and 410Z, respectively). My pilot-style Class El Primero, too, has this movement. After some inquiry I got the information from Zenith that finally the old tooling and machines had to be scrapped and new ones had to be made. And somehow their engineers found out that it was a lot easier and therefore cheaper to produce an escape wheel with 20 teeth instead of one with 21 teeth as it was used in all Primeros before. The anchor and the second wheel also had to be changed, and to show the watchmaker the difference between the two movement variants (in case he had to replace any part) the letter "Z" was added to the "400"-engraving on the movement. From a technical point of view this change has no result whatsoever.

Here's the link to the entire article: https://forums.timezone.com/index.php?t=tree&goto=1527&rid=0
 

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...amazing that a seemingly trivial detail could drive cost-cutting fabrication and process changes for an escapement. Will be counting teeth next time i see one of these wheels.


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