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Discussion Starter #1
Some time ago I became an owner of Seiko 6309 which turned out to be gaining 4-5 minutes per day. Following the advice of wise men here on the forum that everything beyond 30s per day is candidate for cleaning and oiling, I made my first steps into watchmaking and did it myself.
After degreasing the parts in cleaning benzene and drying them, I reassembled the watch and oiled according to oiling plan (with my set of Dr. Tillwisch oils / grease). The result is that the watch is again gaining something in the vicinity of 4 minutes per day !?
Although I did it for a first time, I don't think I made anything wrong and I am puzzled that timing didn't improve a bit. At least oiling of jewels accesible in the top of my Poljot 3133 in Junkers case reduced the time gaining from 40s to around 5-10s per day, and that was done even without disassembling the movement and taking it out of the case (I guess I used only 2min and ended with a huge improvement) !
So the question is what should I look at next? Is it something wrong with the balance? I have a load of old 6309s, so I can try exchanging the balance part...
Any ideas would be highly appreciated.
 

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Your watch may be magnetized. You can check it with a compass. If it's not magnetized you can also try regulating your watch.
 

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Some time ago I became an owner of Seiko 6309 which turned out to be gaining 4-5 minutes per day. Following the advice of wise men here on the forum that everything beyond 30s per day is candidate for cleaning and oiling, I made my first steps into watchmaking and did it myself.
After degreasing the parts in cleaning benzene and drying them, I reassembled the watch and oiled according to oiling plan (with my set of Dr. Tillwisch oils / grease). The result is that the watch is again gaining something in the vicinity of 4 minutes per day !?
Although I did it for a first time, I don't think I made anything wrong and I am puzzled that timing didn't improve a bit. At least oiling of jewels accesible in the top of my Poljot 3133 in Junkers case reduced the time gaining from 40s to around 5-10s per day, and that was done even without disassembling the movement and taking it out of the case (I guess I used only 2min and ended with a huge improvement) !
So the question is what should I look at next? Is it something wrong with the balance? I have a load of old 6309s, so I can try exchanging the balance part...
Any ideas would be highly appreciated.
What is the amplitude of the balance like; fast and rather big swing or slow and feeble? Are any of the coils of the balance spring touching during compression or are they touching the back of the stud or are they touching the underside of the balance cock? Does the balance action change when the watch is held in different positions? Are the balance staff pivots worn? Did you clean the mainspring?

As you can see; there are all sorts of things that could be wrong.

Try a balance assembly from another 6309 and see what happens :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I did the compass test, and I can see an effect which is quite substantial. I tried demagnetizing the watch by holding it close to an older Samsung CRT and degaussing - but it didn't work for me. I guess it will need some more professional equipment.
Funny enough: my Poljot 3133 shows also signs of magnetization when brought close to the compass, but it is not affected as heavily as Seiko? Is it about the material used for the balance spring, or maybe the magnetization level and direction is different?
 

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I did the compass test, and I can see an effect which is quite substantial. I tried demagnetizing the watch by holding it close to an older Samsung CRT and degaussing - but it didn't work for me. I guess it will need some more professional equipment.
Funny enough: my Poljot 3133 shows also signs of magnetization when brought close to the compass, but it is not affected as heavily as Seiko? Is it about the material used for the balance spring, or maybe the magnetization level and direction is different?
Part of the problem with the compass test is that the compass needle is weakly magnetized in the first place so placing it near any iron or ferrous material will make it react. If a watch is truly magnetized then the compass needle will react quite radically and there will be no doubt.
So if you only get a minor disturbance of the needle; the movement may not be magnetized at all.

You didn't answer any of the other questions so it's pretty well impossible to diagnose the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I opened the case today to try to exchange the balance and check if it is of any help for the accuracy, but I got surprized by the behavior of the oscillating weight. It was moving in kind of steps, with two stable positions on either side of the balance, where the solid metal is. Even more, the weight stop at precisely the same place with a noticeable "wiggling" around this position, like being attracted by a magnet ! And indeed, whan I put it above the compas I could easily find what is North and South pole of the watch :)

Anyway, I think I will do demagnetization first and then start exchanging the balance, if needed at all. At least now I have a good reason to get one extra tool in my hobby watchmaker toolkit :). I could see some cheap blue demagnetizers on Ebay like a plate with a button on the top side, and have seen it in action on Youtube. I hope it is true what they are showing...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Now I have done two things: I have changed the balance wheel and demagnetized the watch using a home brewn demagnetizer (I removed the yoke of an old AC mains transformer so that the magnetic field closes through the air / watch put on top). Regarding magnetization, I can see that the disturbance of the compass is minimal (though not completely eliminated, but it might be the influence of the magnetic material as discussed before).
Anyway, the watch is still constantly gaining some 10s per hour, resulting in 4-5 min per day !!! I am really curious about what is going on...

Something that bothers me too is that when setting time I don't feel any resistance on the crown, like there is no friction between the cannon pinion and central wheel. And that is the only part that I didn't dissasembled when cleaning the watch in order to avoid beginner problems, so I don't really know the status. But I have another movement AS1886 where minute and hour hands don't move due to missing friction between the aforementioned two parts. So I have hard time believing that the same problem can also result in gaining time so extremely?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I hope that Pawl_Buster or somebody else can help out here. I still don't have a clue about what is going on i.e. in the start the watch was gaining 4-5 minutes per day, after cleaning and oiling the watch was gaining the same amount of time, and the situation is also the same after demagnetizing the watch and even replacing the balance wheel from another watch. I can see that I can easily move the watch hands by the crown, and it feels like there is very little resistance - but this information might still be irrelevant.

So yes, any help is highly appreciated...
 

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I hope that Pawl_Buster or somebody else can help out here. I still don't have a clue about what is going on i.e. in the start the watch was gaining 4-5 minutes per day, after cleaning and oiling the watch was gaining the same amount of time, and the situation is also the same after demagnetizing the watch and even replacing the balance wheel from another watch. I can see that I can easily move the watch hands by the crown, and it feels like there is very little resistance - but this information might still be irrelevant.

So yes, any help is highly appreciated...
At this point; only a qualified and knowledgeable watchmaker is going to be able to sort it out. The movement will have to be taken apart and each part thoroughly examined for wear or other issues.
there are just too many potential areas that could be causing the problem to try guessing what they might be without having the watch in hand.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This post is missing the latest update in order to close the thread. As I mentioned earlier I exchanged the balance with another one without any improvement on the time gaining (4-5 min per day). What I forgot to check is the position of the regulator pin. On the old one, it was in the neutral position. On the replacement balance, the regulator pin was at the "+" marking, so these two balances were not identical although the result was the same. Now I regulated the new balance back to the neutral position and it keeps the time perfectly - after one day it is still within 10s, if not better.
I am quite surprized that regulator pin can affect the time keeping so much. I was expecting that adjusting the balance can influence somewhere in the range of 20-30s per division/marking, and therefore many posts suggest cleaning and oiling the watch if it's gaining more than that. On the other hand I have similar experience with the AS1866 mentioned in another post and a Certina automatic from the 70s - the regulator pin can be used to do adjustments in the range of few minutes without any problems, and the result is repeatable and not much affected by the watch position ( at least in the few watches I've repaired - and here I believe again that accuracy within 15-20s/day is still acceptable for automatic watches of that age).
 

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If you look at the balance spring closely, the index pin regulates the positioning where the coil spring is pinned [in layman's term- that is ] . If the index pin moves towards + [ shorter coil ] the balance moves faster. If it moves towards - , it has the opposite effect. [ longer coil - that is ]. Seeing that you have 'loads of old 6309 ', I'm sure swapping the balance spring would help. Only a matter of fine adjustment.
 
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