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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi guys, I hope that someone could help me to understand an issue with my speedmaster.
I have 1 year old speedmaster with cal.1861 and everything looks fine despite of one issue it shows. Let me explain it, when it is runnng stopwatch, or chronograph the hour counter, runner is running 5 minutes faster than the minute and second runners of chrono. Because it is on warranty I took it to AD and they sent it to omega service. Few days ago it came back and I was told that they have checked it and done some partial service. Right, then I try to see the problem has gone away and what I found, it is exactly as before, still gaining 5 minutes on hour runner comparing to minute runner. At the AD they say nothing is wrong but for me that chrono is useless because its giving me wrong information.

55 minute and the hour runner shows 1hour



1 hour according minute runner has passed and the hour runner shows 5 past



Here after 6hours



If I made a mistake sorry for my english, I hope someone will be able to tell me why it is running faster 5 minutes.





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Can you post an image of the face after a reset?
This.

It certainly looks wrong in your photos when it's running, but it's always about 5 minutes fast.

It is 5 minutes off when it's reset?
It is 5 minutes off straight away? After 10 minutes?

If it's always off - even when it is reset, the hopefully the hands just need to be removed and reset correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
After reset it comes to 12 spot on, and straight away it is gaining time. When its half an hour passed you can spot it is more than half between markers.
After every hour it is the same 5 minutes past.

Restart position



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Discussion Starter #5
Is it possible that there is a higher ratio between hour runner gear and mainspring barrel driving wheel? Or could it be its penetration?


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If it's under warranty then this should be fixed. I am surprised the AD says there is no problem. Can you try to talk to someone else there? Or try another AD?
 

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Is it possible that there is a higher ratio between hour runner gear and mainspring barrel driving wheel? Or could it be its penetration?


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The ratio of the driving pinion and hour recorder is fixed - as is the distance between the centerlines of the two wheels, so there is no adjustment there. Because of the design (very common design by the way, and not at all exclusive to the Speedmasters or Omega) and lack of a direct link to the other two counters on the chronograph, the hour counter is the one that will have the potential to be the most wonky in my experience.

A few thoughts...

1 - Because the whole system relies on friction to keep it's place, there's a chance that the a knock to the watch can cause the hand to move, so try resetting it, starting it, and then sitting the watch dial up somewhere and see if the same thing happens. This one is a long shot...

2 - Really check the alignment of the hand when reset. Can't see it properly with the photo you posted, and this needs to be checked with a loupe to make sure the tip of the hand is exactly in the middle of the marker when reset. This is the most likely cause of the problem...

3 - Check what happens during the reset sequence and when you start the chronograph. The way the hour hammer works on the dial side is quite different from the hammer for the seconds and minute counters. On those the hammer stays in contact with the cams on the runners when the watch is reset, but on the hour hammer it does not - the hammer swings in to reset, then springs back, and the brake is what keeps the hour recorder runner in place. So let the chronograph run for a few hours, and when you reset it, watch the hand when you press the button in, but don't release it - hold the button until you note where the hand is - this will be the position that the hammer is resetting it to. Then release the button and watch for the hand to move when the hammer lifts off and the brake comes in contact with the wheel. If those two positions are different, then there could be a few things causing it - one is magnetism, and the other could be wear in the main plate where the runner sits...but I would not expect that on a fairly new watch.

In the end I'm not sure Omega will do much for you. They will tell you that the hour counter is not meant to be precise, and even with this small error (I've seen them be as much as 15 minutes out that people have reported on forums) it will still tell you which 1/2 of the hour you are in for measuring elapsed time. So it's not useless really since there's no doubt if you are at 30 minutes or 60 minutes, and that's all that counter is meant to do...still I do understand it is frustrating.

Cheers, Al
 

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Mine exhibits similar behavior and if you search you'll find it is a common problem. A lot of people explain the problem differently (so this will take some time) but I believe they are all the same.

Take a good hard look when the hands are reset. This may be a little difficult because the tail of the chrono seconds obscures the hour register a bit. Is it really sitting on zero or just a smidge to the right? Can you see the hour hand wiggle a little when you press and hold the reset pusher in?

My hour register resets to zero when I press and hold the reset pusher, then advances just a smidge when I release it. I can sort of play with hour far it advances based on how quickly/slowly I let the pusher out.

Here's what I discovered though. It only does this when the hour recorder is under 6 hours, ie, it resets by swinging right/backwards to zero. When I let it record past 6 hours (but before 12) and reset it, ie it swings left/forward, it lands exactly on zero and stays there!

For this reason I'm pretty sure (at least on mine) that it's not a hand alignment issue. Archer has explained how the chronograph works in several previous threads and he has concluded it might be a case of over-lubrication or magnetism. (edit: and he's beaten me to it here too)

Regardless, the difficultly in explaining the situation and stories like yours is why I haven't gone to the AD with it. I kind of hope it's just magnetized, I plan to drop by a boutique and ask for a crystal polish and degaussing, just haven't gotten around to doing that yet. Otherwise I'm just going to deal with it until it's due for it's first service in about 3 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for very good explanation of the problem a reasons why its doing this.
I need to do all these checks what you suggest, Then I will be able to narrow the fault finding.
So far what I have checked after reset it comes back to 12 perfect on index.
Do you know what are the tolerances in omega for this issue, how many minutes it needs to be off the index to be classed as a loss or gain?

If is a magnetism problem then could it be sorted by omega? I might suggest it.
Maybe I should find a independent watchmaker who could fix this? What do you think.


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Discussion Starter #11
I was at the AD today and after his tests it looks everything on time. He left watch running on a desk laying dial upwards and its ok everytime it reaches hour index.
It looks like the problem strarts when I am wearing this speedmaster because only then it is gaining that 5 minutes on hour recoder. When it is laying flat dial up or with crown upwards it is running fine. According the shop or the service center everything is ok because they don't wear this watch and it is hard to prove them that there is a problem.

Here the pic after it is laying running on a desk



And here when it is running worn



Could it be slack between friction spring and power wheel on the barrel? When I am wearing it is too much shock and it is moving forward?



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The ratio of the driving pinion and hour recorder is fixed - as is the distance between the centerlines of the two wheels, so there is no adjustment there. Because of the design (very common design by the way, and not at all exclusive to the Speedmasters or Omega) and lack of a direct link to the other two counters on the chronograph, the hour counter is the one that will have the potential to be the most wonky in my experience.

A few thoughts...

1 - Because the whole system relies on friction to keep it's place, there's a chance that the a knock to the watch can cause the hand to move, so try resetting it, starting it, and then sitting the watch dial up somewhere and see if the same thing happens. This one is a long shot...

2 - Really check the alignment of the hand when reset. Can't see it properly with the photo you posted, and this needs to be checked with a loupe to make sure the tip of the hand is exactly in the middle of the marker when reset. This is the most likely cause of the problem...

3 - Check what happens during the reset sequence and when you start the chronograph. The way the hour hammer works on the dial side is quite different from the hammer for the seconds and minute counters. On those the hammer stays in contact with the cams on the runners when the watch is reset, but on the hour hammer it does not - the hammer swings in to reset, then springs back, and the brake is what keeps the hour recorder runner in place. So let the chronograph run for a few hours, and when you reset it, watch the hand when you press the button in, but don't release it - hold the button until you note where the hand is - this will be the position that the hammer is resetting it to. Then release the button and watch for the hand to move when the hammer lifts off and the brake comes in contact with the wheel. If those two positions are different, then there could be a few things causing it - one is magnetism, and the other could be wear in the main plate where the runner sits...but I would not expect that on a fairly new watch.

In the end I'm not sure Omega will do much for you. They will tell you that the hour counter is not meant to be precise, and even with this small error (I've seen them be as much as 15 minutes out that people have reported on forums) it will still tell you which 1/2 of the hour you are in for measuring elapsed time. So it's not useless really since there's no doubt if you are at 30 minutes or 60 minutes, and that's all that counter is meant to do...still I do understand it is frustrating.

Cheers, Al
Thanks Al. I'm wondering if you think its acceptable to market a 4 figure luxury precision timepeice with an imprecise chronograph that can only be discovered after spending hours with the watch. We all understand that mechanical watches cannot tell perfect time - and the manufacturers let the consumer know what the acceptable timekeeping range is off the bat (e.g. -4/+6 for a chronometer) so we can know what we're buying. Omega definitely doesnt tell its consumers that the "the hour counter is not mean to be precise" in their marketing materials or their instruction manuals. As you can see, I do not think this is acceptable - wondering your thoughts (coming from s/o I respect on this forum).
 

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Thanks Al. I'm wondering if you think its acceptable to market a 4 figure luxury precision timepeice with an imprecise chronograph that can only be discovered after spending hours with the watch. We all understand that mechanical watches cannot tell perfect time - and the manufacturers let the consumer know what the acceptable timekeeping range is off the bat (e.g. -4/+6 for a chronometer) so we can know what we're buying. Omega definitely doesnt tell its consumers that the "the hour counter is not mean to be precise" in their marketing materials or their instruction manuals. As you can see, I do not think this is acceptable - wondering your thoughts (coming from s/o I respect on this forum).
resurrecting a zombie thread!!

15557121
 

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Haha! I'm having this issue right now with a brand new speedy and had to see if the thread still had a pulse.
 

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Thanks Al. I'm wondering if you think its acceptable to market a 4 figure luxury precision timepeice with an imprecise chronograph that can only be discovered after spending hours with the watch. We all understand that mechanical watches cannot tell perfect time - and the manufacturers let the consumer know what the acceptable timekeeping range is off the bat (e.g. -4/+6 for a chronometer) so we can know what we're buying. Omega definitely doesnt tell its consumers that the "the hour counter is not mean to be precise" in their marketing materials or their instruction manuals. As you can see, I do not think this is acceptable - wondering your thoughts (coming from s/o I respect on this forum).
Sorry, I’m not a marketer, just a watchmaker, so commenting on what’s “appropriate” in how Omega markets watches is not in my wheelhouse.

From a functional standpoint, as long as you know if an hour has passed or not, the counter is doing its job. As I’ve said, the design used here is common to many types of chronograph movements, so the ubiquitous ETA 7750 series for example. The most common reason for the counter to be off slightly is hand alignment (how accurately the hand is centred) and if the watch has some magnetized parts. On older watches there are some other possible issues at play such as wear or damage in this area.

What I can tell you is that my own Speedmaster lines up well, as do the vast majority that leave my shop.

Cheers, Al
 

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Sorry, I’m not a marketer, just a watchmaker, so commenting on what’s “appropriate” in how Omega markets watches is not in my wheelhouse.

From a functional standpoint, as long as you know if an hour has passed or not, the counter is doing its job. As I’ve said, the design used here is common to many types of chronograph movements, so the ubiquitous ETA 7750 series for example. The most common reason for the counter to be off slightly is hand alignment (how accurately the hand is centred) and if the watch has some magnetized parts. On older watches there are some other possible issues at play such as wear or damage in this area.

What I can tell you is that my own Speedmaster lines up well, as do the vast majority that leave my shop.

Cheers, Al
Thank you so very much for your thoughtful response - much appreciated!
 
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