vintage gruen

Gruen Diamond Dial cal 460

Gruen Diamond Dial cal 460

Here’s one I picked up for a daily wear watch that’s on the bench along with about a half dozen others right now. It’s a cal 460ss bumper which are a very easy movement to work on and the cross hair dial and diamond shape indices are a nice combination. The dial has received a dip in tarnish remover to take off the heavy patina and what’s left is flaking  lacquer to be dealt with later. there’s also a bit of rust on one bridge screw but it’s localized as far as I can tell so it shouldn’t be a problem. Updates to come.

Gruen Diamond Dial cal 460

Gruen Diamond Dial cal 460 with crumbs.

Bezel with new reflector crystal and case polished

Bezel with new reflector crystal and case polished

Re-cased after first cleaning

Re-cased after first cleaning

Dealing with the rust on the hands is the biggest issue in this case since any significant removal of the metal will result in plating loss. New hands may have to be sourced to finish it off. What’s left is a simple overhaul of the movement which is in very good condition. The bracelet is in good enough condition to keep with the watch., so it’s on the wrist and being wear tested.

1951 Gruen Submarine

1951 Gruen Submarine before Restoration

Not in the greatest of shape and not running for more than two seconds before stopping.

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Gruen Barclay before restoration1951 Gruen Barclay before restoration
Gruen Barclay1951 Gruen Barclay cal 335 after restoration

Every Gruen collector knows this model and mine arrived in the mail this morning.  Some call it The Spider due to the lug shape but I suspect it’s as much cool factor as anything else. It does have a very distinct look to it and it’s easy to see why it’s collectible. The calibre 335-21 was the first entirely U.S. made Gruen and marked Cincinnati USA. The bridge design is pure Gruen with it’s well finished machine anglage, chamfered  and polished crown and winding wheel. As you can see this one is in dire need of a service.

The balance looks good and swings flat and true but obviously won’t run due to the years of dirt and old oil deposited.

Gruen Barclay Dial and casebackGruen Barclay Dial and caseback

The dial matches the movement in as much that it needs a thorough clean. There is some lifting of the lacquer so that will have to be addressed.

Gruen 335 movement Before COAGruen 335 movement Before COA
Gruen 335 after overhaulGruen 335 after overhaul

A few hours after tearing it down and pegging and cleaning pivots it’s running strong. It was a pleasure to work on and went back together like the parts wanted to go home. I wish they were all this easy. There is still a small problem with the winding gear and the train jewels have to be taken off and cleaned but it’s close to being finished.

Gruen Barclay after overhaul and crystal polishGruen Barclay after overhaul and crystal polish

The case needs polishing and lug straightening  but for a days work it looks pretty good. The second hand doesn’t show up very good in the photo but it’s there and original.

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Running with good amplitude and a beautiful sound to the beat. Unfortunately there’s no sound in the video so you’ll have to take my word for it.