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Thread: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

  1. #1
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    To celebrate my 1750th post, will examine and compare the ????? (Poljot) 3133 and the Valjoux 7734.

    First the technical details of both:

    The Poljot 3133 is a 23 jewel, cam controlled, chronograph, lever movement operating at 21,600 bph. It has a running second dial at the 9 o'clock position, a 30 minute counter sub-dial at 3 o'clock, and a sweep second counter mounted centrally along with the timekeeping minute and hour hands. A date display is provided at the 6 o'clock position. The chronograph functions are controlled through two buttons, one (at 2 o'clock) for starting and stopping the chronograph, one (at 4 o'clock) for resetting the second and minute counters. The cam prevents the action of the reset while the chronograph is running.

    The 23 jewels are in the following positions:

    Balance staff bearings: 4
    Impulse jewel: 1
    Pallet pivot bearings: 2
    Pallet entry and exit jewels: 2
    Escape wheel pivot bearings: 2
    4th wheel pivot bearings: 2
    3rd wheel pivot bearings: 2
    2nd (or off set center) wheel pivot bearings: 2
    Chronograph second counter wheel, rear bearing: 1
    Chronograph minute counter wheel, rear bearing: 1
    Minute counter intermediate wheel pivot bearings: 2
    Coupling wheel pivot bearings: 2




    The Valjoux 7734 is a 17 jewel,cam controlled, chronograph lever movement operating at 18,000 bph. It has a running second dial at the 9 o'clock position, a 30 (or 45) minute counter sub-dial at 3 o'clock, and a sweep second counter mounted centrally along with the timekeeping minute and hour hands. A date display is provided at the 6 o'clock position. The chronograph functions are controlled through two buttons, one (at 2 o'clock) for starting and stopping the chronograph, one (at 4 o'clock) for resetting the second and minute counters. The cam prevents the action of the reset while the chronograph is running.

    The 17 jewels are in the following positions:

    Balance staff bearings: 4
    Impulse jewel: 1
    Pallet pivot bearings: 2
    Pallet entry and exit jewels: 2
    Escape wheel pivot bearings: 2
    4th wheel pivot bearings: 2
    3rd wheel pivot bearings: 1
    2nd (or off set center) wheel pivot bearings: 2
    Chronograph second counter wheel, rear bearing: 1




    Immediately, we see in first image of each pair the there is a significant difference in the calendar mechanisms. (NOTE- all images will have the 3133 first, unless otherwise noted.) Then both movements were completely disassembled, so each component could be examined and compared. I won't show the disassembly, as it would be rather picture intensive.

    Here are all the little bits and pieces.

    3133



    7734


    Let's look at the balance and balance cock first:








    We see that the 3133 uses a shim to control the end shake of the balance. This is typical from what I have seen in Russian made movements.

    Next the pallet and pallet cock:









    The 3133 bridge is shaped to accommodate the banking shoulders machined into the mainplate, the 7734 uses old-fashion banking pins.

    At this point we are going to end this post. More comparisons and picture will follow.

  2. #2
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Continuing with the next piece to show a marked difference, the hammer:





    The significant thing here is the eccentric placed in between the legs of the 7734, this eccentric will change the relative position of the two hammer faces. This is done so both faces will be in contact with the cam hearts at the same time when the chronograph is reset. If one face was further back from a cam heart and not in contact that chronograph hand would have play and would not reset to zero reliably. This design was simplified in later versions of the 7734. The new design has a floating hammer face pivoted in the middle so it will self-level. This design is used in the 7750 series.

    Next, the brake:





    Minor differences in the manner of attaching the brake to the plate.

    Minute counter sliding gear:





    The one is jeweled and the other is not. But the major difference is in the 3133, this part is two halves held together by a small screw, in the 7734, this part is riveted together making it a permanent assembly.

    The bearing for the third wheel,





    This is the mainplate, note that the 3133 has a small bridge for the 3rd wheel. This is because the pivot for the 3rd wheel is inside the gear diameter for the 4th wheel. In the 7734, the 4th wheel gear goes under a cutout. Because the 4th wheel also has the long pinion for the running second hand, getting it out from under this projection is difficult, the gear actually must be bowed slightly (it springs back into shape.) By making this small projection removable, the 3133 is much easier to disassemble.

    These next two pictures are of the screw for the start/stop lever:





    The significance of the three cut across the head of a screw is that it indicates the screw is a left-handed screw. The 3133 uses left handed screws for three things, the start/stop lever retention/pivot, the reset lever retention and pivot and the minute counter sliding gear. All of these rotate in a counter-clockwise direction and would loosen a right-hand thread. The screws for these items in the 7734 are conventional right-hand threads.

    More to follow...

  3. #3
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Now, I shall show you the reason a 3133 cannot be used as a direct replacement for the 7734:



    (3133 on the left) First the dials cannot interchange as the dial feet are not located in the same place. The holes for the dial feet are in the cutouts of the spacer ring.



    (3133 on the left) Next, we see that the 3133 is thicker, over a full millimeter thicker. Even when the calendar parts are removed from the 3133, it still has a bit more stem height than a 7733, so it just cannot be used in cases intended for Swiss movements.

    Now, just some comparison shots, maybe you can see the differences in quality.

    Minute counter wheel (Note - The 3133 cam hearts have grease on them, this why the surface looks uneven.):







    Chronograph second wheel (Note - The 3133 cam hearts have grease on them, this why the surface looks uneven.):









    As you could see in the very first set of pictures in this thread, the calendar mechanisms were quite different, but there is a fundamental difference that make all the parts non-interchangeable. See if you can spot the difference:



    In fact, the bridges all had different alignment pin locations, so none of the 7734 bridges would fit on the 3133. On the This makes me question the long assumed tale of the Russians buying old 7733 machinery and starting production. What this looks like to me is the bright boys over at the First Moscow Watch Factory got a hold of a few production 7733s and tore then down and made new drawings.

    Although the 7733 and 7734 have been through several modernizations during their production run, and I do not know how many of the improvements we see in the 3133 were incorporated in the 7733/7734. But it is the little things that were changed but had no technical reason to be changed that lead me to this conclusion.

    Now, I think I know the next question that you all are thinking, "How the quality/reliability of the 3133 stack up against the 7734?"

    Interesting question, in my opinion, the 3133 is a much easier movement to work on than its Swiss half-brother. The thickness of the gears ans cams is the same and the quality of the cam surfaces is very good (see below). Had the two movements been made in the same facility, with the same quality program, the reliability would be the same. Case in point, the old version of the PRS-5 with the 3133 movement, these were inspected prior to casing up, and have according to what we hear on the various watch fora, have performed well in service. (By inspecting prior to casing, we are retroactively applying a higher standard of quality assurance, not the most efficient way to do things but it does the job.)



  4. #4
    Administrator swanbourne's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Superb post, thanks. I'll move this to "Classic Posts" after a few days.

    Eddie
    Whole chunks of my life come under the heading "it seemed like a good idea at the time".

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    Craftsman rickf's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Wow, what a great piece of work. Very interesting and informative. Especially since I'm considering flipping my Strela with a 3133.

    Rick

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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    I think I might have to wear my Sturmanskie tomorrow 8)

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    Master markosgr28's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great work!! Amazing!!

    I had more than 10 Russian watches with the 3133 (or the 31681) in the past and I was always wondering how good is the 3133 compared with the 7734 that it came from. But I never expected to get such a good answer!!

    Thank you very much.

    Cheers,
    Markos

  8. #8

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    excellent post, and great photography too :)

  9. #9
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    :hello1: :hello1: :hello1:

    Most interesting! Great pictures and texts!
    Thanks for sharing this with us.

    /john

  10. #10
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Wow - what a great post!! I've heard the names of some of the parts but have never known what they looked like

    Cheers for posting and taking all the photos - must have taken an age!

    Steve

  11. #11
    Grand Master hogthrob's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post; I haven't seen a chrono disassembled before.

    Oh, and congratulations on not being 'Brown' any more.

  12. #12

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Most deserving of a place in Classic Posts.

    Well done indeed.

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    What a cracking post. Many thanks indeed.

  14. #14
    Master doug darter's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    A real tour-de-force, and very interesting!!

  15. #15
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent stuff, TYVM. Now I know exactly what is inside my PRS5! :)

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    Master Jeroen's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Well done, informative and the pic's to make it all clear..... this surely adds to the insight of a few forummers here (me included..)

    thanks for posting!

  17. #17
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Most impressive post, great photographs and explananations. Thanks for sharing with us all :thumbright:
    Gerry

  18. #18
    Grand Master Neil.C's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great post Lysy, definitely a classic.

    I think we can see the difference in quality and as for the "old valjoux machinery stuff"........... :shock:

    I must admit I always thought that was true but questioned when a watchie told me there were so many different parts, so really just a loose copy of sorts?
    Cheers,
    Neil.

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    http://www.freewebs.com/neil271052

  19. #19
    Grand Master SimonK's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Tiptop. Even for someone like me, who has no interest in what goes on under the bonnet (er... sorry, hood).

  20. #20
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Thanks for all the replies.

    Now, if I can just find a Seagull 1901...

    Oh, and the Anglicized spelling of the manufacture's name "Poljot" is not a very good indication of how the word should be pronounced. It should sound more like "pool-yot"

  21. #21
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    thank you very much for this post, it made made put my poljot on!
    ktmog6uk
    marchingontogether!



  22. #22

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great post! Thanks very much.

    Best wishes,
    Bob

  23. #23
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post, well done. Thanks very much :)

  24. #24
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post with fantastic pictures. Thanks a million.

  25. #25
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Most incredible post Lysander! Excellent!

    Thank you very, very much :-)
    We can't stop here, this is bat country.


  26. #26
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Superb post, well worthy of a classic. :)

    Many thanks for that Lysander. :) :)
    Best Regards - Peter
    Please Note: It is possible that Griswold may know nothing whatsoever about horology. It's even possible that he has never even owned a watch. It is also highly possible the he has a strange imagination. His wife insists he would be far better off paying more attention to taking his medication on time.

  27. #27
    Master Omegary's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post, thanks so much for going to the time and effort to put all that together. Comprehensive proof that the 3133 is indeed a copy of the 7734 rather than using the old Valjoux machinery. In general the finishing on the 7734 looks to be of a higher standard but that could be just my perception.

    Cheers,

    Gary

    P.S. Coincidentally I'm wearing a 7734 equipped Tissot Seastar Navigator today.

  28. #28

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Fantastic post, wonderfully informative. A true classic.

  29. #29
    Master j111dja's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Very interesting and informative and great photo's too. Definitely deserves it "classic post" status.

  30. #30
    Master studs's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great photographs... well done! :)

  31. #31
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    :D Bravo! Great work, super photography. Thanks.

    Gert

  32. #32

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great review and well worth the read :)

  33. #33
    Grand Master Scottishtrunkmonkey's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent stuff and saved me posting a similar thread I was working on :wink: :D

    Thanks for posting, have learned something today :)
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  34. #34
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Yes, the decorative finish on the Valjoux is better than the Poljot. Although the nickel plating is better anti-corrosion finish than gold plate.

    Here is the case the the Poljot was supposed to go in, how it is home to the 7734. We are going t have to find some syringe type hand to complete this little project.


  35. #35
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Superb post-thanks for doing this, and for sharing your findings. :)

    Best wishes,
    AP:)

  36. #36
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great post Lysander.

  37. #37
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great post! I have to ask what you're using for the photography- is it just a standard 35mm camera with a loupe on the front, or are you using an SLR?

  38. #38
    Master lysanderxiii's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Quote Originally Posted by glazba
    Great post! I have to ask what you're using for the photography- is it just a standard 35mm camera with a loupe on the front, or are you using an SLR?
    My photography uses a very rudimentary arrangement, really.

    Two different set-ups, one is a basic Fuji S700 digital SLR. The second is my wife's digital HP point-and-shoot with a 10x loupe taped over the lens.

    The pictures were taken at my desk, under a fluorescent desk lamp augmented with a incandescent lamp to try and control the glare. One of these days I will actually get a light tent...

  39. #39
    Master simonsev's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Extremely cool post, many thanks 8)

  40. #40
    Craftsman Loddonite's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Thanks for that Lysanderxiii.
    I will wear my 3133 tomorrow

  41. #41
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Wonderful post :)

    ... which further highlights the fact that I am a mere mortal in the world of horology. The likes of Lysander and Mr Bob Frazier enjoy demi-god status in my eyes :)

  42. #42

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great pictures! Thanks.

  43. #43
    Master Finch's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    great work,very interesting,need to spend a little more time
    with my strela

  44. #44

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Very interesting picture gallery, nice to see the 2 next to each other for comparison.

  45. #45
    Master Gruntfuttock's Avatar
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post! Truly deserving its Classic post status. I can report that my PRS-5 is still running fine and looking good. There have been several comments on the respective finish of the two movements. Apart from the obvious bearing surface bits, this factor has absolutely no consequence on the reliability and operation of any movement.

  46. #46

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Excellent post, very informative and great pictures - do you do classes :wink:

  47. #47
    Master
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    As always, a great and informative post.

  48. #48
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    I have a couple of these which had ended up at the'back of the draw' simply because I had heard so much about their poor construction and manufacture that I didn't really want to rely on them. I just put the best one on for today.

    Thanks, that was a great read, made better for bursting my preconceptions. That seems to be a recurrent theme on the classic threads board!

  49. #49
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    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Superb article I must say! :D I own a Sturmanski that contains the same caliber. :wink:

  50. #50

    Re: ????? 3133 versus Valjoux 7734 (with pictures, lots of them)

    Great Photos Thanks

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