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Thread: Breitling Proffesional Emergency - suggestions for mechanism repair please

  1. #1

    Breitling Proffesional Emergency - suggestions for mechanism repair please

    I'm new to posting so please help me,

    My Breitling Proffesional Emergency REF B73321 has developed a sticking chrono second hand counter.

    This is a digital movement, but all analogue dials, (not the LCD display versions of the Emergency)

    when the chrono is started the long second hand just flickers at the 12 o'clock position.

    when the chrono is stopped, the 1/10 th second dial reads, as does the minute counter dial.

    When it's reset, the long second hand just flickers for a few seconds, as though it's trying to return to the 12 o clock, but of course it's already stuck there.

    Also the Chrono minute hand doesn't move, or reset to 12 when the chrono is reset.

    Other than that those 2 problems, the watch works fine, ie tells the time and Date !!

    I recently fitted a new battery, which was quite a job, as basically it's a watch within a watch, as the whole movement and bezel and glass comes out of the massive case completely seperately. That is because the emergency electronics are seperate from the actual watch movement, and are housed in the outer case, which is attached to the strap.

    please is this a problem with the digital part of the movement? or the mechanical part of the movement, which would operate the chrono second hand and minute hand ?

    either way, greatly appreciate any advice on how to repair this, without sending it to Breitling and being relived of 50% of the watches value to repair it.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    this problem developed after battery change or was before?

  3. #3

    Before the battery change

    Quote Originally Posted by Normunds View Post
    this problem developed after battery change or was before?
    Thanks the chrono problem was there before i changed the battery

  4. #4
    Sounds like a battery problem, if the watch is fitted with a eta 251.262 or similar then I've found the first sign of a failing battery is some of the chrono hands behaving as you describe.

  5. #5
    It did it before i replaced the battery, and then continued after i changed the battery.

    I replaced the battery with a similar one, so maybe the voltage was wrong in the original and i've replaced it with the wrong one again ?

  6. #6
    I've just had a look at the movement, and it says 27 jewels, and has a number on it which reads 744 789

    please Kace, is that the movement number ? as i cant see eta 251.262 anywhere on it

  7. #7
    Please where do i find the eta movement number on the watch ?

  8. #8
    Sorry I don't know where the movement number would be, I took a guess as to what would be inside going from a google of the model and the position of the subdials and date.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by kace View Post
    Sorry I don't know where the movement number would be, I took a guess as to what would be inside going from a google of the model and the position of the subdials and date.
    I've used a loupe to search for the movement number, and found it located very close to the battery in a recess, (so difficult to find).

    It's ETA 251 233

    please do you if that movement is susceptable to low voltage failing battery issue you mentioned for movement ETA 251 252 ?

  10. #10
    just to recap

    my movement is 251 233

    (the movement you referred to with the low battery issue was 251 262 )

    i could post a video of it to show what the problem is

  11. #11
    Master
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    Looks like the battery is a 394

  12. #12
    Grand Master
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    Really canít see this being a battery issue, a fault with the circuit or possibly one of the coils is most likely. If a repairer whoís willing to work on this canít be found the only option is to let Breitling fix it.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by lewie View Post
    Looks like the battery is a 394
    will check if it's got a 394 fitted as can't remember what i put in. (just replaced what was already in it)

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    Really canít see this being a battery issue, a fault with the circuit or possibly one of the coils is most likely. If a repairer whoís willing to work on this canít be found the only option is to let Breitling fix it.
    interesting, it's got 5 visible coils in the movement.

    Please do you know of anyone that repair these quartz movements in the south of England ?

    Thanks

  15. #15
    Grand Master
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    To test the coils and circuit in a quartz watch requires expensive test equipment that many repairers donít have, I looked at buying one but couldn't justify the cost as I donít specialise in fixing quartz movements. ETA no longer supply coils and circuits separately although some suppliers still gave old stock items available, but generally if a component fails the movement has to be replaced with the modern equivalent replacement. I donít know anyone who would be able to fix this, try asking a few repairers.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    To test the coils and circuit in a quartz watch requires expensive test equipment that many repairers donít have, I looked at buying one but couldn't justify the cost as I donít specialise in fixing quartz movements. ETA no longer supply coils and circuits separately although some suppliers still gave old stock items available, but generally if a component fails the movement has to be replaced with the modern equivalent replacement. I donít know anyone who would be able to fix this, try asking a few repairers.
    Thanks - useful suggestions

    I need to find a quartz movement repairer or a possible replacement movement that will fit the dial / case.

    Google time needed !!

  17. #17

    Breitling Proffesional Emergency - suggestions for mechanism repair please

    There is a chap on here who can repair quartz movements - I cannot remember the name. Maybe Bodo (think he does Seiko but maybe ask?).

    Defo will be folks out there who can.

    No option to send back to Breitling? Suck up the cost and get it back like new?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

  18. #18
    Thanks, i'll try and contact Bodo.

    I'm not keen to send it back to Breitling, as think i'll get a massive bill.

    (The last time i did that with Cartier i got a £1k bill on a watch worth £2K !!)

    Really the watch works fine apart from the 'quivering' chrono second hand, so it's not critical.

    just i'd like it to work perfectly of course.

    it's not in bad condition apart from this anomoly


  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by ChronoPantera View Post
    Thanks, i'll try and contact Bodo.

    I'm not keen to send it back to Breitling, as think i'll get a massive bill.

    (The last time i did that with Cartier i got a £1k bill on a watch worth £2K !!)

    Really the watch works fine apart from the 'quivering' chrono second hand, so it's not critical.

    just i'd like it to work perfectly of course.

    it's not in bad condition apart from this anomoly

    I sent Bodo a PM, but they didn't reply

    Am still very keen to try and repair the movement

  20. #20
    Master
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    Just been looking at the differences between the 251.262 and 251.233 movements. The 251.233 movement is thermally compensated and is cosc. I had a quick look to see the cost and it appears to be restricted supply, possibly to authorised manufacturer/repairer only.
    You can get parts for the movement if you hunt around but it depends on if it's a mechanical or electronic issue, you at least need to get somebody to check that first which any good watchmaker should be able to do.

  21. #21
    Journeyman
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    Sounds to me like there is a foreign body jamming the geartrain for the chrono seconds hand - the coil is being energised and is trying to move the gear rotor (causing the seconds had to judder), but something is preventing it from stepping to the next position. A blast of air may dislodge it, or you could try gently stepping the chrono seconds hand around to dislodge the offending spec of dust.

    Failing that, the mechanicals of the 251.233 are likely to be identical to the 251.262 so you could source a donor 262 for any spare parts required. I recently picked up a 'spares and repair' 251.262 off the bay for less than £25 (item no 175451082673) - the electronics were shot but I just needed some mechanical bits to fix another 262. Its a bit fiddly, but doable. Good video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OTys18JorY
    (note: you shouldn't need to remove the geartrains for the chrono 0.1s and hour subdial hands, the coils or the datewheel). The bit you may be interested starts at 06.03 :)

    Good luck

    simon

  22. #22
    Journeyman
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    Forgot to add that the video is for the 251.264 - the electronics are different to the 262, as is the gearing for the chrono 0.1s and hr hands to allow finer adjustment of the zero positions. Otherwise very similar

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by traf View Post
    Sounds to me like there is a foreign body jamming the geartrain for the chrono seconds hand - the coil is being energised and is trying to move the gear rotor (causing the seconds had to judder), but something is preventing it from stepping to the next position. A blast of air may dislodge it, or you could try gently stepping the chrono seconds hand around to dislodge the offending spec of dust.

    Failing that, the mechanicals of the 251.233 are likely to be identical to the 251.262 so you could source a donor 262 for any spare parts required. I recently picked up a 'spares and repair' 251.262 off the bay for less than £25 (item no 175451082673) - the electronics were shot but I just needed some mechanical bits to fix another 262. Its a bit fiddly, but doable. Good video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OTys18JorY
    (note: you shouldn't need to remove the geartrains for the chrono 0.1s and hour subdial hands, the coils or the datewheel). The bit you may be interested starts at 06.03 :)

    Good luck

    simon
    Thanks alot for the info Simon, i will watch the youtube video, and will look into trying to clear the possible foreign body in the rotor. be nice to get it working properly.

  24. #24
    Grand Master
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    Unless you're very confident working on watch movements I wouldn't advise trying to fix this yourself. I have a similar movement in bits, a non-runner I kept for spares. I took the train wheel bridge off to convince myself there were no reset hammers and didn`t take a photo, I tried to re-assemble it for easy storage and despite referring to the service data diagrams I struggled. After 15 mins I gave up.

    Regardless of what you see on U Tube these movements are not for novices.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    Unless you're very confident working on watch movements I wouldn't advise trying to fix this yourself. I have a similar movement in bits, a non-runner I kept for spares. I took the train wheel bridge off to convince myself there were no reset hammers and didn`t take a photo, I tried to re-assemble it for easy storage and despite referring to the service data diagrams I struggled. After 15 mins I gave up.

    Regardless of what you see on U Tube these movements are not for novices.
    thanks, i fully take on board your comments. the last thing i want to do is make it worse. afterall at the moment apart from the chrono seconds, the watch is working fine. I was going to try using a an 'air duster' aerosol (very carefully!!), to attempt to dislodge any foreign debris.

    Please let me know if you think this is a bad idea ?

  26. #26
    Craftsman
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChronoPantera View Post
    thanks, i fully take on board your comments. the last thing i want to do is make it worse. afterall at the moment apart from the chrono seconds, the watch is working fine. I was going to try using a an 'air duster' aerosol (very carefully!!), to attempt to dislodge any foreign debris.

    Please let me know if you think this is a bad idea ?
    Unless you remove the movement from the case and take the dial and hands off it'd a waste of time, IF this is the issue you will just be blowing it around the inside of the movement and pass the problem on to another wheel or another time when it lodges in a different wheel. You have been trying to find alternatives to coughing up for a decent repair since December last year, I would suggest its time to bite the bullet.

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by me32dc View Post
    Unless you remove the movement from the case and take the dial and hands off it'd a waste of time, IF this is the issue you will just be blowing it around the inside of the movement and pass the problem on to another wheel or another time when it lodges in a different wheel. You have been trying to find alternatives to coughing up for a decent repair since December last year, I would suggest its time to bite the bullet.
    Thanks, I agree with you, I've not yet found anyone to do it, which is why it's still pending.

    i'm hoping for a recommendation for a good servicer in the South East on the forum, rather than just picking a company from a Google search.

    Please can you recommend anyone ?

  28. #28
    Grand Master
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    To clarify, me32dc is a professional repairer, so it’s fair to say his advice is worth taking. As a humble hobbyist repairer with several years of experience and limited professional training I fully endorse his advice.

    The Breitling Emergency is a specialised watch and I think you’ll struggle to find anyone who’s keen to work on it, I certainly wouldn’t be up for it. The answer is to send it to Breitling, no doubt that won't be cheap but unfortunately that’s the cost of ownership with a watch like this. When you choose to own a watch like this you have to be realistic about potential service/ repair costs, the best analogy is to consider ownership of a 20 year old prestige car and expect the local back street repair garage to fix it.

    Send it to Breitling, soak up the cost, enjoy owning the watch again. Frankly, any attempt to fix it yourself is rediculous.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    To clarify, me32dc is a professional repairer, so itís fair to say his advice is worth taking. As a humble hobbyist repairer with several years of experience and limited professional training I fully endorse his advice.

    The Breitling Emergency is a specialised watch and I think youíll struggle to find anyone whoís keen to work on it, I certainly wouldnít be up for it. The answer is to send it to Breitling, no doubt that won't be cheap but unfortunately thatís the cost of ownership with a watch like this. When you choose to own a watch like this you have to be realistic about potential service/ repair costs, the best analogy is to consider ownership of a 20 year old prestige car and expect the local back street repair garage to fix it.

    Send it to Breitling, soak up the cost, enjoy owning the watch again. Frankly, any attempt to fix it yourself is rediculous.

    Thanks for your advice, I fully take on board what you suggest about working on the watch myself, which is why i was asking for a recommendation to a specialist.

    i'm too tight fisted to jump straight to Breitling to fix it, with out at least trying to find a specialist.

    (incidentally i'm sorry but I don't agree with your observations about repairing 20 year old classic cars.....

    like your hobby working on watches, I enjoy working on classic cars, mostly 20 - 50 years old, with the exception of paintwork.

    basically if it's got a distributor and carbs then it's probably possible to work on it.

    Actually if it's fuel injected, but still running a basic fuelling ECU and distributor you've got a good chance.

    however as soon as you're working on cars less than 20 years old, with OBD diagnostics, it becomes more difficult. especially if its a sensor related problem.

    however it's not rocket science. i've rebuilt at least half a dozen engines over the last 30 years, including a dry sumped Windsor V8 race engine producing 550 BHP)


    still I agree a watch is not something to be messed with, which is why i wouldn't strip it myself.

  30. #30
    Grand Master
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    I too have a long history of working on old cars, cutting, welding, painting, engine rebuilds.......been there and done that since the late 70s to the present day. My 1970 MGB is currently in awaiting my efforts to put the front suspension, steering rack and rear brakes back together!

    Working on cars and watches is totally different, some of the mechanical principles apply to both but the hands- on skills are very different. I can switch from one to the other.........preferably not in the same day!

  31. #31
    you've got about 10 years more experience than me.

    I rebuilt my first engine in 1987 - an 'A' series from a mk1 morris cooper S 1275 which was bored and stroked to 1380, big cam, head porting (which i didn't do myself) and bulkheading the car to fit a webber 45 on a straight manifold, with an LCB exhaust manifold.

    It produced 108 bhp which was a reasonable increase from the standard 76bhp. However 'A' series engines can of course produce a lot more power, but not with a cam that is tractible on the road.

    however nowadays it would be sacrilige to cut the bulkhead of a cooper S to fit a carb to it !!! different times.

    interesting you've done paintwork. I've done minor bits like painting spoilers and sills, but never dared respray a whole car. i leave that to the professionals.

    you've now peaked my interest to have a look at watch mechanisms, but i won't start with the Breitling, as that would be like trying to rebuild a BRM V16 on your first attempt. rather silly.

    the next job i've got to do when i have a bit of time, is to put a camshaft in a 351 cleveland.

    Good luck with the MG

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