I bought this Roamer on eBay to restore. I don’t do that as much as I used to but I still like to have a project watch to work on every now and then.
The movement, the ‘R-logo’, and the fact that the case back has the Swiss cross and 4 patent numbers indicate that the watch is from 1966.
If you look closely, you’ll also see “Pm” just right of the number 6 on the chapter ring. That stands for Promethium, a lume that they used in the 1960s after they stopped using Radium and before they started using Tritium.
The winding of the crown was difficult and the crystal was damaged. The watch did run, but it needed to be serviced and regulated.
Make sure to remove all the power from the mainspring before you start working on a movement. This is to prevent damaging the escapement while working on the wheel train.
Move the click away from the ratchet wheel while slowly letting the crown slip between your thumb and index finger. Don’t let it snap because that might damage the mainspring.
Lift the balance and the pallets and store them somewhere safe.
Turn the movement around and remove the cannon pinion. You can’t lift the center wheel later if you don’t remove the cannon pinion at this stage.
Remove the ratchet wheel and the crown wheel (reverse-fretted screw) and lift the barrel bridge.
Lift the wheel-train bridge and remove the escape wheel, the third wheel, the center seconds wheel, and the mainspring barrel.
Remove the center wheel cock and lift the center wheel.
Flip the movement around and start with the bottom plate.
As you can see, there’s a lot of old grease in the keyless works, especially on the set lever spring and the return bar. I cleaned as much as possible with peg wood.
Remove the motion works and the keyless works.
Don’t forget the KIF Duofix of the escape wheel. It’s technically not a shock protection system, just a cap jewel with a spring to hold it in place. Gently hold down the spring with a peg wood when you remove it because it will fly across the room if you don’t.
Pre-clean the pivot holes and bearing jewels with peg wood.
Clean all the parts in the watch cleaning machine.
First of all, lubricate the cap jewel of the KIF Duofix and reinstall it with the spring.
Fit the center wheel, the center-wheel cock, and the mainspring barrel.
Place the third wheel, the center seconds wheel, and the escape wheel in position. Install the wheel train bridge.
Install the barrel bridge, the crown wheel, and the ratchet wheel. Don’t forget the bushing for the crown wheel.
Turn the movement around and fit the motion works and the keyless works.
Flip the movement to the top plate and reinstall the pallets (give the watch a few winds so you can check the working of the pallets). When you place the balance, the movement should come alive.
Now it’s time to remove the Incabloc chatons and capstones. Use peg wood to clean the capstone before you clean it with One Dip or something similar. Lubricate the capstones and reassemble the shock protection system on both sides of the movement.
Place the hour wheel and washer in position, fit the dial and continue with casing the movement. I fitted a new top glass because the old crystal was too damaged.
There was a lot of dirt and grease around the tube and inside the crown. I used peg wood and an old toothbrush to remove most of it and then I cleaned them in the ultrasonic cleaner.
I slightly lubricated the tube with KT-22 grease and the crown works very smoothly again.
What do you think of this Roamer? Do you have a similar one? Let me know in the comments below.