Project: Omega calibre 321.

Omega 321 project
A client has sent me his Omega chronograph featuring an early 321. He got the watch in exchange for cutting some firewood back in 1979.. It has since been lying in a drawer. I would say that was a pretty good deal if you think of today’s values;) He would like to have the watch repaired and of course a new set of hands as they are missing. 


The movement is complete and in decent condition.


As expected there is quite a bit of dirt!


I start taking the movement apart.


These parts are getting expensive so I would rather not brake any of those thin springs.


Here you can see the 321 gear train layout.


I take apart the setting/winding mechanism.


Broken mainspring.


Movement taken apart and cleaned.


I see that the balance moves freely after fitting the shock jewels.


New mainspring in the barrel.


Base movement almost back together.


I fit the setting/winding mechanism.


Movement is running again for the first time in over 40 years!


Nothing wrong with the performance!


Chronograph layer back together.


As I could not find original hands I found a pair that matched closely. Then I tightened them to fit the movement.


I applied new compound to the dial and hands. I also added some patina to the hands so they would fit the ageing of the dial.


Movement goes back into the case looking great.

Omega free Seamaster 321

I would wear that!;)

I had a little brain twister when testing the watch. The hour recorder would not reset between 5.30-6.30. Not only that, but the hour recorder would stop working completely. (You can see this issue on the first and third photo)… Removing the hands and dial I discovered that the hammer would jam underneath the hour recorder wheel and get stuck. Inspecting the hour recorder wheel I noticed the hammer hart was a tiny bit thinner at the tip than the rest. That happened to the only position where the hammer would jam. To remedy the problem I unscrewed the hammer hart from the hour recorder wheel and cut a dial washer to shape, I fitted the washer between the hammer hart and hour recorder wheel. The extra hight now made the hour recorder reset effortlessly in every position.

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7 Responses to Project: Omega calibre 321.

  1. Gary Lee says:

    Great job and walk through! Awesome to see watches have a new chance and we get to see the amazing workmanship of the past! I never tire of these. Thank you for sharing Mitka.
    I have a question about dials and reluming. How do you remove the old lime and do you do anything once removed to prepare for the new lume?
    Thanks again,

  2. matabog says:

    Nice tip for the heart-shape reset pieces!

    One question, if I may: how did you tighten the hands holes?

  3. baztron says:

    Nice job. This is actually my brothers watch. I see he only waited 39 years before having it repaired. That’s actually quite quick for him..