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Old 21 July 2019, 02:23 AM   #1
Stu3
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GMT Master Help Needed - Loses 1 Minute/Day

I have a 1987 GMT Master. Serviced in 2016. Minute hand loses 1 minute/day. Can you speed up the minute hand? Second hand is fine.
Hi guys: Hope you can help me.

I have a 1987 GMT Master (great shape) with a service history with AD service centers. Last service was 2016 and then I stopped wearing it as much because I bought a new Bulova Lobster (great watch BTW) and bought a few vintage Accutron 214s (Astronauts etc). I decided to bring my GMT back into the rotation and it will not keep time. I have taken it back to my Rolex AD here in Stuttgart Germany two times (he did the 2016) service and every time I pick it up they say it is running fine. It is losing approx 1 minute per day (fully wound and wearing it - or sitting my my bedside table overnight). BUT, it is the minute hand that is losing time. The second hand is fine (hope you understand what I am saying). I hacked the watch at exactly 1800CET using the timedotgov website on Monday and made sure the minute hand was exactly at the 1200 position (I advanced the minute hand forward to the top to take up any slack) and the second had was also at 1200 when I pushed the stem in to start my test. 24 hours later (exactly), the minute hand was at 59 minutes and the second hand was at exactly 1200.

I called Rolex HQ NY and described this and they said it was possible to adjust the watch so the minute had ran faster. I took the watch to my AD today today and he said it was not possible to adjust the watch so the minute had ran faster. What is the correct answer? Can it be done?

He put it on the "machine" today and said the machine said the watch is keeping time +- 2 seconds per day.

This watch was my graduation present and ran fine up until the 2016 service and I only had it serviced then because it only lasted 36 hours when fully wound (but it kept perfect time). Should I give up on the AD? Trade it for a new GMT?

Hoping you guys/gals might have some tips or ideas. TIA
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Old 21 July 2019, 04:07 AM   #2
Jostack
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Well, the description of the problem doesn’t make any sense. Is it possible you are doing something wrong? Do you have a quartz watch or clock you could sync it with and check at say 6, 12, 18?


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Old 21 July 2019, 07:18 AM   #3
Stu3
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forgive me if my description was confusing...I set the watch to the most accurate time source I can find on the internet (in addition to my new Bulova Lobster and Rolex Air King that was serviced by the same AD). What could I be doing wrong? The watch lost 1 minute in 24 hours (ie the minute hand was at 59 on the watch face when all my other time sources/references were all at 00/12).
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Old 21 July 2019, 10:11 AM   #4
Jostack
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Originally Posted by Stu3 View Post
forgive me if my description was confusing...I set the watch to the most accurate time source I can find on the internet (in addition to my new Bulova Lobster and Rolex Air King that was serviced by the same AD). What could I be doing wrong? The watch lost 1 minute in 24 hours (ie the minute hand was at 59 on the watch face when all my other time sources/references were all at 00/12).


Yeah, I get it. It just doesn’t make sense. You’ve had a watchmaker look at at least twice and said it was ok.

My suggestion? Send it to a RSC for service or sell it.




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Old 21 July 2019, 10:51 AM   #5
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I’d definitely have a different watch maker take a look.
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Old 21 July 2019, 02:44 PM   #6
Stu3
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Thx all. Other than the sentimental value of it being a gift from my parents in 1987, there may be time to cut my loses and walk away. Possibly trade it for a newer GMT or other model. Stuttgart is has a store with a whole wall of used (or near-new) Rolexes that I see every Saturday. Or yes, maybe take it to the other AD in town.

I still would like to understand the linkage in the movement between the second hand and minute hand. Are they truly adjustable independently of each other (as Rolex HQ said) or are they tied together (ie you cannot make the minute hand run faster without making the whole movement run faster as my guy said). I saw a youtube video that shows how you regulate a Rolex with some crazy looking tool that moves the weights on the balance wheel but that looks like it would make the whole watch run faster. The hands (S/M/H) all turn freely when you set the time so they are not dragging on anything on the face/dial and the watch has never been dropped or magnetized.
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Old 21 July 2019, 10:41 PM   #7
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Does it lose a minute every day or does it lose roughly one minute in the first day then stabilise?
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Old 22 July 2019, 12:14 AM   #8
Stu3
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Does it lose a minute every day or does it lose roughly one minute in the first day then stabilise?
It was pretty much 1 minute/day. I set it Monday at 1800CET and by Saturday when I took it back to his store it was pretty close to 4 minutes slow... It was almost 1200 CET when I was his desk/counter and the minute hand was a smidge past 55 on the dial.
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Old 22 July 2019, 06:33 AM   #9
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It’s not possible to adjust the hand rates separately. I always wind hands back to the set time, not forward, to take the slack out of the gearing. Try that.
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Old 22 July 2019, 06:58 AM   #10
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It’s not possible to adjust the hand rates separately. I always wind hands back to the set time, not forward, to take the slack out of the gearing. Try that.
This is what I was told on how to correctly set the time so I run the minute hand past the minute I want it on then go back and it’s always spot on.
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Old 25 July 2019, 08:49 PM   #11
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Old 26 July 2019, 04:14 AM   #12
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It’s not possible to adjust the hand rates separately. I always wind hands back to the set time, not forward, to take the slack out of the gearing. Try that.
Must say that I never realised that hand rates could be adjusted separately myself......I had always assumed that any movement adjustment required would impact upon all the hands?
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Old 17 August 2019, 07:38 AM   #13
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I don't wear my automatics enough to keep them wound so they get set everytime I wear them. I wouldn't notice a minute a day. Now 5 minutes in a week I might.
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Old 20 August 2019, 08:22 PM   #14
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This sounds like the either cannon pinion may be beginning to slip or the hand itself is beginning to come loose. When the watch gives an accurate timing trace but the time displayed doesn't follow, one of these two problems is usually the cause.

The cannon pinion is fitted in such a way that the hands will move along with the movement but the connection can be interrupted for hand setting. Over time, frequent hand setting can cause the relationship between the hands and the movement to be too loose, so the hands will not advance correctly with the movement.

Cure is to tighten or replace the cannon pinion.
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