C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly. Update: Resolved?

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C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly. Update: Resolved?

Post by FloridaPhil »

Hi all,

My little C3 mk1 has given me years of great service but has recently developed an irritating, but not terminal, issue.

When using the chronograph, about every third time it is operated, the central seconds hand resets to the 58s mark, not the 0s mark. I know how to realign the hands and do so. It will then function correctly - until the next time it doesn't.

I've noticed that the issue seems to arise at the start of the sequence. The hand will pause for a couple of seconds on first press of the pusher before starting to move.

I *think* this will be a return to CW for a repair that will likely cost close to or more than the watch is worth so I may live with it (how often do we really use a chrono?). On the other hand, knowing how OCD I can be, I may just get the work done.

Wondering if this could be a low battery issue rather than a mechanical issue. Any thoughts?

If the movement does need to be replaced is there a higher accuracy movement that can be used as a direct replacement?

Thanks for any advice.

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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by Lavaine »

Phil,

Have you performed the "Adjusting Chronograph Hands" procedure as outlined on page 16 and 17 of the manual?
https://www.christopherward.com/on/dema ... manual.pdf
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by welshlad »

FloridaPhil wrote: Sat Mar 06, 2021 2:33 pm Wondering if this could be a low battery issue rather than a mechanical issue. Any thoughts?
This is my suspicion, especially as it's been going wrong after you've re-aligned the hands several times. Certainly, it would be worth trying a new battery first before anything more radical.
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

welshlad wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 11:59 am
FloridaPhil wrote: Sat Mar 06, 2021 2:33 pm Wondering if this could be a low battery issue rather than a mechanical issue. Any thoughts?
This is my suspicion, especially as it's been going wrong after you've re-aligned the hands several times. Certainly, it would be worth trying a new battery first before anything more radical.
Does the C3 have a movement which uses the "seconds jump" as a low battery indicator?
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by welshlad »

Amor Vincit Omnia wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 12:07 pm Does the C3 have a movement which uses the "seconds jump" as a low battery indicator?
I don't think it does. I can't recall that happening on any of mine and there is no mention of it in the user guide or movement spec. I think that indicator is more common on a central seconds hand rather than on a running seconds sub-dial, but I could be wrong.
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by trsullivan »

I agree with Welshlad, it is more likely to be a battery issue than a movement issue. This is a Ronda 5040.D movement, but the Ronda website does not say this movement has a EOL function. This isn't an expensive item, so I wouldn't think it would be very costly to replace, if necessary. I'd check with CW first for a guesstimate, but worse comes to worst, any competent watchmaker should be able to replace this movement for you.

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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by tikkathree »

welshlad wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 12:24 pm
Amor Vincit Omnia wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 12:07 pm Does the C3 have a movement which uses the "seconds jump" as a low battery indicator?
I don't think it does. I can't recall that happening on any of mine and there is no mention of it in the user guide or movement spec. I think that indicator is more common on a central seconds hand rather than on a running seconds sub-dial, but I could be wrong.
This probably doesn't help but some Seiko quartz movements have the running second hand jump in two-second steps when the battery is low. I'd try a new battery if it was mine and I had a battery to hand but my instinct isn't that it's the battery: if you weren't using the chrono how would you know to replace the battery?

FloridaPhil does the issue appear only with short duration chrono timings or long ones too?
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by FloridaPhil »

tikkathree wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 2:13 pm
FloridaPhil does the issue appear only with short duration chrono timings or long ones too?
The duration isn't the issue really. The problem arises at the start of the timing sequence - the seconds hand 'pauses' for a couple of seconds before it starts to tick. The odd thing is that it may work properly 3 times in a row and then fail to start immediately on the fourth attempt, or it may do it the second time, or the sixth. There doesn't seem to be any consistency to the behavior.

If I don't correct the positioning, the reset error will increase. So, for example, the first failure will result in a 2s reset error with the hand positioning to 58s, the next one will result in the seconds hand resetting to 56s and so on.

I'm letting the chrono run for a day or so to see if the 'sticky' resolves itself through constant motion. If that fails to resolve the issue then I'll try a new battery.

Thanks everyone for your input!
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by tikkathree »

FloridaPhil wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 4:07 pm
tikkathree wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 2:13 pm
FloridaPhil does the issue appear only with short duration chrono timings or long ones too?
The duration isn't the issue really. The problem arises at the start of the timing sequence - the seconds hand 'pauses' for a couple of seconds before it starts to tick. The odd thing is that it may work properly 3 times in a row and then fail to start immediately on the fourth attempt, or it may do it the second time, or the sixth. There doesn't seem to be any consistency to the behavior.

If I don't correct the positioning, the reset error will increase. So, for example, the first failure will result in a 2s reset error with the hand positioning to 58s, the next one will result in the seconds hand resetting to 56s and so on.

I'm letting the chrono run for a day or so to see if the 'sticky' resolves itself through constant motion. If that fails to resolve the issue then I'll try a new battery.

Thanks everyone for your input!
Thank you. I have known mechanical chronos to show a similar "reluctance" on start up with short runs of the chrono whereas when the chrono seconds and minutes hands have done a full lap the issue isn't there.

I think you're right to give the chrono a good run.

Every time you start the chrono are you confident you're putting the same pressure on the pusher?
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by Robotaz »

I would guess battery issue. Does it usually work correctly the first two times, then mess up on around the third?
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by FloridaPhil »

Update: I left the chrono running for 48 hours and... no more sticking central seconds hand. I tested the action 15 times and it started up each time. Now, let's see if it stays that way.

Thank you everyone for your input
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by MiniMpi »

Good to hear Phil.
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by tikkathree »

Great news!
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Re: C3 mk1 chrono not resetting properly

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

Good news, Phil. Let’s hope that’s a permanent fix.
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