Monday, August 20, 2007

Everest Watchworks Re-Lume Review

After Mr. Parks worked his magic

After the re-lume. A Vostok with usable lume. A rare bird indeed!

The watch when I got it. Notice how the lume on the minute hand has crumbled away completely.

Not long ago, I received a ninteen-eighties vintage Vostok Komandirskie as a gift. The watch itself was in almost new-old-stock condition except for the lume. It had completely fallen off the minute hand and was powdering on the face as well. As many collectors of Russian watches already know, Vostok's stock lume is, quite possibly, the worst in the industry. It is, at best, weak and will barely remain visible for an hour after exposure to light, if it works at all. The condition of the lume on this example, however, presented me with a perfect opportunity to do a little upgrading to this common Vostok problem.

Like the old Omega Seamaster I reviewed earlier, I decided to send this Vostok off for a re-lume to Kent Parks at Everest Watchworks. Kent is a true craftsman who does high quality work for very reasonable prices. In the instant case, he was not only able to repaint the lume on the hands and face but also had an off white lume color available that looked consistent with the age of the watch. The new superluminova paint Kent applied glows brightly after exposure to light in a manner that a stock Vostok could never manage and remains visible for hours in the dark. Mission accomplished!

If you have an old watch that you would like to rejuvenate (this assumes that all is well mechanically) I think you will be very happy with the job that Everest Watchworks can do. In the instant case, I think that I paid $75 for this job. (Which is probably as much as a nos Vostok from this period runs these days admittedly. Obviously the relative cost of this sort of work needs to be factored against the value of the watch unless the piece is an heirloom or has some other sentimental value.) I am very happy with the results and now proudly own one of, perhaps, half a dozen Vostoks with quality lume worldwide :)
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