More About the 777 Autodater…

Although in good condition, this example was not running  when I bought it, except for a few seconds when shaken or wound. Otherwise it seemed to be winding properly by hand and the sound from the rotor seemed ok. Time setting and date change were also fine. I had thought that I could maybe do a movement swap if necessary, so it was time to take a look inside.

The case is a one piece design, so access to the movement is from the front. The crown is a two piece design, and it has to be pulled quite hard to remove it. This has to be done of course to allow the movement to drop out of the case once the crystal is off  – it’s a little disconcerting since a fair bit of force is needed. But once off the way the two parts connect is clear:

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The crown and outer stem is pushed into this slot:

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After carefully prising off the bezel, I found the crystal was not keen to come out. I checked with Brian Leiser first to see if any special tools were needed, but he advised (thanks Brian 🙂 ) that no, but the crystal is likely to be tight to the gasket after possibly years of  no attention. Using a suction cup didn’t help, so I very carefully and gently levered the crystal up (using a loupe to watch closely what I was doing), trying to engage with the metal ring on the lower part of the glass rather then the glass itself. I could see it was moving a little so after working round the glass and gently easing it, I found the suction cup did lift it off, without any damage done…phew!

Interestingly I found the watch immediately started to run once the glass was off. And when I replaced the glass, it did not run. The solution was simple – a slight re-shaping of the second hand, bending the tip down a little since it had been touching the underside of the crystal. So no change of movement or repair needed 🙂  And it’s a nice movement, the 1121 Jet first produced in 1962:

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The watch is now running flawlessly, and keeping very good time. I wonder how long it has had the problem with the sweep hand – the difficulty in removing the glass suggests it hasn’t been opened up for quite some time. It was an easy enough adjustment to make – as it had to be for me to sort it out!  – so I’m surprised it hadn’t gone to a watchmaker for repair.

I’m still trying to figure out the ‘DMC’ logo on the dial – I have seen this on a diver but with a very plain font used. I have found that there is a DMC machine tool company in South Korea – founded in 1944 it makes machinery for milling etc. Citizen opened a factory in Korea in the early 1970s so I wonder if there is any link? Nor can I explain the 777 logo – maybe just a model name referencing Citizen’s later use of the Autodater 7 moniker. ‘555’ models were also made including one with the same 27 jewel movement, and the use of 555 is also a mystery!

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8 Responses to More About the 777 Autodater…

  1. Marko says:

    Well done, Stephen !!!
    Outstanding movement, i want one of those immedialtely!
    How did you get the stem back? I have had a strugle with one Roamer, which have this same split stem system. A few other watches with same system i have cleared just pushing the two pieces back together, but this Roamer, there is something different… And i don´t want to use too much force, i´m sure that force is not the solution!

    Marko

    • sweephand says:

      Hi Marko – once I plucked up the courage to pull hard enough to remove it, I found pressing it back in was fairly easy. You can feel when the end is located in the slot. I don’t know about the Roamer, I would think it’s a similar design. Stephen

      • Marko says:

        That´s true, Stephen, the structure of the stems with a split design are the same, what i have seen those.
        But Roamer`s is so tight and i have read, that there is certain position, where it engages. And it should be pushed at an oblique angle…
        Well, it´s Roamer and this is Citizen blog, so that´s it! 😀

        Marko

  2. Mikko says:

    Beautiful watch. I was wondering about the “DMC” marking. Only other models I have seen this is the Citizen Auto Dater para40mwater Diver which has the code ADOS 3001-DM. Both are 40m models so “DM” might refer to “Diver Model” and taking it to bit further “DMC” could refer to “Diver Model Citizen”. Just guessing and speculating 🙂

  3. Mikko says:

    To continue my speculation regarding the markings. Both numbers 7 and 5 have high importance in Japanese culture as lucky numbers and therefore 777 and 555 are the ultimate manifestations of luck. For example, similar to Las Vegas slot machines, jackpot in Japanese slot machines are indicated with 777. So, you have obviously hit the jackpot with this one 🙂

    • sweephand says:

      Hi Mikko – good point about the 777 name, that makes sense, as does 555 if that is also a lucky number. And the case back is marked D so maybe DMC does refer to ‘diver model – that seems a little odd though for this model, although it certainly fits the other one you have mentioned which is a classic diver with external bezel. Stephen

  4. Mikko says:

    I went through couple of catalogs by Citizen and Seiko and there is interesting detail about these numbers. In Seiko catalogs watches has been set to day 5 as in Citizen catalogs 7 is used as display date. Date in Swiss catalogs seem to be rather randomly selected. 5 and 7 seem to have high importance in Japanese culture.

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