Poljot Watches: A Legacy of Soviet Union Horology
Poljot watches hold a significant place in the history of Soviet Union watchmaking. Renowned for their precise movements, distinctive designs, and a legacy rooted in USSR craftsmanship, Poljot timepieces have captivated watch enthusiasts for decades. In this article, we delve into the fascinating history of Poljot watches, explore some of their most popular models, and discuss the intricacies of repairing these iconic timepieces.
Part 1: The Rich History of Poljot Watches The journey of Poljot watches began in 1930 when the First Moscow Watch Factory (known as the 1MChZ) was established. The factory was originally founded to produce timepieces for the Red Army, but its craftsmanship and dedication to quality soon led to the production of civilian watches under the brand name “Poljot,” meaning “flight” in Russian. Over the years, Poljot watches became known for their precision, durability, and affordability, earning them a prominent place in the global watch market.
During the Soviet era, Poljot watches adorned the wrists of astronauts, military personnel, and civilians alike. The brand’s collaboration with the Soviet space program was particularly notable, with Poljot timepieces being chosen as the official watches for space missions. In fact, Yuri Gagarin, the first human to journey into outer space, wore a Poljot watch during his historic 1961 flight.
Part 2: Popular Models of Poljot Watches
Poljot Strela Chronograph: One of the most iconic models from Poljot, the Strela chronograph gained popularity for its elegant design and remarkable functionality. The watch featured a manual-winding movement with a column wheel mechanism and a flyback function, allowing for precise timekeeping and efficient measurement of elapsed time.
Poljot Signal Alarm:
The Signal Alarm watch was a unique offering from Poljot, featuring an alarm complication. It was a favorite among professionals who needed a reliable timepiece to remind them of important events or appointments. The distinct sound of the alarm, combined with the watch’s sleek design, made it a sought-after choice among watch enthusiasts.
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As the name suggests, the Poljot Aviator collection was designed specifically for pilots. These watches boasted features such as a rotating bezel for flight calculations, luminous markers for enhanced visibility in low-light conditions, and reliable automatic movements to ensure accurate timekeeping during flights.
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Part 3: Repairing Poljot Watches Given the age and uniqueness of Poljot watches, proper maintenance and repair are crucial to preserve their functionality and value. Repairing a Poljot watch requires a skilled watchmaker with experience in handling vintage timepieces. Here are some key aspects to consider when repairing a Poljot watch:
- Movement Servicing: The heart of a Poljot watch is its movement. Over time, the oils within the movement degrade, affecting accuracy and performance. A skilled watchmaker will disassemble the movement, clean its components, replace worn-out parts, and lubricate it with high-quality oils to ensure smooth operation.
- Dial and Hands Restoration: The dial and hands of a Poljot watch are delicate and susceptible to fading or damage. A specialist can carefully restore or replace these components while maintaining the original aesthetics of the timepiece.
- Case and Bracelet Refinishing: Poljot watches often feature stainless steel or gold-plated cases and bracelets. Restoring their luster involves refinishing the surfaces, removing scratches, and re-polishing the metal components to restore their original shine.
Water Resistance Testing: If your Poljot watch is intended to be water-resistant