Today I present to you a real submarine, the mythical Eterna KonTiki.
Bright colors, an imposing cushion case and a tuning fork movement, we are right in the heart of the 70s.
Here, an NOS (New Old Stock) copy to contrast with the one I received.
This KonTiki comes directly from Sweden and it has not been spared. Today it belongs to a French collector, p@tek on the forums or b.watch on Instagram.
This one presents this watch in a great article that you can find here: Eterna KonTiki Sonic
“Wanting to prove his theory that the Polynesian culture was born in Peru, Thor Heyerdahl and his crew decided to cross the Pacific in 1947 aboard a balsa raft: the KonTiki.
ETERNA is the sponsor of the KONTIKI expedition. The watches worn by these six scientists are Eterna watches. In total: 97 days at sea and 7600 km covered. Since that date, ETERNA sports watches have been called KONTIKI.”
Text and image taken from this excellent article: Eterna: its history and its emblematic models
Let’s get into the technical part.
The project :
The tritium of the minute hand is damaged, it must be relumed.
I open the bottom with its characteristic medallion.
The bottom seal is very imposing.
This is the Bulova-licensed tuning fork movement: the Eterna Sonic 1550, which is a rebadged ESA 9162.
Tuning fork movements are special, they vibrate and buzz. To know everything about this little-known facet of watchmaking, I advise you to read this article:
BULOVA Accutron – The tuning fork revolution
I remove the movement from the box as well as the hands. The minute hand is prepared in order to carry out the reluming.
I apply a mixture with a color matching the patina of the watch and I let it dry for 24 hours.
The color is satisfactory, I reassemble the KonTiki.
The 70s star has regained her splendor and guess what? … It is always waterproof!