NVA Ruhla

User Tag List

Likes Likes:  0
Dislikes Dislikes:  0
Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: NVA Ruhla

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    1,090
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default NVA Ruhla

    I was hoping to have this in time for the Bristol GTG but it has been delayed so here's a preview, using the seller's photos obviously. Curiously, the Ruhla has a tenuous link with the Sinn EZM 1 (see below).

    In the late '80s Ruhla produced these massive divers' watches for the East German military, including the elite combat divers and swimmers of the NVA (Nationale Volksarmee). The Kampfschwimmers were probably the East German Navy equivalent of the SBS, a group of divers "Perfoming armed missions at the shoresides, harbours and in close distance to the coast".



    They were renamed "Spezial Taucherkommando" in 1959 then regrouped in 1960 to form "Kampfschwimmerkommando 18" (KSK-18).



    Their base was the East German harbour town of Kühlungsborn, on the Baltic.



    In 1990 KSK 18 was disbanded along with the rest of the NVA, due to the re-unification of Germany.

    Here's mine...





    No-one knows how many made but there are two different types of dial. Mine is the more attractive earlier version. There is an excellent database for these watches ( http://www.ephemerol.de/ruhla/index.htm) which lists just 25 known examples, excluding mine, although one listed is possibly a reissue (see below). Number 702 shown above is the third earliest recorded.

    It has a quartz movement of indifferent quality. The case is either brass or brass alloy with a matt chrome coating. The dimensions are impressive:

    Case height: 15mm
    Case length: 55mm
    Case width w/o crown cap: 47.5mm
    Case widht with crown cap: 52mm
    Diameter of dial and bezel: 43mm
    Lug width: 24mm

    It should be water resistant down to 500 m or 50 bar (same as my Sinn EZM 3). Best of all, it has a canteen crown...



    Although primarily for the Kampfschwimmers, one Ruhla has turned up which was issued to the East German border patrol so you could think of it as a kind of East German Sinn EZM 1?

    "Reissues" and copies? As mentioned above, one entry on the NVA Ruhla database could be a reissue. In recent years Ruhla has started making "reissues" from the original plans. They are very authentic but there are differences. I will post a seperate thread on how to spot the differences if there is sufficient demand. As well as the "official reissues", I have just noticed that a copy has started to appear on ebay sold out of Hong Kong. A quick tip - all three, the original, the reissue and the HK copy, have different second hands...

    Regards

    Jon'.

    P.S. I have borrowed some of the photos from the excellent NVA Ruhla source mentioned above, which has been produced by Jan Claas van Treeck. I trust that Jan won't mind as I am trying to raise awareness of these rare and interesting watches.
    Last edited by StampeSV4; 21-11-2009 at 15:51.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Bristol, UK
    Posts
    10,800
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    68
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)

    Default

    very cool... can't wait to see it.....
    #womw
    info@atgvintagewatches.com
    Call: +44 (0) 203 544 4012
    Official Dealers
    Bremont, Dodane 1857 & PITA Barcelona

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    1,090
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ATG View Post
    very cool... can't wait to see it.....
    Thought you might say that Al', as it was your suggestion (and a very good one too)!

    Regards

    Jon'.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    1,090
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default Ruhla and EZM 3 similarities

    Whilst editing my first post to add details of the Ruhla's water resistance of 50 bar, I noticed that it is the same as my Sinn EZM 3. However, when you compare these East and West German counterparts the design is actually vaguely similar...





    Wonder what they will look like next to each other? Quality and quantity? It will also be interesting to compare it to my CWC SBS, the British equivalent.

    Regards

    Jon'.
    Last edited by StampeSV4; 21-11-2009 at 16:11.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    193
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    The EZM-3 is much smaller in every dimension, will try to get a comparo photo when the new Ruhla arrives.

    The design obviously lent some influences to the Dreadnought (bezel, general case shape). These are fun watches for the mil diver collector and one of the less expensive to grab. The crown cover is a bit of a pain, they should have anchored it as per SOP for the canteen designs.

    I was just reading the IWC magazine article on the (West) German Minentaucher group yesterday and noted that one of their Chief Petty Officer's older brother was a KSK-18 member before Reunification
    Cheers all, Colin

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    193
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    The backs of my two, more pics to follow. Some interesting changes occurred between the earlier and later watches.

    Cheers all, Colin

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    1,090
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    That's interesting, Colin. I recently sent mine to Al' for a battery change and he discovered that the caseback was not on properly - I thought it was wrong when it came back because the engraving was upside down but it turns out it can only be fitted one way up if you want it to seal, which it now does - I gather that there is a sort of slot and key arrangement with the caseback and a locking ring. If you look at the photo of mine above (taken by the seller) you can see that the caseback looks like it is the right way up but actually it's not sealed - thanks to Al' the watch is now perfect.

    I see that your early watch also has the caseback fitted correctly (hence the crown appearing on the "wrong" side in your photo, which is the same as the example in Billy's book. N.B. the one in Konrad's book is a "reissue" as found on ebay and the caseback engraving he shows is actually from a stopwatch several pages earlier in the same book, not from the "reissue").

    Look forward to seeing a few dial shots too?

    Regards

    Jon'.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    193
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Thanks for that info Jon, very helpful! Unfortunately, the watch which is correct is the one which needs the battery, which means I have to open both of these $%#^&*!

    I'm finding the differences interesting. The later watch has a brushed case and the dial/hand lume is either completely dead or absent - the latter I believe. With no lume in the bezel insert, I'm wondering whether this one is a franken. I bought it a couple of years before the reissues came out, so? I need to review the site which lists the differences between the watches.

    Side profile comparison:


    From the front (#571's bezel looks more grey IRL than blue as it appears in photos, due to wear I believe):






    Cheers all, Colin

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    1,090
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    This is interesting. I gather from Jan's site that the very early versions had a dot of lume at 12 - the latest with lume he's seen is no. 228 - then it was deleted (it's absent from mine which is no. 702). They also have a distinctive ball on the balance end of the stick and ball second hand. The caseback numbering usually seems slightly wonky too!

    I did spend time noting all the differences before I bought mine and I offered to share that information (see my first post above) but no-one responded - now I can't remember them all?!

    Regards

    Jon'.
    Last edited by StampeSV4; 13-06-2010 at 09:51.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    193
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    I'll email him about #571's bezel and ask him about the spade-shaped counterbalance on the seconds.

    Looked at both watches under UV light and it seems #1562 either has very weak lume on the dial or the dial is painted with fluorescent paint only and no lume applied. The hands do have lume and the glow persists briefly after charging. No. 571 seems to have either had the dial re-lumed or the initial lume application was pretty sloppy - it's a bit better than some MOD re-lumes, but not by much.
    Cheers all, Colin

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •