Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Vostok Komandirskie Paratrooper

Today I'm wearing my Vostok Komandirskie (Commander's) watch. These were designed originally for the Soviet military. This is the paratrooper version, hence the planes and parachute on the dial. If you're not familiar with Vostok, here's some good information. I've found that many watch collectors, even if they're not "into" Russian watches, have had one or more Vostoks (or Raketas, the other popular Russian brand.) I bought this one close to 20 years ago, when the USSR still existed. Even so, it's obvious this watch was made for export from its "Made in USSR" engraving on the back. This was definitely my first watch to have a screw-down crown. I don't recall what color strap this originally came on, but I believe it was brown leather. It's long gone so I fitted a red leather strap which coordinates well with the red dial and bezel details. This used to have a more green or teal dial, but it has faded over the years to this brown, olive drab-ish color. It's a neat watch and has held up over time pretty well. The stainless case is much more durable than the chrome plated brass cases of some other Russian watches. Similar watches are still available and can be found with many different dial designs. It's nice to see an item that has been in production since 1965, through the Cold War, Glasnost and the fall of the Soviet Union, and is still being made today.












7 comments:

David Sundin said...

I received one of these watches when I went through Airborne training in Poland. Later, I took it to an old watch repair shop in Houston, where the owner told me that it was an old style, but very reliable movement. It works fine, keeps good time and is still waterproof, after 10 years.

KC said...

I've had one of these watches for about 20 years, haven't worn it in at least 10 years. Pulled it out of a draw and just wound it up and it's working fine. The back on mine is identical with the exception of no Made in USSR stamp. Not sure if that means mine wasn't intended for export or maybe it was made a bit earlier. Otherwise identical including the color fading to an olive - brown.

mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Travis said...

i just got watch that looks just like this one. mine does not have a serial number or the made in ussr stamp. it has the spot for the serial number but no number. do u know what band these had originally? mine has a stainless steel band on it. thanks for ur help!

Svante said...

:-) I also have one. Bought mine boxed, no band and with certificate at a market in Kremenchuk, Ukraine in 1992. It does not say "MADE IN THE USSR" and it sill has a shiny, green dial. Never used it but I took it out of the original box today and it's ticking...

j said...

I have one with original band, it was given to me in 1972 by a visiting Russian Officer, well I traded my 1945 Gruen to him. The band is leather and very intracite. It has a small round Lithograph of Yuri Gagarin on the band at the 6'o-clock.

Liminal said...

What is that watch worth? I bought one from a Russian soldier in East Berlin in 1992. I paid $10.00 USD. What's it worth now, 20 years later?
Mine has a serial number, does not have "Made in the USSR" so I don't think it was made for export. I believe it is post-Soviet as it does not have the CCCP anywhere on it. email me at wcothran@aim.com Thanks!