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My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:47 pm
by cannon pinion
Here is a watch I've wanted for a long time:
s10.JPG
It's a skeltonized version of the famous Waterbury Long Wind. I have 4 of these now - first I got a partial A series movement, then a second E series movement. The E series I got going after some fiddling, but it had some problems that were only resolved with the kind help of another GH member.
After I got the first E series functioning, I took it's carriage apart, cleaned and oiled it and closed up the oversize pivot holes. The improvement was immediately obvious - it now runs 24 hours on a wind instead of 16 and starts up without any shaking.
Emboldened by that repair, I bought a second series E for very cheap,which turned out to need major work. There was no crown or winding gear, so I had to transfer those from the A series parts watch.
The crown is riveted to the stem, so I had to remove the winding pinion and then stake it back on the stem inside the case.
The hook for the mainspring was busted off the arbor, so I tried to replace the whole plate with the A series plate, which had a hook. But it didnt fit right. After some examination, I realized I could unthread the arbor complete with hook from the plate, so I was able to switch that out.
Then I had to punch a new hole in the broken spring. The main problem was pinning the hairspring back in place. It's attached to the plate with a fragile brass stud, which is pressed in. It was loose in the hole so I had to shellac it in place.
That watch isn't running yet, but the work made me feel comfortable enough to splurge on this skeleton model. Two came up on E Bay within a week, I bought the second, more complete of the two.
Here are some more photos to show how it all goes together:
s5.JPG
case with carriage out
s6.JPG
The rotating carriage front view.
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s7.JPG
the pinion gear which drives the carriage.
s8.JPG
Rearview of carriage
s9.JPG
The famous nine foot long spring.
s9.JPG (72.09 KiB) Viewed 441 times
s4.JPG
close up of an oversize pivot hole

As of now, I have punched a new hole in the mainspring, and am puzzling out why the carriage won't rotate. I think it is one of two things, or maybe both: a bent tooth on the duplex escape wheel or the poor mesh of the train gears caused by a lot of excessive side and endshake.
I also want to check the clearance slot in the balance shaft for dirt.
Likely I will begin on it this afternoon. I have to be in just the right mood to work on these long winds. More so now that I've seen how persnickety they can be.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:14 pm
by Marty101
Andy this is great and the pics are beautiful. I just recently was looking at these,or trying too. I couldn't find a decent shot of one;my main interest was of the movement. Yours really helped fill me in,especially about that main spring. I really wanted a look at it! Thank you and I hope to see more yet. :D Fantastic!

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:19 pm
by Marty101
PS-that main spring is looking good,too.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:32 pm
by cannon pinion
Marty - the photos lose in sharpness when posted here. I have a lot of detailed photos I took to document all the little features of these movements. And I found some excellent photos someone else took that are sharper than mine.
I posted a thread on the NWACCMB with some of this stuff, the reason it's there and not here is because it's so labor intensive to get photos up on GH.
If there is anything specific you or anyone else would like to see or ask, I'll post whatever photos I have in response.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 11:18 pm
by Marty101
NICE close-up pics at the NAWCC board. But yes,I do have at least one;did you hand wind that main spring and was it trouble? Nine feet!

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:58 am
by cannon pinion
Marty - I didnt have to wind that particular spring, but I have wound them on several occasions. It's pretty easy once you get the hang of it. The spring is very flexible - Waterbury advertised them as "virtually unbreakable" - and it's not nearly as hard as winding a conventional watch spring into a barrel.
The only trick is making sure you have the loop end of the spring hooked to the right tab. There is a series of tabs around the edge of the disk the spring sets on. One of these is a double tab - the loop hooks there and the next tab takes the loop end.
I've got the carriage apart and cleaned and am checking it.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:38 am
by cannon pinion
This is a watch I have to work on one miniscule step at a time. While it is quite simple, it also has some fragile spots.
On inspection, the slot in the balance staff that one row of teeth clears was clogged with a mix of fiber and hair. Since I didn't want to take the hairspring off the balance shaft, due to it's thin and weak looking collet, I could not put the balance in the ultrasonic. The only way to clean the slot out was with a pivot broach, very slow scraping, then a quick immersion in lighter fluid, more scraping etc. Significant crud came out.
It's very hard to tell if the escape wheel teeth are correct. But I only suspect one. I compared it to the EW from the A series I have - that one is all bent, and visibly so. The one I'm working on looks intact - in comparison.But the teeth are set at compound angles, the tips slightly raked, and every time you turn the wheel the angles appear to change.
I used a digital caliper with the rim of the wheel as reference to measure the height of each tooth - pretty close. I'm going to blow some photos up on the screen and try to use them to see if any teeth are out of whack.
Waterbury advised removing the balance cock from the plate with the spring pinned to it, but as I was doing this, the pin fell out. The hairspring looks good, flat and concentric.
I've put the carriage back together, starting with one wheel, then adding the other two one at a time, to check mesh and shake. It's pretty smooth. I don't think any of the plate holes will need closing, tho one looks like it does.
That's as far as I go tonight.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:55 am
by Marty101
Nice work Andy,I'm rooting for you here in the peanut gallery. I want to hear you have her going in circles again. I guess it makes sense that spring is so flexible since it's extra long-but in any case I'm happy to hear it wasn't a bear to wind.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 3:38 pm
by cannon pinion
img-Saint-Eligius-of-Noyon1.jpg

Posted for a Reason. More to follow.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:35 pm
by cannon pinion
The prior post shows a portrait of St. Elegius, patron of metalsmiths and watchmakers.
Although I am not a Catholic, I invoked his help two nights ago around midnight.
This movement has extremely short pillar screws, looking like they are handmade, and extremely hard to start. After struggling with one of them for far too long, and trying it in each of the 6 pinvises I own - none of which would take it - I put it in a locking tweezers to try to get it started. On the third try, it went whistling out of the tweezer, which made me utterly depressed.
Involountarily, I cried out: Patron saint of watchmakers, help me! I then slowly, methodically cleaned off the bench, the shelves around it, and after about half an hour found the screw in a recess of the shelving.
Thats when I used Google to identify the name of the saint I had spontaneously called on.
I had to invoke him again today when I was trying to pin the hairspring to it's cock.
ws1.JPG
balance, hairspring cock and pin
The pin is tiny,the size of a small eyelash, looks hand filed, and the angle at which you have to approach the hole it sits in is very difficult.
I made a careful set up so I wouldnt lose the pin, which I dropped at least 50 times, but did not lose. Movement on pith, pith in a movement holder, microfiber cloth under that, makeshift bench apron.
Then I went thru every tweezer I had to see which would give the best grip and spent 15 minutes practicing picking the pin up and moving it to different angles.
It still took 3 hours of repeated attempts. I got the pin in the hole on the second try, but it fell out when I tried to push it home. I adjusted the amount of hairspring that is in the cock, tried again, and so on.
I finally got it in and now am coming up for air.
ws2.JPG
installed.

This may seem extreme to some of you to whom this is all second nature, but I am slapdash from birth. Watchmaking is helping me cultivate patience and some level of preplanning. Hopefully precision will follow in train.
Thanks to St. Elegius!

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:14 pm
by richiec
Or it will cause premature insanity.

Re: My Latest Acquisition and What Came Before It.

New postPosted: Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:50 pm
by Neilywatch
Too late -

I have known many people who are convinced that people that tinker with watches are already insane. :D They also think I should be King of the Watch nuts~ :roll: :twisted: