Clock repair parts -- but what, exactly?

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rjlittlefield
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Clock repair parts -- but what, exactly?

Post by rjlittlefield »

I ran into these parts in a museum today. The label said "Screws for Clock Repair". That sounded pretty interesting. I was especially eager to see the quality of the machining, so I hauled out a 10X hand lens to take a closer look...and was surprised to see nothing resembling a screw thread!

There are a total of 96 carefully labeled vials of these things in the collection, and I can't find a screw thread on any of them. They all seem to be variations on this theme of a stepped cylindrical pin or pivot.

At this point the folks at the museum don't know any more about these things than I do, but they're eager to find out.

So I thought I'd pose the question to you folks: What are these things and how are they used?

--Rik

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Technical info about the photos:
1. Canon T1i with MP-E 65 at 1:1, f/16, 580 EX II Speedlite with paper towel diffuser. Stacked from 9 frames handheld.
2. Same, single frame.
3. Canon A710, available light.
4. Same.
5. Same, macro mode.

Harold Gough
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Post by Harold Gough »

Google watch or clock arbour (or arbor) or barrel arbour (arbor).

Harold
My images are a medium for sharing some of my experiences: they are not me.

Len Willan
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Post by Len Willan »

Rik,
The parts are from an assortment of replacement balance staffs , usually Ebauche Number 723.only of use in the right calibre watch that it was made for (circa 1925 > 1940 )

After that most Swiss watches had a shock proof balance jewel system fitted,dominated by Incabloc and KIF . which protected the pivots of the balance staff when the watch received shock, usually as a result of being dropped or knocked.

Micro Batteries and printed circuits,and the quartz crystal ended 400 years of that High Quality Engineering.

David S. Landes book" Revolution in Time " especially the Chapter 20 "Who Killed Cock Robin" (The Swiss Industry) and Chapter 21"The Quartz Revolution.is the read for all interested in Horological history.
Sounds a bit like all things today,that we call progress.
I will still keep my Waltham Riverside Maximus and Kullberg Chronometer each over 100 years old,good as the day they were made.

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Superb information -- you guys are awesome!

Len, you may have set a new record for precision answers to off-the-wall questions. Most appreciated!

--Rik

lothman
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shock absorbers

Post by lothman »

Rik,

old uhrentechnik.de Homepage has an animation of an incablock shock absorber. In the middle you can see your pivot of the balance (blue colored).

My whatchmaker showed me the hand driven special lathe for such work. Hand driven in order do feel the chisel cutting the pivot because you can't see that.

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Excellent animation! Thanks very much for the link and information!

--Rik

lothman
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Post by lothman »

only in german language but also a nice documentation how to replace
the balance staff.

http://www.uhrmacher-westermayer.de/unruhwelle.html

P.S.: every time we complain about CA, we should use a whatchmakers loupe ;-)

DQE
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Post by DQE »

This micro-discussion about a small aspect of watchmaking is very interesting - I can certainly sense how it would be all too easy to become very engaged with this specialty and the vast array of technologies that go into fine watches.

I watched a TV documentary moderately recently that featured a custom watch maker who creates a small number of masterpieces each year. Can't recall the title now but it was really an eye opener for this almost completely uninformed spectator.

I can't think of my cheap digital alarm watch and a traditional watch masterpiece in the same span of thought. They just have nothing in common except for the relatively small detail of being used in part to tell time. One of them is just another useful gadget and the other is a work of fine art, engineering, and science.

---------------
Are there some especially recommended web pages that would show well-crafted photos and/or information about watches, watch design, and watch making?
-Phil

"Diffraction never sleeps"

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

DQE wrote:I can't think of my cheap digital alarm watch and a traditional watch masterpiece in the same span of thought. They just have nothing in common except for the relatively small detail of being used in part to tell time. One of them is just another useful gadget and the other is a work of fine art, engineering, and science.
Now imagine dropping into the hands of an old-fashioned watchmaker, a modern watch and enough technology to see what's really inside of it. I wonder which one he would think was a masterpiece of engineering and science?

--Rik

Len Willan
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Post by Len Willan »

Now this is a wrist watch.worth keeping

A Patek Philippe, ref. 2499, 18k yellow gold perpetual calendar chronograph watch sold for $815,637 Sunday during Sotheby’s Important Watches sale in Geneva. It was sold to a private U.S. collector.
http://jewelrynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/ ... 00-at.html

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