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Components of a Pocket Watch "Click" to Login or Register 
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Hello everyone! Happy Friday the 13th!

This is the next installment in a series of "Helping Hand" tutorials. In this lesson, we cover the basic components of an Elgin 16s pocket watch. There will be a few components for which Elgin used different terms but the vast majority are the same as other companies. As you will see, I've learned a little more of that HTML stuff. Hopefully, my skills at this will improve in future presentations.

I would like to thank Steve Maddox and Ed Ueberall for their technical review of this presentation.

ENJOY!

Components of a Pocket Watch

John D. Duvall
IHC Member 192
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Wayne C. Anderson
posted
John D. Duvall
Great presentation - thanks very much.
 
Posts: 888 | Location: Nebraska, in the U.S.A. Heartland | Registered: November 22, 2002
Picture of Frank Juchniewicz
posted
John,to me a picture is worth a thousand words. The right man was picked for the job.

Frank Juchniewicz
 
Posts: 441 | Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA | Registered: January 28, 2003
posted
This was excellent and very well done i hope to see more in the futureI especially liked the names and what the factory names and the usual names watch repair people use.
Wink Cool
 
Posts: 2135 | Registered: June 01, 2003
posted
John, for a watch novice like me I consider your tutorial fantastic and appreciate the time and effort you have taken to do this for members of Chapter 185. A great service. Of course, you have raised expectations!

Graham Mitchell

www.aussieclocks.com
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Roseville, NSW Australia | Registered: February 12, 2003
IHC Member 107
Picture of Brian C.
posted
Another great job John.
Now this is a feature I think you should have to be a member of 185 to receive.
Brian C.

pwpartsetc@webtv.net
 
Posts: 1833 | Location: Epsom, New Hampshire USA | Registered: December 14, 2002
Watch Repair Expert
posted
As usual, John has done a fantastic job!

I know something about the time and effort involved in creating a presentation such as that, and John deserves much credit, as well as our sincerest appreciation!

I hope everyone realizes that no one was paid a cent for the work above, it was created through the generosity of a fellow member and enthusiast, whose only desire was to assist those less informed.

If anyone ever has doubt about the character of watch and clock collectors, efforts like that should stand as a shining example.

For those who sometimes wonder, THAT is what the ***** was supposed to be about and now the IHC is!

------------------

Steve Maddox
North Little Rock, Arkansas
 
Posts: 618 | Location: North Little Rock, Arkansas USA | Registered: December 05, 2002
IHC Member 234
Picture of Jim Cope
posted
...first class presentation!!!thanks!!!Jim C
 
Posts: 875 | Location: Kingsville, Ontario, Canada | Registered: April 16, 2003
Picture of Mike Dalke
posted
Excellent presentation, John. As a new member of chapter 185 I have been very impressed with the IHC. Thanks for a job well done. I look forward to the future of this chapter and being a part of it.

Mike
 
Posts: 16 | Location: Loveland, Colorado U.S.A. | Registered: June 15, 2003
Picture of Ged Pitchford
posted
Very well done, If I hadn't got arthritic knotted knuckles i'd be tempted to have a go at an old LIMIT pocket watch I have.Thanks again. GED.
 
Posts: 910 | Location: Winterton-on-Sea Norfolk, England | Registered: February 17, 2003
posted
JOHN, Your slideshow was GREAT! Even i learned something new, i have a sleeve wrench and never knew where it went and what it did, NOT that i'm going to use it any time soon Roll Eyes

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, LOOKING FORWARD TO MORE Wink

Mike Nardick
NAWCC # 144409
IHC 185 Charter Member 26
Allegheny Chapter 37
mikena32@attbi.com
 
Posts: 267 | Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania U.S.A. | Registered: November 19, 2002
IHC Life Member
RR Watch Expert
Picture of Ed Ueberall
posted
I noticed that John's tutorials already have 500 'views' between them. Their popularity shows that he has done a fine job with them and that they fill a real educational need to both advanced collectors and those just getting interested in learning about horology.

Ed Ueberall
NAWCC #49688
IHC #34
http://members.aol.com/stdwatch/
 
Posts: 622 | Location: Pooler, Georgia in the U.S.A. | Registered: November 23, 2002
Picture of Stephanie O'Neil
posted
John D,

Simply put "that was great". Cool It almost makes me want to take a pocket watch apart. Slide show gives encouragement. Smile

I have a suggestion. I'd like to see a slide show of components of a wristwatch. Here's why. I have a Lord Elgin wristwatch which I tinkered with one day when I was feeling confident. Big mistake on my part. Now mind you, I know nothing about repair of pocket watches or wristwatches. As a result, somehow the hairspring came loose. Now as a lay person in the field of watch repair, do you think I can fix it myself? Confused

Stephanie O'Neil
NAWCC Member 143979
 
Posts: 1419 | Location: New Orleans, Louisiana USA | Registered: April 01, 2003
Watch Repair Expert
posted
I'd hate to have to answer that question directly, Steph, but I will say this:

Hairspring work is probably the most challenging aspect of watch work, even among experts.

=================

Steve Maddox
President, NAWCC Chapter #62
North Little Rock, Arkansas
IHC Charter Member 49
 
Posts: 618 | Location: North Little Rock, Arkansas USA | Registered: December 05, 2002
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Stephanie,

I must say up front that most of my repair experiences have been with pocket watches. Pocket watch parts are larger and somewhat easier to work with. I have yet to perform many of the repairs taught in watchmaking schools but with
experience gained daily, I will eventually accomplish most of them.

The majority of all watches, wrist and pocket, discussed in our chapter have basic parts that serve the same function. Their packaging, however, can be quite different. In fact, many of the early wristwatches made by American companies were repackaged 0 and 3/0 size pocket watch movements.

Since my experience with wristwatches is limited, most of the presentations will revolve around pocket watches. With the continuing growth of our chapter, we hope that someone in the "wrist" community will eventually come forward and begin posting presentations tailored to wristwatches.

Now for your Lord Elgin. If it is your desire to repair the LE, we (IHC) are here to help and encourage you every step of the way. All that is required by you is the willingness to devote the necessary time and resources to a fascinating and
rewarding hobby. For every success, you will have two failures. You will begin a project, give it up, only to return again. You will be on your hands and knees looking for parts invisible to the naked eye. You will curse, you will experience total frustration but you will return.

If you decide that diving into a watch to see what makes it tick is your next step in the world of horology, then may I suggest that you first practice on the Official IHC Pratice Watch? Scott Cerullo is currently training on this watch. When Scott gets tired of taking it apart and putting it back together, it can be your turn.

In the mean time, study as many books and video tapes as you can about watch repair. Last but far from least, invest in a quality set of screw drivers, tweezers and magnifiers. These are the basic essentials to get started with. Above all, ask questions! Always remember that the only dumb question is the one not asked.

As Steve indirectly suggested, put the Lord Elgin back in the drawer for the time being and first concentrate on the basics.

We are all rooting for you! Hip-hip hooray!! Smile

John D. Duvall
NAWCC Member 144772
NAWCC IHC Happy Camper 192
Chapter 185 Watch Repair Moderator
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Stephanie O'Neil
posted
Steve M.

Hairsprings a complex component of watches huh? I would go and have to mess up my Elgin Deluxe, model 555, 4 adj. 17 jeweled, 10K gold filled wristwatch. Frown Frown

John Du.

I do need to check into looking at videos and purchasing a few tools if I plan to start tinkering. Actually, there was some problem with the watch before I looked at the movement. Just thought I could fix it, can you believe that? Silly me. Roll Eyes

Hopefully, someday, I will get on the IHC list to take apart and put back the Elgin watch Scott is presently working on. Smile

Thanks

Stephanie O'Neil
NAWCC Member 143979
 
Posts: 1419 | Location: New Orleans, Louisiana USA | Registered: April 01, 2003
Elgin Watch Collector
posted
I missed these topics earlier, so I'm glad I caught them in their new form. All I can say is *WOW*! Great work!

The Elgin Watch Collectors Website
 
Posts: 38 | Location: Lincoln, Nebraska USA | Registered: November 22, 2002
Picture of Ken Wyatt
posted
That is the FIRST time I have ever seen a complete description of the innards of a pocket watch.
What made it a compensated balance wheel John ?
Was it the split rim or the bi-metalic aspect?
Really enjoyed it

Take care

Ken
 
Posts: 40 | Location: Stockport, Cheshire, United Kingdom | Registered: November 17, 2003
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Ken,

Actually both. To quote from the War Department Technical Manual TM 9-1575: "The bimetal balance wheel cut at opposite points, which causes an automatic temperature correction to counteract the variation of the hairspring action caused by heat and cold".

Early watches used a solid balance wheel. Depending upon the ambient temperature and its effect on the steel hairspring, the watch might run fast, slow or keep reasonably accurate time. To "compensate" for varying temperatures, which affected accuracy, the compensated balance was introduced. Around the late 1930's, new alloys were being developed to create hairsprings that were relatively unaffected by temperature. With the use of these new hairsprings, the solid balance returned.

John D. Duvall
Vice President, Education
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Stu Goldstein
posted
[size=1]“Early watches used a solid balance wheel. Depending upon the ambient temperature and its effect on the steel hairspring, the watch might run fast, slow or keep reasonably accurate time. To "compensate" for varying temperatures, which affected accuracy, the compensated balance was introduced. Around the late 1930's, new alloys were being developed to create hairsprings that were relatively unaffected by temperature.”[/size]

Something I’ve wondered: Apart from concern for authenticity, when you’re replacing a hairspring in an early watch will only a steel hairspring work or could you choose an alloy hairspring in order to gain its temperature-invariability and anti-magnetic advantages?

[This message was edited by Dog on December 03, 2003 at 13:10.]
 
Posts: 355 | Location: Northern Idaho in the U.S.A. | Registered: November 26, 2002
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Dog,

If the balance was the old solid type, you might be able to vibrate an alloy hairspring and have a watch that would be less affected by temperature. However, if you used the same alloy spring on a split balance, you would again have an accuracy problem due to temperature variations effecting the balance wheel instead of the hairspring.

John D. Duvall
Vice President, Education
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Ken Wyatt
posted
Hi John
Couple of things.
Thanks for replying to my post re the balance wheel, I'm still only stumbling blindly around the site and hadn't set my "pop it" preferences to notify me of replies.
My post on the balance wheel was a clunky question when I look back, as, the split rim and the bi-metallic element really are one item (hopefully Smile ) no good using bi-metals when the expansion has no place to go (Doh!)
I meant the screws around the wheel, do they adjust to alter timing?
As a horology newbie I think that every time I learn anything I can view your tutorials in a different light; they will expand on my meagre facts and increase in their importance for me.
To expand on something you mention elsewhere
F11 gets rid of toolbar at the top of the screen temporarily,and unlocking the taskbar gets rid of the bar at the bottom temporarily, giving a bigger screen area.
Finally John I am on XP home and a right click on the desktop whilst viewing the slides allows me to "zoom in" to enlarge your already superb pictures.

Thanks for listening John

Ken
 
Posts: 40 | Location: Stockport, Cheshire, United Kingdom | Registered: November 17, 2003
Picture of Jessica Lane
posted
John, as everyone has said, the amount of work involved in these presentations is tremendous.

Could I ask a dumb question? Inthe tutorial for replacing a sleeve and stem, you begin with the watch body and sleeve. How do you separate the watch body from the movement? Or do you actually do the replacement with the movement in place?

Also, the winding mechanism on my watch seems to go directly into the area where the balance cock ends. Is this odd? Confused Confused It is supposedly a waltham of some not particularly unusual type.

Sorry to be so dumb. Don't tell Steve Maddox, he's already sufficiently convinced of my hopelessness.

Jessica
 
Posts: 836 | Location: New York, New York U.S.A. | Registered: September 06, 2003
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Hi Jessica,

When you are referring to the "watch body", do you mean the watch case?

Also, what do you mean by "the winding mechanism on my watch seems to go directly into the area where the balance cock ends."?
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Jessica Lane
posted
Hi. I meant the case had three parts: the back, the bezel and a part to which the stem, pendant and crown were affixed, or at least through which they went. You seemed to detach this third part from the others, or to disassemble the case into three parts.

Actually, by now, I've gotten the dial off, and my case is in three parts but, the pendant, crown and stem are attached (?). I'll loook at your tutorial again. Maybe I don't need to get them off, or maybe I should start with the sleeve puller?

I'll let you know if I can't figure it out.

Jessica
 
Posts: 836 | Location: New York, New York U.S.A. | Registered: September 06, 2003
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Jessica,

Review this slide and the stem/sleeve presentation. It should help answer your questions. Once again, if you're not sure how to take something apart, don't! Eek
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
Picture of Sheila Gilbert
posted
John,

All I can say is HOW WONDERFUL!

and

THANK YOU!

OK, and OUTSTANDING, FANTASTIC, PERFECT,

Get the Picture?

Bless you,


Sheila
 
Posts: 3119 | Location: La Plata, Maryland U.S.A. | Registered: May 22, 2004
posted
What a great presentation. I am new to pocket watch collecting and this is a huge help.

Thanks!!

Steve


Steve Scherr
srscherr@verizon.net
 
Posts: 28 | Location: Lake Ridge, Virginia USA | Registered: October 28, 2005
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Sheila & Stephen,

Thank you for the kind comments. Now that I'm settled in my Arizona home, I hope to start on another Helping Hand presentation soon.
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
posted
Welcome back John. You have been missed.

Tom
 
Posts: 1070 | Registered: March 10, 2003
IHC Life Member
Picture of John D. Duvall
posted
Hi Tom!

Thanks, its good to be back!!
 
Posts: 1122 | Location: Arizona U.S.A. | Registered: January 21, 2003
posted
Very helpful & practical information for a relative novice like myself. Thanks, John.

Ted
 
Posts: 107 | Location: Highland, Kansas in the USA | Registered: January 01, 2006
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