Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Toys and a fun day

Today I received some 'toys' that I ordered off the WUS sales forum. It was some tools and 2 watches that the seller had wanted to use to learn about watchmaking/ servicing. According to the seller, the movement was no longer working. I was excited to get the movement as I did not want to take apart a perfectly working ETA/ Unitas 64XX movement and find out that I could not put it back together again. So buying some non-working Chinese clone of the ETA/ Unitas 64XX seems a good deal for me.

I already have some watch servicing tools. So these are some of the additional tools that came today. The first is an interesting case opener. I have not seen one like this before. I think this tool is to be used in conjunction with a table vise. Why? Looking at the photographs below, I think you will come to the same conclusion. I think one would use this tool if the case back is tight. You would place the watch in a watch holder and use this case back opener. It is a 2 handed job.

The interesting thing about this tool is that it comes with 5 different jaws around the center of the tool. Rotate the tool and there is a different jaw. This would fit a rounded slot on a watch case back. The knurled nut is to move one of the jaws away from the other so that you can fit the jaws on the case back. The fixed jaw can also be adjusted by loosening the screw and moving it across the bar.

This would be for removing Rolex/ Tudor case back.

This is for the standard square slot case back.

There is another jaw to remove Panerai type case back. Cool tool.

Next is the watch hand installation press. I have the normal Horotec pen type watch hand installation tool. I find those easy to use but having a press would make installing watch hands easier (I think). At least the tool would be vertical to the watch hands during installation. The tool is very red (reminds me of Snap-on tools). It comes with 8 different pins for different hand size. I like it.

Finally a proper watch blower. I have been using my camera blower.

I have no idea what this is, but I think it is some sort of movement holder. Looks like a lump of resin with a depression on top. Anyone?

A watch movement holder. I have seen this being used in watch service centers and it is normally mounted on some sort of table vise. It has 4 plastic feet and the feet can be adjusted to fit different size watch case. Each feet has 3 adjustment points. It is currently holding one of the watch movement. I will (was) working on this particular movement.

I believe all the tools above are either Chinese or Taiwanese made tools.

The other tools that came with the package are Bergeon Rodico, a loupe (which got smashed in the shipping), finger tip protector, a plastic tweezer, watch hands remover and a cushion pad.

Now on to the watches. The watches are homage watches fitted with Chinese movement. I got 3 dials, 2 movements, 2 watch cases and 3 sets of hands. Out of the 3 dials, 2 I will be sending out for professional refurbishment. Basically I want the dial to be sterile. Also I want the dial to be matte black.

The other dial, I will try to refurbish myself. This dial was in bad shape. The dial, which is sandwich in design has been badly glued together. It easy easy to remove the top dial from the bottom. After the removal, we can see that the luminous paint was only applied at the cut-outs and not across the lower dial. I will be applying the luminous paint across the lower dial and not just where the cut-out is.

The dial has a missing foot, thus it was glued to the movement. You can see the glue stains on the movement later. The dial after it has been cleaned. I have to say that the lower dial, which is made from aluminium is well made. The sub-dial is engine tuned as is the area where the numbers are located. I also need to get some 'welding' solution to refit the broken foot.

The dial after it has been cleaned. I am not too concern about the wordings as I want this dial to be sterile as well.

The watch case. One is PVD black and the other is brush matte. I am considering sending the PVD black case out for black amour coating. We shall see.

One of the movement. I suspect the problem with this movement is the missing pull out piece/ setting lever and that the sliding pinion/ wig-wag pinion is displaced.

This is the movement that I was working on. This is the before photograph. Can you see the glue stains?

The movement is rather pretty. It has the swan neck adjustment, blue screws and very nice finish.

According to the seller, the movement is not working. I suspect the problem is that the pull out piece/ setting lever somehow dropped out (I hope). The missing parts from both movements. One of the hour wheel tension washer is also missing. I will be going to my local supplies store soon to get the washer and the luminous paint.

Well, I spent 2 hours taking the movement apart and putting it back again. I did learn a few things that were not in the books. It is good to check for free play and ease of movement of the Third, Fourth, Escape and Center wheel during installation. This to ensure it does not bind. Also make sure you remember the correct orientation of the Pallet. The other problem is to get the balance wheel to engage the Pallet.

Finally, all fixed and the movement is now running. I will be bring the movement to my friendly watch maker tomorrow to have him check it and also for timing the movement. The pull out piece/ setting lever now installed.

Overall it was a good afternoon. I had fun. The movement has been running for about 1 hour. I have fully wound the movement and will check to see how long is the power reserve. Also I will be rotating the movement to different position to see if it will still tick.

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