Thursday, February 5, 2015

Winding stem in the making ...

Our Mexican student Germán Franco, is restoring an old cylinder escapement pendant watch. The watch is not in a good shape and needs to be thoroughly inspected and carefully repaired. Today Germán is making a winding stem for it using one of our trusty Schaublin 70 lathes.

Germán precisely adjusting the end mill to the winding stem.

Next step: Milling the square!

The old pendant movement and its components.

Making of winding stems is a big part of the micro-mechanical module of our FullSkill course. It actually is one of the intermediate exams and the reason for that is that making a winding stem by hand is not an easy task at all and is an extremely good indication of your skills if you can make one. There are several different diameters that has to be precisely turned down, in many different lengths, and therefore several corners are to be made that have to be sharp. Then there is a square that is hand filed, plus thread making and also heat treatment operation which is always risky. Lastly, there is the slot. It takes weeks of practice and endless amount of patience to make your first winding stem (to acceptable quality and respecting the tolerances of course).

Hand made winding stems by a FullSkill student.

We wish Germán the best of luck in making his winding stem!


  1. Using a support? MILLING the square?? No, that's cheating!! Nah, great work! :-)

    1. Hi Erik,

      Yes, he did mill the square! Our students learn how to make winding stems the old traditional way - the hard way. Once our students are skilled enough with the filing and hand turning, we encourage them to be creative and efficient in their part making. Time is money and if you have the proper equipment, there is no reason to make your life more difficult than it already is :-) So in this case, making the winding stem in the Schaublin and save half a days work was a brilliant decision.

      Have a nice Friday!

  2. Yeah, you are right! I'm a first year student at the Swedish WOSTEP school, which is 3 years. We are learning in the same manner! I'm really looking forward to try out the mill! �� Nice to read your tutorials and experiences, keep it up! Nice friday to you too!