Friday, August 16, 2019

Summer is over!

                                                         WEEK 19
                                                  Summer is over!

Harman Wadhwa 
Origin : New Delhi, India
Age : 28
Watchmaking class : 8 month Service & Technician course
Current mood : It's good to be back, it took few days to settle and get in the work mode.๐Ÿ˜‹ Anyhow, I am half way through my course and there is so much to do. I am covering the last section of the course on escapement. It is going well and I am looking forward to meet the new student coming in next week. (Hint: he is an Asian)
Adios, See you next week.

Pierre Aubert
Origin : Toulouse, France
Age : 23
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill Program
Current mood: Great to be back at it! It took a few days for the skills to get back to normal.
 I learned how to make slot gravers (used for the making of the winding stems) on the Agathon- such a powerful and pleasing machine to use. As for the school watch, I have started to make the final version of my yoke on the Pantograph (see pictures below). More to come next week! Have a great week-end everyone!

Markus McDonald
Origin : Stockholm, Sweden
Age : 20

Current mood: This week we returned back to the course and I found that I was able to get back into the rhythm quite well. The week was primarily consistent of filing the base plates with varying degrees of speed fast at the start but much more slower as I got to the finish.
Although this can be seen as a grind it was a good way of breaking me into the rhythm of the course again whilst allowing me to prepare my tools and work on filling.



STEP 1: HARMAN 

                         We all need something to look at life, like the way I look at my watch parts. ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜‚

                                                          Adjusting of the pallet jewels


Applying the shellac on the pallet jewels


STEP 2: GRAVER MAKING (PIERRE)




STEP 3: SCHOOL WATCH (PIERRE)




                                                       Henrik’s Word
We are all back from the summer vacation, the students slowly got back to their previous work to warm up and get their hands back, Harman started to adjust pallet jewels and practicing some shellacking of pallets, Pierre got to learn how to make a new type of graver which will later help him turn the slot in the winding stems and Markus continued working on his tool bases. During my summer vacation I got to teach a restoration class here in Le Locle and directly after I went to teach another restoration class in AWCI Harrison, Ohio https://www.awci.com/ Both classes went really well and the students were really nice! AWCI now starts to feel like my second home as a teacher! As usual Tom assisted me during the class which was really nice!  As I did not have time to do the blogging during the vacation, I include some highlights from the two classes below. 

                                                              Restoration I in Le Locle:















                                    Restoration and Construction Techniques in AWCI:

This was cool to see! we are inside the new AWCI watchmaking buss that will give courses all around the US, surprisingly spacious inside and equipped with top of the line tools! Very cool indeed!











Friday, July 19, 2019

Days before the summer holidays

                                                              WEEK 15
                                            Days before the summer holidays

Harman Wadhwa 
Origin : New Delhi, India
Age : 28
Watchmaking class : 8 month Service & Technician course
Current mood : Last week before the summer holidays- just finishing work on escapement as much as possible.The study of escapement is near to boundless. And yet, that is what makes it very interesting.  I also learned electro-plating of parts, which is easy to do only when done with a proper strategy and process. This was a bonus learning experience as this isn't part of my syllabus. :D That's all folks, its time to chill and relax this summer holidays, hope you do the same.I'm outta here๐Ÿป
'Alvida' (GoodBye)

Pierre Aubert
Origin : Toulouse, France
Age : 23
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill Program
Current mood: Very exciting and busy last week of school!! I learned how to file squares on the 8mm lathe in preparation for the winding stems making process that will start after the summer break. I was also very happy that we got to do a summer cleanup of the workshop!! It felt great to re-organize things and clean the machines! We covered, among other things, all the steps required to electroplate a part. Last but not least ๐Ÿ˜‰ I finished the setting mechanism for my school watch!! Next step: the bridges. 
See you very soon and have a great summer! 


Markus Mc Donald
Origin : Stockholm, Sweden
Age: 20
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill program.
Current Mood: Finished preparing my gravers for future hand turning! I also practiced my filing ahead of my first intermediate exam.


STEP 1: GREAT SUMMER CLEANUP (Pierre)

In addition to cleaning the workshop- I also dismantled and cleaned my lathe. Clean your tools and they will return the favor ๐Ÿ˜‡

STEP 2: PRE-WINDING STEM EXERCISES (PIERRE)




STEP 3: ELECTROPLATING  


HENRIK's WORD:

Last week of the Fullskill and Technician course before the summer holidays went really well, intensive as expected, but still we got to learn some new things with the electroplating and filing squares in the 8mm lathe for Pierre. Next week I will give another restoration course which I am sure will be very exciting for me and the students and then I am flying to USA, Ohio to teach another restoration class in AWCI. I wont have the time to make another blog post for 3 weeks as the students are off for holidays but I will try to make some Instagram posts here and there in between teaching. In the meantime I wish everyone a lovely summer holiday!














Friday, July 12, 2019

Christmas Came Early!

                                                                WEEK 14
                                                       Christmas came early.

Harman Wadhwa 
Origin : New Delhi, India
Age : 28
Watchmaking class : 8 month Service & Technician course
Current mood : Damn!! Just realized this week i completed 3 months of my course! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ(as Henrik says, time flies in LeLocle) 
I`m working  on escapements which is continuation of last week, its going good working on the division and end shake of the escapement.
it feels like Christmas for all of us, we all got our new tools which we ordered.  *watchmakers can understand this feeling . ๐ŸŽ…๐Ÿ˜

It was a week of celebration too, i got my result for the gear train exam, which was awesome and i`m pretty happy about it.๐ŸŽ–
Secondly, Today is Pierre birthday so we celebrated together at the institute :)
Until next week, Namaste ๐Ÿ™





Pierre Aubert
Origin : Toulouse, France
Age : 23
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill Program
Current mood: I started to work on winding stem squares this week. It is the application of all the micro-mechanic skills that I have covered until now- which makes it very enjoyable and exciting! See you next week and have a great weekend! 

Markus Mc Donald
Origin : Stockholm, Sweden
Age: 20
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill program.
Current Mood: This week was a continuation from last week with an emphasis on grinding and the lathe. 
Firstly was grinding, the objective of grinding was to evolve the quality and fix each piece so that they are all symmetrical and cut from a 30 degree angle. This process was a continues one of trial and error as I had to rework many angles of the piece to be consistent.
The result was the graver being both symmetrical and having a diamond shape.
Secondly was the lathe which was more straight forward with two parts. The first being the calculation and adjustment of the machine to cut from a specific angle, this angle allowed for a cone shape to be cut automatically. This on a conceptional level was challenging however when overcome allowed for a vital part of the lathe to be learned.


The second part was focused on developing threading, the objective was to increase consistency and quality with the external threads as this is one of the most vital aspects both visually and practically.
The conclusion of both of these parts was that a three section piece was able to be created. One that utilized external threads, a middle point and a cone.


STEP 1: Escapements and Tools
                             


Cant explain this moment, it was a struggle working with Peseux 7001 escapement.๐Ÿคฌ

                                                                      Pallet fork


Adjusting the guard pin of the pallet fork

STEP 2: Winding stem!







STEP 3: Turning the cone on lathe.





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

                                  Loved the new microscopes @ Horotec office , La Chaux Fond

Happy Birthday Pierre!




Henrik words!!

Will make this one a bit shorter as i am running out of time! Nothing much new to say, except the sapphire project is coming along nicely but I will have to take a break from it until August again as I am getting closer to the US trip and summer classes that need preparation, in the meantime the students are doing very well!! Have to run now, but see you next week and have a great weekend!
      





Friday, July 5, 2019

Cook-out Week ๐Ÿฒ

                                                            WEEK 13
                                                       Cook-out Week ๐Ÿฒ

Harman Wadhwa 
Origin : New Delhi, India
Age : 28
Watchmaking class : 8 month Service & Technician course
Current mood : this week was great, my exam went well and we had a`cook-out`(Cookout happens once a month, one of us cooks lunch in school and we all enjoy the day together on weekend). It was my turn this month, so I cooked Indian food and went for a short hike in France.๐Ÿ˜ƒ
As for school work, I have started to cover escapements & canon pinions. Both are really interesting, and I love it. 


Pierre Aubert
Origin : Toulouse, France
Age : 22
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill Program
Current mood: Very exciting week!! I was introduced to hand turning on the 8mm Lathe. It is the most characteristic skill of a classical watchmaker! In fact, it is the one thing I dreamed to learn the most before I joined watchmaking school. And as expected, it is just amazing..!! It is very similar to filing: it is a matter of connecting your hands to your mind in order to achieve any shape you would like! And your hand is freely moving into the material, which just feels like sculpting..!! But it also has to meet all your watchmaking requirements for function ๐Ÿ˜Ž I just loved it. In that regard, I have started to make conical pivots, domed pivots and spot centers- all of which are going to allow me to make actual watchmaking parts in the future (balance staffs, winding stems, pivots ...etc). You can literally make anything you want with it, and I find this very appealing. 
As for the school watch, the setting lever spring is almost done: it is already 100% functional, but I want to keep filing so that it becomes buttery smooth when pulling the crown in and out. 
We also had the great pleasure to explore Indian food thanks to Harman!! It was really delicious! And I must say that I have enjoyed the spices a lot.

Have a great weekend and see you next week!

Markus Mc Donald
Origin : Stockholm, Sweden
Age: 20
Watchmaking class : 2Y Fullskill program.
Current Mood: This week was focused on the lathe and a mix of filling tools and grinding gravers which allowed me to stay focused and challenged. What stood out too me during the week was the machine and application of the lathe , although the removal of material is both a pleasure and a challenge being a science of precision onto itself. What brought me the most head scratching and Inquisition, was the various different applications of the Lathe.
This week was aimed at tackling both the external and internal threading which came with its own measurements and step by step process which in the upcoming weeks will become smoother and more experimental to the point of refinement of this versatile yet challenging application. 
STEP 1: INDIAN FOOD ANYONE?






Indian cuisine!

Happy faces!!





Great views!





Types of Escapements!!

Learning to Glue the pallet jewels!

STEP 2: MARKUS AND THREADING OPERATIONS






STEP 3: HAND TURNING!
 Modifying gravers to suit my hand turning tasks! 



HENRIK'S WORDS

This week was very pleasant! The temperature dropped to a comfortable level and I think everyone was happy with that. I also got to enjoy very good Indian cuisine cooked by Harman, delicious! after the cook out we had a nice hike together in France which was also very enjoyable. This week I also introduced Harman to the escapement he seemed very excited about it! Markus also learned a new subject, how to make threads both external and internal in the lathe, he also seemed to enjoy it very much! I teach Pierre the basics of the hand turning with the 8mm lathe, needless to say he loved it! My sapphire project is progressing well, so far I am happy with the shapes developing on the movement, cant wait to see how the entire movement with its modifications will look ones finished! Have to run now, but see you next week and have a great weekend!