Friday, March 13, 2020




Pierre Aubert, James Punshon, Jayne Zhuo
Origin : Sydney, Australia. Toulouse, France. Singapore.
Age : 32
Watchmaking class: Technician Course
Current mood: Yolo, Jayne here. Full on week of theories and hands-on practical work on the Escapement for us. We were all really focused doing the balance end-shakes, division of guard pin, division and end-shakes of escape wheel & pallet. I must say it really tested my patience. You just gotta not be anxious and do every task calmly. Otherwise, great week immersing ourselves in the fun of learning! :)

Markus McDonald 
Origin : Stockholm Sweden 
Age : 21
Watchmaking class: 2 years Fullskill Program
Current mood : This week I continued with the pivot gauges focusing on getting it too the thousand of a millimeter, this was quiet taxing and at times frustrating as even if I was in tolerance too a tenth I could easily go under. However once I learned how to modify the hard metal graver too cut things became a lot smoother and having used the steel graver I quickly grew too love this new tool. I continued with trial and error testing new graver and pressures over the week aiming to get the pivot gauges within tolerance doing it four times until the fifth where I was able to get the piece to tolerance, this was satisfying as I was able to achieve something I had to re do many times.
Additionally too the pivot gauges we had Peter from "the naked watchmaker" come over and interview each of us. This was fun as being able to meet him was a real pleasure and explore why I choose the profession was really nice.
Finally today I  further expanded my pivot gauges as I focused on making the final pivot of three.
In conclusion this was both a trying week but incredibly satisfying as I spent a long time improving and learning how to cut the pivot gauges and develop a system and intuition and as a  result this allowed me too make a piece that was in the tolerance, which in combination with meeting Peter made this week a diverse and enjoyable experience.

Origin : Malaysia
Age : 28
Watchmaking class : 2 years Fullskill Program
Current Mood : Very satisfied with the tool making process. Learned how to plan ahead and prevent errors while making a symmetrical tool with a middle pinion. Finished my pointed nose vice. Back to hand filing! Have to get prepare for my trial exam next week.

Origin : Kaohsiung, Taiwan 
Age : 27
Watchmaking : 2Y Fullskill Program
Current mood: The corona virus has finally struck Switzerland. I only hope the locals are sensible and don't do any panic mass purchasing, hording excessive supplies from others who also need them. Other than that, it's been a busy week, got lots of diverse works. Tried out a different type of heat treatment in hope of saving my unhardened and out of carbon steel ring, did an interview for the school, and was back on the grinding stone, keeping the gravers sharp at all time. Hope this annoying virus debacle blows over soon. 






We got a really nice gift this week from Zenith and Romain who visited us recently to say hi, Jayne bumped into Romain sometime ago when she was going to the  Zenith factory tour, it was great to make a connection with Romain who is also the senior trainer in Zenith. The factory is open to the public every Friday from 9.00-12.00 you just have to book with the tourism office in La Chaux-de-Fonds before. Anyway, its always great for me and the students to get so passionate visitors from this local area, it helps motivate us and make new important contacts in our industry. 

The Coronavirus, COVID-19 seems only to be worse and worse when reading the news, we are lucky so far that all is going on normally here in Le Locle but it can change anytime as we have examples of that already.

The visitor I was talking about last week was Peter Speake-Marin, who is behind The Naked Watchmaker, which is a completely unique thing we never had before, it’s a great resource for anyone interested in watchmaking check it out;  he came back yesterday and made a video interview of all of us which was really fun to do! Cant wait to see how it will all come out, will let you know when it will be published stay tuned… and thank you Peter! 

Stay fit and healthy as I hope to see you next week, in the meantime enjoy as much as possible the weekend!

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