Friday, May 27, 2022


 WEEK 164

Team A
Origin: Thailand & USA, 
Name: A, Kate, David & Leilani
Watchmaking class: Technician
Current mood: 

This week, the technicians have been very focused on reshaping and flattening hairsprings! This unit has been quite challenging, but the work will be very rewarding once we do the timing for them. 
We have also learned how to use the pivoting lathe to burnish and repair damaged/bent balance staff pivots. We quickly learned that using this tool has many pros and cons. 
In addition to this, the technicians have also been working on servicing movements for their repair points. A has been working hard on a bushing for one of his movements (pictured) and Kate has been working on a vintage Omega movement with a very work intensive balance restoration.
Have a great weekend!

Team B
Origin: Japan/Switzerland & Canada
Name: Tetsu & Dean
Watchmaking class: Fullskill 
Current mood:

This week, Henrik graded Tetsu’s pointed nose hand vice and Dean’s brass anvil.  Both made the grade!  This is a significant milestone because this concludes the completion of the graded tools, with the exception of finishing their surfaces, for which Henrik will provide instruction later in the program.  In the meantime, Tetsu and Dean will continue making their non-graded, but mandatory tools.Have a great weekend everyone!Tetsu and Dean

Team C
Origin: Switzerland, Norway & USA
Name: Renato, David, Francesco, Åsmund & Robert
Watchmaking class: Fullskill 
Current mood:

Hello everyone!  This week, everybody continued the same projects as last week. Dean and Tetsuya are really close to having their tools completed.  In the meantime, I’m practicing for the pivot gauge exam while Åsmund and Robert are doing the same with winding stems. David and Renato are about to start the watch technician program, so they are preparing their benches and all the tools required.
See you next weekend! 



Robert wrote an article and got published by Horological Times! It is really commendable of AWCI and Horological Times to give a watchmaking student a voice!

Tetsu continued with some other tool manufacturing, here drilling in the Jig-Borer!


I show the technicians the book I had for adjusting hairsprings when I was a watchmaking student long time ago in Sweden, I forgot how clear and well done the illustrations were, no need even to be able to read the Swedish language as the pictures are self explanatory!

Renato designing a minute jumper for one of his pocket watch chronograph movements, it was missing altogether, only the broken screw thread was left stuck in the bridge, which he also has to later learn to extract!


Even with the original timing certificate!

The technicians got some more watches to repair!

Since Renato and David started the technician course they began with making a handy checking tool that can be used to check endshakes, escapement depths among many other checking uses!
Nice checking tool!

A had a vintage watch with a stripped threaded bushing that he would need to extract and make a new one for, Michael teaching how to make the bushing!

Dean working on his tools, here on the Schaublin 102!


Dean got this fancy and super simple to use machine (everyone got jealous) to make it faster and easier for him to extract balance staff's once he gets back to Canada to serve his customers!

Technicians checking the conditions of balance staff pivots!



It got much colder and raining off and on this week and we lost one day due to ascension on Thursday. It was also a slow pace week which is very rare for us! But also good once in a while as the technicians continue adjusting hairsprings and restoring oscillators with broken balance staffs and other problems, A also had to make a new threaded bushing for a mainplate where the threads were stripped but it was also worn out around it as it also acts as a post for a steel wheel, very interesting work as it was for a vintage watch. Renato and David started their technician course with the introduction of tweezers and screwdrivers. Its great that Horological Times published Roberts article, as it can help give a different perspective to the readers from someone who is in the beginning of their watchmaking journey, thanks to AWCI and Horological Times! Francesco and David were busy turning pivots, Dean and Tetsu completed some tools and continue on some final tools! It was a very enjoyable calm week! have a great weekend everyone!

Friday, May 20, 2022


 WEEK 163

Team A
Origin: Thailand & USA, 
Name: A, Kate, David & Leilani
Watchmaking class: Technician
Current mood: 

This week all the technicians continue with the hairsprings. The hairspring is one of the most complicated lesson. We use many tools and it is necessary to checks it with the theory. We have spent this week learning the theory and practicing. We are focusing on hairspring flatness and its concentric to the balance staff and wheel. Getting things flat and round at the collet are the first steps to do before putting the wheel into the watch to check the timing.

Kate Raksina

Team B
Origin: Japan/Switzerland & Canada
Name: Tetsu & Dean
Watchmaking class: Fullskill 
Current mood:

This week, (16~20 May) Dean & Tetsu had an intensive one and both were pretty much exhausted even before the end of the week.
Dean was working on the Brass Anvil and Tetsu was on the main bodies of the Pointed Nose Hand Vise. Both tools require significant amount of milling, drilling, boring, and hand sawing & filing. As predicted before, those were big challenges and real tests of patience.
Dean and Tetsu took completely different approaches to begin with; one was not afraid of the risks and „learning by doing“ style, while the other was „think twice before starting“ way.
Somehow, our work strategies were changing as the time went by. The risky one became a bit more cautious; started making plans and working step-by-step, and the careful one became slightly braver; wanted to try new techniques and see how it goes. In the end, both of us came to the final stages of finishing their tools, and will soon be getting ready to hand the pieces over to Henrik to be graded. 
Now we are ready to enjoy the weekend.

Hope you all have a great weekend, too!
Dean & Tetsu

Team C
Origin: Switzerland, Norway & USA
Name: Renato, David, Francesco, Åsmund & Robert
Watchmaking class: Fullskill 
Current mood:


This week i finished up two screw heads for my polishing tripod. It’s for adjusting the height so you will be able to make the object you are polishing flat to the tinplate. 

So many great designs were already used by other students and I wanted to have something unique, since this is a tool I will be using a lot in the future I want something that is pleasant to look at and something out of the ordinary. After a lot of thinking and wondering I were left with this design, I must admit I got very satisfied 😃

All work were done in the shaublin 102. This was very fun since I had to figure out a way to work on all the faces and also develop my own cutter which was small enough to not get caught inside the circle. 

I love the 102, it surprises me what this machine is capable of doing! 

Great weather also arrived, it started okay in the beginning of the week and as the week went by it only got hotter and hotter with Friday being the hottest with 27+ Celsius!! 

Other than that; Fransesco bought two new tools, one vertical micrometer for me and one rack and pinion tool for him and David bought a new 8mm lathe. So we spent the morning disassembling and cleaning the tools for rust and dirt and they came out great, almost like new! David’s lathe where made of German silver and after cleaning it looked like brand new! Great find for a good price 

Fransesco were quick to check if the horotec attachment would fit and figured they didn’t, so he started to make adapters. 

The dial gauge I got only measures 100’s so now I’m looking for a digital micrometer to modernize the old tool and be able to measure 1000’s. Already planing to make an adapter in German silver to mount the new micrometer on the stand, so stay tuned! 

Renato just did the hour wheel exam on the hottest day of the week and I think it went very well! 

Have a great weekend everyone! 


More work on perfecting winding stems. Trying to keep them straight during the heat-treatment process, refreshening the surface of the T-rest so the gravers will slide smoothly back and forth when cutting the length of various sections...getting closer and closer to everything coming into place for the finish of this challenging task.
Looking forward to next week, Robert.


Asmund machined these very cool looking screws for one of his tools!

Renato practiced making hour wheels in the Schaublin 70 lathe.


David working on tweaking a hairspring!

It got really vividly green this week!


A submitted another interesting vintage watch that he will overhaul during the course!


Some valid advice from an old NIVAROX plate for the students to find solutions to their hairspring problems!

Renato busy milling on the Schaublin 102! He needed a special washer with an angle incorporated into it that cannot be purchased commercially so the only way is to make it yourself! 


Since the technicians are on the subject of balance and hairspring, they got to see this old book and realized the existence of different types of oscillators and their features!

Comparing a blue-tempered stem to hands on a vintage Gallet, partially made winding stem by Robert after the tempering!

After heavy use Robert refreshed his t-rest!

Robert tempering one of his winding stems!


Asmund found this really nice stand that he will make an adaptor for so he can install a modern micrometer on it!



This week we got very hot, like summer in Le Locle, at its peak, it got as high as 27 degrees Celsius! Asmund finished two very cool looking screws for one of his tools!! The technicians learned how to deal with hairsprings, first on alarm clock size hairsprings and then on pocket watch size, they will continue later with smaller hairsprings. Renato practiced making wheels and ended the week with taking the hour wheel exam. Francesco and David were busy turning pivots, Dean and Tetsu continued machining tools! It was a very enjoyable week! have a great weekend everyone!