Friday, September 29, 2023

Heavy Duty Work!

Week 39

 This week, we had to use an angle grinder to open our locked parts drawer.


Workshop B

    Dean, Faris, Ivan, Louis, Tetsu, Varun

    This week, (25-29 September) Tetsu and Dean worked on some outstanding tasks and projects.

    Tetsu finished the last of his seven movements, then went straight to work on hand-turning a balance staff, which was completed on Thursday. These were two significant milestones in the Fullskill program, congratulations!

    From the chronograph course, Dean overhauled an ETA 2894-2 movement.  The chronograph module was challenging as it has a number of springs and only one bridge to hold them down. 

    Dean also worked on a vintage Rolex 1520 movement, in particular the hairspring and barrel bridge.  The hairspring was quite bent, so it took a bit of time to straighten it out.  

A worn barrel arbour hole on the barrel bridge was causing the barrel to lean over far enough to contact the bridge, so Dean drilled out the hole and installed a bushing.

    This week Ivan, Louis and Varun are learning how to make more parts of the winding stem. They learned how to file squares by hand and how to cut the slots.
Slot cutting practice pieces compared to a 1 Euro coin.

Close up of the slot cutting practice piece.



Workshop A

    Amer, Dunham, Daniel, David, Harold, Miguel

    This week Harold did two practice exams and one trial exam, all of which were on winding & setting system lubrication, flattening of wheels, barrel disassembly, lubrication, assembly and adjustment, and adjustment of gear train.

    This week David started learning how to make a balance staff.

    Miguel finished making several pivot gauges. He finished the sizes 0.18 to 0.14.

    This week Amer and Dunny took their hairspring exam. Amer also finished his 7750 chronograph adjustments.

Friday, September 22, 2023

Quiet week.


Week 38



Workshop A

    Amer, Dunham, Daniel, David, Harold, Miguel

     This week Amer and Dunham had their hairspring practice exams. 

The timing of Dunny's 6498 hairspring. It was Delta 6.
Hairspring was vibrated, double bend and regulating curve was formed by hand.

    This week David made a 0.06mm pivot gauge in preparation for making balance staff.

It was made in the shape of a balance staff.

    Miguel continued to practice pivot gauges. He made a 0.20, 0.19 and 0.11 pivot gauges. He also had to refresh the female cone of his lathe.

The inner edges are wavy and have uneven areas which cause the piece to wobble.

After turning in the lathe and removing the remaining burr in the center by hand.

    This week Harold practiced on winding & setting system lubrication, flattening of wheels, barrel disassembly, assembly, adjustment and lubrication, and adjustment of gear train.



Workshop B  

   Faris, Ivan, Louis, Varun

    This week Ivan, Louis, and Varun sharpened their gravers in preparation to start learning how to make winding stems. Henrik also taught them how to heat treat steel.

    This week Faris continued practicing working on gear train and mainspring in preparation for his exam next week.

Thank you for reading!

Hope to see you again next week!

Friday, September 15, 2023

A Birthday and a surprise!


Week 37

This week It was Ivan's birthday! 

We also had a surprise visitor, Francesco! He stopped by after work to say hello and pick up a few things.

     Henrik also received a very kind donation of old watch parts, materials, and watch movements and will use them one way or the other for education.

    These parts were very kindly donated by Mr. Anthony G. Randall. A watchmaker who has done much in the field of restoration, production, and design of watch movements.


You can read more about him from this article:


Workshop B

Dean, Faris, Ivan, Louis, Tetsu, Varun

    This week, Henrik introduced Dean & Tetsu to another chronograph; the 2894-2. This will be a long term project, starting with timing of the movements under varying conditions, including 50-hour trace measurements, so that we will be able to compare performance before and after movement overhauls.

    While running the 2894 on the timing machine, the guys continued working hard on the remainder of the mandatory 7 movements and watches for service repair points.

    We had wonderful weather till Tuesday, but it seems like that the climate finally decided to go towards autumn.

    This week, Ivan, Louis and Varun learned how to service the 8mm lathe in preparation for learning how to make winding stems.



Workshop A

Daniel, David, Harold, Miguel

    This week, David took the real pivot gauge exam and

Miguel took several practice exams for pivot gauges. 

    This week David restored the reverse cone of his between centers lathe.

Between centers lathe with the reverse cone to seat the workpiece.
Destroyed female cone which causes the workpiece to wobble and be off center.
Restored cone after turning on the Schaublin 70.


    This week Daniel has started to do prototyping for his school watch project, with the fundamental of the mainplate and barrel bridge taking shape.

Main plate in brass with the spots for the gear train milled down.
Barrel bridge with the recesses for the barrels and ratchet wheel.

    This week Miguel also learned how to use the spotting machine to make perlage. He experimented with it on his pointed nose hand vice.

The initial finishing of straight graining.

The two finished pieces.

(Left) The first piece was made with perpendicular rows of perlage which overlap each other.

(Right) The second piece has diagonal rows of 2 overlapping layers.

    This week Harold learned 1) how to know mainsprings’ (manual/automatic) remaining lifespan using a pinvice; 2) how to gauge and flatten bent wheels (professionally and unprofessionally); 3) to understand the differences of different mainsprings; 4) to determine the correct mainspring for a watch (unindicated); 5) to comprehend the differences of different jewels; and 6) how to properly operate on them using tools.

Thank you for reading!

See you next week!

Friday, September 8, 2023

Geneva Trip and Bench Test!


Week 36 

This week we had another bench tester! Alexander from Israel! 

Here is Alexander working on assembly of a ETA 7001 movement.

    Last weekend, we traveled to Geneva Watch Days to visit several brands to get to know the brand and see their new releases during the exhibit at Beau Rivage.

An original Czapek pocket watch which was used as the basis for the design language of the revived brand. 

The Quai des Bergues, which was Czapek's first model after their revival in 2012. Designed with the DNA of the original pocket watch.

Place Vendome Tourbillon, with GMT across from the tourbillon to mirror the design language of the Quai des Bergues.

Lederer's Central Impulse Chronometer in rose gold. It has 2 gear trains that are regulated by 1 central balance wheel.

Close up of the escapement where you can see the skeletonized escape wheels.

H Moser & Cie's pioneer cylndrical tourbillon. It has a cylindrical hairspring inside the tourbillon.

Close up of the tourbillon in Moser's Endeavor Vanta black. The tourbillon is highlighted against the void of the dial.

Moser's sister brand Hautlence's new creation which tells time by using a retrograde minute and a polished blue sphere that spins to display the next hour.




Workshop A

Amer, Dunham, Daniel, David, Harold, Miguel 

     This week Miguel and David took their practice exams for pivot gauges. It was quite difficult, but their skills are improving!

     Daniel made several practice pivot gauges in preparation for the exam.

    Amer and Dunny are learning how to do poising and timing of the balance and hairspring.

    This week Harold learned about and practiced on the disassembling, cleaning, and lubricating the arbour, barrel, and mainspring, installing the mainspring manually and with a winder and closing the barrel. Adjusting the end shake and side shake were also learned and practiced. Factors that affect isochronism were learned. How to properly use the cutting and smoothing broches was learned and practiced.


Workshop B 

Dean, Faris, Ivan, Louis, Tetsu, Varun


    This week, Dean had an amazing restoration project! He had to repair a Zenith pocket watch which had an off center bushing for the balance wheel.

The tilted balance wheel

Centering the hole of the mainplate and the balance cock in the jig borer.

close up of the holes in the mainplate and balance cock through the centering microscope

Hand drilling the final size of the bushing.

The replacement balance staff in progress.


    This week, Ivan and Louis finished some more of their tools. Ivan finished his pointed nose hand vise and Louis finished his polishing tripod.

Ivan's pointed nose hand vise.

Louis' polishing tripod.

His tripod is black rhodium plated and is finished with a cross hatch graining.



Thank you for reading!

 Hope to see you again next week!