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Classic watches, watchmaking, antique tools, history, vintage ephemera and more!

Learn about mechanical timepieces and how they work, the history of the American watch industry and especially all about the Elgin National Watch Company! Check back for new content daily.

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Question Box


From Horology magazine, April, 1939

Question Box

Regulating Watches

Editor Horology, Dear Sir:
I enjoy reading this magazine very much and cannot praise it too highly.

Would like to ask you why the Swiss factories do not give the watchmakers a break. They fill all the holes in the balance wheels with screws so that the watchmaker can not make any change in the weight of the wheel for regulating, except by placing washers or substituting larger screws, which detract from the appearance of the wheel. Many times there is hardly any clearance for larger screws. Would like to have you answer this in the Question Box.
C. O. A.

Answer: Factories maintain that the horologist should never have to change screws for the purpose of regulating a watch. It is quite proper to make a slight change in weight with balance washers.

These, however, should not be larger in diameter than the heads of the screws.

The horologist should always bear in mind that adding or removing a pair of screws may seriously affect the temperature adjustment of the watch.

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