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Question Box

From Horology magazine, April, 1939

Question Box

Jeweled Bankings

Editor Horology, 
Dear Sir:
Please answer in your Question Box.

What is the advantage of jeweled banking pins? How many watches should a watchmaker, working full time at the bench, put in good order per day?

Answer: If the spot where the fork strikes the banking be examined with a microscope it will be found that it is not perfectly clean. It will show a coating on the fork as well as the pin, similar to the substance which appears on the contact surfaces of wheels and pinions. It seems to come from nowhere but is probably due to a minute sliding of the fork over the banking pin, especially if the pallet arbor fits freely in the jewels.

Assuming, therefore, that there is a sliding action, a jeweled surface becomes beneficial. However, the refinement of jeweling the banking is justified in none but highly adjusted watches.

The question of hew many watches per day one should turn out will remain unanswered for some time to come. For the output of work depends on general shop conditions as well as the skill and knowledge of the individual workman.

Among the horologist's tools, for instance, are a number of devices which are not often used. Those who own plenty of equipment seldom get stuck when something out of the ordinary is required. The horologist who limits his equipment to the ordinary bench tools gets lost when a slight alteration is needed or a new part has to be made. Another important factor is an adequate stock of material. Much valuable time is lost in hunting for material. To maintain a good stock, however, is not everything. It is equally important that the material be kept systematically, so that one may tell at a glance whether or not he has a particular piece.

A fair daily average also depends much on the policy of a store in accepting watches for repairs. In too many instances horologists are compelled to work on watches which should have been junked long ago. And last but not least, the general surroundings in the shop, such as light, air and working space, also affect the output.

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