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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Questions and Answers

From The American Horologist magazine, July 1940

Questions and Answers
(Questions by members and readers, answers by National Technical Board and other authoritative sources, What are your problems?)

QUESTION: - Why do screws and steady pins stick?

ANSWER: - by L. T. Christopherson, Technical Board.

The screw and steady pins would stick for various reasons. One and primary reason would be that some watchmaker did not see fit to entirely disassemble movement-the process of cleaning.
Another reason: Did not rotate watch long enough in the rinse solution.

Any other reasons would be faulty manufacture or abuses by watchmakers. I will state, however, that I have had no difficulty in this section with the trouble you mention.

If at any future time that you have a puzzle-just send it to me and I will answer it to the best of my ability.

QUESTION: - How to tighten center pinion to wheel when it becomes loose?

ANSWER: - By W. H. Samelius, UHAA Technical Board.

If the center wheel is fastened to the center pinion, being staked on, the pinion leaves being riveted over the wheel, the same as the balance wheel is fastened to the staff, using a hollow round nose punch, should fasten the wheel to the pinion securely.

If the seat for the wheel is too low, it would be necessary to put the pinion in the lathe, cutting a new seat for the wheel, making the riveting shoulder higher. If it is for an American watch, where the center wheel becomes loose from the arbor, there is a special four lipped punch that comes with the staking tool for that particular purpose. This four lipped punch will set the riveting, or indent the shoulder into the brass wheel, securing the wheel so that it cannot turn on the arbor. 

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