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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From American Horologist magazine, December 1938


Before putting a watch movement in its case, always oil the winding bar in the pendant, where it runs in the sleeve, to prevent rust and squeaking. See that the movement lines up properly with the winding bar in the case, so it will wind and back ratchet freely. It is sometimes necessary to remove the winding bar and sleeve from the case pendant and enlarge the hole in it to one side or the other, with a round file, in order to get a perfectly free action. The length of the square on the winding bar should also be looked after to see that both the winding and setting action is right. If the square is too long, it may be shortened by filing without removing it from the case. If it is too short, it is necessary to remove the crown and turn in the sleeve nut until the action is right.

See that the crystal does not touch the center, and that the hands clear the dial and the crystal, as well as each other.

After the case is dosed, hold the watch to your ear and listen if the balance pivots will "bump" clear on both endstones, as they should do, when the watch is tipped from side to side. This will indicate if the case in any way interferes with the freedom of the balance. 

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