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ScottMcAfee

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  1. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Here's the finished watch. I tried lightly cleaning the dial with rodico, but it turns out rodico is not always your friend. I accidntally removed most of the 8 and took a big chunk out of the '1' in 10. I used some very small dry transfer numbers to bring them back. The '8' is actually a capital 'O' sideways with a small 'c' on top. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    After a few months of minor setbacks and slow progress in addressing the inconstant chrono timing, I now have the watch together and working pretty well. Ended up getting a replacement balance wheel w/spring for the one I tangled and chrono runner (mine had a couple mangled teeth). Also had to straighten two teeth on the oscillating pinion with an exacta blade. I'll post a note or two with pictures to close this thread, but first a question: Does anybody know the lift angle of a Venus 170? If not, I'll try to figure it out with the 180° method, but it would be nice to know the standard. Can't find it online. Thanks!
  3. ScottMcAfee

    Minute Recording Jumper Repair

    Nice repair, Ry! Guess you're the guy to go to for small quantities of thin nickel wire [emoji16] Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  4. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Great news, Ry. Thanks for doing the force test for me. I wasn't looking forward to risking my runner. [emoji51] I'll center it in the hole and adjust the heart if necessary. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  5. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Here are some pictures of the aberrant dart tooth on the runner. I've set that aside as I messed up my hairspring pretty bad (got the tension spring tangled up in it). I'm having fun learning all about the mechanics of tweaking and shaping hairsprings, but it's slow going. Mark's videos on this are very helpful. I may ultimately have to buy one, but I'll give it my best shot. I also took some time off of the 170 to service a family alarm clock with my dad, which was a nice switch to the macro from the micro and my first look at a pin escapement.
  6. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Thanks @Geo! OK, so I got the watch largely back together. It kept pretty good time over the 12 hours I tested it, so the watch part is working pretty well. The chrono mechanism is functioning: start, stop, and flyback. I do have a couple of issues though: The chrono second sweep hand stutters from time to time, especially when the dart contacts the intermittent minute gear. a) I can't see the dart tooth through the chrono runner to make sure the depth is good w/respect to the intermittent minute gear. It's rotated just outside of the view circle. Any tips on rotating it about 5 degrees without breaking the tooth or messing up the shaft or wheel? b: The second hand drags a little on the dial in a couple of places. I'm gradually smoothing out the bend to it but I'm real worried about breaking it. c) I did break the tip off minute register jumper, despite the warnings from the ensembl-o-graph guide to be careful. So I'm sourcing a replacement. d) I can't seem to get many of the parts shiny. Any good tips to take off black patina? I've tried muriatic acid, vinegar, pepsi, naptha. Sandpaper works but is not usable in a lot of places. Thanks! Despite these minor issues I'm really happy with the watch and the result of my work so far. I broke the tip off the minute register jumper, despite
  7. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    OK, I've got the non-chrono portion of the watch back together and lubed, with all parts accounted for. The mainspring worked great and caught the arbor right away. Getting the pallet, escape wheel, their bridge, and the balance in place was incredibly challenging. I don't know how many times I had to place, nudge, fuss, fiddle, adjust, and start over again when it wasn't right. But it was hours. Anyway, I was rewarded with a beating movement. It's great fun to pull the stem out and watch the keyless works turn while now understanding how the whole thing functions. Hopefully I didn't screw up anything too bad with all that fiddling! On to the chronograph parts...
  8. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Good eye, Ry. I got those off and cleaned all the non-chrono parts. Cleaned them twice, as the first time I had no idea they'd rust so quickly after the ultrasonic clean and rinse. The second time was to get this rust off, after which I was a lot less lazy about drying the parts. One piece I didn't take off was this that I found on a closer inspection: What is this, some sort of incablocish balance shock dampener? I don't see it in the tech sheet. I'm a little worried if I take it off springs will shoot out at me or I won't be able to get it together right. I'm a little worried there might be water in there, though. I decided to replace the mainspring. Not sure if the old one is set, but... it's a bit bent out of shape around the eye and hook and it looks like maybe a new hook was fabricated since it's a little blackened at the end. The main reason though: I figured it was cheaper to buy a mainspring than to buy a winder. I've read all I can find on oiling mainsprings. It seems like I can assume that the new spring is lubed. Many seem to think that the spring doesn't touch the cover and bottom of the barrel. This surprises me, but I'm willing to just drop it in there, trying to get it past the groove for the cover and not quite to the bottom, and only oil the arbor. Quite a variety of opinions on this topic.
  9. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Got the friction fit gear off with little difficulty and the keyless works followed quickly. The only thing left is the little sliding gear spring which is so nicely tucked into crevices I'm afraid of bending it getting it out. I think I have to though, else it will probably trap moisture from the cleaning. Turns out that the Otto Frei watch/jewlry tools shop is just a few blocks from where I work. This is both convenient and dangerous I think, but I picked up a few oils and tools without getting too carried away.
  10. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Well Ry, you really anticipated my dilemma. I had gotten the barrel, third, fourth, escape, and pallet out and was studying the second wheel up and down to try to guess if the friction fit (canon?) pinion comes off or the wheel comes off). I was going to post the question, but you beat me to it with the answer! I'm glad it's the canon pinion, since it would be hard to get any leverage on the wheel. Anyway thanks! @Watchtime the crystals came in and look and fit great. Here's the one for the Empire. Thank you! Looking forward to getting it back together!
  11. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Thanks: I had seen some of @Mark's videos on Youtube, including the Venus 175 I mentioned earlier, but hadn't connected them with the admin of this site. And so my thanks to you as well, Mark. Unfortunately despite watching the video a few times, I still didn't release the power before taking off the 3/4 plate bridge. Which I'm guessing is why the third wheel looks like this: Hopefully I didn't damage the wheels or jewels. Ry, thanks for the table; interesting that it doesn't mention 941 or 9415 for the pallet stones. I'm thinking of going with Nye 140c and b, and PML-W10 and maybe 941. Maybe 9010, too, if for no other reason than to compare it to the Nye. I see a lot of questions out there about how the Nye stacks up, but not a lot of answers. Also thinking of trying to epilame with stearic acid. Thanks @Watchtime. -Scott
  12. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    OK, the Chrono parts are all removed, which brings me to the end of the excellent Esembl-o-graf instructions. Any good resources for the disassembly of the rest of the watch? There is a Venus 175 disassembly video on Youtube, but I haven't been able to find anything more on the 170 cal. besides the spec sheet. Thanks! -Scott
  13. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Nice pics. I wonder if electrolysis would work better on the rust w/o losing too much of the base metal? The tension spring didn't give me much grief, though I was worried. I did lose my first screw though. I went back to remove some screws that were still in some of the early parts I removed and get them into the movement (so I wouldn't lose them). One of the springs popped out of my tweezers with the screw still in it. The spring didn't go far and was easy to find, but the screw was nowhere to be seen. I can only imagine how fast the spring was rotating after it left my tweezers! Anyway, a visual scan didn't work so I got out my 2" neodynium magnet and swept the floor with it. Sure enough, it picked it up in a couple of minutes. Now the question is, do I have to degauss it? I don't think it would be too hard to build a demagnetizer from an old motor I have. I figure I could have the screw in a ziplock and run it through the coil, which should take care of it. Such a little screw, though: necessary? I'm resigned to shelling out for decent oils, though I'm considering some nice synthetic gear grease I have for the barrel. Grease won't migrate out of the barrel, will it? Guess I'll find out when I get to it and see what it looks like.
  14. ScottMcAfee

    Empire Watch Co. Venus 170 Service? Repair?

    Thanks for the support, everyone. Ry, I appreciate the links. I'd seen the tech sheet, which I used to make this diagram: I'd seen the Esembl-o-graf for sale (as pdf) by hucksters on the bay, but hadn't yet found a free one online, so thanks for that. The scans are really good, too. It's a great document and largely made my diagram redundant, but it was helpful for me to study the shapes and names of the parts in the tech sheet and find them in the watch, so it wasn't a wasted effort. Some notes on further progress I've made. I was surprised to find screws on the pushers, but I guess they're just there to provide a lip to keep them in the case. The pushers have pretty bad brassing. The case itself is not too bad once the green gunk was removed with mineral oil and a toothpick, but I guess if I replate the pushers I ought to replate the case. I'll think on that some. One thing about those screws: they were good practice for me to learn technique and further refine the tips of my screwdrivers before I attacked the movement. I got through the removal of the first few pieces: flyback levers, chrono bridge, and chrono wheels. I stopped before the Second Wheel Tension Spring. Seemed like a good place for a picture in case it needs to be just-so on reassembly. Ry, you commented that the movement seems fairly rust free, and I was pleased by this too (especially with that broken crystal). Looking through the sides of the movement, I can see a bit of oxidation on the barrel, though. It might get a bit messier once I get deeper in. I'm starting to think about oil. If anyone has any tips on best sources of small quantities, and the minimum types I need, I'd appreciate it. Let's assume I'll take the whole thing apart, but feel free to stop me if you don't think it's necessary to clean or oil certain difficult parts (like the balance, haha).
  15. ScottMcAfee

    Venus 178 Breitling Navitimer

    Beautiful watch and your work was nicely described and documented. One question: You said you inspected each piece after cleaning and this was important. What kind if things did you find?
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