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Everything posted by Bill3

  1. Jdm, that is great advice and I intend to follow your recommendation.
  2. Tiktok, A couple of years ago I tried a Waltham pocket watch for the reasons you mentioned above. It came apart easily and was easy to clean, however I could never get it back together. It has an enormous plate on the back and all the pivots have to fit into place at the same time. I tried to fit that plate every day for two months. The only positive thing I can say about that experience is that I did not lose any parts. It now is stored away "on the side" with many other packets of watch parts all waiting patiently to be reassembled.
  3. That is probably good advice. However, no hobby or any other activity will continue without some positive feedback. So far in this enterprise I have had no positive feedback, unless I count the two watch crystals that I polished the scratches out of. Certainly no results are guaranteed, but uniformly negative results over a long period of time will not be tolerated by the average person. I gather from reading this and another forum, that no one has had as many negative results as I.
  4. Dave, Thank you for your recommendation. Endorsement of the course by someone who is currently enrolled is a strong incentive to take that course. Which level are you currently taking? Is the course primarily practical or theoretical? Thanks to you and jdm for taking the time to respond to my question.
  5. That is a good insightful question, jdm. I had to give the question a few minutes thought to answer. This answer assumes that you know how difficult it is to see one's own weaknesses. In my humble opinion my biggest problems are; not understanding how a watch works, and springing directly from the previous problem, not being able to reassemble the watch once disassembled and cleaned. As an example, I posted on this forum about problems I was having getting the winding mechanism back in a Hamilton wristwatch that I had taken apart and cleaned. Altogether I worked on that watch for more tha
  6. I have been trying to learn to repair (or just to clean and lube) watches for two to three years. I have acquired a great many tools, follow watch repair forums, such as this one, and spend a great deal of time tinkering with watches. Unfortunately I am not advancing in my knowledge or skill. I have looked around for a tutor, but have been completely unsuccessful. Now I am considering an online course in watch repair. I have researched those available and am trying to decide between the Tascione and Time Zone courses. I am looking for guidance from this forum about which course is superi
  7. I have read many oblique references to the watchmaker's lathe, in fact I have heard of a book devoted to that subject, but I have not read it. I am a hobbyist struggling to learn enough to clean and oil watches that I collect and wear. Although that is all that I do now, I hope to improve my skills to the point that I can repair watches. Here is my situation. I have come across a watchmaker's lathe that is for sale at a price that I can afford. Despite seeing references to a lathe, I have never heard specifics about what tasks are accomplished with this tool. Are they useful for the ho
  8. Stuartbaker and Mark, thank you for your input. I think you are right. The groove on the stem looks good with edges that are not worn. I am going to remove the setting lever and check the "nub". The setting lever is very difficult to install, but that is what must be done. I have a donor watch, so if necessary I will take the setting lever from that watch. I am so close, yet so far from turning this into a working watch. When I get the stem in and wind the watch, THE WATCH RUNS. That is exciting for me because this is the first watch that I have torn down all the way and put back tog
  9. I have taken apart a Hamilton 986a, cleaned the parts, oiled, and reassembled the watch. Reassembled, that is everything except the winding/setting mechanism. The clutch lever fits in the grove in the clutch. I can wind the mainspring and even though the hands are not on, the cannon pinions seem to be moving. However, if the slightest pressure is exerted on the winding stem, it slips out. I cannot find a way to make the winding stem stay in. Any and all help and advice will be appreciated. I have attached pictures.
  10. Thank you, Rogart63! I persisted and was finally successful. After many, many attempts and failing each and every time, I thought I was not going to get the lever back in place. Your encouragement got me back on track and eventually lead to success.
  11. I am repairing a Hamilton 986a and asking for help with a Hamilton 986a. I have taken it apart, cleaned and am in the process of putting it back together and oiling the movement. Things have gone well until I started to reinstall the setting lever. The setting lever screw goes in from the opposite side of the movement relative to where the setting lever is. First is a picture of the movement. Then is a picture of the side of the movement where the set lever screw is visible and can be turned. Next is a picture of the side of the movement where the setting lever is to be stalled. The
  12. Thank you Anil. That is good information for a beginner like me. I am now going to try to finish the cleaning and get this watch back together.
  13. i would greatly appreciate some advice. I have taken a Hamilton wristwatch apart for cleaning. It is a caliber 986A. It is completely apart except for removing the mainspring from the barrel. Here are my questions: should I remove the mainspring from the barrel, or just place it in cleaner and ultrasound the mainspring and barrel together? If it is necessary to remove the mainspring, how do I get it out of the barrel? What should it be lubed with? In the attached pictures, is the "rub" on the barrel an indicator that it does not fit correctly? In the picture of the mainspring barrel on
  14. I have learned a lot from reading this post about watch cleaning. I wanted to obtain some of the Priory Polish cleaner mentioned in Geo's post, but it cannot be shipped to the U.S. Is there an equivalent found here on this side of the pond?
  15. Thanks to all who gave answers to my question about preventing a loupe from fogging. A lot of useful information was provided. Thanks again.
  16. Thanks for both excellent suggestions.
  17. Here is the beginners question for today. When I use a loupe after about two to three minutes fog developes on the inside of the loupe such that I cannot see. I can take the loup off my eye and rub the fog away, but it returns in short order. It is so annoying that it makes using a loupe a chore. Is there a fix for this? Thanks in advance for your help and advise.
  18. Thank you, WillFly for the reference to the Hamilton watch video. I had seen it before, but enjoyed seeing it again. I also enjoyed seeing your watch collection! You have beautiful watches on your URL!
  19. I have heard nothing but positive comments about the TimeZone online course. I find the notion of combining the course with this forum very sensible. I think I am going to make the plunge into the TimeZone course! If your experience has been different I would like to hear from you.
  20. Many many thanks for all the good information following my complaining inquiry. It is all good information. I had to laugh at the watchmaker wanting 100K to take an apprentice. The book recommendations are all good. I have all the books mentioned and have read parts of all. From my beginners viewpoint, Fried is the best of the lot. And, probably because of my inexperience, Daniels is the worst. That book is incomprehensible to me. I set it aside months ago and mostly look at You Tube videos now. Thanks again for the information and the encouragement. I hope you will be tolerant of
  21. Hello GEO, Thank you for your interest. You asked about my background. I am a retired university professor. My education includes Master's and Doctorate degrees. The problem I have is not knowing the "language". To explain, I spent six months trying to get a watch to work, which I took apart and put back together again many, many times. My reading mentioned the possibility of a "broken" balance staff. I envisioned a broken balance staff as broken in half or at least in two pieces. After many episodes of taking the watch apart and putting it back together again I finally took the watch
  22. My efforts to teach myself watch repair have not been successful after a year and a half of frustrating effort. I think I am at the point where I need instruction. I have looked around Georgia, the U.S. State where I live, but have not found anyone who is willing to take me on as an apprentice. So where do I look next? I might add that I work on watches as a hobby and am not looking for any kind of certification as a professional watchmaker. I am retired and have time to devote to this project, but badly need instruction. My efforts to learn by reading about watch repair have turned to f
  23. Thank everyone who responded to my question about cleaning a watch dial. better What a treasure trove of useful information! I was doubly surprised to get so much good information, especially since the picture I attached was so miserable that it looked as if an incompetent had attached it. The kind and helpful reception I got here was especially welcomed when it was contrasted to my reception to another watch repair forum that I posted one, and only one, question to. On that forum I was flamed for posting a "stupid" question and for not researched the question in advance in books that I h
  24. This is my first post to this forum. I have very rudimentary watch repair skills and only a modicum of knowledge about watch repair, so please have some forbearance. I have always heard that watch dials cannot be cleaned, but this watch has tempted me to try. I have attached a picture of the gold filled Elgin that I want to clean. I know that the picture is bad, but perhaps you can the black smudge around the numeral 1. Additionally, the gold numerals are dull and have a smug end appearance. Here are my questions. Is it indeed always hopeless to try to clean a watch dial? Is there a
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