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Found 10 results

  1. Hello Watchbangers! Today I return with another small post introducing my vintage mainspring winders! For those who prefer watching something rather than reading through the whole post, here is all the contents in form of a video: https://youtu.be/-63Do2Dkikk Now to the written part! While I first started winding mainsprings by hand ( and recommend this method for hobbyists who don't want to break their wallets) it was clear that I couldn't continue this practise due to the wear and damage it left on the mainspring and barrel! Thus I set out on the search for a pair of vintage Winders as the modern alternatives are not financially possible for a student. I was first eying american K&D winders or Watchcraft sets but coincidentally found a unbranded box of winders on Ebay for around 100 Euros: After inspecting and cleaning the set I was delighted to find that they were produced by Boley as they were stamped gB ( Gebrüder Boley) meaning Brothers Boley: The set came with 8 sized drums, their cranks and a holder! While I'm pretty sure that the hooks only point in one direction, I have tried winding left and right turning mainsprings with success, not sure what is going on there haha. Now the process of using these mainspring winders is the same as any other really! 1. You start by pressing the innermost coil of the spring down onto the arbor, making sure that the hook catches the mainspring latch. Be sure that you are attaching the mainspring the right direction/ way otherwise you will wind it wrong! 2. Then you slide the arbor into the drum and start turning the crank to wind the spring! Be careful on manual-wind springs when approaching the part of the spring which hooks into the barrel! If you go too fast these can catch the edge of the drum opening and break off! Just go slow and optionally help out with a tweezer for example! 3. Then carefully lift off the arbor, making sure that the innermost coil of the spring unlatches itself from the arbor hook again. This will make sure that the spring won't be pulled out as you remove the crank. I like using a pair of tweezers here! 4. Finally you just press down on the pusher, pressing the spring out of the winder into the cleaned and lubricated barrel drum underneath. While I am fully satisfied with the performance of my older set, I must say that it is a bit fidgety to use! The spring power often turns the barrel out of the holder slot leaving me no option other than to press against it firmly. Secondly, the lids of the cranks are also a bit bent. Occasionally, when the spring is almost fully wound in, the strong power allows the left over spring to slip between lid and barrel lip, scratching it around for one turn before I can press down firmly on the lid so the spring is wound into where it should be! I hope you guys are also as lucky in finding an affordable set of mainspring winders and if you have any other questions or comments, please put them down below!
  2. Hey guys, My wife and I started our little company in Borneo back in 03. When covid hit and things got crazy, I stumbled down the horological rabbit hole. I fell HARD. Next thing I know, I'm on this forum, modding, assembling, and restoring old watches. The wife, bless her heart, she put her foot down and said I cannot buy or make any more watches for myself. Well, a horological addict is still a addict and I am no quitter. So I figured, why not make some watches for my employees who have been with us for over a decade, they deserve something special. It sure is not for me. So the planning started early this year, scouring the interwebs for parts that will scratch this itch and make my watchmaking dreams come true. It was a tough slog, looking at all those tempting parts, dials, hands, cases and movements. I think I managed to gather all the parts that I needed and with some waiting, elbow grease and much choice swearing, I think I put together what I want to gift my guys and gals. So here's what is wild. I got about 40 of these things to make by the middle of the year. FORTY. Its like I got a whole watch making factory in my actual factory. Wish me luck folks, I am on a watchmaking mission, and nothing is going to stop me. Except maybe the wife, if she finds out how many watches I'm really making. Stephen
  3. Hey guys, Been a while, real life got in the way of this hobby for a bit. Been watching the brilliant Alex Hamilton's Its about time Channel https://www.youtube.com/@Its_About_Time. One of the tips he mentioned in his videos is to make these pegging tools for jewel holes. I finally got around to it and now I am so ready to do some proper pegging. Wishing you all health, happiness and love this holiday, Happy new year! Stephen
  4. Hello everyone! My name is Benjamin Marn, I am a 20 year old college student who has been interested in horology for about 4 years now. I have since aspired to be an independent watchmaker, most likely as a hobby or a side gig but possibly as a full time career, assuming people appreciate the watches I would design and build. More immediately, I have been planning to make my own bespoke, finely finished watchmakers tools, everything from tweezers to mainspring winders, to jeweling and staking tools, as I am fortunate enough to have access to a 1934 South Bend lathe, a 40's LeBlond lathe, a surface grinder, and a Bridgeport mill. Eventually I would like to build my own watchmakers lathe in the style of a Bergeon 50, from my own iron castings (I also have access to a furnace that is hot enough to melt iron), and after that, perhaps even a rose engine.Hopefully, I will build up a collection of tools that exceeds the quality of brands like Horotec and Bergeon at a price of only the raw materials and the time taken in the machine shop, which I enjoy anyway. In the meantime, I have slowly begun to build up my library of books, starting of course with the great George Daniels' Watchmaking, but I am always looking for more books, especially on the theory behind horology and movement design, as right now one of my biggest struggles is grasping the concepts behind gear trains, tooth counts, mathematical ideas, etc etc. I am also a bit of a visual learner, and another thing I struggle with is visualizing the complex diagrams and explanations of the complications in Daniels' book. Perhaps that's why I like Mark's channel so much, I can see things like keyless works in action.
  5. Hey guys anybody out there know how to get into these big companies,what qualities should one poses or what course should we do?
  6. Hello to all of you out there! So, the moderator asked me to do some intros to myself. Here they are. I'm just getting properly into watch repairs and slowly building my kit and various bags of to-be-fixed watches. So far, I'm sticking to quartz watches. Actually I have a few books on repairing mechanical watches, but it is scary stuff! Maybe I just need to explore more. I'm certainly NOT a pro, but a home-repairing amateur. I have fixed quite a few already, but also killed some watches in the process. Hey, that's part of learning - right? So, I guess that's all for now.
  7. Hi, I'm hoping to buy a set of essential watch making tools for servicing mechanical movements. What tools are should I Purchase? I already have a few basics such as spring bar tools, case back knives and an Ultrasonic cleaning bath. I have been repolshing watches for a few years now and have an array of buffing wheels and polishing pastes etc, so I'm just looking at tools that are specific to movement maintenance. I have been looking at a selection or tools on Cousinsuk.com, I am looking to spend around £200 on tools. I have a few specific questions aslo; Is it worth buying a set of 9 bergeon ergonomic screwdrivers, or is it possible to make do with a smaller selection of screwdrivers? And are Bergeon screwdrivers significantly better than A*F Swiss etc. What lubricants and applicators are needed for servicing basic movements (such as ETA, vintage timex etc)? Is it worth investing in Bergeon eyeglasses, over cousins eyeglasses? And would buying a x2.5 and a x10 glass be sufficient? Lastly are there any books that are highly recommended for watch repair? I would really appreciate any advice that you can give.
  8. This survey is about the use of your staking tools and should take you no more than 5 minutes, the link is posted below. This interview is being conducted for my university engineering design course so any input you supply would be greatly appreciated. https://goo.gl/forms/zFa3XYt19rYp8wX63 If you wish to provide more info, especially related to what you like about your staking tool and what you would like to change about it, please comment below. Thank you for your time and participation in our survey.
  9. Here's a picture of me at my school bench. It's crowded. We have, right now, 5 students. We work in a close environment and are constantly engaged in each other's work. Our hallmark is the apron because making parts by hand is often dirty work. I apologize for my less than distinguished pose! (Why can't my pictures be "slimming"!)
  10. This is my second installment of my experience of watchmaking school. I am entering my 4th week of school. The way ahead still seems long and full of possible obstacles. It is hard to imagine that there will ever come a time when I can begin to think of myself as a watchmaker. I have been watching my instructor and fellow students who are farther along. I've also watched many videos of watchmakers with almost a lifetime of service and I think that I may never come close to them. Perhaps it's best to say, following the family motto of the great explorer Ernest Shackleton, fortitudine vicimus? As you work in our shop at the York Time Institute you have the feeling of being transported back to earlier era of watchmaking; more like a 19th century apprenticeship than a modern, clean, college of the science of horology. It is certainly not as hygienic as the modern Swiss factory/laboratory (we have two dogs who pay us frequent visits!) but that is probably by intent, for our instructor is, when it comes to watchmaking, in large measure an antiquarian. He loves old tools and techniques and the substrate of our craft: old watches and clocks. I find it hard to consider such a love for the old as a defect—like so many modern people do. And, anyway, I've found from experience that familiarity with the old makes for a better understanding of the new when such becomes necessary. For example, I've found an understanding (and fondness for) 19th century classical mathematics of the type found in Whittaker and Watson's A Course in Modern Analysis or Hardy's A Course of Pure Mathematics, has served me well for embracing more modern math which, in spite of its labyrinth of jargon and complex sub-divisions, often seems like a fancy way to swat flies. Ditto computer science. Having, in a sense, gotten in on the ground floor, there are some concepts which I naturally understand. So it seems to me that it is always possible to use to old as a springboard to the new whereas learning the new without reference to the old is like building a scaffold in the air. I also accompany our instructor on house calls. Last week we visited two homes to repair grandfather clocks. It’s good experience towards dealing with customers in their homes. This is real apprenticeship, though we don’t call it that. In fact, we do have apprentices but they’re far more advanced than I am. Perhaps someday! Since my first week I've been learning and restoring some tools I've acquired. I recently obtained, at a very reasonable price, and 8 mm Boley lathe with a number of accessories in a, once nice, but now dilapidated box. I have almost a complete set of collets and a very nice set of gravers. Most of the restoration will be of the box, which I started on today (Sep. 28). So far it’s looking great. I sanded it and put on a nice stain. Tomorrow I’ll shellac it and repair the inside so that the lathe and its parts and accessories will be neatly stored as they were when it was new. I've also obtained a number of free tools from donations made by people who, learning about our school, have generously given us surplus tools. Some of these have to be refurbished but our instructor, because of his aforementioned love of tools, is of immense help. Besides the lathe I have restored staking punches and stumps, a staking anvil, bench blocks, Vernier calipers and a vintage bench micrometer, etc. I am told that I will soon be leaving the “grammar” of tools, their names uses and restoration, to their application or “logic” and that will be the subject of my next installment.
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