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Ticky

This 7s26 hairspring doesn't look right? right.

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3 years old snk80x (green one). Never been that great for accuracy. Became as bad as -30s a day and i was thinking quartz. Started regulating it about a month ago and managed to get it down to -1.2s per day over 7 days.  It took maybe 20 attempts. I usually ware it all the time but i decided to rest it face over night up to see if it would gain a little and it did, about 4 s in one night. Then the same day it had gained 15ish seconds.  So tonight i read up a bit and examined the hairspring. While it was open i adjusted it to slow it down. regulation don't seem  to work, its gaining two seconds per hour tonight as i write this and I've retarded it three times today now . 

 

Sticky hair spring I guess or deformed somehow. 

Two pics one relatively open and one fairly closed. The coils are touching it seems or i can't get a good enough image to be sure. Not quite right anyway? 

 

I don't have tools to mess around with springs. but i do have a tiny screwdriver. Can i take off the balance arm off without messing around in other areas?

DSC09689 (2).JPG

DSC09690 (2).JPG

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Plus or minus 1.2 s/ day is not bad. 

A single such measurement has little individual significance.

Seiko5 lacks the precision for adjustment to this level of accuracy. 

Best wishes.

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Yeah I don't know. its settled down to 3 s in 12 hours after the 3rd adjustment. The spring looks more separated too. 

Thanks the the input. 

I'm not a watchmaker and don't really have tools. So the balance comes right out with one screw? If i was to clean it, I don't have any hairspring jewel lube. It's not next to the superglue in the kitchen everything drawer.  I do have ISO and lighter fluid. 

So the first time I've ever had it open was in the last month and it got dirty. My work space is not dust free its just a room in a house. Did I breath on it too much etc?

 

Thanks again

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Also when I was regulating it. I couldn't do it with the smartphone because it seemed the instantaneous reading was all over the place. I assume there was allot of beat error though the phone app didn't measure this. I got it down to 1.2 over 7 days by adjusting it old school. It would speed up and slow down 3 or 4 seconds during the day resulting in an average of 1.2 when measured at 6 pm.

So should I expect it to randomly go out of regulation every few weeks or so? Pretty annoying. Luck of the draw with this movement I hear. Should i just get a new watch and hope for better unit. 

Please don't recommend high Swiss movements to me. It's an everyday watch and I need be able to abuse it somewhat.  

Thanks

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Also it differently got magnetized last year but it settled down and i accepted the new characteristics of it. So once magnetized always magnetized without treatment?

 

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It is a mass produced robot assembled movement.It is inexpensive and robust in design. It's mechanical oscillator, the balance wheel will never match the accuracy of a quartz crystal, ever.It will however run for decades and never need at battery.It sounds like it is running pretty close to design parameters to me.

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I don't know. The coils have separated by them selves and its been keeping perfect time for about 12 hours.  Sorry to bother you all. I Just wanted to know what i was seeing is what I was seeing. 

 

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Hello Ticky,

some things to bear in mind, to put you on the right track or stop you making decisions you might regret.

Demagnetising isn't expensive, if you want to rule it out. There are Chinese devices available for little money. That would be the first thing to try in my opinion.

You appear to have regulated as good as it's going to get with the tools you have. What makes you sure it got dirty? If the problem was there before you opened it up the first time anyway, then oil could have spread from somewhere onto the hairspring.

Yes you can remove the balance assembly (cock, wheel, spring) as one by just removing the one screw. You might want to try this, to make sure the coils aren't crossed.

The problem you have seems to be one of sensitivity to position. Not surprising, if the coils are closing up so much on the one side. No amount of regulating will cure it. The most likely cause is contamination or magnetism. If you can rinse the balance and spring in the lighter fuel without dipping the jewel, then that would be worth a try.

No, the timing shouldn't just go out after a few weeks or months of running. These are robust and reliable movements, once they are running well.

Maybe get a basic service done by a professional? Then you will have peace of mind and a reliable watch you can trust and enjoy. No point buying another, if you're not happy with this one.

 

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Thanks Klassiker

Thanks for answering some of my noob questions. No I'm not sure I got it dirty. It was just a question to others as I have no idea of the sensitivity of such things. I could demagnetize it. I know it was affected by a magnet in the past, but it settled down and I forgot about it. I have a spare new movement left over from a Seiko mod I did not long ago, that's the only reason I have any watch tools, perhaps I could take the balance from that one. Could take the whole movement too but I don't have any hand tools and the dial isn't my style.  Might try to clean it though. Great advice about keeping the jewel above the liquid, I would not of thought of that. I still think the spring isn't as symmetrical as my other newer ones. 

I don't really want to get it serviced as it's such a cheap watch and It's really not very old. Plus hobbies are nice to develop. 

 

One confession. When i was regulating it for the first few times before having a feel for it yet. I did somehow apply some vertical pressure to the regulator arm so much so that the wheel stopped, jammed basically. Would this perhaps cause a deformation? I have a feeling that the answer would be "probably". I might have to get the balance out and have a look. 

 

I must say though for a back story. The watch was fairly accurate out of the box and over the three years that I've owned it it kept going down hill. Before I finally opened it to try out regulation it was 30s slow a day. Withing spec but in reality way too slow.  And in memory it did have spurts of sudden time keeping change which was perplexing but then settled down. Not that I really remember the details and I certainly wasn't looking at the spring. 

 

Thanks again. 

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Just looked at the spring again with the camera and it's touching. I'll have to demag at least and clean. I'll use that other movent while I wait for the demagnitizer. 

Ticky

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18 hours ago, Ticky said:

Looks very similar to mine. They work fine. It's on the way, you say? When it arrives, put the watch on the grained rectangle and hold down the red button. Then slowly draw the watch away to at least arm's length. Have the watch running when you do it.

Then have another look at the hairspring.

Re your longer post above. You are welcome. I am pretty inexperienced myself, but it's nice to pass on something you've learned if it helps someone else along. The slightest bit of dust or oil will affect the hairspring, so if the demagnetising doesn't give a 100% cure, that would be the next thing to try. I like your attitude ("hobbies are nice to develop") so go for it with the removal of the balance cock and dipping in lighter fuel. You are going to need a screwdriver with the correct size blade, some very fine tweezers and some kind of hands-free magnification (x3 or thereabouts). Watch some videos of Mark removing and fitting balances before you start. It's delicate work, but possible if you go steady and use the right techniques. If you can't stand the thought of damaging it, leave it alone though.

When you pressed on the regulator arm and stopped the balance wheel, chances are all you did was temporarily take out the end shake. I'd say "possibly" instead of "probably", but the possibly could be a few things (bent pivot, chipped jewel etc.). If there's only a very tiny amount of play on the balance, and the rim turns true then you probably got away with it.

When the hairspring off-centre like that, it makes the timing very sensitive to positions. The watch might run fine face up, but turn it on it's side and it will gain or lose a lot. That means completely unpredictable behaviour when you wear it.

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Hi.

I did remove the balance which had crossing coils on the outer edge. I did what jguitron said and gave it a nudge. And it worked as far as i can tell. I put it on the smart phone regulator again and it was much more readable to the app and also the tick sound was much more uniform. Before, every 2nd tick (back swing i guess) was about 60% the loudness of the first one. Now It varies only about 5%. So i regulated it to 0 seconds with the phone and It's lost now 4 seconds in about 17 hours. 

 

I will get a cheap demagnetizer at some point. But it seems OK or for now. I'll have to try it on its back again for a night and see if it sticks again. But its nice, picked up a few tricks during this breakdown. Thanks for the advice. 

 

Cheers

 

Ticky

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On 2/14/2019 at 5:53 PM, jguitron said:

Many times it’s just a matter of gently propping the spring towards the collapsed side

Your Seiko Watch is considered a very inexpensive watch by even Seiko standards. We recently had discussions on Seiko watches and timekeeping there is an exact procedures Seiko recommends for timing. Casually your numbers are super good for a watch of this grade.

Then tech sheets are really handy because this watch is using what's known as the etachron system. This is why I quoted something above on a normal watch you can push on the spring to get things in alignment but with this system both the stud can be rotated and you can rotate the regulator pins. You're supposed to have a special tool but you can do with tweezers. That makes it considerably easier to get things in alignment it also makes it much easier for those not paying attention to get things out of alignment. Then this " smart phone regulator " Thing you're talking about does it tell you if your watches in beat or not?

 

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Always nice when working on a watch to have the tech sheet if it's available. Then I  have attached the last page as a image this is where it explains how to and the components of the etachron  system. Then they don't actually seem to publish the specs for the 7S 26 as far as timekeeping goes so I have something that's equivalent so you can see what sort of timekeeping you can expect. Also good because it explains how you're supposed to time the watch.

seiko-7s26-reg.JPG

Seiko 7S26C_36C.pdf

Seiko NH3x timing.JPG

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Thanks so much John for the input. 

It's something I had no idea of.  Though its nice to know I can adjust the spring more finely, though I don't know how to recognize what I'm trying to correct or when it is correct. And my tools are bad. No optics except a camera which is not a live process and the cell phone isn't good enough to see the gap in the regulator pin. And my very very cheap watch tool set has some fairly corse tweezers. 

 

As for the smart phone app. It's more of a sound analyser that happens to have a beat detection feature. It only uses the basic mic so you have to take the back off the watch and rest the phone's metal bezel on the watch case in order to get it to hear it. You have to be very quiet and even a quiet room will disturb the beat counting, I have to actually breathy quietly. It's not superb as a watch regulator and it doesn't measure anything except for the tick rate and therefor the speed of the watch. Even measuring the watch speed can be jumpy. But it's good for a ball park. Then just manual regulation. I managed to get it down to 1s+ in the last 24h on the wrist. I'm going to leave it and see what it is in a month. That's plenty accurate enough for me. I know it will vary in different positions but it's very cheap watch and I like to do everything with it, chop wood for example. 

Thanks for the manual and the information about fine tuning. I thought it had no fine tuning. But I can't really touch anything except the regulator arm given my tools.  Next post will be a screen shot of the app.  Keep in mind that it's not listening to a watch in that picture. 

 

Thanks

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On 2/15/2019 at 1:35 AM, Nucejoe said:

Plus or minus 1.2 s/ day is not bad. 

A single such measurement has little individual significance.

Seiko5 lacks the precision for adjustment to this level of accuracy. 

Best wishes.

I hope not 'cause my Seikos have no retard or advance . my avatar is one i have since about 7 years now and no problem and i have never touched it inside ( sorry for my bad english )

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