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SonnyBurnett

Newbie with his first pocket watch not working

Question

Hello all.  I have an 1882 waltham 18s sidewinder that doesn't work.  Not sure if this is the first watch I should try my hand at.  it's a grade 802, has a lever movement but it is in a pendant case or I think so.  not sure if these were supposed to be sidewinders set up like this.  The stem pops up as well.  The watch balance wheel will move back and fourth if you set it at almost a 30 degree angle.  if you pick it up or tilt it, it will stop on an dime.  with the balance moving none of the hands move.  also when you spin  the stem in the counter clockwise position, the hands move counter clockwise regardless if the stem is up or down or if the lever is in or out.  If you turn it clockwise it acts like it wants to wind, but the hands will slightly move as you do.

Should I try to tackle it or find another non running watch to try my first look see at?

 

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It sounds like it has more problems than just dirt. I'm guessing a broken balance staff and worn or missing parts elsewhere. These can be fixed, and you probably have all necessary the tools, but maybe you don't have the skills or confidence yet. You could make a start by stripping and cleaning, then assessing the damage. You can do this without much risk. You might then decide to leave it for another day, or carry on. You are going to want to practise using those tools sooner or later, but at this stage you might do irreparable damage. It depends on how much the watch us worth to you I suppose, and whether you are prepared to write it off.

If this watch is of value to you, or you want a quick win, or you want to do a good restoration, then practice on something else first. If you already view it as scrap, then carry on and good luck!

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If the watch is stopping on the dime at certain positions it could be a bent down staff but it could also be that the balance wheel is hitting something. Whether it be the safety roller on the pallet fork or bent center wheel. What I would do is remove everything from the Movement install the balance and see if it spins freely without any interruption and all of the positions. Then go on to install the pallet fork do the same thing. If it stops on a dime and then you know it’s the pallet fork or at least the bridge may have a broken Jewel or a worn down pivot hole. If it’s fine then remove the pallet for it and install the center wheel with the bridge. Spin the balance with a puff of air and gently twist the center wheel with your finger if it any point it touches the balance and you know that’s the spot that needs to be adjusted. But some thing tells me one of the pinions may be loose or one of the leaves broken which could explain why the hands don’t move when the balance is swinging. Or pallet stones are worn down and not lock and exiting the escape wheel. Does the escape move when balance goes back and forth. Another thing is mainspring is the winding loose? There are many things that could be possibly wrong with this move in but these are the things to check.

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6 hours ago, saswatch88 said:

 

That's a good point.  it's probably a 100 dollar watch in working order.  I think I gave 10 for it for practice.  I had it partly apart and then go intimidated by the gears and small parts.  when I put it back together and tilt it to a 30 degree angle it will tick.  lol heck it didn't do that before so i'll take that as a half point win.

20191206_105235.jpg

20191206_112042.jpg

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Hi Sonny and welcome to the forum. With the nice etching on the Waltham I'd certainly give it a go and try restore it to a new lease of life.

First as Saswatch says strip it and take lots of photos while you are doing it. Next inspect all the parts meticulously looking for broken or worn items. If you are not sure thats what this forums for ask and you will receive advice. During stripping you may come across difficulties, if so just ask for help. It would be great to see you (a) find the errors and (b) correct them and (c) have a fully functioning time piece that you have made work.

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1 hour ago, Colditz said:

Hi Sonny and welcome to the forum. With the nice etching on the Waltham I'd certainly give it a go and try restore it to a new lease of life.

First as Saswatch says strip it and take lots of photos while you are doing it. Next inspect all the parts meticulously looking for broken or worn items. If you are not sure thats what this forums for ask and you will receive advice. During stripping you may come across difficulties, if so just ask for help. It would be great to see you (a) find the errors and (b) correct them and (c) have a fully functioning time piece that you have made work.

well I hope there is no such thing as stupid questions because I'm going to have a lot of them haha.  The first being the stem on this watch "pops" up like a pendant style but nothing changes. the hands move only counter clock wise up or down.  the will move clockwise too but it feels tight like it's trying to wind, but is wound tight to boot, it has a lever too that you can flip out to move the hands as well.  will this affect how it works having the pendant and the lever?  what would cause the hands to move regardless of the position?

I also have about 50 books on repairing the one I like seems to be Watch Repairing cleaning and adjusting by F. J. Garrard.  is this a good reference material?

Edited by SonnyBurnett

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Hi Sonny, there is no such thing as a stupid question, but it is stupid not to ask. I have asked many questions on this forum that I thought was stupid at the time and have never been made to feel stupid. It's simple, if you don't know you don't know. You learn by asking questions and getting answers. So ask away, obviously don't ask me because I really am stupid lol:biggrin:

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That stem pulls out to enable the movement to be pivoted up and out of the case.   Do this carefully as the bottom of the dial will strike the case and ruin the enamel.

I have a similar watch a couple of years newer that belonged to my great grandfather.  I had it overhauled back in the 80's, but have not taken it apart yet!  Not 100 percent certain how to tackle these old full plate watches.  I need to see a video on how that works.

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9 minutes ago, nichod said:

That stem pulls out to enable the movement to be pivoted up and out of the case.   Do this carefully as the bottom of the dial will strike the case and ruin the enamel.

I have a similar watch a couple of years newer that belonged to my great grandfather.  I had it overhauled back in the 80's, but have not taken it apart yet!  Not 100 percent certain how to tackle these old full plate watches.  I need to see a video on how that works.

makes sense.  I have both pendant and lever watches and the lever watch I have, also a waltham doesn't "pop" up it's spring loaded and the movement come right out you have to hold it up as you do so and it's movement is on a hinge, it works great and I'm not touching it lol.  I wasn't sure if the "click" or pop up type pendant stem would impede with the lever type movement.  I guess I could post pictures as I begin disassembly if that's okay?

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So my friend who has been restoring pocket watches for 40 years told me to get a 16s size watch that isn't full face, one that has 3 plates to start on as a beginner so I will look for one that doesn't work for a decent price.

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Here's my very first diagnosis.  The watch has probably been dropped relatively hard (guess).  Looks like the balance staff (upper pivot?  or lower?)  is bent and the balance staff jewel (not sure the correct term) is chipped.

I still haven't figured out why the hands turn from the stem with a lever movement.

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23 minutes ago, yankeedog said:

Ugh...bent...you would have to pick about  the most difficult  thing...

lol that's what my friend who has been restoring them for 40 plus years just said.  he said it's not a repair for a beginner :(  .

Maybe I should shelve it and find a 16s with 3 plates in the back to start on?

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I think I figured out why the hands move in any direction.  looks like it was taken apart once before,  the gear that engages the hands when the lever is pulled out was upside down (pic below).  The spring was sitting on top of it and I flipped it over and pushed it down on the spring so that when the lever is out it pops up and engages the hands and lever in it's pressed in and disengaged.  The movement seems to work now.  Now I'm on to why it doesn't wind.

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46 minutes ago, saswatch88 said:

Just go on ebay and buy a parts movement preferably one with a good balance, then just use the baseplate and balance. Or find one that already runs

kind of defeats the purpose of me learning how to repair doesn't it? 

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I also found a 1919 elgin 16s pocket watch not working.  going to look to make sure it's complete before I start on it.  Gonna wait on the Waltham since I need more experience on jewel replacement and balance staff replacement.

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Overbanked means the fork is on the wrong side for the roller jewel to engage. It can be because there's a fault with the guard pin or more rarely the fork horns but usually because the balance was installed with the fork on the wrong side.

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On 12/10/2019 at 5:32 AM, SonnyBurnett said:

kind of defeats the purpose of me learning how to repair doesn't it? 

To the contrary, it's excellent advice. Most work of a repairer is to accomplish the best possible service to get the piece working reliabiy for a long time. As a beginner you will realized how such an apparently simple task can be difficult in practice. 

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On ‎12‎/‎9‎/‎2019 at 5:01 AM, SonnyBurnett said:

That's a good point.  it's probably a 100 dollar watch in working order.  I think I gave 10 for it for practice.  I had it partly apart and then go intimidated by the gears and small parts.  when I put it back together and tilt it to a 30 degree angle it will tick.  lol heck it didn't do that before so i'll take that as a half point win.

20191206_105235.jpg

20191206_112042.jpg

      a watch like yours - in perfect AND original could cost you -----  $900.00 ----  ech?

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On 12/22/2019 at 3:38 PM, vinn3 said:

      a watch like yours - in perfect AND original could cost you -----  $900.00 ----  ech?

Well it seems to be original, but the reason I use it as a practice watch is because the estimated value based on it and it's serial number seemed to be low.  Is there something I'm missing?

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