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AP1875

Amplitude drops after service

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Guys, can you give me some pointers please, close to throwing the towel in here.

I've been doing this for a couple of years now and I'm getting really frustrated with my progress. Literally every watch I service has worse results (or the same) than before I took it apart! And I'm starting to think what's the point, I want to succeed at this but it feels like a losing battle... 

For example the watch I'm working on right now a chinese clone movement. It is a brand new movement and was running at a solid 300 amp fully wound, keeps perfect time within a few seconds per day. I thought with this one I won't wash the balance/pallet fork/mainplate. Just to see if that makes a difference to my results. I washed the rest of my parts in my ultrasonic in some acetone (other times I use isopropyl or petroleum ether as recommended here). I've put it back together and dial up it's running at 270 and dial down 230. What could I have possibly done that's worse that the way these are assembled in China. There were a lot of random oil spots and they're generally assembled in dirty conditions. 

I've taken it apart again and cleaned the gear train again. Cleaned up the oil from the movement that was there when I took it apart. End shakes look good. Stones are lubricated. Gear train moves very freely when I turn the crown. 

I've done all of marks courses and the No Bs watchmaker course and understand how to service a movement but rarely see good results.. 

Any advice appreciated 

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33 minutes ago, AP1875 said:

Guys, can you give me some pointers please, close to throwing the towel in here.

I've been doing this for a couple of years now and I'm getting really frustrated with my progress. Literally every watch I service has worse results (or the same) than before I took it apart! And I'm starting to think what's the point, I want to succeed at this but it feels like a losing battle... 

For example the watch I'm working on right now a chinese clone movement. It is a brand new movement and was running at a solid 300 amp fully wound, keeps perfect time within a few seconds per day. I thought with this one I won't wash the balance/pallet fork/mainplate. Just to see if that makes a difference to my results. I washed the rest of my parts in my ultrasonic in some acetone (other times I use isopropyl or petroleum ether as recommended here). I've put it back together and dial up it's running at 270 and dial down 230. What could I have possibly done that's worse that the way these are assembled in China. There were a lot of random oil spots and they're generally assembled in dirty conditions. 

I've taken it apart again and cleaned the gear train again. Cleaned up the oil from the movement that was there when I took it apart. End shakes look good. Stones are lubricated. Gear train moves very freely when I turn the crown. 

I've done all of marks courses and the No Bs watchmaker course and understand how to service a movement but rarely see good results.. 

Any advice appreciated 

ok for 1 i hope you are not using acetone or alcohol to clean pallet and balance for these chemicals dissolve shellac.

2. You did not mention the caliber of the clone movement, if it is an automatic the first thing that comes to mind is the braking grease in the barrel, you are cleaning it and removing it but are you properly re-greasing the barrel with the correct grease? Are you also oiling the mainspring (which you are not suppose to)? How are you removing and re-installing the mainspring? Are you even removing it at all during cleaning?

3. What lubricants are you using and where? Maybe using too much oil? or too little?

4. How do you oil the escapement?

5.If you going to clean a movement its always best practice to clean the entire movement i know it was an experiment but now your oils may not match from top to bottom pivots.

6. Have ever tried a service on a non-chinese clone, were the results better or worse?

Edited by saswatch88

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Just so there's a small ring showing. Im confident I'm oiling movements correctly. 

I usually remove, clean and rewind the mainspring this one I didn't touch it.. 

4 minutes ago, Chopin said:

How much lubrication do you apply? Too much is not good, for example... what about the mainspring?

 

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22 minutes ago, AP1875 said:

Just so there's a small ring showing. Im confident I'm oiling movements correctly. 

I usually remove, clean and rewind the mainspring this one I didn't touch it.. 

 

ok but did you clean the mainspring/barrel at all? if so are you using an ultrasonic?

and what type of oils are you using?

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8 minutes ago, saswatch88 said:

ok but did you clean the mainspring/barrel at all? if so are you using an ultrasonic?

and what type of oils are you using?

in this instance i did not touch the mainspring. 

i use hp1000/1300, 9010, 9501 and 9415.

i was taught to epilame the escape wheel and pallet stones. Run the movement for 10 minutes and then apply a tiny amount of grease to every 3rd tooth of the escape wheel. i did not do this on the movement mentioned above.

I can't understand how a movement can be over oiled and dirty from China. I service it correctly using decent lubricants and it can be worse than when i started...

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35 minutes ago, AP1875 said:

in this instance i did not touch the mainspring. 

i use hp1000/1300, 9010, 9501 and 9415.

i was taught to epilame the escape wheel and pallet stones. Run the movement for 10 minutes and then apply a tiny amount of grease to every 3rd tooth of the escape wheel. i did not do this on the movement mentioned above.

I can't understand how a movement can be over oiled and dirty from China. I service it correctly using decent lubricants and it can be worse than when i started...

ok i think you could be over oiling the escapement, If you are using 9415 on the pallet stones there should be no need to use epilame or to have to oil the escape wheel teeth, either with 9415 or 9010 on the escapement (this has been debated many times over) you should not have to oil every 3rd tooth or any teeth for that matter, oiling the exit or entry stone or even both, and running the watch through a few cycles should disperse the oil properly, some prefer to oil one or two teeth max but I argue this is def. not needed with use of 9415. Iam more of oil the pallet stones kinda guy. After oiling the escape wheel teeth like you normally do put the escape under magnification, you should not see any oil or wetness on the teeth after a few minutes of running the watch, if you do you used too much. They should look dry. Also are you oiling the pallet pivots? Because you should not be.

Also epilame is best used with 9010, 9415 is such an amazing grease, and i say grease because it technically is, it stays put on pallet stones, it liquifies with friction so it turns to oil on contact but does not spread to escape wheel teeth, this is why 9415 and epilame were formulated to prevent what you are doing from happening.

if you are using 9415 on teeth and pallet stones that is almost likely your issue, esp if you oiled on top of old oil.  i would re-clean the entire movement oil everything as normal except for the escape then check your results and get back to us.

Edited by saswatch88

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I don't lubricate the pallet stones or pivots.. The epilame on the pallet fork wears groove after running for a few minutes, then you grease the escape wheel teeth, you have a perfect line/place for the tiniest amount of grease to sit. I do this under a microscope. Why would a swiss trained watchmaker who has done lots of brand training tell me to do this if it wasn't the correct method?

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39 minutes ago, AP1875 said:

I don't lubricate the pallet stones or pivots.. The epilame on the pallet fork wears groove after running for a few minutes, then you grease the escape wheel teeth, you have a perfect line/place for the tiniest amount of grease to sit. I do this under a microscope. Why would a swiss trained watchmaker who has done lots of brand training tell me to do this if it wasn't the correct method?

Iam not a professional in any sense but I have learned from some of the greatest, highly qualified, rolex omega certified watchmakers that this is the way to do it, I have never heard any instance where someone oils every 3rd tooth of the escape wheel, Unless it is specified by the manufacturer. Iam assuming you are using 9415 on the escape i dont see how or why this is needed if oiled properly. again 9415 turns to oil when the pallet stones make contact with an escape wheel tooth so it as if the teeth are already oiled when making contact, except there is no transfer of oil or grease to the wheel because its not needed (when using 9415) I can see the use of epilame with 9010 but not with 9415, that would be overkill. 

I dont know what you were told or what that person is doing and what oils he is using, what i do know is that you have being doing this for 3 years with no success, so something is obviously not jiving, as said by me and other responders on this thread, (assuming everything else was done correctly) there must be over oiling occurring, and normally when over oiling causes enough drag to result in lower amplitude, in my experience, the problem usually lies within the escapement. So at this point what do have to loose t0 try a different approach? dont use the epilame and just oil the pallet stones with 9415, then run the watch for a few minutes, and see what happens.

get the tech and service sheets on the clone, i.e if its a clone eta 2824 then find what the lubrication recommendations are for that movement from ETA or a manufacturer that doesnt use a  modified version of such movement

Edited by saswatch88

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5 minutes ago, saswatch88 said:

 

I dont know what you were told or what that person is doing and what oils he is using, what i do know is that you have being doing this for 3 years with no success, so something is obviously not jiving, as said by me and other responders on this thread, (assuming everything else was done correctly) there must be over oiling occurring, and normally when over oiling causes enough drag to result in lower amplitude, in my experience, the problem usually lies within the escapement. So at this point what do have to loose t0 try a different approach? dont use the epilame and just oil the pallet stones with 9415, then run the watch for a few minutes, and see what happens.

get the tech and service sheets on the clone, i.e if its a clone eta 2824 then find what the lubrication recommendations are for that movement from ETA. 

As i said i didn't lubricate this movement. The end stones were already lubricated, and i didn't add anything to the escapement. I've basically done what has been suggested above (assemble dry/as it was) and i've lost a considerable amount of amplitude.

Regarding the method of lubricating the escape wheel. Ive only started doing this in the last few months. The guy who instructed me to do it like this has done tutorials with Henrik Korpela who has one of the most prestigious schools in switzerland id like to think that says his methods are good/correct practice. Anyway that isn't the issue here because i didn't lubricate them.

i have had success. Usually with ETA movements 28xx and 7750 movements. With chinese movements, i find it difficult to get very good results, they're usually the same or worse than when i started and it's very frustrating.

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21 minutes ago, saswatch88 said:

 

get the tech and service sheets on the clone, i.e if its a clone eta 2824 then find what the lubrication recommendations are for that movement from ETA or a manufacturer that doesnt use a  modified version of such movement

It's a 3135 the service sheet recommends epilame for the escape wheel and pallet stones haha

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Hi  That Idea I second when doing the mainspring just a smear and that's all. Then reassemble dry and check the Amp then go back in degrees, Just oil the train and re-check and so on , for the time being leave the pallet fork and escape wheel teeth dry then recheck again  A bit of a ball ache I know but it helps to find the cause of the problem.  How old is the oil they recomend not using it after 12 months!!! expensive.   Some oils are ascorbic (take up water) with age and exposure.

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4 minutes ago, watchweasol said:

Hi  That Idea I second when doing the mainspring just a smear and that's all. Then reassemble dry and check the Amp then go back in degrees, Just oil the train and re-check and so on , for the time being leave the pallet fork and escape wheel teeth dry then recheck again  A bit of a ball ache I know but it helps to find the cause of the problem.  How old is the oil they recomend not using it after 12 months!!! expensive.   Some oils are ascorbic (take up water) with age and exposure.

will clean everything again tomorrow and give it another go and assemble dry see where i am and take it from there

Edited by AP1875

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My cleaning process will be peg wood all jewel holes and then place the parts into a screw type jewlery basket and the ultrasonic clean for 5 minutes in isopropyl. The balance and pallet fork i only submerge for a minute to prevent the shellac dissolving. i then dry with a hair dryer. Does this sound ok?

Edited by AP1875

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Hi the whole process of cleaning is to remove old oils and dirt the methodology  varies,

  what you are doing I have also done so as far as I can see Its ok the only difference is I use Carburettor cleaner which is a petroleum distilate drys with no residue but its inflammable so caution is used when using it,

 All the very best and keep us posted on the results we want you to suceed.

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11 minutes ago, watchweasol said:

Hi   Dont get disheartened, this is just one of lifes little mysteries. You do all the correct things and its still wrong. My Fly fishing is like that, do every thing right but catch fish some times, I still go back for more

I second this. This is part of the hobby/job. It happens to all of us, and not just once. I had to strip down and reassemble a movement about 5-6 times a few weeks ago until I got it going. Never figured out the problem but now it all works fine.

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1 hour ago, AP1875 said:

It's a 3135 the service sheet recommends epilame for the escape wheel and pallet stones haha

as i said "if manufacturer calls for it" either way what oils are they suggesting to use with it, and again as i said 3x i find it acceptable to use in conjunction with 9010. I have never used it with 9415, never had any issues. It was designed to be used without epilame, regardless of this not being the issue with this particular movement you still stated quote "that you oil every 3rd tooth of the escape wheel" so it could have been an issue with your previous unsuccessful attempts since it could be you are over oiling regardless of your methods, which is why i mentioned it. again never heard of oiling the escape wheel and not the pallets. not saying its wrong just never heard of it, like ever. The way i was taught by a man who is the only omega certified watch repairer in canada BTW is you apply one drop on the exit and entry stones, run the escape for 10 revolutions then ad another drop on each stone with another 10 revolutions until oil has spread evenly on all teeth, do this using 9010 with epilame, or 9415.

was taught by the same man that as you move the pallet fork, and the escape wheel tooth starts to come across the impulse surface of the pallet fork jewel, you will see a small wedge of oil form in the angle between the tooth and the jewel. If that forms when the leading edge of the tooth is about 1/2 way across the surface of the jewel, that is the right amount of oil. If it forms earlier than that, it’s probably too much, and if it only forms very late as it moves across, that’s probably too little. Its not just a matter of looking at the escape under a microscope with no action.

you posted this thread about one movement but then explain your methods on other unsuccessful attempts so i think the issue is much bigger than this one particular movement wouldnt you agree?
 

3 hours ago, AP1875 said:

I've been doing this for a couple of years now and I'm getting really frustrated with my progress. Literally every watch I service has worse results (or the same) than before I took it apart!

and as you stated here it says nothing about not being successful with only chinese clones, i will re-quote with the words "literally every watch"

I guess you know more than me so ill just see my way out of this discussion

Edited by saswatch88

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45 minutes ago, Chopin said:

I second this. This is part of the hobby/job. It happens to all of us, and not just once. I had to strip down and reassemble a movement about 5-6 times a few weeks ago until I got it going. Never figured out the problem but now it all works fine.

Yep I will go at it again tomorrow. Most of these movements are already running around 250-260 amplitude some greater like this one. So I'm thinking maybe I can't expect them to perform much better due to the quality of them? Should I use the same benchmarks for a chinese clone as a Swiss made movement I.e 270 minimum dial up and down? Something is not right with this one though as I havent applied lubrication and there's an amplitude drop. 

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Epilame is good. How you distribute oil on the escapement is a matter of dispute but get your lube on there and then gove it a day. You'll be surprised. I epilame every freakin escapement that comes through. Don't epilame the fork horns or pivots.

Your cleaning procedure is probably lacking. There are pro chemicals out there for a reason. The slightest film of whatever can drag you down. There are threads upon threads here on the subject.

But most of all, if you are taking care like you say, is let it run. You'll probably find it picks up 20- 30 degrees of amplitude.

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2 minutes ago, nickelsilver said:

Epilame is good. How you distribute oil on the escapement is a matter of dispute but get your lube on there and then gove it a day. You'll be surprised. I epilame every freakin escapement that comes through. Don't epilame the fork horns or pivots.

Your cleaning procedure is probably lacking. There are pro chemicals out there for a reason. The slightest film of whatever can drag you down. There are threads upon threads here on the subject.

But most of all, if you are taking care like you say, is let it run. You'll probably find it picks up 20- 30 degrees of amplitude.

Thanks for the advice. I was worried about the film. I found the isopropyl left some white residue on the parts. Which is why I moved to acetone, but I can't wash pallets or the balance for too long in it. I also have petroleum ether 80-100.

Would you be able to recommend a product for me to try? I've never tried one of the ammoniated cleaning products. I could get some of the L&r fluid. 

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Here are the timegrapher readings for dial down (181)and up (280) Same lubrication as before I haven't cleaned it yet. Something very bad is happening when dial down. I have not seen a difference so big in these two positions before. I moved the beat corrector all the way over as well. The watch is also stopping when turned dial down. I can start it again by hacking the balance and pushing the crown back in (sometimes) . Any suggestions? I don't think this watches issues are related to lubrication but what are your thoughts I might be wrong. 

20200122_090824.jpg

20200122_090538.jpg

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I swapped the balance and these are the readings... 

20200122_102949.thumb.jpg.6034c51980e2bbae9a9a4e19d7d17941.jpg20200122_103442.thumb.jpg.2e457a5f0be72451a3002298ad0ba6a9.jpg

 

Obviously miles better. So something must have happened to the other balance? I can't see a bent pivot, jewel looks OK, shock spring is still in place.it wasnt washed, literally removed placed in a dust free tray and then installed again. Any ideas? 

A question regarding the recent timegrapher. Do the spots indicate dirt on the pallet stones? 

Edited by AP1875

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