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VWatchie

Despite Kluber P125 this Orient/Seiko mainspring slips way too soon

Question

I’m still struggling to get a decent power reserve on my Orient cal. 46E40. As far as I can tell and as a reference, the barrel and spring seem to be identical to the Seiko cal. 7S-series, for example my Seiko cal. 7S36B.

As a replacement I use a brand new Generale Ressorts # GR2378X mainspring (0.95 x .12 x 400 x 10.5 Automatic). In my first attempt I used Moebius 8217 but only got about 24 hours of power reserve. I then read what I could find about it here on WRT and got inspired by this post by @nickelsilver. So, I got myself some emery paper, rubbed the wall so that the brass shone through and applied a thin layer of Moebius Glissalube A 8213 to the barrel wall. To keep the barrel steady while lubricating I shoved a smoothing broach in the hole of the barrel. However, when I was to remove the broach from the barrel it had gotten stuck in the barrel hole, and not realizing the broach is super finely threaded, and left threaded at that, I ruined the barrel trying to get it out of the hole :pulling-hair-out:

So, I had to source a new barrel, and let me assure you, Orient and their retailers won’t be helpful. Eventually, I found a seller on eBay in Spain who knew the barrel between my Orient cal. 46E40 and Orient cal. 46943 are identical and I bought a scrap movement from him and extracted the barrel.

After two weeks of waiting for the new (used) barrel, I decided not to rub the wall of the barrel but instead buy some uber-expensive Kluber P125 and apply it to the best of my ability in accordance with this post by @JohnR725. However, this only lessened the power reserve to about 17 hours. So, I took the barrel apart and took the below pictures of what I saw. Don’t know what the pictures add but nevertheless...

01.thumb.jpg.6d5bf004c94a3cbf3f0da4e96c82905b.jpg

02.thumb.jpg.1c615149b7c059a321cb3f419874f161.jpg

03.thumb.jpg.d284f58f41bebcf203fb66ce04fbf00a.jpg

04.thumb.jpg.2db89aa7149c663f86ca8c9a297b8869.jpg

05.thumb.jpg.f0093f3aad66113fceffa0476a1386ad.jpg

06.thumb.jpg.ecef10ab7b2e1b1bba17c98c4d85863f.jpg

I’m beginning to feel extremely frustrated about this and don’t know what to try next. Perhaps rub the barrel wall to expose some of the brass and apply Glissalube A? Perhaps no braking grease at all? Perhaps the replacement General Ressorts spring in some way just isn’t compatible with Japanese barrels? I’m really lost here and don’t know where to go next. So, some help and inspiration would be greatly appreciated.
 

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4 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

Try putting way way more Kluber P125 On the barrel wall like perhaps all the way around the wall.

Thanks John! I'll give it a try and will report back.

Edited by VWatchie

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11 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

Try putting way way more Kluber P125 On the barrel wall like perhaps all the way around the wall.

Unfortunately it didn't help one bit. If anything, things got from bad to worse. With a small amount of Kluber P125 the ratchet wheel would make 4.5 revolutions before slipping (about 17 hours of power reserve). With Kluber P125 around the entire wall and pretty generously at that, the ratchet wheel would only do 4 revolutions before slipping. I can't hear or feel the spring slipping so I count the revolutions when winding down.

To make matters even more annoying I've ruined two new very expensive Generale Ressorts springs in the process trying to wind them back into my K&D mainspring winder (which really sucks). I first tried to get it back using my fingers, but it only resulted in slipping around and getting Kluber all over the place. I guess replacing mainsprings by hand requires quite a bit of practising.

I can't remember when I felt this frustrated trying to fix a watch. It seems so easy, and still it fails. I wonder what those Japanese people are doing in the Orient/Seiko factory.

In some thread someone mentioned that @jdm was the "master" of these Japanese movements and how to handle the barrel/mainspring. I haven't yet searched it like crazy it but I'll see what I can find.

So, perhaps emery paper on the barrel wall to get a rough brass surface and then some Moebius Glissalube A? And again, I will have to order another mainspring, or a Bergeon mainspring winder, or both to make sure :(

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There is something definitely really wrong here. I know from experience when I listen to bad advice for a Seiko and applied the Kluber P125 Around the entire rim. When I was manually winding it up with the screw of the ratchet wheel and I reached the end I almost thought I was going to break the screw head off. Yes it slipped but it was so dramatically not slip paying which is why thought I'd going to break the head off. The you seem to be getting the exact opposite of what should be occurring there is definitely something not right here at all.

The dimensions of the new spring versus the old are they the same for the Springs look the same?

 

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4 minutes ago, JohnR725 said:

The dimensions of the new spring versus the old are they the same for the Springs look the same?

 

Past midnight here in Sweden and I’m off to bed but I’ll research this carefully tomorrow and will report back. Thanks John!

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I think you’re referring to a comment I made in your post about Seiko mainsprings. I did not say he was the master, I said something along the lines of I think he has a bit of experience with the Seiko 7S series of movts.

 

I’ll add my experience with the 700x series which is the basis for the 7S series and beyond:

 

- The GR springs are close but not exactly equivalent to the springs I’ve extracted from 7002 barrels - they were slightly thinner and not quite as wide. I found, and your experience may be different, that the original used MS worked better than a new GR equivalent.

 

- I’ve had terrible difficulty cleaning and re-greasing the barrel and mainsprings for these movts. I’ve used 8217 and found using the same quantity I might use in a 6309 allowed the spring to slip too soon and too dramatically. If I cut the quantity in half it worked better but still not great. I have not tried using a lot more nor have I used Kluber.

 

- I eventually stopped screwing around with splitting these barrels open since Seiko never intended for them to be and started using factory new replacements which come complete and ready to install.

 

- BUT, and it’s a big but, while I can get expected reserve out of the factory new replacements when wound at the ratchet screw I and some members on one of the Japanese watch forums have experienced issues with building reserve when worn. Not certain if it the reduction wheel being worn down or the hooks on the pawl levers not quite being sharp enough to wind the watch efficiently. Or maybe sitting at my desk during the day isn’t enough activity for these movts.

 

 

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I think we need to go back to the beginning and look at the exact procedure of everything involved with this mainspring plus any additional lubrication you're putting in the mainspring barrel? Something is not right when the laws of the universe seem to be going backwards for us

1 hour ago, meanoldmanning said:

I’ve used 8217 and found using the same quantity I might use in a 6309 allowed the spring to slip too soon and too dramatically. If I cut the quantity in half it worked better but still not great. I have not tried using a lot more nor have I used Kluber.

My experience with the other breaking greases were more was worse. This is what makes the Kluber Different it's really really sticky and more is more sticky. Except for this watch where it's not? But that I also question sanding the inside of the barrel your changing the characteristics. Email auto watches the inside of the barrel has cuts to reduce the contact area to make it easier for the mainspring to slip this is why this is such a weird example here lots of surface area should have lots of stickiness and we don't

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3 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

I think we need to go back to the beginning and look at the exact procedure of everything involved with this mainspring plus any additional lubrication you're putting in the mainspring barrel? Something is not right when the laws of the universe seem to be going backwards for us

My experience with the other breaking greases were more was worse. This is what makes the Kluber Different it's really really sticky and more is more sticky. Except for this watch where it's not? But that I also question sanding the inside of the barrel your changing the characteristics. Email auto watches the inside of the barrel has cuts to reduce the contact area to make it easier for the mainspring to slip this is why this is such a weird example here lots of surface area should have lots of stickiness and we don't

I'm not sure that's the intended purpose for barrel notches. I rather think it's to gain more positive control for the slipping rather than relying on friction and specific lubrication quantities/qualities, like demonstrated in this diagram:

 eKFPFQ6704WeNGzn2jtHJlAU1JzSjkYStOXM5f1M

Putting some watches next to my ear as I wind it I can hear this. For example on my 7750 it is always exactly 8 clicks of the ratchet wheel between each time the sound of the end of bridle slipping into the next notch is heard. You can't expect this kind of consistency relying solely on friction with a smooth barrel wall.

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10 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

There is something definitely really wrong here. I know from experience when I listen to bad advice for a Seiko and applied the Kluber P125 Around the entire rim. When I was manually winding it up with the screw of the ratchet wheel and I reached the end I almost thought I was going to break the screw head off. Yes it slipped but it was so dramatically not slip paying which is why thought I'd going to break the head off. The you seem to be getting the exact opposite of what should be occurring there is definitely something not right here at all.

The dimensions of the new spring versus the old are they the same for the Springs look the same?

 

The measurements of the original Orient/Seiko mainspring are as follows:
0.95 x .115 x 370 x 10.55 Automatic (Height x Thickness x Length x Barrel Diameter)

The closest replacement I've been able to find and the one I've been using is a Generale Ressorts spring:
0.95 x .12 x 400 x 10.5 Automatic

The only lubrication I've done is the Kluber P125 around the barrel wall, and I do not lubricate the spring as it comes pre-lubricated.
As far as I can remember the bridle of the GR spring and the original spring look the same or very similar. Unfortunately, I cannot verify this as I no longer have the original spring (per usual I mangled it in my K&D winder).

49 minutes ago, Nucejoe said:

I presume OP is sure slippage isn't at arbour

And yes, just to make sure, I have no reason to believe the arbor hook slips out of the eye of the inner coil. If it did, the spring would unwind in an instant and it doesn't. When I wind the ratchet wheel screw using a screw driver (this watch isn’t hand wind able) it feels very smooth and the only plausible explanation, as I see it, is that the spring is constantly sliding as I wind. No mater how many revolutions I make on the ratchet wheel, unwinding always results in 4 revolutions of the ratchet wheel before the power reserve is depleted.
 

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I wonder if you'd see signs of slipage on the barrel wall when you open it or on the grease there?  

Another possibility is if you have received a new faulty, weak MS,  especially that it feels smooth as you wind, If the old one is undamaged and you find it stronger than the new one, you have found the fault.  Weak MS exerts weak force against the wall, therefore weaker force of friction developes there, hence weak power reserve.

I missed the initial section of your thread. When it stops, I give the barrel a nudge to see if it runs a lengthy second stage.

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40 minutes ago, Nucejoe said:

I wonder if you'd see signs of slipage on the barrel wall when you open it or on the grease there?

Nope, it looks like in the picture in my previous post around the entire barrel wall.

57 minutes ago, Nucejoe said:

Another possibility is if you have received a new faulty, weak MS

As far as I can tell, the current spring is no different from all other Generale Ressorts springs I've handled. The GR spring feels quite a bit stiffer and more springy compared to the original spring which felt softer.

1 hour ago, Nucejoe said:

give the barrel a nudge to see if it runs a lengthy second stage.

It does not. The barrel rotates freely around the arbor and there are no hick-ups in the train.

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2 hours ago, VWatchie said:

What do you think; should I try Moebius 8200 as motivated in this post?

Yes definitely as we can speculate what it's going to do but it would work out much better for all of us if we find out what it really does so go for it

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58 minutes ago, rodabod said:

Has anyone suggested adjusting the bridle for increased friction. That’s what I would try. 

No, you're the first to suggest it. So, simply bend it, or what do you have in mind?

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22 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

Yes definitely as we can speculate what it's going to do but it would work out much better for all of us if we find out what it really does so go for it

OK, will order a proper Bergeon mainspring winder first as I'm really tired of buying new and silly expensive mainsprings only to destroy them in my pretty useless K&D winder. So, it may take a couple of weeks before I can report back.

EDIT:

Or, I may try to source a compatible complete Seiko barrel if I can figure out which one, if any...

Edited by VWatchie

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1 hour ago, CaptCalvin said:

It wont help much in your case seeing as how it's slipping so early. 

I don’t quite understand the logic here - are you saying that it’s slipping so early that changing the bridle profile could not correct this? There are only so many variables which define the amount of friction that the bridle produces. 

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OP, did you keep the original mainspring? Can you measure with a good calipers the thickness of the bridle compared to the one on the GR mainspring. Another thing I noted when I was trying them on the Seiko 7002 movt is the bridle on the GR mainspring was a fair bit thinner and more flexible. I posted about it on wrist sushi a year or two ago but can’t find the post right now.


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3 hours ago, rodabod said:

I don’t quite understand the logic here - are you saying that it’s slipping so early that changing the bridle profile could not correct this? There are only so many variables which define the amount of friction that the bridle produces. 

Bridle shape only really come into play at the last few winds when there isn't a whole bunch of coils pushing the bridle flat up against the barrel wall.

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These Seikos (and Orients) don't need much power so this would equate with low mainspring power. 24hours sounds OK. I would wind it full and wear it for a day and see how much amplitude it has at the end of the day. Then leave it overnight and check it again in the morning.

If the autowind is efficient the reading at the end of the day (close to full wind) and in the morning (50% wind?) should not vary much.

Anilv

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6 hours ago, anilv said:

24hours sounds OK.

Not OK for a piece which has to be used normally - that includes skipping a day and having it running. Factory specs are 42 hours, even if the last hours are of poor timekeeping. 

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8 hours ago, CaptCalvin said:

Bridle shape only really come into play at the last few winds when there isn't a whole bunch of coils pushing the bridle flat up against the barrel wall.

But ultimately, all that matters is how many “active” turns you get on the barrel. If there’s evidence that the bridle shape doesn’t make much difference then I’d be interested to hear more about it. 

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