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My 404 purchase and service!

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I decided to play in the 404 club and was able to land this gem.  I think I am allowed to exclude shipping in the 404 number.

This is an AS 1187 movement--the 7-jewel version.

It is a very simple movement, but I had some problems.

1) For whatever reason, I had a lot of problem rewinding and installing the mainspring.  Couldn't get the winder to catch, set the winder diameter too large and and to start over, through the process, I managed to open up the inner coil.  Worried that the arbor would not engage, I re-shaped the inner coil.  Fortunately, I have the proper tool to do that.  The final attempt was a diving catch in the end zone.  The diameter I set gave me no margin, but I popped it in.  Since my recent watchmaking revival, I have done this maybe a dozen times with no trouble...not today.

2) Normally, when I drop the balance assy in, it just takes off running.  This time, the roller jewel kept getting on the outside of the fork horns.  Grrr...frustrating.  Finally got it in.

I did not separate the balance from the cock, nor the hairspring from the balance in order to do any truing test or poising.  However, once installed, I could visually see that the balance was perfectly true.  Poising...dunno. 

I made regulation adjustments, but found that there was variance in different positions.  The usual suspects I guess, but I did not check.

There were two goals in this excise:

1) Follow through with a 404 purchase (buy it and fix it)

2) Improve my watchmaking skills.

I am getting better...but...miles to go before I sleep.


2021-06-27 12_28_56-Geneva Incabloc Vintage swiss Antimagnetic Unbreakable Mainspring Watch _AS-IS_ .png

2021-06-27 12_35_30-Photos.png

2021-06-27 12_33_39-P1010340.JPG ‎- Photos.png

2021-06-27 12_34_04-P1010344.JPG ‎- Photos.png

2021-06-27 12_34_42-P1010348.JPG ‎- Photos.png

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Cheap and cheerful! 404 for the win! A nice, high dollar watch is obviously a nice thing, but there's an element of stress to it that is totally absent with a 404. Even if you screw it up wildly, you're basically no worse for the experience. I know it's often suggested to start with pocket watches, but this is definitely where I'd point someone wanting to get started. Takes all the stress out of it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

"Worried that the arbor would not engage, I re-shaped the inner coil.  Fortunately, I have the proper tool to do that."

What is your proper tool?  I've been using tweezers, and my technique is poor.  Thanks.  Well done!

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