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Erratic Timegrapher Trace for Rate


ClusterFoxtrot
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Good evening everyone,

I have an ETA2892-2 that I am servicing and now have the watch back together. I noticed no obvious defect during inspection and rebuild and I have checked the power reserve and all was well post rebuild.

Now, on to the timegrapher. On full wind I get great amplitude and have a good beat error figure, but the rate is all over the place, sudden changes and with seemingly no regular pattern. The trace changes very quickly and I suspect something to do with the balance or escapement, but a partial disassembly to investigate didn't find any obvious. The only thing that I didn't take a much closer look at was the balance.

Before the strip and build, the trace was steady but with mediocre amplitude, so It is highly likely that I have induced this fault.

I think the dial up position is noticeably better than dial down, but neither looks particularly stable to me.

Could someone please take a look at the pics and offer any guidance?

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The only thing not fitted is the auto wind mechanism, but this has been removed, as fitted, the error was still there.IMG_1637.thumb.JPG.5c34cf0734f13bba6212ad138e2a309b.JPG

Another dial up photo. I think it points to something causing a bind, as there is a stable trace, but it occasionally goes astray.

Edited by ClusterFoxtrot
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3 minutes ago, ifibrin said:

How long after oiling did you put it on the timegrapher? It can take up to 24 hr for the trace to become stable. How did you oil the pallet jewels?

Pallet jewels were dabbed with Moebius 9415, I have no fixodrop.

My work space is far from ideal (kitchen table) and I have to be doubly sure that there is no contamination, so I've double checked for this. The jewels looks to be well seated, but bear in mind that I am self teaching myself and have very little experience of what is right and what isn't. I only have my engineering background to draw upon.

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2 minutes ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

Pallet jewels were dabbed with Moebius 9415, I have no fixodrop.

My work space is far from ideal (kitchen table) and I have to be doubly sure that there is no contamination, so I've double checked for this. The jewels looks to be well seated, but bear in mind that I am self teaching myself and have very little experience of what is right and what isn't. I only have my engineering background to draw upon.

Did you try putting it on the timegrapher again after 12 hr to 24 hr to allow the oil to settle? I find that my timegrapher trace immediately after cleaning and oiling is very erratic. How much oil are you using, and which Oiler are you using for the train wheels?

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10 hours ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

On full wind I get great amplitude and have a good beat error figure, but the rate is all over the place, sudden changes and with seemingly no regular pattern.

When you fully wind the watch up I assume you let it run for a little bit like 15 minutes To may be about an hour before you put it on the timing machine? In other words you never want to wind the watch all the way up and put it on the machine it needs a little bit of time to settle down.

Then visually how does the watch look?Does it visually look like it's running at 360°? Also as you rotate the microphone around as it do the same thing at all positions?

What is the watch look like 24 hours later?

29 minutes ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

I am self teaching myself and have very little experience of what is right and what isn't. I only have my engineering background to draw upon.

How new are you to watch repair? In other words is this your first watch or have you done other watches before this and if so how did they turn out? Then for servicing this watch and you entirely disassemble everything or only some things?

39 minutes ago, ifibrin said:

How long after oiling did you put it on the timegrapher? It can take up to 24 hr for the trace to become stable. How did you oil the pallet jewels?

I would be really curious to see one of your watches right after you serviced it and it being unstable?

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9 minutes ago, JohnR725 said:

 

I would be really curious to see one of your watches right after you serviced it and it being unstable?

After I clean, reassemble, and oil the movement, the trace usually isn’t very stable, and the rate can fluctuate quite a bit in the first 3 hr. In other words, the trace is not a straight line. It usually stabilizes and becomes consistent after this time, but the amplitude continues to drift upward. It becomes quite consistent in amplitude and rate after about 5 hr, but I usually only adjust the timing after 24 hr just to be safe.

I thought it was the 9415 distributing on the escape wheel teeth?

Edited by ifibrin
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4 minutes ago, ifibrin said:

After I clean, reassemble, and oil the movement, the trace usually isn’t very stable, and the rate can fluctuate quite a bit in the first 3 hr. In other words, the trace is not a straight line. It usually stabilizes and becomes consistent after this time, but the amplitude continues to drift upward. It becomes quite consistent in amplitude and rate after about 5 hr, but I usually only adjust the timing after 24 hr just to be safe.

One of the things I hate doing is hijacking discussions so this would be an interesting discussion on its own. The reason I ask is in shops repairing watches when the watch is running their placed on the timing machine and their stable. So in other words shops don't set their watches aside and let them run for 24 hours before regulating typically. They may check them after 24 hours to fine-tune perhaps but they're usually stable really fast. The only exception to this is if it's not an automatic you wind the watch up nice and tight and immediately place it on the timing machine there is a stabilization from that. Which is why the watch companies recommend depending upon who you look at anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour to stabilize. But that's mainly because you get too much power especially on a manual wind that last little click is not desirable.

5 minutes ago, ifibrin said:

I thought it was the 9415 distributing on the escape wheel teeth?

If you have a watch to play with You to try an experiment like using 9010 on the escapement. As it's an oil and not a grease and it will work on the escapement. As nice as 9415 is it supposed to be applied in really small quantities typically. If you get too much you can actually lose amplitude. If you look at the Omega lubrication guide they list really apply it under a microscope because they're worried about that. So if you have too much it can be an issue. The other thing to try is putting it on running the watch for little bit taking the fork out rinsing it off such dry putting it back in and you should get transfer from the escape wheel back to the fork and see if that changes anything. Microphone off

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I agree with JohnR725. I usually find no significant difference between timing it immediately after assembling and after 24 hours.

It might be due to the amount of lubricants used. If too much oil is used, the viscosity of the oil might actually dampen the movement rather than reduce friction. Maybe the excess oil flows out after 24 hours and gives a better trace. 😬

Most instructions for the amount of lubricants used are really vague. Like... fill the oil cup 1/3 full... or apply enough to just about to cover the top of the pinion... or apply a drop and check if there is enough after 24 hours.

I now use an oiling method that I learnt from a clock repair webinar. Apply a drop and work the wheel up and down ( like checking for endshake and sideshake ), then check that there is still a meniscus of oil in the hole. This distributes the oil immediately and leaves no room for settling.

As for 9415, I was taught to apply only the size of this dot (.) on the face of the exit pallet. That means the bottle of 9415 is enough for a few hundred watches! 🤔

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I have been using a black oiler for most lubrication tasks and have done this on all watches so far.

I have the traces from this morning, so 12 hours later and it seems to have settled down, but the last trace shows the anomaly again after regulating. 

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Edited by ClusterFoxtrot
Picture rotation.
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8 minutes ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

the last trace shows the anomaly again after regulating. 

I would give a good look to the HS, particularly how it moves in between regulator pins, then give it a one more good cleaning with an horological product. It could be that it occasionally sticks somewhere.

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13 minutes ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

I have the traces from this morning, so 12 hours later and it seems to have settled down

I'm still curious as to how the watches running 24 hours later?

when you're looking at the wavy lines you ever think you're seeing a pattern? In other words it repeats at some point in time and does something basically the same?

37 minutes ago, HectorLooi said:

It might be due to the amount of lubricants used. If too much oil is used, the viscosity of the oil might actually dampen the movement rather than reduce friction. Maybe the excess oil flows out after 24 hours and gives a better trace. 

If you use inappropriate oils? If you go for super heavy very high viscosity oils ancient oils that of gone bad using grease instead of oil you get some interesting results. But you do have to try really hard I did an experiment once because trying to figure out a lubrication issue that somebody did have. Worry lubricated the entire watch with D5 and even that didn't seem to produce the desired results of being really bad.

41 minutes ago, HectorLooi said:

Most instructions for the amount of lubricants used are really vague. Like... fill the oil cup 1/3 full... or apply enough to just about to cover the top of the pinion... or apply a drop and check if there is enough after 24 hours.

I now use an oiling method that I learnt from a clock repair webinar. Apply a drop and work the wheel up and down ( like checking for endshake and sideshake ), then check that there is still a meniscus of oil in the hole. This distributes the oil immediately and leaves no room for settling.

Somewhere in the group recently we discussed this again. The trend in modern watch repair is more lubrication. My guess is because they found out with the old method of super minimalistic it didn't last with time. As a watch serviced may go away and not return to the service center for five or more years is my guess of war lubricants.

 

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3 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

If you get too much you can actually lose amplitude. If you look at the Omega lubrication guide they list really apply it under a microscope because they're worried about that. So if you have too much it can be an issue.

How does omega recommend applying the 9415? Through the view hole on the mainplate? 

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I've experienced this a few times. Once it was due to lint on the escape wheel, another time it was due to a damaged end jewel and another time it was due to some debris in the leaves of the cannon pinion.

That's why I advised you to test a bare bones setup to reduce the possibilities. 

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22 hours ago, ifibrin said:

How does omega recommend applying the 9415? Through the view hole on the mainplate? 

Omega assumes you're working on an Omega watch. Omega's recommendations may or may not fly for other stuff. Basically it's kind of like you would normally do looking down at the watch where you're supposed to see the pallet fork versus through a tiny hole like in some American pocket watches like a full plate for instance we can't even see the teeth have to put it on the escape wheel itself probably not recommended by Omega.  than it also depends upon whether you have any LUBRIFAR Left on your escape wheel are not I assume you have no idea what that is it's really nifty used actually have a kit for applying it yourself probably cost a small fortune. Sunset of putting the quantity like I would normally put they recommend putting a microscopic drop I think they might even recommend using a microscope visits that tiny. Letting a few teeth go by is move the fork back and forth in another super tiny drop in another it's in the PDF below. So simplistically not as much as we used to do.

Which is actually interesting everything else is increased on the quantity of lubricants at least for the whole jewels and here it's decreased.

16 hours ago, ClusterFoxtrot said:

Does this look especially off centre and in need of adjustment? 

Ideally you want to look at the balance wheel and hairspring in the watch. That's because if it's going to be a problem that's where the problems going to be. Out of the watch the balance wheel can be in one direction or another it's really better if you can see the problem in the watch. Which of course makes it extremely difficult to see and even more difficult to photograph.

Then casually to me out of the watch it may be perhaps slightly off center but not enough to worry about and not enough to cause the problems are seeing.

Then I'm not used to looking at the etachron system like this so is this that or not? Because otherwise it be easy enough to adjust when it's in the watch

When you're looking at the timing machine watching it move all over the place does the amplitude fluctuate up and down?

Another thing to do is to take the balance out take the pallet fork out and check all of the end shake of all of the wheels. If you're having a binding issue someplace that could be a problem

 

 

 

Omega 8645_WI_40_rules for lubrication cousinsuk.pdf

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I think lubricating the escape wheel teeth directly (every other tooth) makes the initial timegrapher trace much more consistent, as opposed to applying 9415 to the face of the pallet jewel and allowing it to spread; this is even after cleaning the pallet fork after allowing the 9415 to distribute around the escape wheel for 15min.

I looked at the technical document provided by @JohnR725, and applying the 9415 directly in the middle of the pallet jewel face definitely requires a microscope, and an even finer Oiler than the bergeon ergonomic!

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Thank you for all of your help and suggestions so far. To address a few points...

The end shakes appear to be ok, ie, there is some.

I have checked and double checked the escapement for debris, none evident.

The hairspring is definitely off to one side when the balance is fitted, but it is difficult to see and next to impossible to adjust due to the bunching happening under the balance cock. I'll refit it and try to take a photo.

Failing this, I'll have to remove the movement again and check the timing sans dial and hands and see what I've got.

I may not be able to report back for a few days due to having no dedicated space to work in and not enough time to set up and pack away again. However, I don't let things get the better of me and I'll resolve it.

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