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looking for a simple, ultra-precise hand-wound movement - suggestions?


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I am interested in acquiring a simple movement that is also extremely accurate; accurate as a feature of it's simplicity.

certainly a hand-wound movement with no complications.

what do you recommend?

what sort of accuracy have you seen?

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16 minutes ago, t4thomas said:

I am interested in acquiring a simple movement that is also extremely accurate; accurate as a feature of it's simplicity.

certainly a hand-wound movement with no complications.

what do you recommend?

what sort of accuracy have you seen?

Would be nice to know what you are about Thomas please. An¬† intro, howdy doody , kiss my curvy something if you would be so kind ūüôā

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7 minutes ago, Neverenoughwatches said:

Would be nice to know what you are about Thomas please. An¬† intro, howdy doody , kiss my curvy something if you would be so kind ūüôā

hey, thanks for the response!

I am just starting to delve into the world of horology, and I seem to have bug.

I have a growing collection of modestly priced timepieces; nothing fancy, but all personally interesting for different reasons e.g. an original timex marlin, a modern seiko sacm171 with high accuracy quartz, a handful of microbrands etc.

I am not sure that I will progress to my own repairs, but I find the theory part fascinating.

I've consumed a couple of books - wrist watches explained by michael fraser was my most recent find. in particular, I am interested in caliber design and the intersection between the science and the art.

fwiw, I am based in the uk.

Edited by t4thomas
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2 hours ago, t4thomas said:

I am interested in acquiring a simple movement that is also extremely accurate; accurate as a feature of it's simplicity.

certainly a hand-wound movement with no complications.

what do you recommend?

what sort of accuracy have you seen?

Does it have to be a wristwatch?  Large balances are good for accuracy, so a marine chronometer?

I am surprised at how accurate some of my old pocket watches are - again nice large balances. 

Are you planning to tweak it for accuracy, or do you just want to buy an accurate movement?

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1 hour ago, t4thomas said:

hey, thanks for the response!

I am just starting to delve into the world of horology, and I seem to have bug.

I have a growing collection of modestly priced timepieces; nothing fancy, but all personally interesting for different reasons e.g. an original timex marlin, a modern seiko sacm171 with high accuracy quartz, a handful of microbrands etc.

I am not sure that I will progress to my own repairs, but I find the theory part fascinating.

I've consumed a couple of books - wrist watches explained by michael fraser was my most recent find. in particular, I am interested in caliber design and the intersection between the science and the art.

fwiw, I am based in the uk.

Welcome Thomas, as you may be starting to realise watch collecting can be expensive. As you may not realise watch repairing can be even more expensive. Tbf if you are an avid collector being able to repair and service what you have and cheap bought non working to fix and add to your collection, the cost for tools etc can be offset against that benefit.¬† ¬† ¬†Who am i kidding?¬† ūüėĄ

Edited by Neverenoughwatches
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 How exact a watch is designed to run , depends on the grade of its escapement, high grade ones furthur need to be adjusted to several positions to keep time thats approaching  exactness, some as many as seven or eight positions which include temperature adjustment as well. This gives you the keyword in your search,  " ADJUSTED" 

So just type in your requirements and add adjusted, you will see some pieces say adjusted in three postions, some four , so on. 

Providing the oscilator hasn't been worked on by a watch destroyer like me, you get the escapement that left the manufacturer company and thats good. 

Rgds

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2 hours ago, t4thomas said:

I am interested in acquiring a simple movement that is also extremely accurate; accurate as a feature of it's simplicity.

certainly a hand-wound movement with no complications.

I think you're asking for the impossible because you don't actually understand what you're looking for. Accuracy is not determined by its simplistically it's determined by other things this will present a challenge for you to find something that does this.

Okay simple that means no automatic no complications at all. How about a SW210-1 b? It's manual winding and it has a technical sheet so I can explain things. I'm attaching the PDF below.

You'll notice if you read carefully at the movement comes in three different grades Elaboré, Top And Chronomètre. They're all sort of identical except the two upper grades If you go to PDF page 4 you can see the various grades and what the differences are. First thing we see is the balance wheel nickel balance wheel on ordinary watch much much nicer balance wheel for the two top grades. Basically a balance wheel that doesn't change because of temperature chronometer grade watches are supposed to run and keep time regardless of temperatures.

Looks like they're shortchanging on specifications normally they hairspring is different for the two top grades I was the balance wheel and hairspring are decided not to respond to temperature changes. Then we get the PDF page 5 we get timing specifications you notice I don't actually publish the chronometer grade because you need the chronometer grade specifications which is published by another company. Also the top grade watches identical to the chronometer grade except somebody has to tweak it to the chronometer grade. Yes I know this because I know somebody who purchased movements from them originally there were supposed to get the chronometer grade but then they wouldn't sell them slanted top grade adjust them and submit them for chronometer certification. So yes the top grade will keep chronometer timekeeping somebody has to do the manual labor

save your money and extremely accurate watch all have to look for one that says it's a chronometer grade watch which is different than the suggestion down below of what a chronometer Is.

https://sellita.ch/index.php/en/movements

9 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

Does it have to be a wristwatch?  Large balances are good for accuracy, so a marine chronometer?

Yes a Marine chronometer definitely would not fit on someone's wrist. But do we really need a Marine chronometer anymore?To understand what a Marine chronometer is I have a link basically I think of it as a clock with a detailed escapement. But it's not your regular clock and yes it keeps phenomenal time.. But one little mishap and it's an expensive thing to fix. The detailed escapement is very unforgiving to things happening to it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_chronometer

So classically at least until modern times chronometer would refer to a clock with a detent escapement that keeps phenomenal time. You can have pocket watches with detent escapement's but I would really recommend not having one of those. Today of course chronometer just means timepiece that keeps really good time

Here's a link to the Swiss people who certify whether your watch keeps good time are not. Unfortunately the Swiss will not look at other watches that are not Swiss because then they would feel embarrassed as Seiko has watches that will keep chronometer time keeping and so do other people so they only certify Swiss watches this means if you want to your watch chronometer certified jewel have to go to one of the other certification agencies

https://www.cosc.swiss/en/certification/chronometer

Now back to do we really need a Marine chronometer in the answer is no. When Hamilton was doing a Marine chronometer they worked out a better way to make a balance wheel a bimetallic without having a bimetallic. Traditional chronometer making with the bimetallic balance wheel from what I had once read was once your chronometer balance wheel and hairspring or in the clock it needs to stabilize for one whole year before you can regulate it that's because there's a lot of stress on the metals to put this thing together Hamilton figured out a better way. So the same balance wheel bus used in their chronometer at least the concept is found in a Hamilton deck watches. When I was reading was if the deck watch had come out first the chronometer would've never of come out. So if you want something really nice for timekeeping that does not quite fit in your pocket get a Hamilton deck watch or? But the same design of hairspring and balance wheel found in those is found in the Hamilton 992B they could just buy one of those. But if you're not going to do your own work you're not going be super happy because more likely somebody's played with it and it will require adjusting to put it back to keeping really good time plus they in general need to be serviced anyway

Then I'm attaching the specifications for Hamilton 992B just you can see what timekeeping they can keep

 the problem becomes if you don't want to do your own work you basically should just go by Rolex or a grand Seiko or anything that says it's chronometer rated. Or something vintage just buy a good railroad grade pocket watch but they may require some work to get them back into keeping really good time.

DocTec_SW210-1.pdf Hamilton 992b 950 timing.pdf

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1 hour ago, JohnR725 said:

I think you're asking for the impossible because you don't actually understand what you're looking for. Accuracy is not determined by its simplistically it's determined by other things this will present a challenge for you to find something that does this.

Okay simple that means no automatic no complications at all. How about a SW210-1 b? It's manual winding and it has a technical sheet so I can explain things. I'm attaching the PDF below.

You'll notice if you read carefully at the movement comes in three different grades Elaboré, Top And Chronomètre. They're all sort of identical except the two upper grades If you go to PDF page 4 you can see the various grades and what the differences are. First thing we see is the balance wheel nickel balance wheel on ordinary watch much much nicer balance wheel for the two top grades. Basically a balance wheel that doesn't change because of temperature chronometer grade watches are supposed to run and keep time regardless of temperatures.

Looks like they're shortchanging on specifications normally they hairspring is different for the two top grades I was the balance wheel and hairspring are decided not to respond to temperature changes. Then we get the PDF page 5 we get timing specifications you notice I don't actually publish the chronometer grade because you need the chronometer grade specifications which is published by another company. Also the top grade watches identical to the chronometer grade except somebody has to tweak it to the chronometer grade. Yes I know this because I know somebody who purchased movements from them originally there were supposed to get the chronometer grade but then they wouldn't sell them slanted top grade adjust them and submit them for chronometer certification. So yes the top grade will keep chronometer timekeeping somebody has to do the manual labor

save your money and extremely accurate watch all have to look for one that says it's a chronometer grade watch which is different than the suggestion down below of what a chronometer Is.

https://sellita.ch/index.php/en/movements

Yes a Marine chronometer definitely would not fit on someone's wrist. But do we really need a Marine chronometer anymore?To understand what a Marine chronometer is I have a link basically I think of it as a clock with a detailed escapement. But it's not your regular clock and yes it keeps phenomenal time.. But one little mishap and it's an expensive thing to fix. The detailed escapement is very unforgiving to things happening to it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_chronometer

So classically at least until modern times chronometer would refer to a clock with a detent escapement that keeps phenomenal time. You can have pocket watches with detent escapement's but I would really recommend not having one of those. Today of course chronometer just means timepiece that keeps really good time

Here's a link to the Swiss people who certify whether your watch keeps good time are not. Unfortunately the Swiss will not look at other watches that are not Swiss because then they would feel embarrassed as Seiko has watches that will keep chronometer time keeping and so do other people so they only certify Swiss watches this means if you want to your watch chronometer certified jewel have to go to one of the other certification agencies

https://www.cosc.swiss/en/certification/chronometer

Now back to do we really need a Marine chronometer in the answer is no. When Hamilton was doing a Marine chronometer they worked out a better way to make a balance wheel a bimetallic without having a bimetallic. Traditional chronometer making with the bimetallic balance wheel from what I had once read was once your chronometer balance wheel and hairspring or in the clock it needs to stabilize for one whole year before you can regulate it that's because there's a lot of stress on the metals to put this thing together Hamilton figured out a better way. So the same balance wheel bus used in their chronometer at least the concept is found in a Hamilton deck watches. When I was reading was if the deck watch had come out first the chronometer would've never of come out. So if you want something really nice for timekeeping that does not quite fit in your pocket get a Hamilton deck watch or? But the same design of hairspring and balance wheel found in those is found in the Hamilton 992B they could just buy one of those. But if you're not going to do your own work you're not going be super happy because more likely somebody's played with it and it will require adjusting to put it back to keeping really good time plus they in general need to be serviced anyway

Then I'm attaching the specifications for Hamilton 992B just you can see what timekeeping they can keep

 the problem becomes if you don't want to do your own work you basically should just go by Rolex or a grand Seiko or anything that says it's chronometer rated. Or something vintage just buy a good railroad grade pocket watch but they may require some work to get them back into keeping really good time.

DocTec_SW210-1.pdf 3.99 MB · 0 downloads Hamilton 992b 950 timing.pdf 985.65 kB · 0 downloads

thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to respond so thoroughly. this is very insightful.

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Do you want just a movement or a whole watch? It would be really hard to beat one of the 30s- 60s Omega 30mm movements, here's a read. Anything from Longines up to the late 60s is amazing, for precision go for the larger calibers like the 30L. Peseux movements are pretty fantastic across the board, and there is a "current" one available from ETA, the 7001 (at least I think it's still in production). There are others, depends on what you can spend. An IWC with a caliber 89 movement is fantastic, but will cost a lot more than something with a Peseux movement. For pocket watch, the 992B John mentioned is probably one of the best movements ever made, with Hamilton's own Hamilton Elinvar Extra hairspring and stainless/ Invar ovalizing balance, it completely solved the residual middle temperature error.

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On 6/12/2023 at 5:31 PM, t4thomas said:

what sort of accuracy have you seen?

I've seen a Vostok 2409 (no complications and costing about $30 new) with an average accuracy of about 3 seconds per month. A bit of luck, of course, but still. A change in the way I was using it and it wouldn't have been as accurate (wearing it for about 16h a day, always wound in the morning, not subjected to any extreme gravitational forces or magnetism, and resting dial-up during the night).

Basically, most watch movements can be averagely accurate as long as they are in good health. However, only a few really high-end movements can be precise. The ones listed by @nickelsilverlikely belong in that category. So yes, there's a difference between accuracy and precision. Imagine a rife shooting on a target where the lowest score is 1 and the highest 10. If all rounds hit, for example, a score of 1, it is precise, but not accurate. If all rounds are spread around the target, it is not precise but it can be accurate provided the average is in or near the middle of the target. My Vostok belongs in that category.

In general and before quartz, if mechanical movements had not been able to be averagely accurate, timepieces would not have been affordable to the masses. Luckily, the Swiss lever escapement is a very robust construction. Without it, the world would likely have looked very different as an efficient society can't function as well without people being able to tell reasonably accurate time (+/- a few minutes).

Here's a very interesting video about accuracy and precision from where I got the analogy between a rifle and a watch movement. A special thanks to @nickelsilver¬†for the suggestions. My next watch purchase will have one of the movements you listed for sure!¬†ūüĎć

 

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On 6/13/2023 at 9:27 AM, nickelsilver said:

Anything from Longines up to the late 60s is amazing, for precision go for the larger calibers like the 30L. Peseux movements are pretty fantastic across the board, 

For pocket watch, the 992B John mentioned is probably one of the best movements ever made, with Hamilton's own Hamilton Elinvar Extra hairspring and stainless/ Invar ovalizing balance, it completely solved the residual middle temperature error.

I agree about Longines - I only have a few but the quality is superb, and they all keep very good time. 

I have a Hamilton 992 (unfortunately not the 'B' with the better balance) - when I last cleaned it, I used it as my daily watch for a few days.  As I remember it was about 1-2s per day, and easily matched my mates new Omega Seamaster Co-ax he was showing off.

I'm surprised you mention Peseux @nickelsilver, what makes them so good?  I must get some.

Of my watches, a couple of brands which I thought were better than expected are Certina and Revue. 

 

Edited by mikepilk
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17 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

I'm surprised you mention Peseux @nickelsilver, what makes them so good?  I must get some.

 

 

They had a specific caliber for chronometer competitions, the 260, which is a legendary watch. Those are quite hard to find (and very expensive), but all the other movements of theirs that I've worked on have just been superb runners, great timing, great no-frill quality.

 

Can't believe I didn't mention Zenith- who also made a competition-specific caliber, the 135. All of their hand wound calibers I've seen have been fantastic.

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@mikepilk examine pinion leaves on any Peseux manual wind, you'd know it is no ordinary train gear. 

 ETA 7001 is copied off Peseux 7001, though haven't seen the ETA make, I doubt it is made as good as Peseux. 

 

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10 minutes ago, Nucejoe said:

@mikepilk examine pinion leaves on any Peseux manual wind, you'd know it is no ordinary train gear. 

I have 2 Peseux movements which came out of Accurist watches. I assumed they were just average quality as they are so common in Accurist watches.

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16 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

I have 2 Peseux movements which came out of Accurist watches. I assumed they were just average quality as they are so common in Accurist watches.

Most other brands used Peseux movements.

Definately an under rated movement pricewise.  You find  adjusted ones in some luxury brands.

The 260 NS mentioned.

https://grailium.com/product/watch/cyma-observatory-competition-chronometer-peseux-260/

 

Edited by Nucejoe
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6 hours ago, mikepilk said:

Hamilton 992 (unfortunately not the 'B' with the better balance)

Watch naming and/or numbering schemes are often filled with ministries like everything else in horology. I've attached the technical specifications for the 992B and noticed that it's basically an entirely new watch. So basically I like the second generation to the 992 but it's entirely different the only thing they share in common is their both 16 size railroad grade watches.

6 hours ago, mikepilk said:

Peseux

While looking for an answer to question I had which is our all the watches they make really really nice or just a few? In any case there is a link that talks about the 7001.

https://wornandwound.com/caliber-spec-peseuxeta-7001/

6 hours ago, nickelsilver said:

chronometer competitions

Thinking of chronometers there is an agency that does that. Then as you can see from the second link they have annual reports except their missing the 2015 report. The 2015 report is interesting because it gives something of that they probably really didn't want to share with the public. On pages 12 and 13 of that report which I'm attaching down below it lists all the companies who got their watches chronometer certified. So basically could see all the companies are making high grade chronometer watches and we get to find out how many watches Rolex makes in a year which I'm not sure if that's actually published anywhere?

https://www.cosc.swiss/en

https://www.cosc.swiss/en/news

 

 

RANN2015-1 pages 12 and 13.pdf

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1 hour ago, Nucejoe said:

Hi OH,

To expand on your point heres a good read on percision and accuracy,  useful to all .

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/how-distinguish-accuracy-precision-forecasting-stefan-de-kok

I know a lot about precision and accuracy. My question was to the original poster what do you consider as  extremely accurate.

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16 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

 I've attached the technical specifications for the 992B 

I'm not seeing it.

16 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

...  and noticed that it's basically an entirely new watch. So basically I like the second generation to the 992 but it's entirely different the only thing they share in common is their both 16 size railroad grade watches.

Oh no¬†ūüėü

That means I might have to buy a 992B.  You are costing me $$$ @JohnR725 !

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21 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

I'm not seeing it.

Honestly it was there must've been gremlins or alien abduction let's see if I can attach  it again. I'm not sure technical is quite the right term but it does explain about the watches existence.

 

25 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

That means I might have to buy a 992B

Well it's either that or you by a Hamilton deck watch. I really rather love the Hamilton deck watches unfortunately it's a little too big to go in your pocket. For the deck watch they put into types the cases of full gimbaled boxlike the Marine chronometer by just smaller or a pocket watch kind of case without a bow that was meant to go into a box and just stay facing up smaller boats basically that didn't need to gamble. That conceivably could carry your pocket but it be a little bit big which is why the 992B is nice.

Hamilton 992B.pdf

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  • 5 months later...
On 6/13/2023 at 10:27 AM, nickelsilver said:

Peseux movements are pretty fantastic across the board, and there is a "current" one available from ETA, the 7001

image.thumb.png.ca4b7a36b14a4ff5e5091f041358ef31.png

image.thumb.png.43523869c3b882b0c1be4bf6fcb64065.png

I just bought this on eBay. It's housing a Peseux cal. 7040 (or possibly 7046). It looks pretty with its¬†c√ītes de gen√®ve. It's going to be interesting to see how it performs. As I understand it, this calibre is still being produced by ETA with a calibre number of 7001 (used by Nomos, for example). Again, thanks for the tip @nickelsilver!

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