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Broken hairspring - replacement options


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I am in the middle of servicing an Omega 23.7S T2 for a friend and the hairspring has just broken. I reckon the watch is around 90 years old. The hairspring is blue steel, possibly original, and looks to have failed through old age and corrosion (possibly aided by a slight indelicacy in assembly!)  It's a Breguet type hairspring and has broken at the overcoil, about 180 degrees from the stud.

I would quite like to fit a modern replacement spring and try my hand at vibrating it to the balance wheel, rather than find a replacement fragile old spring only to have it fail again. I am prepared to try forming an overcoil. I have learnt that new springs are more robust than the old blue steel types and are much more likely to survive the manipulation required for forming overcoils, colleting and studding.

The balance is a bimetallic type to compensate for the variation in timing that a blue steel spring would introduce as a result of temperature variations and that temperature variations would therefore arise through the use of a modern Invar type spring but I still think this would be better than using an old spring. I'd be interested to hear the views of others on this point. Also, I would welcome any advice on sourcing a suitable hairspring in the UK. I've seen the Otto Frei advice for choosing a flat hairspring but I haven't found any advice regarding sourcing a spring for overcoiling.

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1 hour ago, Bluescrew said:

I would quite like to fit a modern replacement spring and try my hand at vibrating it to the balance wheel, rather than find a replacement fragile old spring only to have it fail again. I am prepared to try forming an overcoil. I have learnt that new springs are more robust than the old blue steel types and are much more likely to survive the manipulation required for forming overcoils, colleting and studding.

the problem with the hairspring is that even though the modern Springs seem like their better you still have to have a spring with the right characteristics to fit your balance wheel.

then of course you as noted will have a temperature problem with the modern spring versus the balance wheel. But that's a small price to pay to get a hairspring if you can get a hairspring at all.

You should do a search of the discussion group we've covered hairspring vibrating. The biggest problem is sourcing hairsprings as there are no longer available other than new old stock whatever you can find. then there's no difference between a flat hairspring and Breguet hairspring there both identical in other words there both flat they both get vibrated the same way. Then once their vibrated you form your over coil

 

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Thanks for that, JohnR725. It confirms what I thought about availability. Thanks too for pointing me in the right direction.

A balance complete for this calibre / caliber is proving hard to come by. I wonder if there is any information available on the characteristics of balances and hairsprings that might help me in selecting a possible substitute hairspring for the Omega. I need to find a spring that I can shorten to suit. I have skimmed the topics on this site sourcing hairsprings and will now research the subject in more depth.

I suspect that vibrating hairsprings successfully might be difficult and laborious to achieve for an amateur, especially without a vibrating tool.

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3 hours ago, Bluescrew said:

A balance complete for this calibre / caliber is proving hard to come by.

It's nearly impossible to find complete balances for these old Omega's. I have two 26.5 T3's awaiting hairsprings. 

3 hours ago, Bluescrew said:

I suspect that vibrating hairsprings successfully might be difficult and laborious to achieve for an amateur, especially without a vibrating tool.

With an overcoil, nigh on impossible I'd say. But if you do perfect the technique, could you knock my off a couple for my T3's please 😀

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On 10/31/2023 at 8:26 AM, Bluescrew said:

Omega 23.7S T2 for a friend

Oh one of the things to remember is is this a good friend? Yes I know the YouTube videos make watch repair looks so simple. But in watch repair videos have you ever seen a video on my first watch was my girlfriends, my wife's some other family member or close friend or somebody and they had sentimental value and now they're extremely angry at me and the watches broken? How many of those videos have you ever seen? The unfortunate reality of watch repair his every one break and destroy things but you're more likely to have accidents when you're starting out and having to explain to someone why the watch no longer runs somebody really needs to a video about which basically says you should work on friends watches and nothing that's valuable that can't be replaced

As long as your Omega is not too old unfortunately yours is it goes in between there is cross references to monitoring numbering system. As soon as you get the modern numbering system we find way more parts availability etc.

On my favorite parts site we get your watch without the letter S which looking at the physical bestfit book all the 27th go back to the base caliber of 23.7 but with the exception of the second link nothing I have has the letter S and I don't know what that means or What it changes you will notice the second link the references to the TE 12 and three no idea what that means. Then on that website all of them are 23.7 S Where is in the bestfit book none of them have an S?

image.png.37371acfb0ba692144084b69198d35b8.png

 

http://cgi.julesborel.com/cgi-bin/matcgi2?ref=OME_23.7T2

http://www.ranfft.de/cgi-bin/bidfun-db.cgi?10&ranfft&0&2uswk&Omega_23_7S_T2

 

5 hours ago, Bluescrew said:

A balance complete for this calibre / caliber is proving hard to come by. I wonder if there is any information available on the characteristics of balances and hairsprings that might help me in selecting a possible substitute hairspring for the Omega. I need to find a spring that I can shorten to suit. I have skimmed the topics on this site sourcing hairsprings and will now research the subject in more depth.

I suspect that vibrating hairsprings successfully might be difficult and laborious to achieve for an amateur, especially without a vibrating tool.

So now what you're going to need is a time machine to go back in time if you are back far enough you will find that there a individuals that ran companies that would vibrate the hairspring for you in a bargain price. Somewhere I've snipped out the advertisements conveniently of not finding them in the computer. Unfortunately they've all retired on other business and who knows where they hairspring is a vibrating tools disappeared.

Then we have covered hairspring vibrating before quite a bit need a hairspring of the right CGS characteristics. Then supposedly in one of our prominent members keeps telling us you can vibrate hairspring without a vibrating tool but as of yet he has published an article on how to do were all looking forward to that or not. It depends upon the individual but learning to vibrated hairsprings is a really tedious boring horrible task that no one in the right mind should ever have to endure yet the schools still torture their students to do that

So for instance here's a school in its fancy huge building with lots and lots of courses versus the early days really only had one course and they rented space in another building. Look at about one minute and 40 some seconds you can see their torturing a student by making them vibrate a hairspring. Probably being done for the school watch that they're making. Which does become interesting because the schools that are still teaching hairspring vibrating like our local college they're still doing it they seem to have an endless supply for hairsprings for 6497. Anything else he needed a hairspring for is going to problematic

https://youtu.be/4w27i3JnxY8?si=qzdZMmHdTyPbmE83

So yes we really cover the procedure somewhere else in the group. So you're going to need hairsprings which are almost impossible to get or if you're really really desperate somebody covered the lunacy of well basically was a waste of time but still quite interesting there are companies out there that will make hairsprings for you but they want to make hundreds and thousands of trillions and this person thought he had a lot of watches where he would have a hairspring made the reality was it's a bit pricey as they really want to make thousands of hairsprings. One of the reasons raw hairsprings are no longer available is the Swiss rather than making generic CGS hairsprings rest of vibrate would rather supply the company with the unique hairspring for their watch or they will vibrate the spring for your watch but still they want to do hundreds and thousands of trillions and it's going to be pricey.

So we've covered this all before of what you need is the hairspring pins, the collet's of the right size unless a course you can save yours we have to somehow get the pin out. Possibility of the stud although you should build the salvage the one you have. Of course a vibrating toward be nice but it is a pain in the ass to learn how to use the things they do need some practice hairsprings balance wheels etc. to practice on because it's not instantaneous skill set learn. Although the students in the modern schools only do one or two hairsprings so how hard can be? Then you need a hairspring of unknown CGS we don't care what it is. Then you vibrate with that and run some after it's been discussed somewhere else in the group you can calculate out the correct CGS hairspring you need and a lot of luck finding that.

It's probably best to keep an eye on eBay hoping that another watch comes up that you can steal the balance wheel and/or hairspring from

But

2 hours ago, mikepilk said:

But if you do perfect the technique, could you knock my off a couple for my T3's please

There is that problem we all have lists of things that were looking for that will show up sooner or later everything shows up on eBay sooner or later it's the later aspect that becomes a problem. The other probably have when you're waiting is if you can't visually look at the watch and see a part number of model number that jumps out instantly that means whoever is selling that watch movement won't know what its is and they will describe it like vintage Omega and that means basically get stuck looking at all the vintage Omega's hoping that you're going to find yours someday

oh and shortening hairsprings only works if they're flat because we start shortening over coil you'll have to reform the band and that's going be a really complicated it would be best to start with a flat hairspring of suitable size or basically get the vibrate at how hard could that be there is a school up above how expensive could that be? Oh and they probably have a waiting list. Maybe you could drive one of the students to vibrate a spring for you except of course they don't have access to hairsprings anymore than you do. The only hairsprings they have probably now are the ones for the students watch. At one time they went ahead three sizes hairsprings available for the various calibers they were working on a learning on and nothing else.

 

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13 minutes ago, RichardHarris123 said:

These days having a  student or any unrelated young person in your car is probably frowned upon

The problem with dictation software is goofy wording of speech. It's either goofy wording or no wording at all or basically take it or leave it

but a bushy change the wording you can kidnap a students or hire somebody to kidnap the students and Walter Raddatz steal the vibrating tool probably there's laws in Switzerland their frowned on. Although in the past with it used to publish the newsletter where is in the newsletter they would have the special projects that students were working on can't quite remember what is called there was an exams course above the basic course and students would do special projects like possibly vibrating hairspring although that would be pretty basic so I'm not even sure it would qualify as a special project maybe something to get you warmed up. Astronomer by the thinkers like one PDF the newsletter in existence and all the rest are physical. Don't even think they have any of them on their websites they probably don't do that anymore now that the school is too big and too diverse. So a lot of times in the special projects people would make stuff make a lot a replacement parts restore watches and of course vibrated hairspring

 

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55 minutes ago, JohnR725 said:

So we've covered this all before of what you need is the hairspring pins, the collet's of the right size unless a course you can save yours we have to somehow get the pin out. Possibility of the stud although you should build the salvage the one you have. Of course a vibrating toward be nice but it is a pain in the ass to learn how to use the things they do need some practice hairsprings balance wheels etc. to practice on because it's not instantaneous skill set learn. 

👍i shall say no more 😆

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16 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

Then we have covered hairspring vibrating before quite a bit need a hairspring of the right CGS characteristics. Then supposedly in one of our prominent members keeps telling us you can vibrate hairspring without a vibrating tool but as of yet he has published an article on how to do were all looking forward to that or not. It

Might that be Nucejoe ? Hes the only other besides me that has hairspring fascination that i know of  Come on prominent member Joe , spill the beans matey, i have a candidate for a raw hairspring acquisition come vibrating experiment 🙂

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54 minutes ago, Neverenoughwatches said:

Might that be Nucejoe ? Hes the only other besides me that has hairspring fascination that i know of  Come on prominent member Joe , spill the beans matey, i have a candidate for a raw hairspring acquisition come vibrating experiment 🙂

 I as well…I do recall an illustration or two in one of the dusty books the elders seem to eschew what showed a brave soul vibrating a hairspring with a pocket watch. Technically possible I suppose…I’m away but will try to find later. It was a brave chap for certain…

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47 minutes ago, rehajm said:

 I as well…I do recall an illustration or two in one of the dusty books the elders seem to eschew what showed a brave soul vibrating a hairspring with a pocket watch. Technically possible I suppose…I’m away but will try to find later. It was a brave chap for certain…

I think that was a common process, same principle as a vibrating tool except you have the convenience of a purpose made frame with the genuine article.  I do have a Luthy tool and have used it twice, its great fun 😆

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20 hours ago, mikepilk said:

It's nearly impossible to find complete balances for these old Omega's. I have two 26.5 T3's awaiting hairsprings. 

With an overcoil, nigh on impossible I'd say. But if you do perfect the technique, could you knock my off a couple for my T3's please 😀

Of course! I'll get straight back to you 😉

Thanks everyone! I feel a lot older and wiser now.

I shall look upon my problem as a long-term project. There must be thousands of watches out there that are just lacking a functional hairspring. Once I work out how to do it I'm gonna be rich!

John, I did tell my friend the bad news last night in the pub. He took it surprisingly well. I think he might be in the denial stage...

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Hi @Bluescrew,

Actually, vibrating hairspring without vibrating tool is comparable with watching TV without armchair. It is more convenient to rest in armchair while watching TV, but it is still possible to do without.

The main problem is where to source hairspring that will be suitable. And, the answer for me is usually in different Soviet and Chinese movements, I have plenty of them gathered to use their stones, screws, hairsprings and whatever will be useful. The hairsprings that seem to look suitable, have to be tested with the balance wheel. Usually the collet doesn’t fit to the place on the staff, but small ball of Rodico helps to attach the collet or the end of the bare spring to the balance for the coarse test, which will determine if the hairspring is proper for the balance wheel The idea is to find hairspring that gives little lower frequency, so shortening will bring the frequency to normal. BUT, at least 10 coils must remain on the spring – shortening it more leads to bad isochronism.

Then, if spring passes the test, it’s collet may be replaced with the original one, or reamed in order to fit to the staff. Then, hairspring on it’s new place and balance is vibrated to find the correct length of the spring, then the remain cut and the overcoil formed. For the vibration I only need a big watch with the same BPH ticking loudly so I can hear it clearly, just like metronome.

Look here, I have showed restoration of a pritty battered Omega 265 movement, which I believe has similar hairspring as 27.3

I have replacet it's hairspring with one from Poljot 2609.2H, as I remember

Edited by nevenbekriev
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1 hour ago, Bluescrew said:

shall look upon my problem as a long-term project. There must be thousands of watches out there that are just lacking a functional hairspring. Once I work out how to do it I'm gonna be rich!

John, I did tell my friend the bad news last night in the pub. He took it surprisingly well. I think he might be in the denial stage...

I get into trouble if i mention British precision springs, so i wont mention them 😔.  Last time i looked the forum had quite a few thousand members, if we all chip in a fiver we can set up our own hairspring making company. How hard can it be ? 😆

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1 hour ago, Bluescrew said:

There must be thousands of watches out there that are just lacking a functional hairspring. Once I work out how to do it I'm gonna be rich!

 A problem you will have is sourcing raw hairsprings. Plus an Omega spring is expectedly high grade, I guess grade No one or two, not sure, so help please @nickelsilver  .

Next you may look into Chinese ones,  there good luck finding someone who knows what they r selling. 

You might match any grade spring with the balance you got then it  keeps good time but Omega isn't just good. 

 

Omega 

Where gold more than glitters.🧐

 

Rgds

 

 

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34 minutes ago, nevenbekriev said:

Hi @Bluescrew,

Actually, vibrating hairspring without vibrating tool is comparable with watching TV without armchair. It is more convenient to rest in armchair while watching TV, but it is still possible to do without.

The main problem is where to source hairspring that will be suitable. And, the answer for me is usually in different Soviet and Chinese movements, I have plenty of them gathered to use their stones, screws, hairsprings and whatever will be useful. The hairsprings that seem to look suitable, have to be tested with the balance wheel. Usually the collet doesn’t fit to the place on the staff, but small ball of Rodico helps to attach the collet or the end of the bare spring to the balance for the coarse test, which will determine if the hairspring is proper for the balance wheel The idea is to find hairspring that gives little lower frequency, so shortening will bring the frequency to normal. BUT, at least 10 coils must remain on the spring – shortening it more leads to bad isochronism.

Then, if spring passes the test, it’s collet may be replaced with the original one, or reamed in order to fit to the staff. Then, hairspring on it’s new place and balance is vibrated to find the correct length of the spring, then the remain cut and the overcoil formed. For the vibration I only need a big watch with the same BPH ticking loudly so I can hear it clearly, just like metronome.

Look here, I have showed restoration of a pritty battered Omega 265 movement, which I believe has similar hairspring as 27.3

I have replacet it's hairspring with one from Poljot 2609.2H, as I remember

Hi nevenbekriev

Thanks for the helpful advice, I will study your restoration closely as soon as I get the chance. It's great to know it can be done. My friend only wants his watch to tick again and keep time within a few minutes a day and he isn't interested in what is inside the case. If he wanted a high grade repair he wouldn't have let me loose on it!

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Not sure if it was clear but was under the impression this is a steel spring? In that case there are grades, but it's more about the number of coils and their spacing really. If alloy then I doubt Omega used less than Nivarox 1 or equivalent,  but most of the time you can get a grade 2 or even 3 to rate within spec with some work.

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3 minutes ago, nickelsilver said:

Not sure if it was clear but was under the impression this is a steel spring? In that case there are grades, but it's more about the number of coils and their spacing really. If alloy then I doubt Omega used less than Nivarox 1 or equivalent,  but most of the time you can get a grade 2 or even 3 to rate within spec with some work.

It is a steel spring, but I'd rather replace it with a newer non-steel spring that is easier to adjust without breaking.

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6 hours ago, Neverenoughwatches said:

Might that be Nucejoe ? Hes the only other besides me that has hairspring fascination that i know of  Come on prominent member Joe , spill the beans matey, i have a candidate for a raw hairspring acquisition come vibrating experiment

As far as hairspring vibrating goes there several people on the group of gone the schools who know the proper way to vibrated hairspring.

Then we have Nucejoe That claims basically everything with hairsprings are easy and that you can vibrate it without a vibrating tool. In other words you put in the watch to run the watch thoughts isn't going to all the details. So for instance in your start with a raw hairspring you wouldn't be anywhere near the proper place for the regulator pins or the starter anything else he can make a wild guess and just temporary pin it but you need a different timing machine that is the standard timing machine won't bill of time that far out. Says major at the physically look at it and see how slow you're going. But Indiana idea of the hairspring it was close that would be a lot easier.

Oh and then he did take it to a new level. He reached out to one of the hairspring company is and he wanted to get a specific size because it a whole bunch of watches and I found it hysterically amusing because of course they think you're a serious customer purchasing a hairspring for specific watch etc. etc. which is true but that means that will blot of technical specifications that you would have no knowledge of because he didn't actually manufacture the watch. You do a search somewhere in the universe we've discussed this so verse several weeks of time I go back and forth and I finally agree on and surprisingly the price is way too expensive.

 

2 hours ago, Bluescrew said:

It is a steel spring, but I'd rather replace it with a newer non-steel spring that is easier to adjust without breaking.

All hairsprings have the unfortunate characteristic of breaking. They just the and ribbons of metal and classically people who are careful and even if you are careful things happen. So classically get bent at the stud and a lot of times the regulator pins and the having a really bad day I can get bent all over the place.

Then end up with all kinds of characteristics of the hairsprings. Like I always worry about Omega hairsprings is a tend to be very very soft and their very easy at least for my memory when I started out of bad things happening and I'm sure they were all not steel Springs. So basically you have to be careful with all your hairsprings and if you going to learn the vibrate you in the a lot of Springs to play with because it takes time and effort to learn how to manipulate hairsprings.

2 hours ago, nickelsilver said:

Not sure if it was clear but was under the impression this is a steel spring? In that case there are grades, but it's more about the number of coils and their spacing really. If alloy then I doubt Omega used less than Nivarox 1 or equivalent,  but most of the time you can get a grade 2 or even 3 to rate within spec with some work.

Vintage Omega with steel spring.

Vintage and hair Springs is interesting American watch companies typically had three types of hairsprings labeled week medium and strong. Corresponds basically the way to the balance wheel this is why sometimes you find watches were somebody swapped the wrong grade and your watch what you have way too many timing screws or way too little screws.

So the real question is can we take a vintage steel spring and replace it with a modern alloys spring especially some of those that are really soft and really not designed to carry a balance wheel this heavy?

Oh minor update for those not paying attention hairsprings what are they used for? Yes that seem silly their part of the timing requirement of the balance wheel but there a spring and they do have another characteristic extremely important for the functionality of the watch. Namely the mainspring gives the balance wheel a kick and the hairspring returns the balance wheel for the cycle to begin. They have to have the right characteristic of the hairspring to have the energy to move your balance wheel. So there's a little more to it than just fighting it hairspring to vibrate with their balance wheel.

4 hours ago, Bluescrew said:

I shall look upon my problem as a long-term project. There must be thousands of watches out there that are just lacking a functional hairspring. Once I work out how to do it I'm gonna be rich!

John, I did tell my friend the bad news last night in the pub. He took it surprisingly well. I think he might be in the denial stage..

Well for your business plan if you went to the hairspring companies and said I would like some CGS hairsprings not vibrated and if you restrict your sizes to suitable for wristwatches up to whatever how many hairsprings would you really need? Of course you still don't need the hairspring collet's and the hairspring pins you probably have to have those custom manufactured.

Now before you go back to hairspring vibrating at least you learned a lesson hopefully it's one of the things that often come up and introductions were people are told don't start on anything that has value to anybody as accidents can happen. Honestly it wasn't my fault the cat jumped on the bench and watch is now on the floor too bad yes those getting things happen I'm sure it's wasn't your fault but. It is actually quite amazing if you tell people you know how to repair a watch or even think you know how to repair a watch all this and watches start materializing is nobody knows where to get the watches fixed or at least that's what they claim. The reality may be they just don't want to pay for the watch repair and they're hoping that you'll do it for next to nothing.

Okay let's go looking for things yes there are other ways to do this like for instance vintage timing machine makes use of a standard principle for vibrating hairsprings

image.png.ce26efc78032d12171529aaf761a649a.png

Notice the reference to hairspring vibrator is basically part of the tool question for which in the image you probably won't builder grass down at all. This is an early type of timing machine right from the basically the very beginning ended up with two types the drum type like this and those the paper came out. The drum type eventually goes away it has the annoying habit like this machine for instance the place your watch on the machine you move the shifting lever all the way one side you release and the mechanism with a threaded mechanism pulls the print head back printing across the drum as it spinning which means you can't see what's going on its way through. On the other hand you can be extremely far out of timekeeping way beyond what a paper tape machine does and the line can wrap around the drum quite a bit so it does have some minor damages

Okay now the actor crash course on types of timing machines how exactly does is vibrated hairspring? Your hairspring is placed on your balance wheel pin down the collet and you hold it with the tweezers someplace your wild guess of where you should be. Although you do have to put the tweezers in first and then grab the hairspring. Tweezers go into a oversized rubber grommet on one end and the balance wheel just touches the microphone. So with a puff of air as your balance wheel oscillates back and forth it will lift up on one of the swings and it looked On the microphone. This is a classic method of vibrated hairsprings not just with timing machines like this I believe Greiner makes a very exotic machine that does this.

Then think overall they swear you can send your balance away and I remember some students we sent one of mine away and it came back with brand-new hairspring. So yes we have a business model here is needy at your hair Springs and also looks like the persons doing balance staffs and balance jewels all of which are worthy things to do. Except of course getting the balance staffs can be a challenge especially for vintage which major going to probably have to make those and the balance jewels those will be interesting to put all the worthy thing to do if you can win a Powerball lottery and purchase all this stuff because it might not take that much money but none of this is really available anymore

image.png.2211c352f15523da539b7fbb5f9fb60d.png

Search terms you can search for hairspring vibrating or just vibrating it should work or random letters like CGS see what pops up a business will pop up

A little white reading to get you started although I don't seal the hairspring vibrating old choices?

So search for CGS I'm not going give you anymore links to the discussions because there's lots of them lots and lots of them and you should scan through all of them now keep you busy for a few hours. As I said vibrating or vibrating tools should get you something

Then they go out onto the Internet user favorite search engine and frustrations. Often times which are going to find our people in a classroom situation writing a blog about their experiences

But you might find things like this

Or you might even find another discussion group imagine that other people who need hairsprings

https://mb.nawcc.org/threads/watch-timing-machines-and-hairspring-vibrating-tool-questions.109309/

Then whatever you do whatever exciting things you find remember to come back to the group and show us. It may make it easier for somebody else need to hairspring if we have relevant information in one place rather than scattered all over the universe.

Then here's an example of the students in school learning To vibrator hairspring

http://www.bobinchak.com/watchmaking/2017/4/26/hairspring-week-vibrating-the-hairspring

Then the students the schools at least now have it easy they're only doing one hairspring for one size they don't have to do multiple hairsprings. Not good do what you do which is figure out what hairspring you need to have unless you just lucky and guess right. Or somewhere out there I found a video of a Swiss school I teach a two-year program they make a watch all by hand supposedly. Although in the background you can see CNC equipment they're going to obviously work in a modern factory. But when they get to the final hairspring vibrating they don't they use a Greiner vibrating machine.

Then I'm repeating from discussions we've had before you go to your favorite search engine search for hairspring vibrating and I find looking at the pictures speeds things up considerably especially if you know what you're looking for like this this will keep you busy but it's gross overkill for one hairspring

https://watchmaking.weebly.com/hairspring-vibrating-tool.html

Who will note that I'm doing quick search and I'm not going to watch the entire video but I'm sure it's a disappoint some be don't actually need a vibrating tool perhaps

 

 

Then maybe a light reading is in order. Scroll down until you get to Joseph School of Watch Making And download the entire book. Plus it does anything else interesting on the website download that while you're there as there is other interesting stuff. But you'll notice in the Bulova textbook they have hairspring vibrating and do I see how to make it over coil looks like it's in there to

https://www.mybulova.com/vintage-bulova-catalogs

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, nevenbekriev said:

Hi @Bluescrew,

Actually, vibrating hairspring without vibrating tool is comparable with watching TV without armchair. It is more convenient to rest in armchair while watching TV, but it is still possible to do without.

The main problem is where to source hairspring that will be suitable. And, the answer for me is usually in different Soviet and Chinese movements, I have plenty of them gathered to use their stones, screws, hairsprings and whatever will be useful. The hairsprings that seem to look suitable, have to be tested with the balance wheel. Usually the collet doesn’t fit to the place on the staff, but small ball of Rodico helps to attach the collet or the end of the bare spring to the balance for the coarse test, which will determine if the hairspring is proper for the balance wheel The idea is to find hairspring that gives little lower frequency, so shortening will bring the frequency to normal. BUT, at least 10 coils must remain on the spring – shortening it more leads to bad isochronism.

Then, if spring passes the test, it’s collet may be replaced with the original one, or reamed in order to fit to the staff. Then, hairspring on it’s new place and balance is vibrated to find the correct length of the spring, then the remain cut and the overcoil formed. For the vibration I only need a big watch with the same BPH ticking loudly so I can hear it clearly, just like metronome.

Look here, I have showed restoration of a pritty battered Omega 265 movement, which I believe has similar hairspring as 27.3

I have replacet it's hairspring with one from Poljot 2609.2H, as I remember

Interesting nev, the uk has a supplier of hairsprings, a very well known old company taken over sometime in the 80s. These are made mainly for aircraft instruments, I'd hope they might be useful but the materials they are made from are different to the nickel iron types for watches.They include Beryllium copper, cadmium copper,phosphor bronze and stainless steel. I wondered if the Beryllium or stainless might be suitable. 

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Bronze hairsprings are plenty available (at least in Germany) in all grades. As mentioned, suitable for ultra cheap watches only.

9 hours ago, Neverenoughwatches said:

the uk has a supplier of hairsprings ...

I am still waiting for my order, paid in 07/2023 😬

Frank

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