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  1. #1

    Default best repair book

    I've worked on some watches and clocks. My skills are ok. I know that I need to improve my diagnostic skills so I can bring more to the table as I work on a wider range of horological problems. Would you please give me the name of what you see as the best and easiest to understand (I like pictures, no I am not a dummy, I just find illustrations easy to follow) watch and clock repair book. Maybe I will need a couple. If so please tell me.

  2. #2
    Registered User richiec's Avatar
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    Default Re: best repair book (By: rjcullis)

    Books by DeCarle and Fried come to mind. DeCarle does both clock and watch repair books.

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    Default Re: best repair book (By: richiec)

    Read my review of "Maintaining and Repairing Mechanical Watches - A Practical Guide" to see if it might be a possible book to help you.
    - Robert

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    Default Re: best repair book (By: robmack)

    I've yet to get them but I hear that Antique Watch Restoring by Archie Perkins is the bees knees. Not the cheapest but described by the best by many of the people whose advice I trust the most on this
    forum. I'm saving up for them at the moment!

  5. #5

    Default Re: best repair book (By: karlmansson)

    I have a pretty good collection of repair books and probably reach for Perkins' books more often than any. Fried and DeCarle are the basics, but Perkins' books are just crammed with useful, practical, easy to understand information.

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    Default Re: best repair book (By: Dave Coatsworth)

    The above are all good recommendations and I have found that not one book covers everything, which can be expected. Depending on your knowledge and talent, you will have to reach for several texts that are either generalized or cover techniques for specific tasks. For example, a couple of references you might want to consider that are beyond basic cleaning are the Joseph Bulova School of Watch Making training manual (60s) and, James L. Hamilton's Timing Manipulations (1950). I consider these two books very useful for learning how to pick up on refinements that make a watch keep time accurately they way they were originally designed.
    Darrah
    Chap. 15, 124, 139, 149, 168

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    Default Re: best repair book (By: darrahg)

    I find Fried not easy to understand, on how he explains things. I have heard the Bulova manual is very good.
    One clock at a time. Kevin West
    http://www.global-horology.com/GHMB/

  8. #8
    Registered user. RJSoftware's Avatar
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    Default Re: best repair book

    Eventually all roads lead to George Daniels Watchmaking. He takes you all the way (pictures and all) for how to make all the parts by hand from stock. ISBN 978-0-85667-704-5.

    De Carle is more thorough than Fried but is less organized than Fried. De Carle drifts all over the place but does cover subject well.

    Fried is more like the general mechanic guy who wants to get the job done. De Carle is in the pursuit of perfection and touches on theory.

    Daniels is a submarine ride loaded with torpedo's in foreign enemy waters. When you get to his level you're ready for war. Notice the genuine title of "Watchmaking". Notice how we refer to watchmaking but really only repair. Quite a different level.

    I'm not to his level and probably won't be ever. I don't have funds/tooling etc. But it's quite interesting seeing someone who does. How they do things. One day maybe my ship/sub will come and I can jump on board with total abandon. Till then...

    Truthfully, I like all of them. They are all interesting in their own way.

    RJ
    Last edited by RJSoftware; 07-13-2017 at 06:44 PM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: best repair book (By: RJSoftware)

    You will need some funds to buy Daniels book. I have it, it is great. A lot of information on a lot of things you will probably ever do but nice to know how it is done.

  10. #10

    Default Re: best repair book (By: richiec)

    As someone who is just starting out, I can give you my perspective. I agree with RJ's assessments of de Carle's book (more thorough and includes more theory) and Fried's (reads like a mechanic's repair manual). I like both, but prefer de Carle's overall. I have one "complaint", however. Some of the figures in his book are completely out of proportion (comically so)! For example, he shows a hand holding balance that is the size of a silver dollar. What makes watch repair so challenging (for me at least) is how small and delicate the the parts are. If a watch was really the size of a dinner plate and constructed of heavier, more robust parts, repairing it would be a lot easier. As a result, you don't really have a true appreciation for just how difficult some jobs are. Ultimately, this is a minor criticism especially since he more than makes up for it in other ways.

    There is a book that no one has mentioned yet, "Repairing Old Clocks and Watches" by Anthony Whiten. This book would probably give a true watchmaker nightmares, and there even a few passages that make even a neophyte like myself shudder. Having said that, the book has a lot of merit. For one, it's hilarious. Whiten has a wonderful sense of humor and I frequently found myself laughing out loud as I read it. The other is something that, as a newbie, I find particularly appealing. For someone just starting out without a complete arsenal of proper tools and such, he has tons of advice for making up tools and techniques to get the job done. While some of these may be less than ideal, they give you a way to jump in, get your hands dirty, and still learn and have fun while your work space is slowly developing.

    Eric

    P.S. Daniels book is on my Amazon wish list!

  11. #11
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    Default Re: best repair book (By: ebrauns)

    I would throw in a good word for Jendritzki's "Swiss Watch Repairer's Manual." It is focused on wrist watches but provides a more modern slant on service and repair. The companion volume on "Watch Adjustment" is wonderful, too.

    For starting out, Fried's "Watch Repairer's Manual" and "Bench Practices..." books are probably the best 2 to own.

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