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  1. #1

    Default Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine

    is it difficult ? I can imagine milling a bridge and the plate with a sherline mill but I lacked the experience whether is it feasible and the problems one might faced. I am not a machinery guy, I can repair watches and make some parts on a watchmaker's lathe but never attempted to make one whole complete watch before.

    What about gear cutting, where can one get the wheel and pinion cutters ?

    You might already know I lacked the machinery skills necessary but I am very tempted to get the sherline lathe and micro mill to do some parts and eventually a watch. The idea of making a watch has been running in my mind for years. I just unsure if I should go ahead and make the purchase for the sherline lathe and mill package as it is cheaper to buy the whole lot then to buy them separately.

    How long does it take for one who is just below competent to make a watch from a sherline lathe and mill ? I know if I spent enough time on the machines everyday , my proficiency will increase and hence quality of work. But a rough gauge assuming a normal person who spent 2 hours on the machines a day, how many years ?

    I can imagine it is also a lot faster with the CnC investment, I am a computer guy. I can program and design on 3d programs like rhino3d, autocad. But apparently I lacked the experience and the potential "obstacles" I might faced. What are the things I should know before I make the purchase ? What are the things I should know before I decide to think of making a watch ?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: USforest)

    If you undertake this endeavor please take some time to plan it through and have a nice high-res video camera close. I suspect you will have made one of the most popular videos relating to watches, ever.
    Thank You. AL M. (EverydayCat) - Plano,TX
    "A man, like a watch, is to be valued for his manner of going." - William Penn

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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: EverydayCat)

    It sounds like George Daniels' 'Watchmaking' would be a good recommendation for you. I also came across this page here http://www.csparks.com/watchmaking/ , and then there is this guy http://web.ticino.com/dcorson/watch/index.html of course. So there's at least four of you...

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    Registered user. gerene's Avatar
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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: gruesome)

    There is also this interesting website... http://watchmaking.weebly.com/index.html

  5. #5

    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: USforest)

    Op's questions:

    1. is it difficult ?

    Not for da Tom Prescher or Eva Leuba or Aniceto Pita or someone with da similar skill, talent, education, resources, dedication, etc.

    2. What about gear cutting, where can one get the wheel and pinion cutters ?

    These and other expendables are available - new - from da various European industry supplier. Some people make their own. Da index wheels and de engine are elemental to da wheel cutting.

    3. How long does it take for one who is just below competent to make a watch from a sherline lathe and mill ?

    stiff personally doesn't know of da verified occurence of da "watch" made solely from da "sherline lathe and mill". With da industry standard maschines there are several estimates in da various "independent horology" resources and these are wide ranging - so dis is open for da discussion and some debate. Da design phase and prototyping for da new calibre could easily consume a thousand of da professional man hours.

    4. But a rough gauge assuming a normal person who spent 2 hours on the machines a day, how many years ?

    Without da proper instruction, hours are much less meaningful.

    5. What are the things I should know before I make the purchase ?

    You are bolding going where few have before and even fewer have successfully returned from.

    6. What are the things I should know before I decide to think of making a watch ?

    A. Before da advent of astrophysics, horology was just about da most challenging scientific discipline.

    B. An "independent horologer" - personally. These are some of da kindest and most insightful people you will ever meet. They will no doubt point out various educational opportunities in da micro mechanics fabrication for you to consider.

    With da proper maschines and training dis ist quite feasible!

    sm iiH!

  6. #6

    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: USforest)

    oops
    Last edited by stiff muckler; 09-16-2011 at 08:49 AM. Reason: da dreaded double post

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: USforest)

    Quote Originally Posted by USforest View Post
    is it difficult ? I can imagine milling a bridge and the plate with a sherline mill but I lacked the experience whether is it feasible and the problems one might faced. I am not a machinery guy, I can repair watches and make some parts on a watchmaker's lathe but never attempted to make one whole complete watch before.

    What about gear cutting, where can one get the wheel and pinion cutters ?

    You might already know I lacked the machinery skills necessary but I am very tempted to get the sherline lathe and micro mill to do some parts and eventually a watch. The idea of making a watch has been running in my mind for years. I just unsure if I should go ahead and make the purchase for the sherline lathe and mill package as it is cheaper to buy the whole lot then to buy them separately.

    How long does it take for one who is just below competent to make a watch from a sherline lathe and mill ? I know if I spent enough time on the machines everyday , my proficiency will increase and hence quality of work. But a rough gauge assuming a normal person who spent 2 hours on the machines a day, how many years ?

    I can imagine it is also a lot faster with the CnC investment, I am a computer guy. I can program and design on 3d programs like rhino3d, autocad. But apparently I lacked the experience and the potential "obstacles" I might faced. What are the things I should know before I make the purchase ? What are the things I should know before I decide to think of making a watch ?
    USforest Name

    Many years ago I had the same ambition. I started out by reading Horological publications on making parts using traditional watchmaking methods as suggested in these publications. From this point I purchased a watchmakers Lathe with a complete set of attachments for machining etc. (I now have three complete sets in my collection)
    While a number of people have successfully used this equipment to build a complete watch as outline in publications, I personally had skill related issues in its use . While I can successfully use the equipment , I simply do not have the natural skills required to be efficient with it. Its not the equipments fault, it is my fault. (What do you do) With further research, I found that in the manufacturing process parts were not made this way, but instead were/are machined in the same manner everything else is machined. To make a long story short, I now machine all parts on machine type tools such as a Sherline Lathe and Mill.
    I personally find that this equipment requires far less developed skill but requires far more tooling.
    To be successful, I would suggest you determine what system will adapt to your natural God given skills rather than you adapt to a particular system.
    Unfortunately in Horological circles, many will tell you there is only one way to do things. If your able to look beyond these opinions, I feel you will have a better shot of achieving what you wish to achieve.

    You will find little if any published material on the use of Sherline equipment on the construction of watches. One obvious reason is that traditional published methods of watch making were published before this equipment was available. This equipment was not designed to be used in the same manner as watchmaking equipment, but in the same manner as horological parts were/are are manufactured. As such, traditional published watchmaking methods WILL NOT BE efficient if practiced on this equipment.

    Can a watch movement be efficiently machined on this equipment ? Absolutely without issues. There are many Micro machining examples by both hobbyist and industry that far exceed watch requirements using this equipment.

    Some horological examples are as follows.

    The first attached photo shows a center wheel that was cut and crossed on a Sherline Mill using a Sherline Rotary Table. In addition, the cutter used was also machined on the Mill. Of course commercial cutters can also be used such as PP. Thornton.

    http://www.ppthornton.com/

    Another example would be machining an escape wheel with a Mill mounted Microscope.

    http://mb.nawcc.org/showthread.php?t...g+escape+wheel



    In addition to parts machining, much detail work can also be machined such as engraving with basic setups. An example is shown in the second photo along with the following link.

    http://mb.nawcc.org/showthread.php?t...ibration+marks



    In regard to purchasing equipment, I would suggest you find out what equipment works best for you as an individual as mentioned. With that being said, if you wish to use Sherline equipment I would suggest you purchase the lathe first and determine if machining parts is a method that works for you. Purchasing to much equipment that you are not familiar with can be overwhelming when your starting out.

    Another possibility depending on where your located, would be the NAWCC workshops. Hands on methods of machining watch parts and other parts are covered in WS-117, WS-119 and WS-121 with the use of Sherline equipment supplied by the school.

    Jerry Kieffer
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSCN2948.jpg   DSCN3436.jpg  
    Last edited by harold bain; 09-16-2011 at 05:53 PM. Reason: liven up links

  8. #8
    Registered user. Raynerd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: Jerry Kieffer)

    Jerry, exactly how did you grind up the cutter profile?
    Chris
    www.raynerd.co.uk - So long and thanks for all the fish.

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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: Raynerd)

    Quote Originally Posted by Horology101 View Post
    Jerry, exactly how did you grind up the cutter profile?
    Chris
    Chris
    The Wheel cutter was not ground. It was machined from A-2 steel on the Mill and then hardened and tempered. The large radius was machined with a .250" endmill and the cutting radius with a .030" endmill. With a little practice it is no more than a 20 minute procedure and the design allows it to be sharpened razor sharp quickly and easily before each use.

    In this case the existing tooth profile was measure under Optics for replacement. Readily available endmills allowed the exact profile to be easily and accurately duplicated by machining at a fraction of the cost of a commercial cutter that was not available for this profile.

    Jerry Kieffer

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    Registered User Kevin W.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: Jerry Kieffer)

    I saw a watch that was supposedly all made by a Taig lathe and mill, if i remember right.Google it and likely can be found again.
    It would take a lot of skill to do such a thing.
    One clock at a time. Kevin West
    http://www.global-horology.com/GHMB/

  11. #11

    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: Jerry Kieffer)

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Kieffer View Post
    Chris
    The Wheel cutter was not ground. It was machined from A-2 steel on the Mill and then hardened and tempered. The large radius was machined with a .250" endmill and the cutting radius with a .030" endmill. With a little practice it is no more than a 20 minute procedure and the design allows it to be sharpened razor sharp quickly and easily before each use.

    In this case the existing tooth profile was measure under Optics for replacement. Readily available endmills allowed the exact profile to be easily and accurately duplicated by machining at a fraction of the cost of a commercial cutter that was not available for this profile.

    Jerry Kieffer
    Hi Jerry, can a normal wheel cutter for used on watchmaking lathe be used on a sherline lathe ? I assumed a wheel cutter holder must be make to fit the watchwheel cutter onto the sherline lathe.

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    Default Re: Making a watch out of a sherline lathe and mill machine (RE: USforest)

    Quote Originally Posted by USforest View Post
    Hi Jerry, can a normal wheel cutter for used on watchmaking lathe be used on a sherline lathe ? I assumed a wheel cutter holder must be make to fit the watchwheel cutter onto the sherline lathe.
    Name??

    Sherline makes the largest selection of smaller Horological Arbors in 10mm, 8mm and MT for common sized Wheel and pinion cutters that I am aware of. However because of the wide range of cutter sizes manufactured over the years, you will in many cases need to make your own regardless of the type of equipment used. Personally, when using Sherline equipment I prefer MT (morse Taper) arbor mounting over 8mm with both options being readily available. I find the MT option to be more rigid, repeatable and more accurate.

    The standard spindle on the Sherline Lathe and Mill are identical making accurate accessory transfer quick easy and practical. This is one major advantage of these machines not normally found on this size equipment.

    Jerry Kieffer

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