Gruen 335 keyless work

Discussion in 'Watch Repair' started by Roy Horrorlogic, Oct 12, 2018 at 5:02 AM.

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  1. Roy Horrorlogic

    Roy Horrorlogic Registered User
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    Mar 7, 2017
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    I have had this watch in partially dis-assembled form for years. I've just cleaned and relubricated and the movement runs very well. However even after I changed the clutch spring for a slightly weaker equivalent the clutch doesn't engage the intermediate wheel in the setting position. The Ranfft pic is taken in the winding position and is of modest resolution so I'm unable to make a comparison of relative clutch and lever wear - I've seen much worse still functioning. I'd appreciate an informed opinion. I'm guessing that replacement parts for this movement are all but unobtainable.
    And on that, I believe this is a US-built movement? I have other Gruens with AS based movements but I'm assuming also that there is no AS equivalent to the 335 for spares donation? Snap below.
    Roy

    Gruen-335-KW-120022.jpg
     
  2. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    Wow, some pretty ugly stuff going on there... The tooth repair on the hour transmission Wheel is something else.

    The Power of the spring shouldn't matter in this case. There are hard Contacts all through the setting lever to the yoke and the clutch Wheel. It looks like the pivoting distance of the acting Surface of the setting lever is too short. Are you sure that it's an original part? The wear around it suggests otherwise. I've seem botch jobs where someone had transplanted a setting lever that was "Close enough" that did some real damage.

    Look up some Pictures of the proper part and compare both setting lever and yoke. And I would also recommend getting rid of the rust on those parts, in particular on working Surfaces.

    Best regards
    Karl
     
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  3. Roy Horrorlogic

    Roy Horrorlogic Registered User
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    Thanks Karl
    yes that tooth is "interesting". I've found that tooth replacement generally is interesting. Usually runs out at about £2500 for one human tooth.
    I have no idea whether these parts have been replaced however the images on Ranfft, as far as it's possible to tell, look pretty identical to me. Do you know
    As for the rust, I thought I'd try to get the watch to set first. Not a lot of point in cleaning the rust off if the watch is not recoverable.
    All of which is academic if replacement parts cannot be obtained. I wish I had the tools and skills required to manufacture them.
    Here's a rough comparison with the only decent image I can find, roughly resized etc but not taken perpendicularly.

    comparison-2.jpg
     
  4. Roy Horrorlogic

    Roy Horrorlogic Registered User
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    sorry, duplicate post.
     
  5. Chris Radek

    Chris Radek Registered User
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    Apr 13, 2014
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    Roy I agree with you that your keyless parts all look like the ones in the other photo, and if you've investigated the clutch lever's hole and post for wear, and the set lever screw and its hole, and all the parts for ill-advised filing marks, I think they may be fine. (Usually when someone mistakenly thinks metal swells with age, they are sloppy enough at filing to leave good evidence of their misdeeds...) The clutch is a little worn but I don't think a new one would fix your troubles. I think you need to expand your problem search. Clearly the minute wheel has been damaged and repaired, but also I notice that its depthing with the cannon pinion is way too loose, barely meshing at all, but the depthing with the intermediate wheel is too tight, and maybe it even binds. What is going on there? Could someone have replaced the minute wheel with a badly fitting part, and then moved the intermediate wheel toward it, causing both problems? Or maybe it's just the intermediate wheel's post that is worn, allowing it to be pushed out of the way of the clutch. Something is weird here and I think you just haven't looked at all the parts with an open mind (or maybe a sinister mind considering what evil may have been done beforehand!) to see the full story yet.
     
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  6. Roy Horrorlogic

    Roy Horrorlogic Registered User
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    Thanks Chris
    Yes, that makes a lot of sense. The minute wheel post actually detached itself and I refitted it. But I'll take a closer look at it as soon as I can and post my conclusions - if any.
     
  7. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

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    Chris, I agree with the depthing! Didn’t see that at first but that’s weird. Is there wear on the intermediate wheel post, Roy? That could be the answer to your whole problem. Maybe someone made a bushing for that post that got lost in cleaning?

    Best regards
    Karl
     
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  8. Roy Horrorlogic

    Roy Horrorlogic Registered User
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    Just got around to taking another look at this. As far as I can see there's no wear that would account for such a big misalignment. Here are some horrible hand held macros that show better detail. Is it possible that the stem is "almost but not quite"? I have bought another incomplete movement (plus four others that I don't need) whose KW looks very clean. Good money after bad?

    G-335-KW-140030.jpg G-335-KW-140031.jpg G-335-KW-140032.jpg
     
  9. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

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    Looking at it from this angle it really looks like the teeth of the clutch wheel are worn pretty square off. A lot of small errors from wear that add up to the problem your are encountering I think.
     

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