Over my head in deep water?

Buffomarinus

Registered User
Mar 7, 2020
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Far North Queensland, Australia
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G'Day,

A local mate just disturb my obsession with English fusee pocket watches by leaving this seemingly complex movement on my work bench (see attached images).

I would guess that it is some sort of Swiss "chronometer." Other than that, I don't have a clue.

No problem removing it from its rather nice silver case which, by the way, would make a fine home for one of my "orphans." The hands and dial were straight forward and by the book. Pulling the stem was simple. As for the "innards," well, that's a whole 'nother story. Where do I start?? How do I let down the mainspring:???:

What exactly is this beast? Is there a detailed source of info somewhere on the WEB which might enlighten my search and free me from my ignorance? Or, am I truly over my amateur head with a movement of this type?

Any and all help and suggestions appreciated.

Buffo

Far North Queensland, Aussie

Case.jpg Dial.jpg Hall marks.jpg Innards2.jpg Innards3.jpg The innards.jpg Under the dial.jpg
 

gmorse

NAWCC Member
Jan 7, 2011
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Hi Rob,

It's a chronograph, which has a sweep centre seconds hand able to be started, stopped and returned to zero, all without affecting the running of the main movement. There's a running seconds at VI and a minute register, (minute counter which clicks over each minute while the chrono is running), at XII.

I can see at least one broken spring, and the likelihood of finding a suitable spare part is small, these usually have to be made from scratch.

The innards.jpg

I think it's actuated by the pendant, judging by the position of the spring and post in the green circle. Successive pushes will start, stop and reset. The barrel click is under the red arrow. Time setting is by the pull-out lever which engages with the rocking bar.

Under the dial.jpg

I think there are sufficient problems for you to politely decline this one if you want to keep your mate as a friend! In the UK this would cost several hundred pounds to fix.

Regards,

Graham
 

gmorse

NAWCC Member
Jan 7, 2011
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Hi Rob,

I should have added that if it was your own watch, it would be a good learning experience, but as it isn't, and because of its generally poor state and modest quality, you shouldn't touch it; whether there's someone else in FNQ or any other state who's competent and willing to repair this I can't say, although Richard Watkins lives in Tasmania, and he's an expert on these things.

Regards,

Graham
 

Buffomarinus

Registered User
Mar 7, 2020
153
79
28
71
Far North Queensland, Australia
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" I should have added that if it was your own watch, it would be a good learning experience."

G'Day Graham,

As always, thanks for your excellent response to my quandary.

The mate who dropped it in my hands more or less turned it over to me to do as I please... I think! I'll have to get back to him and see if this is still the case. :)

Thanks for suggesting Richard Watkins as a source of info on the movement. I've been in contact with Richard in the past and found him to be an amazing open source of watch repair info. and historic publications on the subject.

Many thanks,

Rob

FNQ,Au

Beer and pocket watch.jpg
 

Buffomarinus

Registered User
Mar 7, 2020
153
79
28
71
Far North Queensland, Australia
Country
G'Day Richard,

Hey, thanks for the enlightening response to my email.

I did manage to take the old dear to pieces, clean, reassemble and lubricate it. Luckily I photographed each step, so reassembly wasn't fraught with any major difficulties.

Sadly the movement is none the better off for my diligence. The balance cock had been heavily "butchered " in an attempt to get the old thing to run properly. My interest soon faded after struggling to compensate for someone else's severe mucking about. It is now back in the hands of its owner where it will run, but not with much accuracy.

I think I'll stick with pre-19th century English fusee movements and steer well clear of these complex Swiss "mongrels" in the future.
 
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