• The NAWCC Museum and Library & Research Center will reopen starting Wednesday, January 6, 2021 as per Governor Wolf's reopening mandate.

Removing a broken regulator screw.

schweige

Registered User
NAWCC Member
Jan 14, 2005
154
0
0
I am a hobbyist that usually works on wristwatches, and I am making my first attempt at cleaning and repairing a pocket watch.
I picked up a Lorraine pocketwatch at the recent NAWCC regional in San Diego. It has a Gallet 17 jewel, 3 adjustments movement that runs with very low amplitude. I am preparing to clean it and discovered that the head end of the regulator screw in the swan's neck regulator (i hope I have the lingo correct) is broken off. Amazingly the only other pocket watch I happen to have in my collection is an old beat up Gallet 17 jewel that was given to me by a relative. It has a mangled hairspring and probably some other problems, but it has an intact screw in its regulator. I would like to swap the regulator screw to the serviceable watch, but need advice as to how to remove the broken screw.
I am unable to grip it with my forceps with enough force to be able to turn the screw out. The gap where the screw is accessible is too small to get into with any of my pliers. I have sonicated it in heptane in the hopes that it may jiggle it's way out a bit, but it didn't move. The swans neck and the screw are both steel so alum is not a possibility. Does anyone have a trick to grip the screw in order to back it out of the hole?
Hopefully if I can get it out, the screw from the parts watch is the right size to replace the broken one.
Thanks in advance for any help.

Ed Schweiger
 

Attachments

Smudgy

Registered User
May 20, 2003
2,874
24
38
Country
Region
If you have an old pair of pliers that you would be willing to sacrifice I would suggest grinding the ends down enough to be able to grasp the screw.
 

rrwatch

Registered User
Gibbs Literary Award
NAWCC Fellow
NAWCC Member
Sep 4, 2000
1,456
349
83
74
Pooler, GA USA
www.antiquewatchmaker.com
Country
Region
Ed,
It appears that you have some length of the micrometer screw protruding on the inside of the swan neck spring. If you can get some thin nose pliers or a small pin vise around those threads you may be able to back the screw out enough to remove it.
 

schweige

Registered User
NAWCC Member
Jan 14, 2005
154
0
0
Thanks for the help everyone.
Dave, I didn't state it in the original message but the swans neck is broken in the parts watch.
rrwatch, that's exactly right. That little bit is the part I need to get a hold of in order to turn it out.
Smudgy I'll probably end up trying your suggestion with the ground down pliers.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone,

Ed Schweiger
 

Skutt50

Registered User
Mar 14, 2008
3,650
164
63
Gothenburg
Country
If the screw do not want to move you can try to either heat it slightly or freeze it before trying the removal. I have succeeded removing parts with freeze spray and some times heat.
 

fuzzuki

Registered User
Dec 11, 2001
367
1
0
Here's how it's coming out.
Soak that part in WD40 for a day.
Get a very small pin vise. A small pin vise used to remove balance screws.

Gently push the "goose neck" spring to the side as you grip the long end of the broken screw.
Then simply turn the screw out.

The goose neck may get bent a little, but it should bend right back.
It's made out of spring steel.