Russian Chronometer

Discussion in 'Chronometers' started by CJo, Jul 20, 2019.

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  1. CJo

    CJo Registered User
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    Aug 22, 2005
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    Operator in an Ethanol plant. I train new operator
    southwest Kansas.
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    This belongs to a friend. My problem is that when I wind it up, it won't start on it's own. So I take it out and give the balance a little push, and then it will run till it runs down. Sounds like it is out of beat, but I'm not sure how to put this in beat and was wondering if it was something that I could do easily or not. I need someone to tell me how to put it in beat. Maybe it is a different issue, just not sure. Thanks for your help.

    IMG_3257.JPG IMG_3254.JPG IMG_3255.JPG
     
  2. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    A detent chronometer only has impulse in one direction, so there is no concept of "out of beat." That observation implies that your friend's chronometer has a lever escapement, but the pictures you show do not look much like my lever escapement Russian Marine Chronometer.

    movement.jpg That may be because it was made in the "other" factory. Here is a link to the page on mine. AWCo Web

    If yours is a detent chronometer, the correct behavior is to not start when wound until it is given a twist, usually by a sharp rotation of the box of about a quarter turn. That is the safer way to do the same as pushing on the balance.
     
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  3. CJo

    CJo Registered User
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    Aug 22, 2005
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    Operator in an Ethanol plant. I train new operator
    southwest Kansas.
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    Tom thank you very much for your reply. I have learned something I didn’t know which is awesome. This a detent chronometer. Again, thank you very much.
     
  4. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    I am glad. Learning is what we are all about here. :)
     
  5. pocketsrforwatches

    pocketsrforwatches Registered User
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    I'm no expert on detent chronometers having only recently acquired a Hamilton Model 21. I do believe that it is dangerous to let a detent chorno wind all the way down. Damage can occur to the delicate detent. It should be allowed to run down to where there are several hours left and then "corked" either with actual cork wedges or small strips of folded paper under the balance rim. Some chronos have other means to lock the balance. If I'm not mistaken it looks like there is a pointed arm on your balance cock which would swing over and lock the balance by contacting a balance weight. Someone else with more knowledge than me can verify this.

    Roger
     
  6. Dr. Jon

    Dr. Jon Registered User
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    Yours looks a lot like the typical Russian detent chronometer.

    These are not self starting. They have to be started by swinging the balance but twisting the movement or using something like a fine paint brush to swing the balance/

    It is unlikely to be out of beat but they have be reasonably close to being in beat that is the impulse has to occur near the neutral point of the balance swing.

    If you started the balance and did not hear any ticking sound it may be far enough out of beat that the escapement could not drive it. When it is running under power the escape whee turning should be visible by watching the spokes of the escape wheel and you should hear ticking. It is not the same as that of a lever watch.

    It could also be dirty and gummed enough that the escapement cannot overcome losses and it runs down.

    If you don't know how to work on these you can break some stuff learning. This is not as bad as it would be on other instruments since replacement parts are available but for now I suggest you carefully swing the balance at least 90 degrees let it free and listen for ticking. If it does not tick it has some serious issues.
     

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