watch stops when on its back

Discussion in 'Watch Repair' started by tracker, Oct 8, 2019.

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  1. tracker

    tracker Registered User

    Aug 15, 2007
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    I have a 21 jewel waltham crescent st with an up/down indicator.And recently it will sometimes stop when laid on it's back I know there are several possible reasons for this,but I would like to know the best way to start troubleshooting the problem. Watch is running fine in all other positions. Any ideas?. Thanks.
     
  2. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User
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    Apr 11, 2002
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    I work at the Veritas Tools machine shop.
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    Could be a number of things, a bad pivot on one end of balance wheel, or a bad jewel on one end as well. perhaps others will have more ideas about this.
     
  3. musicguy

    musicguy Moderator
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    Moving thread to watch repair where it will get better exposure.


    Rob
     
  4. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    Could be an end shake problem with something interfering with the balance, lever or wheels in one orientation but not the other.

    Could be cracked jewels or bent or broken pivots.

    To trouble shoot you start with the balance and work your way backwards through the train. Is the balance free in all orientations? If you let the watch unwind and then give the watch a flick of the wrist, does the balance oscillate unhindered in all positions? If so, you need to take the watch apart and check all components for integrity and check all the end shakes and side shakes. If the balance is not free you still need to take at least the balance assembly and escapement out for inspection and repair.

    Regards
    Karl
     
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  5. Tim Fitzgerald

    Tim Fitzgerald Registered User
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    Great advice Karl, short and sweet.
     
  6. doc_fields

    doc_fields Registered User

    Sep 29, 2004
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    Bad cap jewel with wear on the end of the balance pivot? Had one once.....................gary
     
  7. DeweyC

    DeweyC Registered User
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    Karl gave you the outline for the procedure. What I do is:

    Inspect all escapement jewels and the staff especially; under a microscope.
    Ensure escapement functions (lock and slide)
    Remove EW and pallet. Install balance complete. Does it maintain its swing in all positions
    Remove Balance Spring and repeat
    Install pallet bridge and repeat
    Install pallet and spring. Repeat

    As you hit an undesired result, stop and find the fault at that subassembly. Then repeat.

    As you point out, it could be anything and you need a procedure that allows you to find the fault.
     
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  8. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

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    Having a step-by-step procedure that you repeat every time helps you learn what the usual causes are as well as ensuring that you didn't miss anything.

    Usually (and I say that carefully) when a balance swings properly except in one position, that's an indicator that there's something wrong in the balance. When it's DU or DD the end of the staff that is down is often where the problem lies and it's usually a bad jewel or damaged pivot on that end. When it's horizontal, it could be anything but most often it's very worn or bent pivot(s). Sometimes it's the wrong size jewels but that's rare that someone would cannabalize jewels and then put igood ones in their place. It's not unheard of, I had a 16 size elgin with this problem that nearly drove me nuts until I figured out 1 jewel was a different size than the other one.

    Establish and follow the procedure outlined above and you'll find the problem.
     
  9. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User
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    Was the problem found?
     
  10. tracker

    tracker Registered User

    Aug 15, 2007
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    Great advice . I have let the mainspring down and the balance has good movement in all positions.I wonder if it could be dirt? I don't see anything but I have not taken the movement apart yet.After my first post I wound the mainspring put the watch on it" back and it ran down completely without stopping.I have been holding off going further because I have never worked with a movement that has an up/ down indicator .If it stays an intermitant problem should I leave it as it is?Or should I dive in?
     
  11. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    Does the watch stop at the same time every time? If so, it could be interference between the hands as well, or in the motion works.
     
  12. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

    Dec 19, 2011
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    Have you ever serviced a watch before? If not, I'd suggest you learn on a less complicated movement before attempting to service this one. If yes, then I'd say go ahead and service it.

    Pay attention to where the various pieces go.
     

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