Why is this hairspring off center?

Discussion in 'Watch Repair' started by Paul Raposo, Apr 17, 2017.

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  1. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    A Tudor cal 59. I've had the the balance out of the movement and took the wheel and spring off the bridge.

    The spring was the correct shape on the balance wheel with the coils evenly spaced. When I put them back on the bridge the spring was still the right shape.

    When I installed the bridge back into the movement the spring bunches up on one side and is spread out on the opposite side. The spring is flat when in the movement and running.

    The pallet fork doesn't sit between the banking pins when the movement is not running, but is off to one side. It starts on the first turn of the crown and runs but loses about 70 to 100 seconds per day dial up.

    I hope these pictures give a clear view of the spring.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  2. Skutt50

    Skutt50 Registered User

    Mar 14, 2008
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    #2 Skutt50, Apr 17, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017
    It sounds like the first half coil of the hairspring is not shaped correctly.

    Remove the balance cock and wheel once more and turn it upside down. The balance should sit straight and you should be able to have it oscillate a few turns in this position. You should be able to see where the mis shape occurs.

    If you can not see the problem you might have to remove the hairspring from the balance and install it in the balance cock. Now the center of the hairspring should rest straight above the jewels. Also try the adjustment arm. The jewel should stay above the center during the full movement of the adjustment arm. Don't forget to verify that the hairspring rests in the middle of the adjustment "pins" during the full movement of the adjustment arm.

    This is most likely linked to the problem with the hairspring. Don't try to correct this untill you have the hairspring sorted out.

    EDIT:
    Having enlarged your last picture it actually looks like the hairspring is not fitted between the adjustment "pins". (It could be the angle and un-sharp picture.)
     
  3. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

    Dec 19, 2011
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    This. The hairspring is not between the pins on the rate adjuster.
     
  4. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    #4 Paul Raposo, Apr 17, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017
    It does appear in the picture that the coil isn't in the index but I can confirm that it is. It's a boot style index that must be turned to create an opening for the spring to slip out and I double checked it before turning the boot to close it.

    I'm wondering if the spring was either pinned too short or was too short to begin with and when the stud is put into the carrier it's pulling the spring and causing the bunching up.
     
  5. richiec

    richiec Registered User

    Feb 24, 2007
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    Just as Rob stated, it appears as if the spring goes inside of the regulator pins, remove the balance and CAREFULLY reinsert it between the pins and check again.
     
  6. Skutt50

    Skutt50 Registered User

    Mar 14, 2008
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    Your regulator is set at FAST and you still loose time. This indicates that the hairspring is not too short but possibly too long!

    It does not take much to cause the "bunching up". E.g. a small slip with a screw driver could cause this. I still believe you have a mis-alignment in the outer coil probably between the stud and the regulator......
    Have you tried to move the regulator to see if the "bunching" changes or moves position?
     
  7. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    Oh! I did not know that. Honestly I've always assumed when a spring looks like this it was too short. Learning something new everyday, thank you Skutt50 :thumb:

    That was actually the first thing I tried and the bunching remained the same.
     
  8. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

    Dec 19, 2011
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    #8 Rob P., Apr 17, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017
    It's not between the pins. Enlarge your pic #3 and you will see that the outer coil is inside the inner pin. You can't see between the pins but you CAN see that the coil is distorted at that point.

    Take the regulator off the balance cock and see if the coils return to correct position. It should just pop off with a tiny bit of pressure along with twisting a tool in the split in the ring. You'll have to remove the balance from the cock to put it back on or risk damaging/bending things but if you're positive it's in between the pins that will prove it or not. And will lead you to other possible places to look.

    Edited at add:

    I just opened the case on my Cal 59 because I thought the kink near the stud might be an issue. It's not. the kink is correct and should be there. However, I can clearly see by comparing mine with yours, that your terminal curve is being distorted right at the regulator pins.
     
  9. Skutt50

    Skutt50 Registered User

    Mar 14, 2008
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    This would indicate that the hairspring is OK between the stud and the regulator pins.
    It is further confirmed by Rob.P in his post #8 above. (There may well be an issue at the stud but it would not be my initial approach.)

    If this is correct and the kink is right at the regulator pins it appears (from your pictures) as if the hairspring has been bent outwards. Could this have occured when the balance cock was removed from the balance? Not unlikely!

    In such case the hairspring should be bent back a tiny bit. This will be a delicate job if done with the hairspring in the movement and you can easily over bend or damage the hairspring. Personally I would remove the hairspring and do the correction "on the desk". I would also at that time install the loose hairspring in the balance cock and verify that it is well centered as discussed earlier in this thread.
     
  10. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    It all comes down to how the watch behaves. The frequency of the oscillator is determined by the relationship between spring and load. So either the balance is too heavy or the spring is too long/weak.

    Bunching up like this could be an effect of someone trying to fit a new spring that has too many turns. The spring would then appear to be well centered but as the stud is screwed in place, being the only fixed point of the spring apart from the collet, the coils on the other side will be pushed away.

    If the spring is original I would look at the first half coil where the spring leaves the stud. Or the "terminal curve" if you will. In particular the off set just where the spring leaves the stud and then the part that interacts with the regulator sweep. And as others have mentioned, double check that the spring is indeed between the regulator pins.

    But a spring shaped as the one you have SHOULD run fast. Everything points to it. Coils rubbing, increased friction at the pivots. There is a plethora of problems that can make a watch run fast but few that will make it run slow in every position. Check the balance for timing washers and you can maybe shed some light on whether the spring is original or not.

    Best
    Karl
     
  11. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    There's actually only one pin. The spring is sitting between the wall of the boot and the index pin. I don't know if there are suppose to be two pins but there is only one on this particular movement and the spring is between that pin and the boot.
     
  12. Skutt50

    Skutt50 Registered User

    Mar 14, 2008
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    This sounds correct, just does not show in your picture.
     
  13. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    Yeah, I tried to get it clear but my those were the best I could do.
     
  14. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

    Dec 19, 2011
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    Maybe this will help. Pics of the hairspring and boot/pin on my 59.

    You can see that my terminal coil is not concentric with the other coils, it expands outward from about 7 o'clock on the pic. There is only 1 pin next to the boot but if the HS is inside that pin it will cause the coils to deflect like yours is doing. Double check. If it's in between, then I suspect the outer coil is too concentric. You'll need to pull the HS off the balance, put it on the cock and adjust to center the collet over the jewel. Check that the sweep of the adjuster doesn't change the centering.
     
  15. Paul Raposo

    Paul Raposo Registered User

    Nov 4, 2005
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    I see now Rob. I honestly didn't understand what you meant but your pictures and explanation have helped. Looking at your pics makes me realize how bad my hairspring is. I'd like to know who worked on this watch before I bought it.
     
  16. geo.ulrich

    geo.ulrich Registered User

    Apr 10, 2013
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    did you demagnetize?
     
  17. RJSoftware

    RJSoftware Registered User

    Apr 15, 2005
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    Looks like it's bent at the stud. You said you took the spring off so you must have turned the boot off the pin. I use tweezers to turn the boot. Most flat springs have this arrangement. I think only overcoils have two pins.

    What I do is (with fully assembled) just reach in with needle and adjust near the stud. The regulator acts as the steady and the needle push bends at the regulation point. Then return the regulator to original position and examine that spring is in middle of boot and pin.

    Easy fix.

    RJ
     
  18. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    If there is no sign of a terminal curve having been formed at some point the chances that the spring is not original are even higher. It's kind of difficult to
    make a coil perfectly match the rest of the coil if you're not very good at adjusting springs. So it makes no sense that someone with those skills would first adjust the spring that way only to leave it like this. Seems to me
    that this could be a spring from another movement with a stud that fits this balance cock.
     
  19. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

    Dec 19, 2011
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    It looks to me like you're going to have to pull the HS off the balance and re-shape it. At least it isn't mangled. I think you can get it reshaped to adjust and run right. Of all the HS's I've had to do this to, only one wound up with a good full curve for the adjuster. All the others were against a pin on one end or the other and I had to mess with them to get even a small adjusting range in the middle. They all run, but I wish I was better at shaping HS's than I am. Hopefully you are up to the task.

    If you get it reshaped and running, you may find that the HS is a replacement for that balance that is not the correct strength and which will not allow it to come to time. At that point you have a second issue. But that's easy to fix compared to reshaping the spring itself.
     
  20. karlmansson

    karlmansson Registered User

    Apr 20, 2013
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    Not sure I agree with that.
    If you do indeed have a replacement spring, in order for it to work as intended You'll have to shorten it. Provided that it is too long. That it is being compressed in the way you are decribing suggests that it is. A correctly formed terminal curve will only ADD to the diameter. So if it doesn't fit not, it won't fit later (this is of course provided you don't have a Breguet overcoil at hand).
    So really you need to vibrate the spring to find the correct length for it. This is by no means an easy task. If you only remove weight from the balance you will lose amplitude and lots of it. In production, the balance is matched to the spring in terms of dampening. A balance that is too light for the movement will behave differently even if you adjust the length of the spring to compensate.

    Then there is the issue of matching the pinning point at the collet to your vibrating point. The studding point for the balance cock is normally somewhere around 90-70 degrees from the vibrating point. There needs to be a certain angular relationship between the pinning point and the studding point for positional error to be kept to a minimum. The watch will be impossible to adjust or kept at a reasonable isochronism if not. Refer to Daniels "Watchmaking" forthe details please.

    It sounds like a non-original hairspring to me, considering the watch is running slow, and not fast as would be expected from at hairspring that looks like this.

    Best regards
    Karl
     
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