Reply To: Stem and Sleeve Problem

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Bob Tascione

    Hi BYJWR,
    Sorry, I didn’t realize you had responded to my last post.
    It’s possible that the stem was broken or lost over the years and replaced with a new one. It’s also possible that the crown was replaced. You may want to check to see if there is anything like a burr or other material built up on the crown where it makes contact with the pendant. If necessary material from the underside of the crown can usually be removed to allow more travel. This is commonly done in a lathe and is best performed with the help of a crown chuck, which is just a chuck that fits the shape of the crown and aids in truing and clamping without marring or damaging it. Before doing this repair though you may want to check that the movement fits tightly in it’s case. If there is a little extra room then it may be pushed away from the pendant enough to prevent the stem from reaching far enough into the movement to activate winding.
    If you need to buy a new stem for an old pocket watch they can still be ordered from some supply houses such as Ofrei. Ordering stems for older pocket watches can be a little tricky but you may find this page with photos for particular watch cases helpful in identifying what you need.
    If your stem appears to be correct when compared to the photos but has just been cut too short for your crown then you can order the same as what you have and cut the length down to whatever length is needed. If it’s clearly the wrong stem for your case then Steves offer in his post may be of help when ordering.
    Hope this is helpful BYJWR!