Balance staff

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  • #48175
    johnnypump321
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 1
    • Total Posts: 3

    I just removed a broken balance staff(My 1st) and now going to attempt to replace it . I have quite a few new ones i purchased on E-bay and was wondering, is there a tool to measure both the broken and new one in order to replace it? This is my 1st fix so yes I am quite confused. It couldn’t be just placing them side by side. Thanks in advance.

    #51032
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    A “bench micrometer” would be your best bet to start with and a good eye glass, not so easy on the angled part. I am sure someone else should be able to help you out with this one.

    #51033
    Bob Tascione
    Moderator
    • Topics Started: 38
    • Total Posts: 1559

    Hi Jonnypump321 and welcome to the forum!
    There are several tools that can be used for measuring staffs. A small mic as Arutha suggests is the best and easiest to find. Also as you suggest laying them side by side under high magnification can get you very close for measuring lengths and heights. Laying them in opposite directions and bringing them together can give you extremely close, accurate hub and shoulder height dimensions. There are pivot gauges and some pretty neat tools from the past that work well but are not really necessary.

    I know that you are just asking a question and a good one at that but I would like to give an unsolicited suggestion here. You said that this is the first staff that you have removed which I assume means that this is your first staffing job. Staffing can be a bit daunting at first and can take a little time to get the hang of. My suggestion is to order the exact staff (or 3) that you need for this job. As you get more proficient at it you can try to match a staff from a bulk batch. I have found that I almost ALWAYS had to alter one or more dimensions on a lathe when choosing a staff from an assortment. Not a big deal but it’s probably good to have the ball in your court when starting out. It’s tough enough at first. If it’s a watch that you’ can’t locate a factory staff for then it might help to set that one aside for a while and tackle a few staffing jobs where the correct staff is available. Again it’s just a suggestion.

    Hope this helps Jonnypump321,
    Bob

    #51034
    johnnypump321
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 1
    • Total Posts: 3

    Thank you both very much for the well needed info. Bob can you recommend whom to send out the old staff to for a replacement? And yes i will order at least 3 just in case.

    #51035
    Bob Tascione
    Moderator
    • Topics Started: 38
    • Total Posts: 1559

    Happy to be of help Johnnypump321,
    Usually when ordering staffs you would give the supplier as much information about the movement as possible such as movement make, model, grade, etc. rather than sending the staff. Most material suppliers such as Frei Borel etc. can supply Swiss wrist watch staffs while other suppliers may be a better choice for pocket watch material. Couldn’t tell from your post what type of watch you are working on. If you can let me know a little about the watch I will be happy check around for a good supplier for you. Prices have gone up quite a bit for American pocket watch staffs so finding a good supplier will be a big help for all of us.
    Thanks Johnnypump321,
    Bob

    #51036
    johnnypump321
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 1
    • Total Posts: 3

    Sorry for the long delay Bob. Still looking for a parts supplier. The pocket watch that i am working on is a swiss Buren 19 size serial # 2218949, 7 jewel 2 adjustment. Hope thats enough info. Thanks again in advance.

    #51037
    Bob Tascione
    Moderator
    • Topics Started: 38
    • Total Posts: 1559

    Hi Johnnypump321,
    Is there any chance that there is a Cal number? There may be some numbers stamped on the pillar plate along the rim near the balance. If there are numbers they may or may not be the caliber number but it’s worth a try. I’m assuming when you say 19 Size that you mean 19 ligne. Am I correct or did you measure in American size? 19 Ligne should be 45.72mm which is very close to a 16 size American. If it’s a 19 Size then it would be 45.72 mm across the dial. Finding the staff shouldn’t be a problem but might need to narrow down the cal. We can also identify the cal by matching the clutch lever, set bridge and set lever to the illustrations in the Bestfit catalog. I would take a picture of that page so you could identify your movement but as I mentioned in a previous thread I’m having problems with my camera so the detail wouldn’t be good enough. Also don’t have a scanner here. Staffs for your watch can most likely be purchased on ebay or just about any watch supply house. Of course you can always call a supplier and ask if you can send the movement to them if we can’t nail down the caliber. Also a 19 ligne 7 jewel buren movement might be all you need to tell them as it’s possible that Buren only made one caliber that size with 7 jewels. I tried to find some info on that but couldn’t locate anything.
    Here’s an ebay seller:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Buren-ligne-19-caliber-690-pocket-watch-balance-staff-/270515929432?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3efc018158
    You can find others by putting in Buren balance staff into the ebay search. Might contact the seller and tell him or her what you have and that it’s a 7 jewel movement. Might be all the info that’s needed.
    Hope this helps,
    Bob

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