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June 27, 2014 at 6:44 pm #49100
Hi again guys,
I’ve been working on an Illinois Lincoln size 13 or 14? (the thinner model with detent for stem)
I am trying to trouble shoot why the balance slows to almost a complete stop when bridges are face up and goes fine when bridges face down.
Things I have inspected.
1.The bottom balance pivot looks good, not broken, chipped and is smooth.
2.The bottom balance jewel is not cracked or chipped
3.When applying pressure on the mainspring by torquing the crown at full wind, it will bring in more pressure causing the balance to speed up with bridges side up.
4.I placed the balance assembly on an Illinois Autocrat (same design) and it runs fine while bridges face up.
5.Movement was cleaned and oiled per eta 6497 specs.
6. Has new main spring
Any suggestions on what might be causing or what else to trouble shoot GREATLY appreciated.
Such a pretty movement and I would love to get it working well.
NicJune 27, 2014 at 6:59 pm #58241
Nic, just a few questions….
When you say cleaned.. Did you push out the balance jewels, both cap and hole, and clean the gunk from between and pegged out the jewel hole?
Have you checked for end shake on the balance?
Could the hairspring be catching something?
How are the index pins, straight, too close together etc?June 27, 2014 at 10:00 pm #58242
I did clean that, and just checked the other suggestions. The balance wasn’t shaking, hairspring wasn’t catching anything, index pins were okay (same as autocrat settings).
when checking the hairspring I did look closer at the balance without the fork to see if the balance was slowing by itself when turned right side
up and it was, then noticed the staff was sinking all the way down into the bottom balance jewel so that the flat part of the bottom of the staff was hitting
the jewel brass setting. Since the staff looked good, I thought it had to be the jewel being worn. I ended up using the jewel from thespare autocrat movement after trying many of the ones I had on hand that didn’t work and it’s working fine now. However it would be great if anyone knows where to score a bottom balance
staff jewel for the Illinois Lincoln size 14
thanks for collaborating with me Chris and the ideas. Helped a lot!June 28, 2014 at 7:47 am #58243
the flat part of the bottom of the staff was hitting the jewel brass setting.
Nic, Something doesn’t sound right with this? Even if the pivot was broken off, the staff shouldn’t touch the setting as its diameter is smaller, the staff cone should, by rights, rest or even fall, into the lowest point, the oil sink of the jewel?
Unfortunately we never know who has messed with these old watches, altered something or replaced original parts with “Handy” parts.
I’ve had my share of mismatched parts that I thought were the originals, only to find that they’d been bastardized DOH 😮
A lot of wasted time, but funJune 28, 2014 at 12:59 pm #58244
I think it was a mismatch. Do you know how to order the correct jewels? Would a Bestfit catalog contain the information?June 28, 2014 at 4:22 pm #58245
Turns out the staff was too short as well. The balance wheel shakes out in the area near the center wheel and comes up out of the bottom jewel. I ended up swapping out the entire assembly for the Autocrat one. However the autocrat pivot was too tight on the top (this was the case on the Autocrat movement as well). I polished it down with a dremel and rubber grit wheel using a method I came up with a couple years ago. Now works great. Snug fit and moves freely. I did it that way because I don’t have a pivot polisher and my tail stock DC is stuck so I can’t make a polisher that way either. Will hopefully figure it out.June 30, 2014 at 9:29 am #58247
Okay, now that I got i running in a way that looks nice in all positions, ha ha , the watch is loosing about 30 minutes to an hour a day. Usually does that mean the balance wheel is over banking? causing the roller jewel to take too much time to reach the fork, and should it be turned out more so it has more tension before it goes through the two pins that hold it in line under the balance bridge? Does it mean the hair spring is locked in starting off too far to center? How should I trouble shoot it?June 30, 2014 at 12:36 pm #58248david pierceParticipant
You said you replaced the whole assembly. Did you replace the balance wheel with one from another watch? If so does the replacement balance wheel have the same weight and inside and outside diameters at the rim? Does the balance wheel and hairspring vibrate at the proper frequency for that watch mechanism (probably 18,000/hr). Have all frictional obstructions have been removed such as dirt, gunk, part to part contact and so on. Did you demagnetize the movement? Is the hairspring clean? You are in an aspect of repair where a timing machine could be extremely useful. If you do not have one they are not terribly expensive.
davidJune 30, 2014 at 1:13 pm #58246Bob TascioneModerator
Overbanking or re-banking will usually result in a faster rate. If you didn’t replace the balance assembly with another as David mentions and the rate is slow in all positions then try checking that the hairspring is contacting BOTH index pins for a portion of it’s vibration. There are a few other things that can cause the slow running problem you’re experiencing but index pin spacing being too wide is a common problem. You may also find that the index pin spacing is so wide that neither pin is ever in contact with the hairspring. If your regulator is adjusted to the ‘fast’ extreme then I would definitely check this spacing. I’m assuming here that the watch is clean since you suspect re-banking which would indicate healthy balance amplitude.
Good luck and let us know what you find out.
BobJuly 1, 2014 at 1:46 pm #58249david pierceParticipant
If the mechanism is keeping proper time but the hands are running slow, the problem will probably be with the canon pinion. This is where a timing machine can be of great help.
davidJuly 1, 2014 at 5:54 pm #58250
Yes, I would like to get a time machine. Do you recommend one? I tried Kello, but it works on par with the reviews of dissatisfied customers reviews 😆
It did check the balance wheel as well and made the weight screw spacing the same as the original. The movement had already been through a cleaning. As well, the minute hand was a little loose which I just replaced and am checking the time now. I still need to make sure the pins are not too loose too.July 1, 2014 at 7:21 pm #58251Bob TascioneModerator
I just re-read your previous post and see that you said the watch is running 30 to 60 MINUTES per day slow. I thought you had said seconds per day.
First off best not to move balance screws to different positions as they were adjusted in the factory for temperature compensation as well as establishing a perfect relationship between the balance assembly center of mass and the balance staff axis. Moving them will change the dynamics of the balance. Also…if you are thinking of buying a timing machine so you can determine whether or not the cannon pinion is loose or slipping, there is a very simple way to do that without a machine. If you would like an explanation of how to go about it let me know and I’ll put it up here.
BobJuly 1, 2014 at 8:56 pm #58252
Bob I would be interested in hearing the technique
I agree with Bobs advice and personally would not mess with the timing screws, even though its tempting. These are dynamically balanced little units and are very easy to mess up, causing yourself a whole world of frustration.
Nic, maybe because its 5 am and my caffeine hasn’t kicked in yet but, this reminds me of a buddy that wanted to change the brakes on his car, as he progressed, he found more issues, got more advice etc
When I visited him some time later, I was shocked to see not only the wheel assembly in bits, but also the differential stripped, drive shafts out and rear tranny seals LOL
I asked what happened? It just got out of hand he groaned 😆
A timing machine is not going to solve the problem here, in reality, you can use numerous other methods to check timing and save yourself loads of dosh$ to invest in other tools or parts.
Posting photos will also be a great assistance, it could be something so simple that once seen someone might say….. THAT’S the obvious problem 😮July 1, 2014 at 10:10 pm #58253
Well I know it’s not the cp, because it was keeping good time with the slow bottom pivot jewel balance problem before I replaced it.
The pins were a little loose so I squeezed them tighter and now the spring is snug, but it’s still running slow, but it’s running a lot faster than it was before.
Could be the hairspring is a little dirty because I was just using watch tacky putty to clean it, so next I will try using the zenith cleaning solo on the hairspring and balance wheel a little to get all the residue off it.
This has happened before on this movement, but a watch maker fixed it, he just didn’t fix the bad jewel. I think it might be common with these 13 14 size movements, but Chris you are right, if I remember correctly it was an easy adjustment, I wish I could remember what it was.July 2, 2014 at 6:18 pm #58254
cleaned the hairspring but that didn’t change anything either. Been playing around with the position of the hairspring both on the balance assembly
and what direction it starts out from going from the holder to the pins to get some idea which makes faster and which makes slower. spent hours
trying this but to no avail. It’s actually worse now than when I started. bad day
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