Pocket watch slows down and will stop, help!

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  • #48445
    rozeerox
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    • Topics Started: 5
    • Total Posts: 12

    My pocket watch seems to slow down and will eventually stop if you don’t move it every so often even though it is fully wound. I opened the back to check the movement and everything seems clean and not clogged up with greese at first glance. The balance swings freely but does speed up and slow down randomly. Do note that I didn’t take it apart since I want to practise that first on a watch i don’t care for as much since I’m still just learning!
    And bcz I’m a noob I wondered if any of you might have an idea as to what’s wrong with it?

    #52552
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi,
    when was the watch last serviced? if it was any longer than a year ago, even though it might look clean you will find the old oil has dried out and become gummy. This alone is enough to stop a watch. Once it has been cleaned and oiled it should run ok, if not you will then have to start looking at worn pivot holes/cracked jewels. If this is a nice watch then put it away and forget about it until you have gained some experience working on some cheaper watches. You will know when you feel ready to tackle this watch. Whatever happens just remember to come an ask if you run into any problems. We are all here to help :)
    Paul.

    #52553
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Rozeerox,
    Since you do not feel ready to take the watch apart just yet, check on Ebay and see if you can purchase a movement for that watch. A working movement for a Waltham can be purchased for around $30.00 if you are lucky. If the movement is working properly, go ahead and swap it out in your watch. Now you can begin to disassemble, inspect, repair and clean the origional movement without the fear of screwing it up. Before working on it check the previous posts on this site for similar problems and watch the assembly and repair videos. Make sure you wind the mainspring down before taking it apart. Check the balance staff to make sure you do not have a broken pivot. Check the balance wheel and make sure the balance screws are not rubbing against anything. A watch can work at one temperature and not work at another temperature due to the balance wheel expanding. Replace and lubricate the mainspring. Use Bob’s method for removing the cap on the mainspring barrel. To replace the cap I use a Harbor Freight watch crystal press with two flat nylon anvils. Always check for worn or cracked jewels and worn or bent or broken pivots. Make sure the balance wheel is running true and in poise. Check the hairspring for rust pitts. Make sure the pallet jewels and roller jewels are not loose. If they are, they will have to be re-shellaced and adjusted. Once you get your origional movement working you can swap it back out and sell the replacement on Ebay.
    david

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rozeeroxPocket watch slows down and will stop, help!