Home Forums General Discussion Forum Watch Lesson Learned The Hard Way

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      Newbies Beware! I just committed one of the rankest Newbie errors. I had cleaned and serviced my Great Great Grandfathers size 18 Elgin pocket watch and it wouldn’t run so I started to take it apart to see why. I had wound the mainspring completely tight (first error) then I couldn’t get the click to release the ratchet wheel. I decided to lift the barrel out of the case thinking that I might only damage the ratchet wheel in doing so(big error). The barrel spun hard and ended up damaging the escapement wheel. The ratchet wheel survived with no damage. Now I am looking a finding parts for the old watch. All the escapement wheels I’ve located thus far have larger pivots and won’t fit in the jewel. So its either replace the jewel or find a smaller pivot escapement wheel. Any suggestions there?

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        Ouch!!! Hey- I’m glad you were able to use the watch machine instructions. There is a NOS L&R machine listed on E-bay still with it original box and unopened cans of solution which is really amazing.

        Back to your problem the only answers are to find an escapement wheel (Is this the pallet wheel? If yes better look over the pallet stones and roller jewel VERY CAREFULLY as they may be damaged too) that has the same size pviots or you could put an otherwise identical wheel in a lathe and cut down and polish the pivots to the size of the jewels. Not sure whether I’m helping here or elevating your concern.



          Thanks Dave

          That is a good suggestion. Fortunately I was given a couple hundred escapement wheels and have found a couple that are correct except for the pivot size. I won’t have lost anything trying and it will give me some practice with the lathe.

          Bob Tascione

            Hi Wingman,
            I’m with Dave. Since you have that lathe waiting and calling out to you for some exercise and some extra escape wheels with larger pivots then grinding down and polishing the pivots to size should be fun and easy. Your lathe will love you for it!
            Let us know how it turns out Steve,

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