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Old 03-10-2019, 08:24 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I have been using x35 to do it, Noah and am just about to order some new lenses to take it to x50...

I also use a fine precision oiler with a slightly bent tip so I can allow slightly more clearance visually before touching the stone.
Very tricky so will report back after going from x35.
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Old 03-10-2019, 08:58 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Great information there Noah, much appreciated. I hadnít even considered capillary action to account for the two tracks.

Scope is probably a good idea, but the stuff in my budget just doesnít have great depth of field. Will have to revisit that.

I do work with backlight though as my bench is actually a light table. That is actually incredibly helpful.


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Old 03-10-2019, 09:39 PM   #28 (permalink)
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I promise you (and I rarely do such a thing), you will not understand how you coped without it once you have one. Search for "Omano OM9959".
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Old 03-11-2019, 03:45 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I scored an Amscope 10x-30x stereo microscope on Amazon for $49. Got lost in the mail but turned up 2 weeks later at my neighbor's house. Anyway, very useful for inspecting but not very good for working on stuff. I think 3" of working distance at 10x. Plenty of depth of field and can see most of 6309 size movement.



I eventually got a 5x to 50x variable zoom with 9" working distance. Got that one for $225 on Amazon. The only thing I can think of to make it better would be a stand that can articulate/angle the head. It looks straight down and placing the screwdriver blocks my view.



I lucked into the first one and waited patiently for the second one.
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Old 03-11-2019, 04:19 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Default Pallet Fork Lubrication

Quote:
Originally Posted by bk_lake View Post
I scored an Amscope 10x-30x stereo microscope on Amazon for $49. Got lost in the mail but turned up 2 weeks later at my neighbor's house. Anyway, very useful for inspecting but not very good for working on stuff. I think 3" of working distance at 10x. Plenty of depth of field and can see most of 6309 size movement.



I eventually got a 5x to 50x variable zoom with 9" working distance. Got that one for $225 on Amazon. The only thing I can think of to make it better would be a stand that can articulate/angle the head. It looks straight down and placing the screwdriver blocks my view.



I lucked into the first one and waited patiently for the second one.


Interesting. I donít think I need one yet for anything requiring drivers, mostly for oiling and definitely inspecting. The issue with tools and hands getting in the way is why you use a bent oiler for the escapement task.

In the meantime Iím going to work out oil quantity issues with the Ďsemi-dynamicí method as Noah called it. Iíve done it a few times and not seen issues with inadvertently displacing oil. Well, that I can see at 20x at least. Just need to dial in appropriate amount of oil.


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Old 03-11-2019, 08:12 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Just taking the balance out of a lubricated balance jewel setting can transfer a droplet of oil from the pivot to whatever it touches on the inside of the lower and upper balance settings. In my experience, installing a fork into a wet escape wheel is highly likely to transfer some of that lubrication away from where you want it, which can create a trail for further lubrication migration. But as long as you're experimenting on your own pieces, test away! I would say, though, as you've pointed out- we can't see what we can't see. A microscope is like a timing machine- things were "good enough" before you got it, but the newfound knowledge with it is worth the expense.
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Old 03-11-2019, 09:21 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Default Pallet Fork Lubrication

To be clear, this experimenting is all done on movíts that are being torn back down again and cleaned afterward. They are mine and typically beaters. Barring using a microscope which I currently donít have and as a hobbyist certainly canít justify budgeting more than a few hundred buck for something Iíll use a couple times a month, its actually extremely easy to see what Iím doing under a visor or loupe oiling the face of the escape teeth rather than the exit jewel face, especially from the going side. Also to be clear, Iíve only done it this way a few times. Iíve also tried dynamic oiling a couple years ago, and without a microscope itís really quite difficult so abandoned the practice and instead oil the exit jewel.

As to the semi-dynamic approach, itís actually easier to do with the pallet fork in place as you can slowly tick the wheel around with better control and still easily access the teeth faces as they go by. Balance jewels donít get oiled until after the escapement is oiled, and no wheels get removed after their pivot jewels are oiled. Now, obviously the next thing to do would be to use the inspection port to determine whether or not there is enough of an oil web developed between the teeth and jewel face as the slide past each other, but 20x loupe is a bit underpowered to actually see that well. Scope for inspection would be nice for sure...

I also donít work on watches for others, never had a desire to and do not offer it. I only do this to tinker and really only got into it a couple years ago as a way to get my mind off chemo. Worked well for that actually.


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Old 03-12-2019, 12:10 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Michael,
There comes a point where we must examine what is easy vs. what is best practice, and set our sights on raising our techniques through practice to meet the demands of the job. I have the feeling that if something is unconventional in its approach, it really should have something to say for itself beyond being easier to carry out.
I'm not saying that everyone uses a microscope for oiling escapements- some factory service centers teach their technicians to do it with loupe only to save time. But I've tried it both ways, and like the extra control and inspection of results I can achieve under high magnification. I use the chance to also double-check my cap jewel oiling so that the extra time used by employing a microscope is not a complete loss.

And I know it may seem like I'm only good at fault-finding, but most manufacturers recommend not to run the balance in dry jewels. I applaud your willingness to think critically about a vital component of watch service, and thanks for letting me pick at it a little. You're a good sport!
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Old 03-12-2019, 07:35 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Hereís the thing though Noah, itís not really an unconventional approach any more than dynamic oiling (which I frankly thought was a weird and messy approach when I first read about it), it is merely a mod of that approach but from the going side rather than through the inspection port, and while not running. I tried with pallet fork in place and not in place, either worked, one is better for a couple reason. I guarantee if you were to inspect the work of most hobbyists out there youíre likely going to find dabs of oil on the side of pallet stone, the tops of escape teeth, around the inside of the inspection port, the balance wheel rim, etc. even when Ďcorrectí technique was employed. My modified approach best as I can determine so far avoids this. Oiling this way, you can directly see the face of the escape teeth and see that you hitting them accurately or not. The only thing I have any trouble with absent a scope is whether I applied enough oil as 20x just isnít powerful enough to see that well.

And again, itís something Iím experimenting with. If others want to take an open minded look at trying it, thatís up to them, their experience may vary. Iím not advocating it, Iím merely bringing it up.







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Old 03-12-2019, 08:51 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Hi Michael,
By bringing it up in a public forum where the disseminated information cannot be controlled, you are advocating it, practically speaking. And I see serious issues with the method which definitely is unconventional by any definition youíd choose.
We must walk before we run, and in that spirit I highly recommend that those just starting out allow themselves to stand on the shoulders of those who have come before them, mastering industry standard techniques before they strike out on their own. Iíve given what I thought were good reasons that the establishment does not oil this way, but you seem to ignore them at every point. Itís cool, we can still be friends :-)
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