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Discussion Starter #1
I found this lovely Raketa on eBay - great 70s design (or early 80s I would say - maybe somebody knows more?)

I've taken it apart today, to be cleaned and reassembled another day. Teardown: Raketa Pocket Watch #679721 | Watch Guy

I wanted to upload some photos, but this is currently broken on watchuseek - it tells me the photo has to be 790 x 0 (which is a bit hard to achieve ;-) )

Please let me know if I am getting on your nerves with my postings as I haven't had any feedback lately. No problem leaving you alone if this is not wanted.

Cheers,

wilderbeest
 

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I found this lovely Raketa on eBay - great 70s design (or early 80s I would say - maybe somebody knows more?)

I've taken it apart today, to be cleaned and reassembled another day. Teardown: Raketa Pocket Watch #679721 | Watch Guy

I wanted to upload some photos, but this is currently broken on watchuseek - it tells me the photo has to be 790 x 0 (which is a bit hard to achieve ;-) )

Please let me know if I am getting on your nerves with my postings as I haven't had any feedback lately. No problem leaving you alone if this is not wanted.

Cheers,

wilderbeest
Nice job, wilderbeest! You are definitely a "Watch Guy". Maybe your photos are just too big. Try something around 800 x 800 and see if that works.

Keep posting! I haven't seen one of yours lately...did I miss it?

Oh, I meant to ask you what your technique is for removing and re-installing the hairspring on the balance. Any tricks?
 

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Nice watch and great photos as usual! Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Nice job, wilderbeest! You are definitely a "Watch Guy". Maybe your photos are just too big. Try something around 800 x 800 and see if that works.

Keep posting! I haven't seen one of yours lately...did I miss it?

Oh, I meant to ask you what your technique is for removing and re-installing the hairspring on the balance. Any tricks?
I'll make sure that I will post some detailed photos of that on the reassembly - give me a couple of days. :)
 

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I found this lovely Raketa on eBay - great 70s design (or early 80s I would say - maybe somebody knows more?)

I've taken it apart today, to be cleaned and reassembled another day. Teardown: Raketa Pocket Watch #679721 | Watch Guy

I wanted to upload some photos, but this is currently broken on watchuseek - it tells me the photo has to be 790 x 0 (which is a bit hard to achieve ;-) )

Please let me know if I am getting on your nerves with my postings as I haven't had any feedback lately. No problem leaving you alone if this is not wanted.

Cheers,

wilderbeest
Great stuff, please keep posting these! Very interesting.
 

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That's a nice photo series.

May I ask why you remove the hairpsring from the balance wheel?

Cheers,
Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
That's a nice photo series.

May I ask why you remove the hairpsring from the balance wheel?

Cheers,
Paul
Hi Paul,

Good question ;-)

I normally leave the balance cock, balance and hairspring assembly together as it's very fiddly. The watch has a problem, though. The balance wheel doesn't turn freely and gets stuck on the pallet arm. In order to investigate the problem, I will put the pallet arm and balance assembly on the plate without the spring or any other parts, so that I can observe what is happening. My guess is that the arm is either too high or too low and touches the balance staff ....
As I'm a bit busy at the moment (with paid work), I will do that in a couple of days time.

There are some people out there who claim that you have to remove the hairspring for a thorough clean - there is actually a guy who posted on one of my entries 1922 Hamilton 910 | Watch Guy (look at the comment at the very end) and tells me I should do just that. I don't agree with that and think that the hairspring can be cleaned nicely whilst still on the balance wheel. The risk of bending or damaging the hairspring in other ways far outweighs the benefit of a (maybe) better clean.

I would like to hear other people's opinion on this, though... Do you remove the hairspring for cleaning?

Cheers,

Christian
 

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Thanks, Christian.

I never dismantle the balance assembly myself, apart from sometimes removing the top jewel if there's a problem with it. This is partly because I'm not really good enough to fiddle with the assembly safely, and partly because I seldom see any need to do so. Certainly there's no reason if all that's needed is a clean. I work almost entirely on a very small range of movement types and, if there is a problem with the balance, I usually transplant an identical assembly rather than replacing individual components.

Cheers,
Paul
 

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Thanks, Christian.

I never dismantle the balance assembly myself, apart from sometimes removing the top jewel if there's a problem with it. This is partly because I'm not really good enough to fiddle with the assembly safely, and partly because I seldom see any need to do so. Certainly there's no reason if all that's needed is a clean. I work almost entirely on a very small range of movement types and, if there is a problem with the balance, I usually transplant an identical assembly rather than replacing individual components.

Cheers,
Paul
I believe cleaning the spring, itself, can be done by soaking and swishing around in solvent or even the use of a soft brush, however, I've always regretted not being able to clean the area where the staff enters the jewel bearing which is all I do with the other jeweled bearings in the watch. It seems that the balance bearings should be the most critical bearings to be cleaned and oiled properly since they experience the most movement by far. With the spring out of the way cleaning and oiling would be improved, obviously. Also you would not risk contaminating the spring with oil as you try to oil the bearing through an installed spring or deform the spring while pulling it out of the way of the oiler. That having been said, I usually do what Paul does with a fair amount of success although the pile of rejected balance assemblies is getting quite large!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I believe cleaning the spring, itself, can be done by soaking and swishing around in solvent or even the use of a soft brush, however, I've always regretted not being able to clean the area where the staff enters the jewel bearing which is all I do with the other jeweled bearings in the watch. It seems that the balance bearings should be the most critical bearings to be cleaned and oiled properly since they experience the most movement by far. With the spring out of the way cleaning and oiling would be improved, obviously. Also you would not risk contaminating the spring with oil as you try to oil the bearing through an installed spring or deform the spring while pulling it out of the way of the oiler. That having been said, I usually do what Paul does with a fair amount of success although the pile of rejected balance assemblies is getting quite large!
Removing the balance complete with hairspring is not that much of a problem - and a good idea as you say. This gives you the chance to properly clean the top jewel of the balance staff. I was just marvelling at the guy who told me on my blog to remove the hairspring from the balance wheel itself for cleaning. I find that to be a bit much and too risky.

Cheers,

Christian
 

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My watchmaker cleans hairsprings in the old-fashioned way, using a box with wood granules in it. He said it's no longer possible to buy it, perhaps people prefer to use ultrasonic cleaners for the same purpose nowadays.
 

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Removing the balance complete with hairspring is not that much of a problem - and a good idea as you say. This gives you the chance to properly clean the top jewel of the balance staff. I was just marvelling at the guy who told me on my blog to remove the hairspring from the balance wheel itself for cleaning. I find that to be a bit much and too risky.

Cheers,

Christian
One thing I learned about watch tinkering rather quickly is that, for me, it's a lot easier to dis-assemble/remove than it is to re-assemble/replace! I've removed balance wheels before but I've never been able to get them back in place, same with shock-protected jeweled bearings.
 
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