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Buying such tubes is VERY expensive on this picture you see 50 pcs of a 0.3mm tube ... in weight this is far below half a gram
and costs about 80Euro without VAT ( but you would have to take at least 10000 of one size when buying directly at the manufacturers ) one pcs I was told is about 1.7 Swiss Francs this is higher than the street price of any illegal drug you could ímagine which is far above pure Gold or Platinum revets.jpg

It is about the coaxiality you try to achieve with such a lathe ..... the tube is o,55mm and the hole is 0.3mm drill with 0.27mm and bore the hole until it fits but easiest is to have larger shafts!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
Indeed expensive, and I will need 3 types for each hand.... I will try to find a way to purchase an watchmaker lathe then, it seems the only way I can do this.
 

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3 Types for each hand? could you explain ? normally minutes and hours hand are not equiped with a fitting as they will be set directly .... ( and mounting such a fitting needs further equipment as shown ( also several 100 Bucks if bougth preowned))

If you would have the tools available and just invest your time you probably could do a set of hands for 20 Euro but withthe lathe ( at least 1000€ + motor + inverter + collets etc. + the punching tool ... I guess you will be at least at 2Thousand at the end

easier and cheaper to pass your premade hands ( filed and handmade with a smaller than necessary hole) to a watchmaker who does the finishing work for a single piece solution..... and pay the 50 to 60 Euro ( estimated)
 

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3 Types for each hand? could you explain ? normally minutes and hours hand are not equiped with a fitting as they will be set directly .... ( mine got that tubes because I did them not the traditional way and routed them in one piece!!!!) ( and mounting such a fitting on a second hand needs further equipment as shown ( also several x00 Bucks if bougth preowned))

If you would have the tools available and just invest your time you probably could do a set of hands for 20 Euro but withthe lathe ( at least 1000€ + motor + inverter + collets etc. + the punching tool ... I guess you will be at least at 2000€ at the end

easier and cheaper to pass your premade hands ( filed and handmade with a smaller than necessary hole) to a watchmaker who does the finishing work for a single piece solution..... and pay the 50 to 60 Euro ( estimated)
 

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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
Well, i missed a comma :), mean 3 tubes, one for each hand, I have observed that usually hour hand wheel is below the dial, this mean that the hour hand should have a tube as well to reach the wheel, if the hour hand have such tube will cove the minute wheel, which mean that the minute hand will require a tube as well, so at the end are 3 tubes, one for each hand.
 

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If you would not use a DIY Movement the power train is applying torque and rotation on the hands train ( in between is a kind of friction clutch what makes it able to adjust the hands train against the power train to adjust the time - the second staff belongs to the powertrain - here you usually need a tube on the seconds staff there is the minutes tube which carries the minutes hand but his tube is already in the movement as it normally carries 1 side of the friction clutch. The minutes gear on this tube leads over the change gear to the hours wheel which is bound to the hours tube which is also part of the movement both tubes are existing so you would have to just press on the hands. Due to the diameter and the pressing surface as the slow motion speeds the hands are often done in thicker sheetmetal or plastic without a tubular flange, but if you have thin punched hands they usually have a formed / domed tube wich you also could directly do on rather thin sheetmetal with a special punching tool but that is tricky as the tool would have to fit to material parameters and thickness.. Easiest is to route the tube from solid hands stock of the minutes and the hours hand ( seconds is rather flimsy so the effort is just possible for rather expensive unique hands)
- takes some more time, but is the most defined way to do it
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
I bought an automatic Swatch to take the ETA movement from it and put in my case, so for sure it is pretty standard and not an DIY, but even so, hands from this Swatch, all have, well not really tube alike the seconds hand, but not sure how to name them, let say tubes :)

I spent so far on this project 1500E, so, if I will find for max. 500E an old used watchmaker lathe will worth to buy one.
Is there any websites which sell used watchmaker lathes? Not eBay.
 

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If you would find an old watchmakers lathe with the necessary parts for that price you would be very lucky... normally a working spindle in rather poor condition is about 170€ support is 300€ and a drillsupport is about 250 € rail 200€ all rather bad conditions ... ( a useable collet is usually 10 Euro and there are 32 for the full set of standard collets, as you should not damage the collets by using a too big one for a too small diameter!

Watchmaker lathes are just passed to the next generation, if the previous dies or retires .... so they are rather rare what keeps the price up ... There is a Chinese lathe of poor quality on the market which is ( new state) more than 1000 € without the necessary sub parts!
Swiss Star Lathe (new) rather 10k, Horia Lathe - full set about 40k ... there is a lathe from the us which is rather nice for about 1000$ but you always would need the additional parts
Just a few watchmaker use their lathes ( most do just maintenance and replace), so no one wants to invest in a new one and so the preowned are kept and forwarded - bought mine -35 years old good condition - but had to think a bit about the invest.
About your project:
1500 Euro until now ... I guess for that price you had the possibility to think about asking for to cast a case in Silver!
 

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Discussion Starter · #50 · (Edited)
Well, :), indeed, 1500E could seems to be too expensive, but if you take into account that i didn't had any tools, even a hammer is not that pricy, also, i bought the quantity of silver, after my calculations to build two cases, to have just in case enough material in case i broke some parts, and what to say :) i ended up with more than 500grams of silver :))))
And indeed, somebody could cast that for me, but this is not hand made by me.... :) anything you see in my previous pictures was made by hand, with no machining involved, beside my Dremel 4000, which was used almost for drilling holes.

Regarding a lathe, it is too expensive indeed, i will try to find someone which is willing to do my tubes for hands from silver then.

I found some lathes on eBay not very expensive, but i don't know the condition of them.
 

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A lathe is not a lathe Watchmaking lathes were originally developed as a kind of multitool - most watchmakers were not that highly paid specialists and had just little space in their flats so the machine was to be designed with adaptive tools to do the necessary work!


A suggestion: you have your dremel... and as seen you have a pull stand for that device... why not use the Dremel as a spindle which moves so you probably could turn small things if you could do a kind of support on the baseplate of your stand... I did this with my DIY router when I was in need of M0.5 screws and so turned the bodies!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBokWd9LG78
 

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If you would need to cut a syringe needle or a brass tube on that Dremel use a cutter blade and pull it sidewards over a 80grain grinding paper you will get something like a file with you can file through softer alloy ( if it would be thin) but take care the blade is normally designed to break easily so be sure to create a safe handle!

By the way just pm that lathe offer to me - I would be curious ... even if a lathe starts at 1 $ normally the last days of a bidding session would raise the prices extremely
 

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Making hands is really not that hard.
I make mine by hand.
You do need the ability to drill very small holes - but an arcamedian drill will do that.
Pipes can be formed with punches directly in the blank.
Have a look at my twitter feed @solutionsbydave for some photos.
Basic equipment: bench peg, jeweler's saw, drills, files, pin vices


Ill post more when I get home, in out waiting for a daughter so on my phone.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
@MachaMind interesting idea with the cutter blade, thanks. Regarding my Dremel, i bought a Dremel Workstation as well, which, from photos seems to be something strong, which could be used as a bench press drill and also as a stand for Dremel 4000, however, is not what i expected, the main body which keep the tool fixed is made from a cheap plastic, which bend around. Well, i have used to build my case screws, here is a pic working on a screw.

IMGP7602.jpg

@Dave, i could not wait for your photos and details, many thanks.
 

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See if you can find a Derbyshire 8mm lathe. There is one listed on eBay now for $300 US includes the motor and a handful of collets. Not sure how easy they are to find outside the US.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Perhaps you may look for Sherline lathes from the US - they would be more than 500$ but those are new rather precise and you can buy from an exising source..... ( means you probably may buy part for part instead trying to get all you can in one step for a matching system...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDylgtjLXLM I have no experience with that machine but it looks not that bad even if it would be not a watchmakers lathe! I heared there would be an importer in Austria!

@ Rocket - Marc is from Bucharest ...
 

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Right, Im home, so a more in depth reply.
It to cold in the garage to be making demonstration hands, so this is more of a rambling illustrations :-!

First important tool (not shown) is a comfortable seat. I have a nice wooden stool that came from a Sorting office. Its the right height for my benchpeg:


This is a sort of multi purpose supporting thingy. Its wood, so you can support very thin things on it and saw them (and it).
I have a fairly cheap jeweler's saw frame, but skimping on the blades is false economy. Get the correct tooth size - for thin stuff like hands I usually use 8/0 - the finest available.


Sawing itself is an art to practice. Its much faster to saw things to shape than to file them.

Files:
Diamond files are cheap enough nowadays, and have the smallest teeth available - which means they wont snag on the edge of thin material.
These sets were around £5 each.





Car boot sales are also a good place to find stuff. This haul was £8 IIRC, and has some of my new favorite files in it.



Dont forget to ensure there are safe edges on some of the files:





I put this safe edge on using a diamond stone.


Layout of the hands:
a very pointy scriber



Sometimes I use a needle in one of the pin vices.
I used to use layout blue (I also make larger metal items) but for watch sized pieces a sharpie marker is simpler. The ink comes off with alcohol.



Holding a nascent hand is tricky. I usually use a cheap set of pin vices:







Corks from wine bottles are a useful for shellacing things to so they are supported for polishing





This is an hour hand for instance:



For supporting while I file the shape I use a different piece of wood in my bench peg, which is carved to suit, and has some saw cuts in it.





You rest the hand in the cuts, and file away.



the wood is sacrificial - if it gets filed it doesnt matter. Staged shot - its hard to hold a camera and a hand and a file:



You get the idea.
You can also support the hands with other items - This hand is shellacked to a blunt utility knife blade for instance:



I dont actually have many making photos - I tend to do and then take a picture.

I typically cut an oversized blank, drill the hole, and then layout the shape I want using the hole as a reference point. If you check out these threads there are more photos of various making bits:

https://www.watchuseek.com/f6/pocket-watch-fixer-upper-1927170.html
https://www.watchuseek.com/f6/case-...e-can-re-made-very-picture-heavy-2695522.html

There is an amount of skill, hand eye coordination and practice required, I make better hands quicker than when I started.

With regard to lathes - for hands they are not required, but for case and dial work you would be better with one.
I used my unimat (similar to a MJ-189 or Seig C0) for forming the pipe and drilling the hole in the pocket watch fixer upper thread.
A brand new C0 is under £300.
For a long time my Unimat was the only lathe I had, and it is good enough for most parts of a watch, certainly if you are not planning on making a movement from scratch (and I think you probably could on it if you were stubborn ;-) )
Lathes.co.uk occasionally turns up watchmakers lathes for cheap, and sometimes fully equipped for a lot more.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
Hi Dave,

Many thanks for your detailed explanations, it was encouraging, I will give a try.
Is there any rule/calculator/tool to do the hole in the hand for friction fit?

I will try to use for the moment what tools I have, because it seems to be a bit expensive a lathe at this point, however, for sure I will purchase a good/complete one in the "near" future, when the budget will grow back :) , I have in my mind to start a project on building a movement also :) but lets finish this project first.


Best regards,


Marc
 

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I don't know of any rule as such.
I usually pick a 1.5 mm drill for 150 hands, .9 for 90... Since I drill into a blank I can try the fit before shaping. holes can be both opened and closed a small amount with a staking tool.
Most people don't realise that drills are for making holes undersize. Reamers are for making holes the right size.
For Pocket watches I measure the gear the hand is going on with a micrometer, and then find a drill. Years ago I bought a big set of Re sharpened carbide pcb number drills so I have a large selection to go at.

I forgot pipes yesterday, but you can make a pipe integral with the hand in a malleable metal like annealed silver by not drilling the hole but by broaching it. That will form a pipe from the materiel that was in the space where the hole goes.
A staking set is useful for doing this.


Dave
 

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Perhaps you could check out Sherline lathes.. but if the Orbit is good for 0.1mm Drills?
I own a Boley/Leinen vintage lathe but its a very good one even as its about 35 to 40 years old
asset.jpeg.jpg
 
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