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Old 9 November 2019, 01:08 AM   #1
locutus49
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Couple Watchmaking Questions

1) Why do most watches, when viewed through the back, have these large plates that obscure the movements? I don't mean the rotors. The plates are usually decorated with Cote de Geneve (stripes). Exceptions are Langes and PP 5170s, where you can see the gears etc.

) When people talk about adjusted in 5 or 6 positions, what does that mean?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 9 November 2019, 02:03 AM   #2
gnuyork
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I don"t know why the plates, I assume for structure...something for the movement to be attached to.

Adjustment in positions for what I understand means they adjust and check the timing accuracy with the watch in different positions (dial down, crown down, crown up etc.)... COSC specs have these tests in various positions I believe.
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Old 9 November 2019, 02:10 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by locutus49 View Post
1) Why do most watches, when viewed through the back, have these large plates that obscure the movements? I don't mean the rotors. The plates are usually decorated with Cote de Geneve (stripes). Exceptions are Langes and PP 5170s, where you can see the gears etc.

) When people talk about adjusted in 5 or 6 positions, what does that mean?

Thanks in advance.
The base plate?

https://bespokeunit.com/watches/watc...uide/#movement
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Old 9 November 2019, 02:31 AM   #4
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Good question.

I've always been a dial, case and hands type person when it comes to watches and never fully comprehended why there are so many types or styles of movements. Is one superior to the other?

I'm not even a fan of the in-house craze going on today, when the ETA movements were just fine AND could be worked on by any watchmaker. I can definitely appreciate the beauty of a Lange highly decorated movement but is it just a supermodel who is afraid of breaking a nail or is it a tough but pretty athlete.

But the number of different movements always was a but puzzling to me. I realize that Rolex makes a very good so called pedestrian but robust movements and some other brands make prettier ones but far less robust. I do realize that different complications require different movements.

I guess I just don't understand why X movement is better, stronger etc than Y movement.
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Old 9 November 2019, 04:56 AM   #5
77T
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Quote:
Originally Posted by locutus49 View Post
Why do most watches, when viewed through the back, have these large plates that obscure the movements?
My 2˘:
It is simpler to fabricate large plates that will maintain parallel rigidity if the watch is sharply jarred.

Quote:
Originally Posted by locutus49 View Post
Exceptions are Langes and PP 5170s, where you can see the gears etc.
Those makers want a true work of art and spend a lot of time designing/fabricating skeletonized plates. But the movement’s parts would experience more damage from shocks that the large plate movements could withstand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by locutus49 View Post
When people talk about adjusted in 5 or 6 positions, what does that mean?
This is more detailed and depends on what accuracy a maker wishes to offer.
The short answer is to make it run accurately.

Long answer follows...

When you wear a mechanical movement watch, accuracy is affected by your many different positions during the day.

The balance wheel regulates the gear train and if it sat still in a face up position only, then would need but one adjustment. The center of gravity at the balance wheel is never perfect so the watchmaker would adjust for that to keep the beat rate consistently on target.

When a watch is horizontally, the balance pivots on one tip in a jewel bearing and has no variations to speak of. But when the watch vertical at 90°, the balance wheel oscillates on both pivots with greater friction. So there are the extra positions to be adjusted.

Of course. In real life, the movement goes through all sorts of angles and g-forces that affect the BPH.

When a movement is adjusted correctly correctly, the amplitude of the balance wheel will be averaged for the best accuracy In those 6 positions to provide the best chance of COSC (or better) performance.

By measuring the amplitude in different positions, and by micro adjusting the balance wheel, he/she can check to see if the improvement is enough to meet standards.

Long explanation, I know.

It is impossible for a mechanical watch to be perfectly accurate but these extra adjustments yields the best chance for acceptable performance.


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Old 9 November 2019, 05:01 AM   #6
77T
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blansky View Post

I guess I just don't understand why X movement is better, stronger etc than Y movement.

Materials, design, tolerances and workmanship all play a role.

The comments I often see about Rolex movements not being “pretty” are maybe true - but movement is robust.

The pretty ones may not be as strong due to design choices.



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Old 9 November 2019, 05:14 AM   #7
locutus49
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Thanks to all for your answers. They make sense and responded perfectly to my questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fat_ninja View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blansky View Post
Good question.

I've always been a dial, case and hands type person when it comes to watches and never fully comprehended why there are so many types or styles of movements. Is one superior to the other?

I'm not even a fan of the in-house craze going on today, when the ETA movements were just fine AND could be worked on by any watchmaker. I can definitely appreciate the beauty of a Lange highly decorated movement but is it just a supermodel who is afraid of breaking a nail or is it a tough but pretty athlete.

But the number of different movements always was a but puzzling to me. I realize that Rolex makes a very good so called pedestrian but robust movements and some other brands make prettier ones but far less robust. I do realize that different complications require different movements.

I guess I just don't understand why X movement is better, stronger etc than Y movement.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 77T View Post
My 2˘:
It is simpler to fabricate large plates that will maintain parallel rigidity if the watch is sharply jarred.



Those makers want a true work of art and spend a lot of time designing/fabricating skeletonized plates. But the movement’s parts would experience more damage from shocks that the large plate movements could withstand.



This is more detailed and depends on what accuracy a maker wishes to offer.
The short answer is to make it run accurately.

Long answer follows...

When you wear a mechanical movement watch, accuracy is affected by your many different positions during the day.

The balance wheel regulates the gear train and if it sat still in a face up position only, then would need but one adjustment. The center of gravity at the balance wheel is never perfect so the watchmaker would adjust for that to keep the beat rate consistently on target.

When a watch is horizontally, the balance pivots on one tip in a jewel bearing and has no variations to speak of. But when the watch vertical at 90°, the balance wheel oscillates on both pivots with greater friction. So there are the extra positions to be adjusted.

Of course. In real life, the movement goes through all sorts of angles and g-forces that affect the BPH.

When a movement is adjusted correctly correctly, the amplitude of the balance wheel will be averaged for the best accuracy In those 6 positions to provide the best chance of COSC (or better) performance.

By measuring the amplitude in different positions, and by micro adjusting the balance wheel, he/she can check to see if the improvement is enough to meet standards.

Long explanation, I know.

It is impossible for a mechanical watch to be perfectly accurate but these extra adjustments yields the best chance for acceptable performance.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
Quote:
Originally Posted by 77T View Post
Materials, design, tolerances and workmanship all play a role.

The comments I often see about Rolex movements not being “pretty” are maybe true - but movement is robust.

The pretty ones may not be as strong due to design choices.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
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