Unfortunately, my free time to tear down, clean, lubricate and reassemble watches has been limited the last few months. I am in the beginning phases. I live vicariously through Ben, Doug, Stan, and others here.
I thought I would share the results of about 3 hours last night with a Ingraham Dollar Pocket from the Teens or Twenties.
I have done some basic movement work with partial dis-assembly but, haven't done a complete tear down and service. So, I thought I would start on a larger scale with a more inexpensive movement. An old dollar watch that was frozen tight seemed to be a good start to get a feel for the basics without the risk of ruining an otherwise good movement.
I have read that the single bridge design of these could be quite frustrating to re-assemble. But, I took care to study how everything fit together so as to be ready when everything would need to slip into place at once.
The dis-assembly went very smoothly, especially with how simplistic these movements were designed. I cleaned the parts and pithed out the non-jewelled holes.(These inexpensive movements were not jewelled.) I looked for excessive wear but, under my average magnification things didn't really look all that bad.
The oiling went well, I was very careful to not get any stray oil near the hairspring.
So, now for the big question: Could I get it all back together?
I really didn't have trouble with the wheels, they could really only fit one way to "complete the circuit", so to speak. But, repositioning the escape and balance wheel was a bit more challenging. Taking care to not damage the hairspring while wrangling the balance into place took the most time of the entire process.
But, all in all, it went back the same way it came apart. Now to test my work. I check the balance to see that everything is spinning freely and watch the power transfer throughout the movement. Everything moves more effortlessly than I had imagined!
But, when I then go to wind the mainspring to see what would happen, the mainspring spun freely in the barrel..........Arghh......
Apparently, one end of the spring was weak or, already broken and I didn't realize it. But, regardless, the end effect was the same. No power.........
But, I wasn't that discouraged. Actually, I came away from the first total tear down with a very positive outlook. The escape and balance were what concerned me most and that went smoothly. So, now I just need to find another test subject that has a good mainspring to advance my experience on.
I am going to photo-document the next foray. I have at least two more similar watches to experiment with.) I really hadn't expected to get completely through the process in one sitting, as I did. It is rare for me to have that much interrupted time for such endeavors.
"Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." (John Wayne)