30
NOV
2015

The Detent Model

NOTE: FOR THE CURRENT STATE OF PROGRESS (UPDATED FREQUENTLY) PLEASE SCROLL DOWN RIGHT BELOW THE ‘EQUIPMENT’ SECTION. YOU WILL FIND THE MOST RECENT PIECES THERE.

 

Unlike two years ago when Joe was working intensely on building a prototype for the Tourbillon Model, we are at the moment tackling the current project sans prototype. Because we gained experience with the Tourbillon Model, that experience carries over to the Detent Model; both models also share several components throughout the mechanism.

The design philosophy of both models is classic, clean, and minimalist, as is the manufacturing process. We are in a profession that has a history of many centuries, and its culture should resist the influx of digital elements. Let’s face it, we watchmakers are in demand because of the passion for high end mechanical watches. And we should be the last ones who contaminate our beautiful “nature preserve” with CNC, 3D printing and the like technologies that are applied by some in the hope to substitute the masterful skills of a competent watchmaker. Our profession is built on a high level of skills and knowledge, and we better make sure that it stays that way.

I will get off my soap box now and continue talking about the project.

These are some of the players: The first year students, who started at the Lititz Watch Technicum three months ago, in September 2015.

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The Detent Model Team

   

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The Detent Model Team

 

And this is the equipment used to create these beautiful pieces – it is as traditional as the watchmaking profession itself:

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Schaublins

Two Schaublin lathes, with milling attachment and dividing head.


 

Watchmaker’s lathe with cross slide

Filing a square on the watchmaker’s lathe

Watchmaker’s lathes. Very similar to the Schaublins, just much smaller.


 

 

Small drill press

 

Drill presses. Most drilling can be done with a lathe, but a drill press is an efficient alternative.


Burnisher

 

This fantastic little machine helps you create flawless pivots in a very reliable and time efficient way.

 


 

 

The individual components of our detent model

 

6. Escape Wheel Arbor

This is a relatively long piece with a small diameter, which can be a challenge when it comes to maintaining concentricity during machining and heat treatment. We developed and optimized our process on several workpieces:

 

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Pinion for escape wheel arbor cut, before heat treatment. Tip of ballpoint pen as reference.

 

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Escape Wheel Arbor, after heat treatment

 

 

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Arbor in Hardening Tube. Using a hardening tube reduces scaling and distortion.

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Closup of Hardening Tube.

 

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Checking the runout error after heat treatment using a dial indicator.

 

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Closeup: tip of dial indicator on pinion

5. Hairspring Collet

 

Hairspring Collet (not yet cross drilled)

 

 


 

4. Impulse Roller

Impulse Roller – test fitting the stone

 

Impulse Roller

 


 

3. Unlocking Roller

Unlocking Roller, just finished. Test fitting the unlocking stone (not deburred yet).

 

 

Here the unlocking roller is posing next to a ball point pen (standard edition) for size reference.

 


 

2. The Balance Bridge, made by Cory Schell and Jacob Curtis.

 

This collage shows the bridge in various stages of completion

 


1. Transmission Wheel Arbor – stages in chronological order (click on image for high resolution).

 

Initial centering of the pinion cutter to the arbor blank

 

 

Centering the pinion cutter to the arbor blank using the male center in the tailstock as additional reference point.

 

 

 

Cutting the pinion leaves

Complete

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cutter and completed pinion

 

Arbor with points

Arbor with points

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hardening

 

Removing the scale

 

Tempering

Tempering

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Measuring the runout error caused by the heat treatment

 

Arbor with pivots machined

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Arbor with pivots machined

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Burnishing the pivots to size

 

Verifying fit to hole jewel

 

Finished arbor with hub installed and wheel blank.