Watch and Clock Escapements eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 236 pages of information about Watch and Clock Escapements.


We will now, with our improved drawing instruments, resume the consideration of the ratchet-tooth lever escapement.  We reproduce at Fig. 16 a portion of diagram III, from Moritz Grossmann’s “Prize Essay on the Detached Lever Escapement,” in order to point out the error in delineating the entrance pallet to which we previously called attention.  The cut, as we give it, is not quite one-half the size of Mr. Grossmann’s original plate.

In the cut we give the letters of reference employed the same as on the original engraving, except where we use others in explanation.  The angular motion of the lever and pallet action as shown in the cut is ten degrees; but in our drawing, where we only use eight and one-half degrees, the same mistake would give proportionate error if we did not take the means to correct it.  The error to which we refer lies in drawing the impulse face of the entrance pallet.  The impulse face of this pallet as drawn by Mr. Grossmann would not, from the action of the engaging tooth, carry this pallet through more than eight degrees of angular motion; consequently, the tooth which should lock on the exit pallet would fail to do so, and strike the impulse face.

We would here beg to add that nothing will so much instruct a person desiring to acquire sound ideas on escapements as making a large model.  The writer calls to mind a wood model of a lever escapement made by one of the “boys” in the Elgin factory about a year or two after Mr. Grossmann’s prize essay was published.  It went from hand to hand and did much toward establishing sound ideas as regards the correct action of the lever escapement in that notable concern.

If a horological student should construct a large model on the lines laid down in Mr. Grossmann’s work, the entrance pallet would be faulty in form and would not properly perform its functions.  Why? perhaps says our reader.  In reply let us analyze the action of the tooth B as it rests on the pallet A.  Now, if we move this pallet through an angular motion of one and one-half degrees on the center g (which also represents the center of the pallet staff), the tooth B is disengaged from the locking face and commences to slide along the impulse face of the pallet and “drops,” that is, falls from the pallet, when the inner angle of the pallet is reached.

[Illustration:  Fig. 16]

This inner angle, as located by Mr. Grossmann, is at the intersection of the short arc i with the line g n, which limits the ten-degree angular motion of the pallets.  If we carefully study the drawing, we will see the pallet has only to move through eight degrees of angular motion of the pallet staff for the tooth to escape, because the tooth certainly must be disengaged when the inner angle of the pallet reaches the peripheral line a.  The true way to locate the position of the inner angle of the pallet, is to measure down on the arc i ten degrees from its intersection with the peripheral line a and locate a point to which a line is drawn from the intersection of the line g m with the radial line a c, thus defining the inner angle of the entrance pallet.  We will name this point the point x.

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Watch and Clock Escapements from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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