Watch and Clock Escapements eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 202 pages of information about Watch and Clock Escapements.

The grinding is continued until the required surface is dead flat, after which the work is washed with soap and water and the shellac dissolved away with alcohol.  The final polish is obtained on the zinc lap with Vienna lime and alcohol.  Where lathe cement is used for securing the regulator to the plate A, the alcohol used with the Vienna lime dissolves the cement and smears the steel.  Diamantine and oil are the best materials for polishing when the regulator bar is cemented to the plate A.


The knowledge most important for a practical working watchmaker to possess is how to get the watches he has to repair in a shape to give satisfaction to his customers. No one will dispute the truth of the above italicised statement.  It is only when we seek to have limits set, and define what such knowledge should consist of, that disagreement occurs.

One workman who has read Grossmann or Saunier, or both, would insist on all watches being made to a certain standard, and, according to their ideas, all such lever watches as we are now dealing with should have club-tooth escapements with equidistant lockings, ten degrees lever and pallet action, with one and one-half degrees lock and one and one-half degrees drop.  Another workman would insist on circular pallets, his judgment being based chiefly on what he had read as stated by some author.  Now the facts of the situation are that lever escapements vary as made by different manufacturers, one concern using circular pallets and another using pallets with equidistant lockings.


One escapement maker will divide the impulse equally between the tooth and pallet; another will give an excess to the tooth.  Now while these matters demand our attention in the highest degree in a theoretical sense, still, for such “know hows” as count in a workshop, they are of but trivial importance in practice.

We propose to deal in detail with the theoretical consideration of “thick” and “thin” pallets, and dwell exhaustively on circular pallets and those with equidistant locking faces; but before we do so we wish to impress on our readers the importance of being able to free themselves of the idea that all lever escapements should conform to the rigid rules of any dictum.


For illustration:  It would be easy to design a lever escapement that would have locking faces which were based on the idea of employing neither system, but a compromise between the two, and still give a good, sound action.  All workmen should learn to estimate accurately the extent of angular motion, so as to be able to judge correctly of escapement actions.  It is not only necessary to know that a club-tooth escapement should have one and one-half degrees drop, but the eye should be educated, so to speak, as to be able to judge of angular as well as linear extent.

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Watch and Clock Escapements from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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