question about trimmer adjustment

# Thread: question about trimmer adjustment

1. ## question about trimmer adjustment

I noticed on the 'how to' it says to make adjustments 1/32 of a turn at a time. I made adjustments more like 1/8- 1/4 and I noticed my first 3 adjustments it kept speeding up even tho I had turned in different directions.
I seemed to get it to slow down by going counter-clockwise (by the way this is a dw5600e-1v) Each 1/8th of a turn was slowing it 15 seconds per month according to my calculations and since it was 30sec fast i figured one more 1/4 turn counterclockwise should do it but now its 120 seconds fast/month. Can the trimmer screw be turned as much as you want? say to make the watch 20 min fast a month or can it only be rotated say once and then it goes back to the accuracy it was? Like adjustable + or - 2min / month?

2. ## Re: question about trimmer adjustment

From what I observed, the trim adjustment screw isn't mapped out to an exact ratio of degrees and time. I also found it better to turn it less than more. I have not had to turn it more than 40 degrees to correct the most inaccurate watch. At some points I went too far, then had to go back the other way. Also... I noticed that with some watches, there is a "settle in" period. The observed time deviation will change a little after a few days. So... it's really best to do this with a bunch of watches together, and over a period of several weeks. So for instance, if after your first adjustment you're seeing a 1 second gain in 3 days, just do a very minor turn in the negative direction. Observe the time deviation again over several days, and if you have to adjust it again, do even less of an adjustment.

Lastly, do not aim for +/- 0 deviation, otherwise it'll drive you mad. The best thing is to stop once you're within +/- 5 seconds per month. After time adjusting 8 watches, I've got 3 that gain 5 sec/mo, 3 that gain 3 sec/mo, 1 that is losing like 1 sec/mo, and 1 that is absolutely dead on (it baffles me how I managed that).

3. ## Re: question about trimmer adjustment

Originally Posted by xevious
From what I observed, the trim adjustment screw isn't mapped out to an exact ratio of degrees and time. I also found it better to turn it less than more. I have not had to turn it more than 40 degrees to correct the most inaccurate watch. At some points I went too far, then had to go back the other way. Also... I noticed that with some watches, there is a "settle in" period. The observed time deviation will change a little after a few days. So... it's really best to do this with a bunch of watches together, and over a period of several weeks. So for instance, if after your first adjustment you're seeing a 1 second gain in 3 days, just do a very minor turn in the negative direction. Observe the time deviation again over several days, and if you have to adjust it again, do even less of an adjustment.

Lastly, do not aim for +/- 0 deviation, otherwise it'll drive you mad. The best thing is to stop once you're within +/- 5 seconds per month. After time adjusting 8 watches, I've got 3 that gain 5 sec/mo, 3 that gain 3 sec/mo, 1 that is losing like 1 sec/mo, and 1 that is absolutely dead on (it baffles me how I managed that).
thank you for responding to my confusing post. I was checking the time on a 24 hour cycle, I will give it a few days to settle before syncing it to the atomic clock this time and see what happens

4.

5. ## Re: question about trimmer adjustment

Originally Posted by matt1357
thank you for responding to my confusing post. I was checking the time on a 24 hour cycle, I will give it a few days to settle before syncing it to the atomic clock this time and see what happens
Please be sure you are using an accurate and repeatable time reference. Radio controlled ("Atomic") clocks can drift over the course of a day as can computers, etc. Remember, you are attempting to measure differences of a few tenths of a second in 24 hours - a yeoman's task without careful measurements and an accurate reference.

One way to alleviate the effects of some of the variables is simply to measure time difference over a longer period of time. Even 48 or 72 hours will yield better results than just 24 hours.

HTH

6. ## Re: question about trimmer adjustment

Originally Posted by matt1357
thank you for responding to my confusing post. I was checking the time on a 24 hour cycle, I will give it a few days to settle before syncing it to the atomic clock this time and see what happens
Yes, waiting a few days is best once your deviation is less than 0.5 seconds per day. The OP on the time adjustment thread talked about using a stopwatch in a procedure to figure out the deviation in a shorter period of time, but it's inherently flawed on two counts: 1) the human finger reaction to brain impulse is inconsistent with timing, and 2) there is a settle-in period needed after adjustment. Also, you don't need to deal with waiting for the atomic sync to take place in the night time. I just manually set the time to a watch I know is already in sync. And as Gaijin mentioned, even an atomic sync watch can drift quite a bit between synchronizing, so a good method is to do your time adjustment in the morning, only 7 hours after the reference watch has synchronized.

7. ## Re: question about trimmer adjustment

The trimming adjustment is almost certainly a variable capacitor, and it is likely to go from maximum slow to maximum fast in one half turn of the screw.

They generally have one fixed "plate", which may be metal or just metalized ink printed on an insulator, attached to the base. Then there is a rotating disc, which has its own metallic "plate". Both of the plates cover one-half of a circle. The capacitor has maximum value when the moving and stationary plates are aligned one over the other, and minimum value at 180 degrees away from this position where the plates are as far as possible apart.

So if you happened to start out with the capacitor set exactly half-way through its adjustment range, the plates would be half-overlapping. From that position, turning the adjusting screw in one direction decreases the capacitor value for just 90 degrees *and then it starts increasing again*. Similarly, turning the screw in the other direction increases the value for 90 degrees *and then starts decreasing it again*. Moreover, it wasn't likely half-way through its range when you started, so you might have only 45 degrees of range in one direction and 135 degrees in the other direction before the effect of turning the screw reverses.

So if you adjust by 1/32 turn at one time, then remeasure the rate, you can easily tell whether your adjustment is in the right direction or not. If you make several adjustments in the same direction and the timing gets better for a while then becomes worse, you will know you've passed the point of adjustment reversal.

Adjusting 1/4 turn at a time is way too much to figure out what is going on, unless you can actually see the capacitor plates and know you haven't passed either the "minimum alignment" or "maximum alignment" points.

- Dave

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