Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis
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  1. #1
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    Confused Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    I am a very young collector starting out, and just recently bought a 1912 Hamilton 17J 924 from a antique mall. It worked for about 3 weeks with no issues. One day I came home and it stopped. I gently shook it back and forth to see if it would start, but it didn't. When I shook it, I could hear the pallets hitting the escape wheel, but the second hand was not moving. I tried winding it, but it is already fully wound, and won't budge. I can say that it is at LEAST not a balance staff issue, because I checked that. I think it is a mainspring issue, but I am not sure. I have done some research, but that was inconclusive, as I could not find another watch with the same symptoms. I need to know what the problem is, but I am very young and do not trust myself to take it apart. I want to know the problem so i can estimate a repair cost, as I do not have a job, or any source of income.

    This is my first post, so please excuse any spelling errors or any misused technical terms.

    Thanks,
    Cloneqwerty
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  2. #2
    Member odd_and_vintage_fan's Avatar
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    It's all gummed up with dirt and old oils. Get it serviced by a watchmaker and it'll run just dandy for the next four years or so.

    Watchmaker, NOT a jeweler. They'll just send it out to a watchmaker and charge you for the privilege. There's Vintage/Pocket Watch forum and it has a thread on how to find a watchmaker.

    https://forums.watchuseek.com/f11/wa...s-3433002.html

    The one I send my mechanicals off to charges "$95 and up" for pocket watches, but he does great work in a very reasonable timeframe. That'll work out to $25 a year to have a watch in perfect order.
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  3. #3
    Member odd_and_vintage_fan's Avatar
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    Also, welcome to the forum!

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  5. #4
    Member 6R15's Avatar
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    If you could hear the tick-tick-tick of the escapement as you said, then something is wrong between that and the gear train to the hands
    the five stages of a watch flipper
    infatuation
    appropriation acquisition justification resale

  6. #5
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    Thank you all for your help, I will start looking around for local watchmakers.

  7. #6
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    UPDATE:
    I sat down after reading this thread, and took the case off. I gently put my screwdriver in between a tooth on every gear in the train, and moved it back and forth. I managed to get it running, but it sounds clunky, and has a low amplitude. I have determined that it just needs a professional cleaning. Thank you all for your help
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  8. #7
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    Quote Originally Posted by Cloneqwerty View Post
    UPDATE:
    I sat down after reading this thread, and took the case off. I gently put my screwdriver in between a tooth on every gear in the train, and moved it back and forth. I managed to get it running, but it sounds clunky, and has a low amplitude. I have determined that it just needs a professional cleaning. Thank you all for your help
    Stop, put the caseback back on and take it to a watchmaker before you break something.

  9. #8
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    I did not break anything, I was EXTREMELY careful, and carefully put the case back on afterward.

  10. #9
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    I did not break anything, I was EXTREMELY careful, and carefully put the case back on afterward.

  11. #10
    Member Nokie's Avatar
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    Re: Amateur starting out, need a diagnosis

    A good watch pro can bring it back to life for you to enjoy, so that would be the way to go, IMHO.
    "Either he's dead or my watch has stopped"
    Groucho Marx

    "The only reason for time is so that everything does not happen at once..."
    Albert Einstein

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