Tech Session of 07/09/2016
The session opened with Chapter President Drew Lundgren providing an update on preparation for the August Regional and encouraging members to continue to repair and donate items for the silent auction. Members were also reminded that we need items for our regional exhibit “Timepieces in the Workplace”. Please contact Albert Rambaud (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have items that may be suitable for display in the exhibit. We'll begin setting up for the Regional on Thursday morning about 9:00 AM. If you're available, help would be appreciated. Also, please register for the Regional if you have not yet done so.
The ever-entertaining Ben Fulbright regaled us stories of the history of Chapter 139 and shared a draft of his 66 page book of helpful practical hints from the workbench, "Tips and Tricks for Restoring Old Clocks." He has assembled this book from his many years of clock repair, focusing on the types of tip and tricks that clock repair classes do not usually cover. Bob Holkan has generously arranged for publication and copies will be available for purchase at the Regional with all proceeds going to the Chapter.
Show and Tell included a brass movement that Drew has commenced restoring, and had considerable success using "Evaporust" to remove rust. It was quite a remarkable transformation when compared to the “before” pictures (pics below)
The session also featured a presentation from Mr. Nino Sardi, Senior Lecturer and Coordinator from the Watch & Clockmakers School of Western Australia (http://www.wcawa.org.au/Training.html) where Chapter 139 Vice President Shaun Clarke trained. Nino provided an interesting insight into the recent growth of interest in watch and clock making in Western Australia and described the training that 37 students are currently studying at the school. Nino also showed a recent repair of a cracked mainspring barrel by removing the ring gear and fitting it to a donor barrel. (Shaun Clarke)
Photos: Darrah Artzner, Drew Lundgren and Shaun Clarke
Tech Session of 02/13/2016
Everyone was very relaxed and peaceful until the mini sessions started. There were three in all. The first was Shaun Clarke's demonstration of how to remove a pocket watch main spring and clean or replace it. The second was Val Link's presentation on how to fill a worn pivot hole using silver solder and acetelyne torch. The third was Drew Lundgren's demonstration on how to resilver a dial assisted by Ken Arnold. All three presentations were just super and any one of them would have been enough for one Tech Session on its own. Again, they were Super! Keep up the good work guys.
Members and the Board discussed replacements for the new year as Avin Brownlee (Treasurer) has served a full term and then some. A couple of Director positions were also discussed for relplacement. And, don't be surprised if the Tech room gets more shelving in the near future.
Members were urged to take a clock to restore for the Silent Auction that will be held at the August Regional.
Tech Session of 01/09/2016
It seemed that attendees at this session were truly the die-hards of the Chapter since this session occurred only one week after the One Day Show. Regardless, there were a couple of new attendees, welcome, and attendance was very good but it did take a coffee and doughnut or two for most to get going. This was a positive setting though since it gave some others a chance to present some tips, tricks and showings for a very attentive group. For example, Drew Lundgren gave a demonstration on how to repair the end of a main spring by reducing the temper on the spring end, punching a new hole and then triming and smoothing the end. A perfect job! A new member brought in a 'problem child' mantle clock to see ifit could be straightened out, so to speak. Another newcomer came in for assistance on a clock he was given at the previous One Day Show for an initial lesson on clock repair. One long time member brought in a recent acquisition that was an 18 size, model one, 19 jewel Rockford. It had a running problem that was easily fixed by replacing a balance jewel screw to one of correct size so that it would not interfere with the balance. He explained that purchasing a watch that is not running is a gamble and are not usually this easy to diagnose and repair. Following the formal activities, a few folks stayed helping one another for another two hours.
Oh, I was working on a relatively new 6 size pocket watch with center seconds hand in which the seconds hand looked more like a Z than an arrow. After the third time of fitting and straightening I had it about 98% straight and wanted to get at least one more percent from it. However, pulling it off of the arbor the fourth time caused it to develop wings and took off. I felt so bad that I took it home and replaced it. It doesn't happen often but does happen. I will take a magnet along with me next month and see if I can find it.
Four of us stayed after and sorted out clocks for the Chapter sponsored Silent Auction in August. I accepted the challange and took home a 400 day anniversary and vintage Mastercrafter animated electric clock. Both have broken parts that will need replaced or made and then cleaned. D. Artzner
Tech Session of 03/12/2016
Turnout at the tech session was very good, and there was much active discussion both before and after the formal part of the meeting. We had no guests in attendance.
First, Darrah Artzner gave us an overview of his plan for the upcoming March 20th NAWCC Webinar in which Darrah will give an overview of Rockford pocket watches. This is nice recognition of Darrah's expertise.
SHOW & TELL
Edward McDowell purchased a topping tool at the show in Mesquite, took it home and cleaned it up, then brought it to the tech session for all to see. The mostly brass tool shows great workmanship. It received much attention. (photo attached).
Albert Rambaud showed us photos of a "basket case" French clock movement that Jim Dubois donated to the Chapter. After verifying that most of the essential parts were present, Albert showed his expertise in restoring the movement, including some parts fabrication. Albert's handiwork will be included in the Chapter's silent auction.
Shaun Clarke brought in a watchman's clock and leather case that he purchased at the Chapter 124 Regional. The rather small clock looked almost new.
Marcus Bush showed us a rather common looking black flat top mantle clock that had a bit of a twist. The clock has an alarm in the case that is separate from the movement. The alarm is wound through a winding arbor in the base below to the left of the dial. Marcus is graciously donating this clock to us for the Silent Auction.
We had two formal demonstrations, both of which drew crowds around:
Shaun Clarke brought in his electronic, high tech watch timer and gave a demonstration of how it works with various watches.
Ken Arnold gave a demonstration of installing bushings in a clock plate that was brought in by Giovanni.
There was an informal Board meeting shortly thereafter. (Drew Lundgren)
Tech Session of 04/09/2016
This session started off with a bang by having several members giving mini demonstrations: Drew Lundgren brought in a depthing tool and gave several examples of how to use the tool; Ben Fulbright brought in several fusee and fusee like clock movements and talked at length about them; Edward McDowell gave a rendition of how a verge with a broken pinion can cause grey hair; and Jimmie Burchfield showed us his gimballed Hamilton 22 clock in a double box. Shaun Clarke brought members up to date on the status of the pocket watch class that will be held in June and Marcus Bush explained his idea of how the Galveston day trip will be conducted. Marcus said the date for the trip was delayed due to competition with other tour groups. An electro-magnetic battery operated clock was brought for trouble shooting because it kept running too fast. One solution was suggested, dropping the pendulum so that the curved bar would be centered within the coil, and we shall see if it helped at next months gathering.
Tech Session of 05/11/2016
The session began by several members that attended the latest pocket watch class giving comments about it. Even though they were all positive, Shaun and I will be making a few changes to improve on it since we would like to make it even better for the one planned in the Fall. We want to thank all of the students for being very dedicated and with positive attitudes during the class. It was a lot of fun, Darrah
Chapter President Drew Lundgren brought in a Reminder clock and suggested that it be a Chapter project. There was silence in the room since he suggested it be done in a month. Several members liked the idea but thought the time to completion was too short. It was shelved for the time being. Tasks will include case work, electrical, clock maintenance and skilled painting or some other means of reproducing the advertising and other details.
Tasks related to the up and comming Regional were discussed and all individuals, since being seasoned veretians, had them under control. Links to host hotel reservation and early discount registrtion form were discussed and, as of this writing, are in place and working properly.
This session should be considered one of the all time greats in terms of Show & Tell. A half dozen folks brought in items that were really crowd pleasers. Most were captured in the pics below. Check 'em out!
Tech Session of 06/11/2016
Copyright 2010 NAWCC San Jacinto Chapter 139
Tech Session of 08/13/2016
Tech Session of 09/10/2016
The latest trend during the Tech Sessions of 2016 has been Show and Tell and problem solving tips and tricks and this one was no exception. Several members brought in items that had problems solved but wanted to share that solution with others. That was just Super! Darrah Artzner presented a Power Point presentation of the servicing of an Ansonia alarm carriage clock and a pdf of it is available below. There is no verbiage and you just had to be there to get a full benefit out of it.
Geoff Parker attended the National in Kentucky and accepted on behalf of Chapter 139 the Chapter Of The Year Award. He also brought George Goolsby's Fellow award back to Houston and presented it to him during this session. Congratulations George! George is also a National Representative and will be attending our All Texas Chapters Regional in August.
Fellow member Bob Holkan, previous manager over Ben Fulbright during their working together at NASA and now retired, managed to collect many tips and tricks that Ben Fulbright had documented over the years and thought it worthy for publishing this year. He di just that and presented Ben with several copies of the book. Ben, in turn, presented several copies to the Chapter to do with at it pleases. The Chapter thanks him very much and copies will be available for sale at the August Regional. Two copies will be donated to the NAWCC for their lending library and special books section.
There was just about 100% Show and Tell during this session since it was requested that members bring any recent purchases from the Regional and why they bought it.
Ben Fulbright gave an interesting presentation about iron front clocks and noted that they are not all iron. Some can be found made from spelter and others aluminum. Marcus Bush brought in a mini drill press that was his present from Geoff Parker. Both Geoff and Marcus wanted to bid on it during the Chapter sponsored Silent Auction but Marcus was not available to bid on it. Geoff won the bid and later presented it to Marcus. It is really a special drill in that it is inexpensive but is built with ball bearings and is highly accurate. One had to know details of that press in order to realize that it was a super buy at the final winning bid. Marcus really appreciates the gift Geoff. Marcus also brought in the skeleton clock he made during the last class that was taught by Del Rolison and suggested that the Chapter get another class ready for the up and coming year. By the way, Del told attendees that he is getting an introductory CAD class ready and, with luck, should have it finalized for the new year.
Darrah Artzner brought in an Ansonia swinger that Marcus gave him to iron out some problems. Darrah in turn presented the group with those problems and how they were solved. They are pretty simple clocks yet there are many minor adjusts that are necessary in order to make them run reliably and some of those problems can be found related to the stand in which the clock is supported. He also noted that not all the swingers utilize the same size jewel bar and that acquiring a correct one can be an event in itself. For example, Junghans and Ansonia swinger jewel bars are different in distance between the jewels than those for Asian swingers. Sometimes they have to be made using new or pressed out cup jewels.
Someone brought in a watch for Geoff Parker to identify as real or fake. Sorry to say the watch was a dud and hope the owner did not pay too much for it. Another hunter watch was also brought in a Thomas Russel & Son movement (refer to pics below) for further identification but left without an complete answer. There were other discussions but they have slipped my mind. Hopefully others will send me more details that I omitted.
Tech Session of 10/08/2016
This month's Tech Session was a mix of Show & Tell and repairing. A Grandfather movement was brought in for a bent center arbor repair and Drew Lundgren ended up explaining how a quarter hour/tubular chime movement operates the chiming mechanism. What was also interesting was the stand that was used for holding the movement. Refer to the photos below. Bill Hardy showed the group the results of a computer program he has been working with for rendering drawings. Shaun Clarke reminded everyone that the pocket watch servicing class was full and that it is right on schedule for the end of the month. He also mentioned that anyone wanting to donate tools to the Chapter can go the Chapter web site and review tools that are needed for various stages of experience for both clocks and watches. These lists are good references when shopping at out of town regionals too since they can be viewed on line. Shaun replaced a gasket on Dennis Carroll's Gruen wrist watch as the one installed appeared to be in pieces during a recent battery replacement. Desmond Rolf brought in glass plates that were ornamented with reverse decals and talked about the process of which can be done via an ink jet printer and copier. Ben Fulbright showed a five foot clock dial with hands and stated that these were parts of a two faced electric clock that he is donating to the Chapter for placement at the top of Tim's building. One of the two dials will have to be made due to a crack but that should do it. Well, maybe not. No one has thought out the need for installing water proof power to the site, possible licensing from the city, and getting it up on the building. Piece of cake, right? RIGHT! I am sure I left out something as there was sooooo much going on.
Tech Session of 11/12/2016
This session was combined with the One Day Show on the 5th. Go there.
Tech Session of 12/10/2016
President Drew Lundgren opened the session by thanking Edward McDowell and his wife for hosting this year's Xmas gathering as it was truly appreciated by all attendees.
There were several new faces at this session as a result of their finding out about us through the Mini Maker Faire and Chapter web site. They all had clocks that needed identified or had problems that could not be resolved. Drew Lundgren (Pres) showed members how to drill a centered hole into a steel rod (arbor) using a 6 jawed chuck and Shaun Clarke (VP) gave all clock lovers a chance to identify a chuck that most had never seen before since it is used for working with watch crowns. Geoffrey Parker brought in his recently serviced 400 day clock and was especially proud of it since his main bag is wrist watches and getting them to run is quite different than a watch movement.
I might add that Shaun and I (Darrah) responded to a couple of requests for assessing watch collections since the last Tech Session. One was the son of a former NAWCC member that passed away and the other was a non-member with a similar situation. They had no idea of what to do so sought us out for advice by searching the NAWCC and Chapter web sites. We gave them pointers on how to identify watches, provided them with references, general values, and suggestions on ways to dispose of their watches. Both parties appreciated the advice they received and we wish them the very best on dissolving their recently acquired collections. Chapter 139 members have always made themselves available to all local residents, and in particular Chapter members, in situations such as these at no expense since we consider it a service to the community. The only down side for those of us that are assessors is that at no time do we attempt the purchase any item since we are the ones laying ground work for their values.
Tech Session of 1/14/2017
The meeting was called to order at about 8:20 AM with all seats filled. The attendance was good.
We started with discussion about the upcoming One Day Show and Annual Membership Meeting on Saturday, February 4th. Both Marcus Bush and Ben Fulbright gave indications that there'll be some nice things on the mart tables and those include clocks and tools. The meeting will also include election of three officers. Ken Arnold has volunteered to run for Secretary, Giovanni Santarsiere has volunteered to run for Vice President, and sadly we still have no one volunteering for the President position.
It was mentioned that NAWCC had not yet posted our Regional on the website. It was explained that we had submitted approval forms in 2016 for several years of Regionals, and we submitted them again in January 2017 and received approval during the second week of January for our August Regional. Planning should start soon.
We spoke about the National Convention in Arlington and our plans to help with unloading and loading. Ken Arnold will be coordinating that activity as he does so well for our Regional. Members were encouraged to enter the various craft categories. It is a great opportunity to show off the good work that our members do.
We talked about recent classes, including the spring barrel class and the wood works movement class. Both got excellent reviews. Thanks to Marcus, Joe and Tim for teaching the spring barrel class, and to John Hardy for the two wooden works classes. And we talked very briefly about the ongoing "Build Your Own Skeleton Clock" class led by Marcus with some guidance from Del. Participants in that class stuck around for to work on their clocks. Darrah announced that he and Shaun will teach another 3/4 plate Elgin class on March 11 and 12. We also talked about taking up John Hubby on his offer to teach a class on Bulle clocks.
Geoff Parker reminded people in attendance that it is time to pay dues. Cash and checks (payable to Chapter 139) are preferred. If you didn't pay at the Tech Session, you can pay at the One Day Show.
We thanked Edward McDowell for hosting a great Christmas party at his home in December. That was a good time, but next year we need for those planning to drink alcoholic beverages to bring their own instead of dipping into the host's private collection.
We moved on to the show and tell part of the session, starting with Brent and his 1959 Howard Miller map clock. Fortunately with some troubleshooting he got the moving time scroll behind the map to start moving. Darrah brought in a safe timer unit from a Cannonball safe. It had three York timers built into the unit. Ken Arnold brought in a wooden works stand, built by Sammy who donated it to the Chapter. It is a really cool design to accommodate the movement and weights (pic below). That led to a lengthy and educational discussion about repair of wooden works, including pinions and types of bushings. Val Link showed us a finger ring representing the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Engineers which you sometimes see on Ball pocket watches. Wayne Denham talked about the Galveston Railroad Museum and the clock we had donated to them. He brought in a nice article about railroad timekeeping. Darrah Artzner has volunteered to clean and service the Ball pocket watch used when giving tours at the museum.
At that time we ended the formal part of the meeting and attendees began working on their clocks and watches. Marcus brought in a number of clocks from the estate of the late Bonita Spivey and the Chapter purchased a number of these clocks for our Regional silent auction. We need members to start working on those needing cleaning and/or repair. Clocks not purchased by the Chapter will be brought to the One Day show for sale. (Drew Lundgren)
Tech Session of 2/11/2017
This was a very busy session with many members bringing Show & Tell items with some super presentations. (more verbiage to come)
Tech Session of 3/11/2017
Tim Glanzman brought in some lathes and gave attendees a great lesson on their uses, differences and advantages over one another (photo). He also discussed the use of attachments.
Refer below for Ken Arnold's notes on the session
Ken Arnold's notes from the March 11, 2017 Tech Session;
Pocket watch repair session was in progress, Shaun and Darrah as instructors.
We have 15 silent auction items for the August Show. Three have been repaired and I circle the number on blue tape to indicate they are ready to go. I did try to get several members to take clocks to repair. We need more auction items.
We have 12 volunteers to help unload at the NAWCC national in Dallas. There will be three unloading sites and we will be responsible for one. Carts are being supplied by Dallas host chapter.
Show and Tell;
Geoff showed a German watch and a framed rolls Royce watch parts.
Desmond explained how he repaired a pivot on a skeleton clock that a member broke during the skeleton class.
Desmond repaired the shaft on a KWM bushing tool. This seems to be a design flaw from KWM.
Albert talked about dulling drill bits to used on brass or plastic.
Member? Repaired a golden hour clock by cleaning the old hardened grease out of the motor.
Member? Brought an early bird cage grandfather movement to show members.
Suggestion that members generate a list of items that they are looking for at the national and call people if you find one.
Ralph and Jeff will have a Saturday sidewalk sale on March 18th at there shop on Westhiemer.
Tim gave an excellent presentation on choosing a lathe. He gave handouts that compared the following; initial price, accessories available and price, accuracy,portability,strength,CNC option, types, jeweler lathe, Sherline, Taig, Unimat, mini lathe (Swig, Grizzly, Harbor Freight, etc.
Tim also handed out a list of manual lathe safety rules.
(Photo courtesy of Ken Arnold)
Tech Session of 4/08/2017
This Session was electrified by Albert Rambaud's presentation of the testing of an electro-mechanical clock. He gave details of the circuitry and provided trouble shooting tips. He also demonstrated his self built testing device and the principles behind it. We also had several show and tell items that kept everyone's attention. The Chapter would also like to thank Albert for donating his stereo microscope to the Chapter and, I am sure it will get plenty of use from the watch folks.
Tech Session of 5/13/2017
This session brought out some interesting items during the Show and Tell section even though it was brief. Shaun Clarke gave an excellent presentation on the NAWCC Musuem with plenty of photos. It was just Super! Several members then dug into their projects while others worked on problems or problem solving. Gene Bruce surprised everyone by his giving attendees a portable head light. Thanks Gene! View the pics form more info.
Sorry folks, got a new camera and not used to it so a couple of shots are out of focus.
Tech Session of 6/10/2017
Tech Session of 8/12/2017
Tech Session of 7/08/2017
Several members brought in some Show n Tell items that were informative or needed questions answered about them. Refere to the picture gallery for more info.
Attendees were also given the opportunity to learn about plating from Val Link who has been working with and teaching about precious metals for years. He gave a super demo on how to plate using power from batteries and all the tips that provide excellent results. He bought in worn out watch cases that ended up looking like beauties!
Here are some tips I wrote down while Val gave his demonstration:
Use cyanide solutions for best results (better conductivity). "Don't mix with acid based solutions"
Solutions of copper, silver, nickel and gold. (source jewelry supply)
Rio Grande, Krone web sites and others
Direct current from 3 to 6v. Watch cases use 6v and small parts 3v. If plating has a brown color it is too much voltage (current?) as it is burning.
Make two leads (red) for + and black for -
Brush can be folded over sponge or tight pored seat cushion (spongy) in between alligator clip.
Use a copper wire and form it to fit within a watch case body that make minimal contact.
Most important point is to have it finished perfectly and feather edges of existing plate with worn areas so new plating will blend in with others. Best to plate entire object so no transition edge will be produced.
Use pickling solution to clean if desired (sodium bisulfate). However, any super cleaning will do ok.
Use gloves and good ventilation.
Do copper plating to increase conductivity. Nickel plating used to fill and give better surface when gold plating. Silver under gold is ok too.
Prep process is most important.
Gold anode is best as it replenishes the gold cyanide solution.
Use a buffing stick to burnish after plating. (felt surface)
Brass brush with oil for burnishing.
Power: 6v lantern battery, three c or d battery holder (4.5v), two c or d batteries at 3.v are some choices.
Geoff Parker brought in some interesting watches to show and gave the group the story behind getting good deals on them. Desmond Rolf brought in a couple of different cutters when doing lathe work and showed how versatile they can be when cutting. Val Link brought in a statue needing an arm attached that he repaired. John Trego brought in a calendar mechanism the needs parts but doesn't know just what parts. And, finally Tim Glanzman gave a talk on a China made lathe and what it took to get a good deal. Click through the photos and enjoy.
The last couple of Tech Session have revealed that new technology in lighting has gained everyone's interest and this session was no exception. Albert Rambaud brought in a light that attaches to a cap and caught the attention of everyone. It was actually used for shedding some light on a cuckoo clock problem that Joe Mixon fixed. Then. Geoff Parker presented some good wrist watch deals and explained how they became a reality. There were several clock problems that I did not have time to detail as it was a busy session. Sorry about that. Finally, Tim showed the group shirts that Nita Mixon purchased for the National unloading crew to advertise the All Texas Chapters Regional that will be held next month. They went well with the white cowboy hats and gave the crew a unified appearance. They did an excellent job and gave the National a punch in the arm.
This was the first Tech Session following the All Texas Chapters Regional that became drenched by Hurricane Harvey causing all events to be terminated prematurely on Friday evening instead of Saturday. Therefore, Chapter president, Tim Glanzman, took the time to hand out certificate awards to all those present that made the Regional possible. Tim will get the remaining certificates to those not preset at a later date. Hurricane damage and recovery efforts was discussed at that time as several members reported having damaged homes as well as some of their clocks and watches, the extent of which is unknown at this time. I hope everyone brushes up on salvaging techniques and gets most back into working time pieces. If you do not know how to bring a watch or clock back to life or, even determine if one can be revived, contact Joe Mixon or Shaun Clarke. I feel a mini or even maxi restoration class coming on.