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Do You Know the Ten Major Structures of Watch Movements?

Machinery itself is a very complex thing. The movement of a watch is equivalent to the heart of a watch. Its movement structure can be roughly divided into ten parts, namely the prime mover, the transmission mechanism, the escapement speed regulating mechanism, the winding needle mechanism and the screw. splint mechanism, etc. Below we will explain to you in detail.


1. The prime mover of the watch


The prime mover is the source of power that provides the energy required for the clock to run. Its definition is its internal storage elastic element spring. That is, the elastic potential energy is stored, which depends on the length and thickness of the spring, and the elastic potential energy determines the length of the mechanical watch. The mainspring provides the raw energy for the mechanical watch after converting its stored elastic potential energy into mechanical energy. When the elastic potential energy stored in the mainspring is fully released, the mechanical watch loses its energy supply and stops running.


Through the understanding of the prime mover system, we can understand that all the gear trains in the mechanical watch are powered by the prime mover system except that the auxiliary gear train is driven by human external force.


In addition, the parts of the prime mover include the spring part, the barrel wheel, the barrel cover and the barrel.


2. The clockwork of the watch


The mainspring belongs to the "prime-moving mechanism" of a mechanical watch. It is made of special alloy strip with high elasticity and high toughness. According to the shape of the free state, it can be divided into two types: spiral spring and S-shaped spring. Watches currently use an S-shaped spring because it can store more potential energy. When working, the output torque is large, and the torque is relatively stable.


3. The transmission mechanism of the watch


The transmission mechanism is a set of transmission gears that transmit the energy of the prime mover to the escapement governor. It is composed of two wheels (center wheel), three wheels (over wheel), four wheels (second wheel) and escape wheel pinion. The wheel is the driving gear and the pinion is the driven gear. Most of the tooth profile of the clock transmission system is the modified cycloid tooth profile made by modifying the principle of the theoretical cycloid.


4. The needle-pulling mechanism of the watch


The winding needle mechanism is a device that can wind up the mainspring and correct the time. It consists of crown, stem, vertical wheel, clutch wheel, clutch lever, clutch lever spring, pull gear, compression spring, dial wheel, span wheel, hour wheel, minute wheel, large steel wheel, small steel wheel, pawl , pawl spring, etc.


Both the winding and the setting needle are realized by the crown part. When winding, the vertical wheel and clutch wheel are engaged. When the crown is turned, the clutch wheel drives the vertical wheel. The vertical wheel then winds up the mainspring through the small drum and the large drum. The pawl prevents the big drum from reversing. Pull out the crown when setting the needle. The pull gear rotates on the pull gear shaft and pushes the clutch lever to disengage the clutch wheel from the vertical wheel and engage the needle wheel. At this time, when the crown is turned, the needle wheel drives the hour wheel and the minute wheel through the cross wheel to achieve the purpose of correcting the hour and minute hands.


5. The column wheel of the watch


The column wheel is not only very important to the watch but also a manifestation of the watchmaking craftsmanship of a brand. The mysterious column wheel is a cylindrical gear that can rotate. The upper part of the ratchet with the triangular tooth tips on the lower half is a column perpendicular to the gear. Therefore, the ratchet is also known as the column wheel. In terms of appearance, the column wheel resembles a petal with 5 to 9 lobes. Represents the precision with which the power transmission is disconnected when the gears are running at high speed. Although the column wheel has many lobes. It has only two states: on/off, connected or disconnected.


6. The escapement speed regulating mechanism of the watch


The escapement speed regulating mechanism relies on the periodic oscillation of the balance spring. Keep the speed regulating mechanism in a precise and regular continuous motion. The devices that take the role of speed regulation and divide time include the balance wheel, the balance shaft, the hairspring part, the double disc part, the escape wheel part and the pallet fork part.


7. The rotor of the watch


The function of the rotor system is to drive the rotor to swing through the movement of the wrist to store the power in the mainspring drum.


8. Fast swing, slow swing


The number of oscillations of the speed regulating mechanism of the clock in a unit time is called "frequency" and also called "beat". In the movement of a watch, fast swing refers to a frequency of 26,000 beats per hour or higher. For example, 28,800 times/hour is a commonly used fast swing parameter. And 36,000 times/hour belongs to the type of high frequency swing.


Slow pendulum refers to the situation where the frequency of the balance wheel is less than 26,000 times per hour, generally 18,000 times per hour or less.


9. Automatic winding


Self-winding watches are usually referred to as having a power reserve of at least 40 hours. Even if the watch is not worn, it still has enough energy storage to maintain stable operation.


10. Tourbillon


Tourbillon means "spin" in French. In mechanical watches and clocks, it refers to the "rotary escapement speed regulating mechanism", which is mainly used to correct the errors caused by gravity on the clock parts and improve the accuracy of travel time.

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