With the development of the times, "intelligence" can be seen everywhere. Smartphones, smart watches, smart home appliances, and more are all kinds of intelligent devices. However, there is also a group of people who pursue more primitive and retro things. Mechanical watches are one of the most common ones. Compared with smartwatches powered by batteries, the rotating figure of the balance wheel of a mechanical watch is more eye-catching. As we all know, the movement is the heart of a watch, and a movement has hundreds of parts, each of which plays a crucial role.
Balance Wheel and Hairspring of Mechanical Watches
The balance wheel is a circular component that oscillates back and forth on the shaft. The hairspring is a very thin spring wound around the circumference of the balance wheel, consisting of a hairspring and a hairspring stud. The balance wheel is connected to the hairspring, and the hairspring drives the balance wheel to perform reciprocating motion, forming the regulating mechanism of the watch, which has a decisive influence on the accuracy of the mechanical watch's timekeeping.
Escapement of Mechanical Watches
The escapement mechanism is a switching device for mechanical energy transmission. This switch is controlled by the timing reference and switches the main drive chain of the clock at a certain frequency, indicating the stop-start alternation and rotating at a certain average speed to indicate the accurate time. Escapement locks (escapes) the motion of the main drive, at this time, the main drive chain of the clock is locked; release (lever), employs part of the potential energy of the oscillation system, opens the main drive chain motion, and at the same time retrieves a certain amount of energy from the main drive chain to maintain the operation of the oscillation system.
Winding Mechanism of Mechanical Watches
The winding mechanism is a spiral metal torque spring. According to the principle of lever moment, the energy of the winding mechanism gradually decreases as the movement runs. When the winding spring is fully wound, its torque is maximum (the torque lever is longest). Therefore, the front end of the winding spring needs to output a small force. After running for a period of time, the winding spring tightly wound on the winding shaft will slowly loosen, and its energy will decrease accordingly.
When the energy is about to run out, the torque at the end of the winding spring is minimum (the torque lever is shortest), and the output force also decreases accordingly. Therefore, the transmission power needs to be increased to maintain the operation of the mechanical watch.
Regulator of Mechanical Watches
A device for adjusting the timing of the watch. Change the effective length of the hairspring to adjust the oscillation period of the balance wheel. The regulator consists of a regulator ring, outer clamp, inner clamp, or double inner clamp. It is mounted as a component on the balance cock through a shock absorber set. The hairspring passes through the inner and outer clamps, and springs in between when it expands, contacting with the inner and outer clamps. At this time, the working length of the hairspring is from the clamp to the fixed point of the inner stud.
Jewel Bearings of Mechanical Watches
The jewel bearings inside the mechanical watch movement can effectively improve the service life of the watch movement and reduce wear and tear. Of course, it is not that the more jewel bearings, the better the movement. Generally speaking, the more jewel bearings, the more complex the structure of the movement, which can also reflect the design style of the watch.
Plate of Mechanical Watches
The plate is the basic component of the mechanical clock. Used to support and fix the parts, ensure the relative position of various parts during operation, and ensure the axial and radial clearances during operation. By means of holes, slots, columns, and threads on the plate, all internal components of the clock or watch are tightly and correctly combined to form a working whole, that is, the movement of the clock or mechanical watch.
Automatic Rotor of Mechanical Watches
The automatic rotor is a component in the automatic mechanical watch movement. The automatic rotor is an eccentric heavy hammer that can rotate. When the watch is worn on the wrist, the arm will constantly change position and swing, and the eccentric heavy hammer can drive a set of wheels (automatic steering wheel, automatic winding wheel, automatic over wheel) to wind the mainspring.
After buying a new watch, wind the mainspring fully first. After that, as long as it is worn enough every day, the automatic rotor can replenish energy to the mainspring, thus keeping the automatic watch running properly.