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Watchmaker Contest

by Jordan Ficklin

Tags: , , , ,

Those of you follow this blog closely will be aware that Prem C of Prime Time Canada had commented on the Simple Tools Post that he was going to make available a set of barrel closers to one lucky reader of this blog.

e456_2Well they have arrived and they are very nice. The set includes one barrel closer, useful for all but the largest pocket watch barrels, and one Rolex ladies caliber barrel opener. If you’re a watchmaker and you don’t have these you want them. If you’re not a watchmaker, they may not be of interest to you – or maybe they will be.

To win the barrel opener comment on this post and tell me what your favorite horological tool is before Monday March 9th at Midnight Mountain Time Zone. Be sure to fill in your e-mail address (it won’t show up on the web-page). The winner will be selected at random from the comments. If you win I’ll contact you via e-mail to get a physical address where I should send the barrel closer.

If you don’t win the tool you can purchase one from his ebay store: Prime Time Canada

Here are some more details about the tool:

With this fabulous barrel closer tool, you can save a lot of money and hassle by being precise. The barrel is also a WHEEL, and almost always tends to get overlooked in it’s re-assembly after cleaning in an ultrasonic cleaning machine. The barrel covers are usually very flimsy,and even the slightest pressures whilst dismantling or re-assembly can damage the barrel cover, causing more or less than normal play in the BARREL and ARBOR.

This results in making more or less tension in your gear train after assembly, and if you noticed, sometimes you as a watchmaker get movements back for repair with the main plates SCOURED, both below on the main plate and above on the barrel wheel bridge. This usually means that someone, has not been clever with their barrel assembly!

These barrel closers have been made by fabulous 5 axis CNC machinery. The BARREL closers have been fabricated out of a very high grade of clear acrylic, allowing for your BARREL assembly time after time to be both precise and perfect. The material has been stress tested, and will not wear out under great duress.

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  1. Chris
    Posted February 27, 2009 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    I’m fond of the cheap little watch link adjuster I got on amazon. It’s nice being able to size new watches at home, or resize them after I haven’t worn them in a while. It doesn’t look like much but it sure does the job.

  2. Posted February 27, 2009 at 4:44 am | Permalink

    My favorite horological tool is my Ultrosonic cleaner.

    Many thanks!
    Mike Kenley

    Posted February 27, 2009 at 9:22 am | Permalink



  4. Jamie Dolinar
    Posted February 27, 2009 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    I am fond of 2 tools in my shop

    1. the horia jeweling tool (a must for any real watchmaker)

    2. I have the pleaseure of owning a electronic poising tool that is a gem when it comes to percise poising of the balance wheels on hight grade watches

    and if i win this barrel closer I will actually dontate it to the local watch school here in Michigan as a tool for the students to use and learn on


  5. Maurice D. Lareau
    Posted February 27, 2009 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    My favorite tool is the Horia 7750 movement holder that I bought from Seeing that you have CNC machinery, could you make some aluminum or brass standard size movement frames for retro fitting that could be customed fitted by watchmakers?

  6. Posted February 27, 2009 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    I size a lot of watch bands. I needed a tool to fold over the tabs on the expandable band after I had shortened the band. I used a small needle nose vice grip. I ground it down to make it a smooth jaw. It works perfectly to fold over those tabs without scratching the band. Also works for holding a stem when a crown is hard to get off.
    The other tool that is very nice is a cannon pinion puller.

  7. BoB
    Posted February 27, 2009 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    My favorite tool? Well of course it would be my beautiful new barrel closer! ­čśë Failing that, nothing beats the feel of a nice pair of Dumont tweezers.

  8. Mike Puente
    Posted February 27, 2009 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    I like my watch bench.

  9. Posted February 27, 2009 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    My favorite tool is an antique bow cutter. It is beautifully made. I don’t get to use it much. Most practical tool is my K&D Inverto 18.

  10. Posted February 27, 2009 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    Jp Hi,
    Very precise and excellent word usage, I thank you for running the article, I realised that many watchmakers still do not use barrel cover closers, even though they should. Technological advances in movement manufacturing since the 1990’s is widening these gaps of watchmaker tooling vis-a-vis knowledge. Cheers,

  11. Posted February 27, 2009 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    I’m jealous Jamie…

    For me, I’d have to say that my favourite tool is my lathe. Hands down.

  12. Vince
    Posted February 28, 2009 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    My favorite tool is my Derbyshire lathe. I bought it from a retired tool and die maker. It had never been used and had been stored in the bottom of a drawer for over fifty years. It’s a pleasure to use.

  13. michelle
    Posted March 1, 2009 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    i enjoy using all my tools, but my favorite is a pair of tweezers that i bought from a friend with a load of other bits and pieces from his clearout. i like them the best because they are fine tips, anti magnetic, long and slim, they feel very comfortable in my hand and i seem to be able to hold onto things better with them and drop less! and i use them every day,
    kind regards, michelle

  14. wtchmkr
    Posted March 4, 2009 at 3:05 am | Permalink

    More and more companies are manufacturing with higher accuracy, so escapement adjustment on new calibers may become a thing of the past. However, the escapemeter is still one of my favourite watchmaking tools.

  15. Greg
    Posted March 4, 2009 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    My favorite tools are my hands and eyes. Without them, all of the other tools are useless.

  16. DaveN
    Posted March 5, 2009 at 4:44 am | Permalink

    Being a bit of a ‘gadget freak’ my favourite tool should be my timing machine – but it isn’t. That honour goes (like BoB) to my No.2 Dumostar tweezers. Second place goes to the first watch tool that I made – a simple sharpened and hollowed-out peg wood stick for turning Novodiac shock springs.

  17. neutronfluxlabs
    Posted March 8, 2009 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

    My favorite tool would have to be my lighting and optics. Without quality lighting fixtures I would not beable to leverage the magnification of quality optics. If you cannot properly see the movement you are working on then no tool is of value.

  18. Posted March 9, 2009 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    My favorite tool is Dumont #7 bent-tip tweezers and my Bergeon 6825 spring-bar removal tool. Both have made my watch working much much easier.


  19. J.Peter
    Posted March 10, 2009 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    Contest Closed with 17 entries

  20. J.Peter
    Posted March 10, 2009 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

    The winner as generated using is comment number 13, congratulations Michelle.

2 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] a nice little gift from PrimeTime Canada ends Monday March 9th, at midnight. To enter visit the original contest posting. This entry was written by J.Peter and posted on March 8, 2009 at 9:12 am and filed under […]

  2. […] his set in a post exactly one year ago this week, it came up again in his post on simple tools, and we gave a set away to one lucky commentator back in February. One thing we haven’t done yet, though, is to […]

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