Of course to explain every detail of the method of repairing the various parts of a watch would take more space than you would allow in your journal, and hence I will not attempt to go into minute detail, except perhaps some of the more important items, and the most common things found in everyday experience. Among these are broken pivots, worn pivots (sometimes requiring new ones), worn holes in plates, and at the intersection of barrel arbor, ratch and bridge of Swiss watches, etc., which, as a rule, require common sense as much as practice, and it varies in different watches, so that the common sense rule applies the best to nearly all of these, and if you have not got common mechanical sense, then you have mistaken your calling and should do something else. In any of these repairs don't go it blind, but study your case carefully and do the best thing you study out. When there is a worn pivot hole in a plate, and one side is countersunk for oil, then have a punch rounded at the point, just the shape of the countersink (and if you have not one make one, and here is where my rule, that of making a tool as the need comes for it, comes in play), and by screwing this punch into the vise, and with a smooth, flat point punch (slightly cornered of course) in one hand and holding the plate or bridge with the other, with the countersink on the punch, have a striker tap light and quick blows, and you move the punch around on the side most worn (and one side is almost invariably worn most, throwing the wheel arbor out of upright) and close up, even a little too much, and then with a round, smooth broach enlarge it, so that it will be right size, and this leaves it hard and smooth.

Broken pivots, as I have hinted, I place the arbor in a split chuck, and if true, I drill into the staff with a drill, made from a nice piece of steel wire, the old and ordinary shape of a drill, which is a trifle larger at the cutting point than it is back of the point, and I make these as I need them, and harden simply by holding the wire in a flame till red hot, and then dash into an apple, potato, soap, or pure rubber. Which is the best of these I have as yet been unable to determine, so I use either as the most handy. Take a good, tough and small pointed graver and turn a slight center in the end of arbor I am to drill, and then by giving my lathe a back and forward motion, I begin to drill, and by the sense of feeling I can tell whether my drill is cutting or not, and if not, I have a small, smooth oilstone at hand and sharpen the drill as often as it refuses to cut, and if that drill will not cut, I make another.

I make my drills of very small wire, filing them at point and then tap the point (holding the wire in a very fine pin vise), thus flattening as well as spreading it, and then shape the cutting edges as spoken of above. When you have drilled sufficiently to hold a plug firmly, then have a piece of steel of spring temper filed so as to fit closely and so straight that it will not act too wedging (and split the arbor), drive it in, cut it off and turn down, finishing with an oilstone slip, and polish by running the lathe rapidly and with a piece of thin boxwood (or hard pegwood) charged with diamantine, being sure that the end of the pivot has no burr, thrown either way, over end or on side, for such a burr will cause a lack of freedom of a balance pivot particularly. This matter of setting pivots requires a longer experience than almost any other work, and it needs a long practice to do a nice job. If your split chuck will not hold your staff or arbor true, then use cement; but in this, too, you must be sure that your center is true, and that the sound pivot enters it perfectly.

Sometimes you meet with steel so hard that you cannot touch it with a drill, in which case draw the temper of the staff or arbor you are drilling, and if it projects so little that you cannot draw the temper without injury to the wheel, then unstake or separate the wheel, and by drilling a hole into a piece of brass wire, about the size of the staff you are drilling, insert the staff in this hole, and then heat the wire near the staff and thus gradually and yet effectively draw the temper.

I consider it well for young workmen to practice pivot setting in some old and useless watch any spare time they may have, and thus become adepts at this work. Unhindered, I am not over on an average of one-half hour in setting any ordinary pivot, especially if I do not have to cement my work. If this is a balance pivot, be very careful to see that your balance is true and poised before putting on hairspring and roller. There are some pivots that are underturned (to make look tidy and light), and sometimes it is about an impossibility to put in a new one, and in this case, if an American watch, I always put in an entire new staff, and hence keep a full assortment on hand.

Regarding replacing broken jewels, I also keep a full stock of these, turned (the setting) to match any make or style of watch; except, of course, Swiss watches, and for these I keep a large assortment of sizes, both of cock and foot and wheel jewels, and a full stock once procured, they last a long time and are a good investment, for with them you can meet any emergency.

In a Swiss watch, or any watch where the jewel is set into the plate, have some one of the devices for throwing up the burnished lip, and then select a jewel that just fills the space, and then with a smooth pointed punch, such as I described I used for closing up a pivot hole, I turn this lip back by sliding this round pointed punch around the outside, making it act as a burnish. Cap jewels I either treat in the same manner as the last, or cut away the setting, and insert them as they are inserted in most Swiss watches.

I have now taken up the more common repairs, and will close by hastily speaking of the more rare cases, and the adjustment of the hair spring, etc., etc. It is often the case that there is never end shake to the balance to make it absolutely safe when screwed into the case, and when this happens I take the point of a sharp graver and prick up a burr on the bridge, and never on the plate, as any unskilled workman does, for the under side of the bridge never being finished, you really mar nothing, and sometimes this raising of the cock (or bridge) becomes a necessity, to have it clear the rim of the balance, which, if raised, it will clear, and then by bending down the end of the cock at point where the jewel is, and thus regulate the end shake. I hardly know how to give directions how to proceed in adjusting hairsprings, when they are disarranged, but if I could see you, I could explain by example what I cannot well do in words. To commence, a hairspring, when there is no power applied to balance from the jewel pin, should be, when pinned, just as free from any twist or cramping as it would be if lying flat and free on a smooth piece of glass, before it has been pinned at either end, and when it is pinned in the watch (at stud and collet) it should be thus free.

To bring it thus requires demonstration that cannot be made on paper, unless you could make diagrams, too numerous for this article.

What I have said regarding it, however, gives an idea of how a hairspring should be pinned. Common sense is demanded here as elsewhere. To put a watch in beat, too, is a very important item, which I do by placing sharp pointed tweezers, first on one side of the arm of balance and then on the other, and so pin my hairspring in the stud, that it will let off as readily on one side as the other. I had forgotten to say that every watch should have a little oil on the face of the pallet stones. I know full well that some workmen will say that there should be none, but I can tell of scores of watches that have failed and indeed stopped simply for want of oil on the pallets. Selecting mainsprings, too, needs much more care than is usually given to this department, and as a rule even the watch factories fill the barrel too full, that is, too long springs. Whether I am correct in this or not, you cannot be too particular in selecting the right strength, length, and width of mainsprings. Mainsprings should be well and carefully oiled.

There are many ways of replacing broken teeth in wheels, and the width of the web and the size of the teeth has much to do with how they are put in, but I usually dovetail them in, and then with the very tiniest bit of soft solder fasten them, but in so doing be positive you have got off all soldering fluid, that it will not rust the pinion into which it meshes, and be very particular to have it exactly like the rest of the teeth in same wheel, and don't mar the web of the wheel more than is possible.

I will now draw this article to a close, well appreciating the fact that I have only made a superficial attempt to instruct younger men in the cleaning and repairing of watches, for there is almost an endless variety of special repairs coming almost unexpectedly to any one, even if they have been in the business a long time, as I have, and as I first said, I am learning daily some new phase of the business, and am surprised that I never had known it before. I have, too, taken perhaps more space than I ought, regarding tools and bench, yet the older I grow, the more I can see the importance of this part, that I may be enabled to do work well and quick. Besides, I have left such repairs as the chain and fusee, uprighting wheels, repairing cases, adjustment to position, heat and cold, isochronism, enlarging jewels, or changing angles of pallet stones, etc., etc., all of which I do as necessity demands, as well as the care of striking watches, fly backs, etc., which, too, I make a specialty of, and of chronometer escapement watches, which would take more space than I feel disposed to ask you to give me. - American Jeweler.