Westclox bullseye pocket watch won't run
September 19, 2020 7:44 PM   Subscribe

My pocket watch is wound up tight and

won't run. I'd like to work on it but Google and YouTube have nothing for me . Can you help?
posted by notned to Technology (2 answers total)
Many people with broken watches are under the impression they've overwound the watch and broke it. It's important to remember that overwinding cannot break a watch. Watches are designed to wind only to a certain point, meaning something else is the problem.

Attempt to wind the watch again and see if it works. Make sure that the watch was wound properly before you attempt more ambitious repairs, as opening a watch risks breaking it further.

Open the watch to diagnose the problem. Use a knife or thin screwdriver and carefully pry open the cover to see where the problem is within the watch. The two most common problems are the spring not being properly connected and the staff being broken. The staff is easily replaceable and the spring can be reattached to either the winder or the staff. However, do so with caution, as watches can be very delicate and easily broken.
posted by ananci at 8:00 PM on September 19 [2 favorites]

If it is an older watch it can indeed be over-wound, but from the sound of this it is a modern one. The usual technique was to either let it sit a few days to see if changes in temperature and humidity help, or to tap the rim of the watch on something hard to see if you can get the vibrations from the bang to make it loosen. I have heard of people putting them on a washing machine that jiggles while a load of clothes are run to try and see if those vibrations will do it.

You could also take it to a watch mender, if you can find one in your area. Look for clock and watch makers generally found in older neighbourhoods and providing services to seniors.
posted by Jane the Brown at 9:20 AM on September 20

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