When you invest in a luxury watch you not only great the rush of serotonin straight to the brain. A natural response after you’ve bought the timepiece you’ve had your eye on for some time. But you also need to be aware of the maintenance that comes with it to keep it ticking.
There are some simple things you can do to ensure the longevity of your watch, such as not overwinding the crown for automatic movements, but other issues that arise will likely require the expertise of a trained mechanic. Instagram user Horologer – who has already shown us in great detail the inner working of Rolex watches and how they’re assembled – has posted a video to his account that shows one such common issue that can cause rattling inside your watch.
Nobody likes to hear a rattle, and if you hear one in your watch, your first assumption may be that a tiny screw or jewel has come loose and is being thrown around inside the case like a rag doll. But Horologer tells us there’s a greater chance of it being a loose oscillating weight. The oscillating weight is the part responsible for transferring kinetic energy from daily wear to a pivot which then turns the winding mechanism and the mainspring, keeping the watch powered.
As Horologer’s video shows, when the weight becomes loose, it can knock other parts inside the watch and potentially causing more damage. He goes on to expose the damage that can be caused if the weight is left unrepaired.
In the images above, we’ve put Horologer’s image of a Rolex 3135 calibre on the left. In it, you can see some discolouration on the outer rim of the main plate. As he says in the post, the plates are made from brass and then coated, and in this instance, the coating has been worn away because of the loose oscillating weight. For comparison, the image on the right is of the same movement, but without a loose weight.
You could, if you wanted to, fix a loose weight yourself, as sourcing one online can be relatively easy. You’ll just need to make sure you have the right tools for the job, such as a good set of screwdrivers. You also want to wear gloves when handling any parts as any oils you have on your fingers can be transferred and cause issues in the future. For peace of mind however, we’d always recommend visiting a qualified technician.