My Cricket chirps - and rattles

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My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 11:25am

On a whim I picked up a mid 60s vintage Vulcain Cricket on the bay. Model # S2314A gold plated manual winder with a V120 (?) movement. 35mm, some chipping of the plating and a little too much polywatch on the acrylic crystal but a terrific dial - looks great on the wrist. All functions working properly (time winding, alarm winding, time set, alarm set and alarm disable), power reserve 38 - 40 hrs. alarm duration 20 seconds and plenty of alarm volume - but there's a "rattle" (makes the same tone as the alarm) when I shake my wrist from side to side (12 to 6) but disappears when watch is shaken front to back (9 - 3). Clearly this has something to do with the alarm hammer mechanism but I'm reluctant to pop the case back since it is within the return period. I'm not a Cricket expert, so I don't know whether this rattle is characteristic of Crickets in general. Can anyone opine?
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby conjurer » September 19th 2018, 11:43am

this Wood knot happin With a invicter GODAM it.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby foghorn » September 19th 2018, 12:11pm

Considering the watches age I wouldn't be alarmed.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby JAS1125 » September 19th 2018, 12:22pm

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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 2:30pm

You fellows are a veritable goddamn fount of helpful information!
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby MKTheVintageBloke » September 19th 2018, 2:46pm

I seriously doubt that the hammer rattling against the gong is a factory flaw. I mean, even my Poljot alarm, with a movement a few grades lower in quality than a Vulcain Cricket, doesn’t have the hammer rattling against the pin. Now, I haven’t dealt with a Cricket before, so that’s just a theory if mine, that simply the watch might not have been serviced regularly, yet the alarm function was used often, and so it could have some wear to the hammer assembly. If the alarm duration or intensity would be reduced, I’d think that the alarm works are simply congested with old grease, or that the mainspring of the alarm is worn (or both).
My concern is that if anything’s worn, spares might be hard to come by, which happens to be the plague of in-housr movements in vintage watches.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby conjurer » September 19th 2018, 2:47pm

The rattle is probably due to a maladjusted figgleboom, which needs to be set precisely to 30.58 milli-kefavers to the junction brake (in French, the brake du junction.) This can be fixed very easily with Craftsman power tools, particularly the maladroit steam hammer.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby foghorn » September 19th 2018, 2:54pm

conjurer wrote:The rattle is probably due to a maladjusted figgleboom, which needs to be set precisely to 30.58 milli-kefavers to the junction brake (in French, the brake du junction.) This can be fixed very easily with Craftsman power tools, particularly the maladroit steam hammer.





Quite possible as a maladjusted figgleboom can easily cause the balance to get half cocked.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 2:56pm

conjurer wrote:The rattle is probably due to a maladjusted figgleboom, which needs to be set precisely to 30.58 milli-kefavers to the junction brake (in French, the brake du junction.) This can be fixed very easily with Craftsman power tools, particularly the maladroit steam hammer.


So you're saying the Johnson bar is dragging?
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby conjurer » September 19th 2018, 2:57pm

Falstaff wrote:
conjurer wrote:The rattle is probably due to a maladjusted figgleboom, which needs to be set precisely to 30.58 milli-kefavers to the junction brake (in French, the brake du junction.) This can be fixed very easily with Craftsman power tools, particularly the maladroit steam hammer.


So you're saying the Johnson bar is dragging?


If not the Johnson bar, then probably the Jaysus cock.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Thunder1 » September 19th 2018, 3:00pm

I'm guessing old and dried our lubricant as the culprit..why not have that beauty serviced?
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 3:02pm

MKTheVintageBloke wrote:I seriously doubt that the hammer rattling against the gong is a factory flaw. I mean, even my Poljot alarm, with a movement a few grades lower in quality than a Vulcain Cricket, doesn’t have the hammer rattling against the pin. Now, I haven’t dealt with a Cricket before, so that’s just a theory if mine, that simply the watch might not have been serviced regularly, yet the alarm function was used often, and so it could have some wear to the hammer assembly. If the alarm duration or intensity would be reduced, I’d think that the alarm works are simply congested with old grease, or that the mainspring of the alarm is worn (or both).
My concern is that if anything’s worn, spares might be hard to come by, which happens to be the plague of in-housr movements in vintage watches.


That's what's puzzling. I'd think that if things were too worn or out of adjustment, the alarm either wouldn't function or wouldn't accept a full wind - but factory specs call for a fully wound alarm spring to sound for 20 secs - and this one's right on the money. If I hadn't gotten it for a relative song, it would be on its way back.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 3:05pm

Thunder1 wrote:I'm guessing old and dried our lubricant as the culprit..why not have that beauty serviced?


Seller claims freshly serviced - but who knows what that means... If keep it, I'll certainly have it looked at.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby foghorn » September 19th 2018, 3:21pm

Falstaff wrote: If I hadn't gotten it for a relative song, it would be on its way back.




"Hey,Soul Sister"
"He Ain't Heavy ,He's My Brother"
"Babylon Sisters"
"Papa was a Rolling Stone"



Which song?
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 19th 2018, 5:01pm

foghorn wrote:
Falstaff wrote: If I hadn't gotten it for a relative song, it would be on its way back.




"Hey,Soul Sister"
"He Ain't Heavy ,He's My Brother"
"Babylon Sisters"
"Papa was a Rolling Stone"



Which song?



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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby gerdson » September 19th 2018, 9:07pm

I will chek on mine later for comparison. But conjurer's hints seem very plausible.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby gerdson » September 20th 2018, 8:15am

still no time to check. But a question - does this condition of rattling only occur when the spring for the alarm is relaxed (that means the alarm has been running out completely)? Because - if I do remember correctly - then this is normal.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 20th 2018, 5:17pm

gerdson wrote:still no time to check. But a question - does this condition of rattling only occur when the spring for the alarm is relaxed (that means the alarm has been running out completely)? Because - if I do remember correctly - then this is normal.


Gerdson, I believe you are onto something there. With a full alarm wind the rattle is substantially diminished - not entirely gone, but certainly much less in evidence. Do post when you are able to try yours - and thank you.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby gerdson » September 20th 2018, 9:51pm

Alarm wound - I hear nothing. Unwound and the hammer rocks when gently shaking the watch - but there are only few clicks, i wouldn't call it a rattle. Also I was amazed once more about the volume produced. :P
Still I don't think anything is really broken on Yours. Maybe there is a spring that has lost a bit of it's tension.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby bobbee » September 20th 2018, 10:44pm

My Memostar alarm does the same when wound down, probably normal.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Falstaff » September 21st 2018, 8:06am

bobbee wrote:My Memostar alarm does the same when wound down, probably normal.
Pics ore yew maid itt upp...


bobbee - Thanks for the Memostar input. Other than that rattle, this is a handsome piece - gold/champagne dial and hand set are primo and other than some chipping of the plating, mainly on the lugs - case is in good shape and as I said, on the wrist it's beauty.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby gerdson » September 21st 2018, 11:44am

Lovely :)
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby 3Flushes » September 21st 2018, 3:14pm

I asked my stepdad, he sold them and has a few. He said that it is wear on the hammer mech- since it takes a full wind and sounds off in spec wait until it doesn't work correctly to correct the issue. He said there is a little wear in the high speed striking frammis and that particularly when unwound it leaves enough play for the hammer to strike when shocked. He suggests you stop shaking it and he says if you like to play with the alarm, eventually the wear will prevent the striking frammis pinion from engaging the hammer arm flickment. The last thing he said was as long as the striking frammis bridgeplate itself is in good shape, the pinion and the flickment are cheap fixes. Then he died.

He'd ran a store and fabricated mountings which he spectacularly jeweled for the shop and sold nationally, along with platinum, gold and silver fitments, and whatnot in the backroom which was about 1600 square foot. Smelter (metal melter) and everything, big exhaust hood. During the Hanukkah season we'd go there and make Smooregelach in the thing- big 'ol copper thing under a big copper exhaust hood.

The timepiece department occupied the Southernmost 600'ish sq feet of the sales floor of the joint. The walls were lined on three sides with old school leaded glass showcases arranged by manufacturer as indicated by the branded schwag in the front counter which had angled, slide-out style display drawers. The cases were attached to a mahogany counter with a row of drawers underneath that ran the entire length. Storage cabinets formed the foundation of the whole deal. To the right, there was a half-door in the wall which revealed a twin bench watchmakers shop in a small carveout of the backroom occupied by one watchmaker, a Filipino guy named Tai. Customers would knock and Tai would open the top half of the half-door (the bottom half of the half-door was nailed shut. I don't know why) and take in, or return watches upon presentation of a receipt from the cashier, Mona. Mona was a 5'4" 300 pound militant Latina lesbian activist with a shaved head and a cameltoe the size of home-plate. Mona also served as chief of security and business office manager.

Tai spoke a broken version of Filipino, Tagalog and English which all ended up spoken in a cacophony of barely intelligible Ching-lish. When his Tourettes Syndrome was really acting up, the rapid fire barrages of profanity laced Ching-lish attacks on customers who'd abused their watches or clocks would clear out the joint. These episodes required quite a bit of Tegretol to settle the little fella down such that he'd be worthless for the rest of the day. When informed of the incident, my Stepfather would assume the affect of George McFly, look down at his shoes and say, "that's fuckin' Tai" as he shook his head in a sympathetic kind of way prior to taking the rest of the day off to drive Tai home.

Those days were a hoot because Mona's Mother Mable would come in and man the half door to take in repairs and deliver fixed watches and clocks. And I do mean MAN the half-door. Hand to God, Mable made Mona look lipstick-lesbian by comparison. Mable was fat, malodorous, and loud with a deep gravelly voice (the result of drinking too much "get whatever's on sale" Bourbon and from smoking Pall-Malls). She was always moist in the armpits and brow as well. She had a way about her; it was almost as if her B.O. drew people in. I don't know, like it was intoxicating. The customers couldn't get enough of her (and there was plenty); when she was laughing with customers the windows would rattle.

So, the point is, prior to his recent death, dear old stepdad been retired from the jewelry business for 23 years so it has been a long time and what used to be a cheap fix may no longer be so. I think he'd say don't trip and enjoy the watch. And stop shaking it.
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby Thunder1 » September 21st 2018, 3:20pm

^^Whoa...
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Re: My Cricket chirps - and rattles

Postby bobbee » September 21st 2018, 3:35pm

Awesome!
Epic crack pipe dream m'man. :)
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