Floorology

Floorology – the art of finding things you’ve dropped on the floor. I’ve been thinking about this post for a while and something I read over on timezone today made be decide to go ahead with it.

It is better to drop a part on the table because one didn’t use enough pressure holding it than to use too much pressure and never find it again.

I try to pretend that as a professional watchmaker I am too good to drop parts, but I’m not. In fact I know that it is just a part of the craft of horology. There are much older, wiser and experienced watchmakers than I who still drop parts.

One thing for certain is that I’ve gotten better at finding parts. I am lucky to be in a position where if I don’t find a part in two minutes I can usually open a drawer and get a new one, but when I can’t get the part, I have no choice but to find it. It is extremely rare that I don’t find a part in five minutes or less.

For finding parts, a clean floor helps. A nice soft broom is very useful, as is a magnetic broom for steel parts. For jewels the best tool is you palm. Run it across the floor and the jewel will stick to it, along with all kinds of dirt and junk.

That first quote is the truth however, it’s best not to send the parts flying. The best way to do that is 1. practice, 2. the right tweezers, and 3. well prepared tweezers. Brass, Bronze & Nickel are all softer metals than steel, so parts kind of “stick” to them better. Bulkier tweezers are less springy. Enough pressure will launch a part out of any pair of tweezers. It is good to put a grain finish on the inside of your tweezers (except for your F tweezers which should be polished) because they will grip things better. This grain should go perpendicular to the length of your tweezers.

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