Things used to be better in bygone times? Indeed, not really. Watchmaking has consistently depended on innovation and it has advanced together with the apparatus, devices and procedures that make watch creation conceivable, essentially to keep on top of the occasions. Consequently, we’re bringing you “in the background” at Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier to perceive how watch parts are made.
The careful handwork that goes into the assembling of Haute Horlogerie watches is interesting. However, when visiting watch creation offices, the “unoriginal picture” of the old, autonomous watchmaker at his seat is scattered. There, close to skilled workers, you’ll additionally find best in class CNC machines, lasers and front line gear. The business has gone through gigantic industrialisation significantly improving the nature of the parts manufactured… Technology is a basic power in the turn of events and development of watchmaking art.
Today, we take you in the background of the watch business at Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier (VMF) to view four distinct techniques for creating watch parts, clarifying why and how they are commonly used.
Editor’s note: the creation techniques we are introducing here are those for the most part utilized at Vaucher and these are normally by all account not the only ones – think bar turning, Liga, infusion, DRIE…
A customary creation procedure, stepping comprises of cutting and collapsing parts from metal sheets. Plans are moved into stepping apparatuses that are mounted into presses. In reformist bite the dust stepping, a metal strip is framed into a completed part in a few operations.
Stamping apparatuses are complex and costly to manufacture, however they permit the creation of profoundly precise components with repeatability and a high efficiency. The creation resiliences are of +/ – 2 microns.
The choice to create a section in stepping relies upon its size, complexity and on the volume of creation. As a rule, it is utilized for huge creations of components in steel, metal, CuBe or gold. This is generally utilized on moderately slender parts.
Machining is an interaction where a device (processing and penetrating) eliminates material from a piece of crude metal to acquire the ideal shape. It is utilized for the sequential creation of plates and scaffolds, to make their complex shapes with accuracy. These are created from metal plates (named barquettes for those anxious to fabricate their French watchmaking jargon). Some are machined dry or with oil to grease up and keep the piece at a stable temperature.
Several arrangements are utilized at VMF to be adaptable and adjust to clients’ needs, specifically for Haute Horlogerie short-arrangement creation. Fleury Modulo is a computerized dry assembling arrangement with a particular direct exchange. Everything modules can work independently or be grouped. At Vaucher, two assembled lines are utilized, one for extensions and one for plates. Two ungrouped Modulos are likewise operated.
Primacon machining focuses are utilized to manufacture parts in explicit metal compounds or titanium. Titanium is light, solid and safe yet these properties are a revile for machining requiring the utilization of coolant.
Cutting-edge Willemin-Macodel focuses have quite recently been gained; these are explicitly adjusted for machining watchmaking components. Among their specificities, these element a rearranged delta robot – where the component is moving and not the device. The machine’s equal construction empowers the load moving to be limited. Process durations are fundamentally diminished while accomplishing excellent submicron precision.
Last, Vaucher likewise combines machining metal strips that have been stepped, taking preferred position of both the accuracy of stepping and the adaptability of machining. A fundamental piece of the skill lies in the ability to expound creation measures… In the video beneath, instances of machining at Vaucher: 1.Dry machining – 2.Machining with coolant – 3. Willemin-Macodel
Wire disintegration is an electro-thermal cutting cycle. A meager metallic wire fills in as a cathode to dissolve and cut a shape in a workpiece.
Wire disintegration is appropriate for unpredictable or thick parts (for example apparatuses) and short runs. It very well may be utilized for restoring otherwise rejected parts. VMF utilizes wire disintegration for the most part to manufacture stepping bites the dust and openwork parts.
Laser Machining, Marking And Engraving
Over the previous years, VMF has built up an ability in laser etching, marking and machining. These subtractive assembling measures utilize thermal energy to eliminate material from metal, pointing a laser towards the workpiece.
Laser machining permits fabricating profoundly exact parts. It is fit to machine dainty components (up to 0.8mm at VMF), especially for limited scope creation, for which the creation of stepping devices would be excessively long and excessively costly. VMF works for the most part with Durnico (a steel assortment used to create springs), metal, CuBe and titanium.
Among the special skill collected by VMF is laser cutting on both barquettes and metal strips.
Pictured over, The Seed VMF 5440 type with miniature rotor and flying tourbillon. Its extensions are laser-engraved with the theme of the cog wheels covered up under their surface. Short arrangement of hands or hour markers are likewise laser machined at Vaucher Manufacture.