Saturday, February 18, 2012

Beware of your own fatigue level when working on small things

I went back to working on a Hampden lever set from 1888 that has a dial size of 34.34mm (beyond that, I haven't identified the model yet) today and the previous night was one of my close friend's birthday which turned in to a night or drinking; complete with tequila shots so waking up this morning was a tad rough.

As I was working on the watch, I felt fatigued faster than usual due to my mild hangover today and I thought to mention something here to those who are getting into generally making things or are advancing in various tinkering to take into consideration your fatigue levels as you continuously work and perhaps avoid a mistake that should have otherwise never occurred.

When you feel a bit tired, a little out of focus, can't seem to get past something that shouldn't be putting up so much trouble.....take a break. Stand up and away from your table/bench/work area and walk around for a moment, taker 15 minutes and go walk around if it nice out and comeback to your work. Often I have solved problems that plagued me for hours and in the brief walk I figure out the solution.

Working on small things, for me it was filing down the pallet bridge on the Hampden today that got to me faster, and somethings will simply tire out faster; no matter how small of a thing it maybe. The key is to take your time, specially with parts that would be difficult to source. It is nearly 8pm as of this writing and I started working on the watch around 3pm today, the filing I did not start until around 4pm and took a break at 5pm, came back to work on it at 7pm to polish up to prep for jeweling, which I means I spent 2 hours filing and polishing something that is 11.46mm ling and 2.53mm wide, the hour spent filing was getting from 1.3mm down to .8mm thickness. Despite the time it has taken, I have not destroyed the pallet bridge out of a watch from the 19th century by taking the necessary time.

Well, back to work for me as typing this was my break.

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