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What Should We Do About the Magnetization of Mechanical Watches?

30 Sep 2021

Why Is It Magnetized?

In daily life, strong magnetic fields can be seen everywhere. Mobile phones, telephone handsets, computers, radios, magnetic buckles on bags, refrigerator doors, induction cookers, and various other appliances may cause watches to be magnetized.

The most typical one is the magnetic clasp on the bag, which has a great influence on the mechanical watch, so the mechanical watch will be magnetized again unknowingly, and the magnetism will not recede by itself in this case, so it needs to be demagnetized and repaired to return to normal.

So how can you tell when a watch is magnetized? You can use a more sensitive compass, put the compass flat on the table, and then hold the watch close to the compass, do a round-trip fast rubbing action, if the compass hand swings, it means that the watch is magnetic.

Once the watch is magnetized, it will affect the accuracy of the watch and bring a big error, making the watch go fast and slow.

The most serious thing is to make the balance spring ring stick to the ring, if that is the case, the watch will be faster than 2 hours almost every day. In addition, like the automatic bearing part, the magnetic field will attract more iron chips and debris, making the ball bearing more worn and affecting the automatic winding efficiency.

The quartz watch is better, it will at most stop under the effect of strong magnetic field outside, but it will not be affected by the magnetized parts after the time of the watch.

Once it is removed from the magnetic field, the watch will immediately return to normal. However, in a strong AC magnetic field (for example, around a large electric motor or transformer), a quartz watch may go fast, so be careful when wearing it.

The strength of the external magnetic field is related to the magnetic strength and the distance of contact with the magnetic object itself, and the greater the magnetism, the closer the contact distance, the more serious the watch will be magnetized. If the magnetic field is AC, the watch will be magnetized and demagnetized alternately, so it is the DC magnetic field that affects the watch.

How Do I Demagnetize My Watch?

It is relatively simple to repair a magnetized watch, so it can be demagnetized by a repairer in a professional watch repair shop. However, the demagnetization machine in some repair stores is not complete. This is very bad for the watch.

For example, if the hairspring is not thoroughly demagnetized, if it is kept running, the hairspring has adsorption phenomenon, which will increase the friction between the hairspring and cause mechanical failure. If the broken parts need to be replaced, the repair cost will be too high.

Here we must understand a concept: what is a watch hairspring. Simply put, the role of a watch hairspring is to drive the balance wheel to swing back and forth for the purpose of dividing time.

According to the different classification basis, the hairspring has many branches. If the raw material is used as the classification basis, the hairspring can be divided into alloy hairspring and silicon hairspring.

The hairspring is one of the most prone to failure and damaged parts in the watch, troubleshooting the hairspring is often encountered when repairing the watch, if the disk is very messy hairspring, to re-expand it, disk into shape, is more difficult, requires high technology, such as disk system can not be replaced with a new hairspring, and for the general minor hairspring failure, can be sorted out by the hairspring and troubleshooting.

Theoretically speaking, the demagnetization of a watch is to put the watch in a strong alternating magnetic field, and the strength of the magnetic field should be gradually decayed.

Professional demagnetization equipment uses a C-shaped silicon steel core with two sets of coils. A large capacitor is used to put the points and produce an alternating magnetic field that attenuates the oscillations.

We ourselves are in the magnetic field, sound systems, television sets, refrigerators, sound machine speakers and so on, a variety of artificial magnetic field filled with daily life.

Living in such an environment, the watch will be magnetized without notice, perhaps because you gently touch some electrical equipment, so we have to do a good job of preventive measures.

It is advisable to buy anti-magnetic watches, which are not completely anti-magnetic but can play a preventive role; watches with anti-magnetic properties should also be careful not to come into contact with strong magnetic fields.

The most direct anti-magnetic method is to avoid contact with magnetic objects, such as computers, cell phones and televisions; watches should be regularly maintained, often wiped and kept clean.

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