Watch and Clock Repairers

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Also known as:
Antique Clock Repairer, Chronometer Repairer, Clock Repair Technician, Clockmaker, Clocksmith, Horologist, Time Piece Repairer, Watchmaker

ABOUT WATCH AND CLOCK REPAIRER CAREERS
Video transcript

Fine wristwatches are tiny, intricate machines. Repairs and maintenance require the talent s of highly skilled watch repairers. Many watches and clocks made today are mass-produced and battery-operated. As a result, it is generally less expensive to replace them than to fix them.

But luxury watches, chronographs, and antique watches and clocks are a different story. Instead of batteries, they rely on mechanical movements and manual winding springs. That old-style function is achieved through dozens of minute gears and components.

Expert watch repairers use precision instruments and magnifying equipment to inspect each part, cleaning, oiling, and replacing as needed. They may use special metalworking tools to create new components. They need excellent mechanical and problem solving skills.

Several associations offer certification programs, however, most learn the trade by studying alongside a master watch repairer as well, and training can take several years. The work is quiet and fairly solitary. Occasionally, you may have to go to a site to fix such things as grandfather clocks that are too big to bring into the shop. Even Big Ben needs attention once in a while.

Expect to spend the workday sitting at a workbench. This is a profession that requires great concentration, a steady hand, and exquisite patience. After all, it takes time to ensure watches keep time with faithful accuracy.

SNAPSHOT
Repair, clean, and adjust mechanisms of timing instruments, such as watches and clocks. Includes watchmakers, watch technicians, and mechanical timepiece repairers.
Leadership
LOW
Critical decision making
HIGH
Level of responsibilities
LOW
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
HIGH
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Competition for this position
LOW
Communication with others
LOW
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
LOW
Comfort of the work setting
HIGH
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
LOW
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
Daily tasks

Fabricate parts for watches and clocks, using small lathes and other machines.

Record quantities and types of timepieces repaired, serial and model numbers of items, work performed, and charges for repairs.

Demagnetize mechanisms, using demagnetizing machines.

Adjust timing regulators, using truing calipers, watch-rate recorders, and tweezers.

Perform regular adjustment and maintenance on timepieces, watch cases, and watch bands.

Repair or replace broken, damaged, or worn parts on timepieces, using lathes, drill presses, and hand tools.

Disassemble timepieces and inspect them for defective, worn, misaligned, or rusty parts, using loupes.

Oil moving parts of timepieces.

Test timepiece accuracy and performance, using meters and other electronic instruments.

Clean, rinse, and dry timepiece parts, using solutions and ultrasonic or mechanical watch-cleaning machines.

Order supplies, including replacement parts, for timing instruments.

MAIN ACTIVITIES
Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
Performing for or Working Directly with the Public Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Administration and Management Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Clerical Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Engineering and Technology Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Production and Processing Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Sales and Marketing Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
TOP SKILLS
Repairing Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Equipment Maintenance Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
Troubleshooting Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Quality Control Analysis Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.