This is probably the third or even fourth post on 102 - the most agonising tool acquisition since we decided to get into watch manufacturing. Full credit goes to a handful of subscribers who, despite my own doubts, remained stubbornly supportive and pointed out the obvious: while 102 costs more than a mid-class European sedan, it will not only pay itself off but it will outlast 5 cars.
Yet it was only after we unpacked the lathe that we were blown away with its beauty.
And I am not talking here merely about the quality of workmanship, the lack of backlash, or the way various attachments fit perfectly into each other. It is the very maturity of the Schaublin lathe that will impress any keen machinist: after 100 years of development, 102 has reached the stage where
there is really nothing that could have been done better, simpler, more accurate or more beautiful. We could hear its voice: "I, the tool, was here decades before your grandfather, making watch and clock parts. And I am here to stay, to outlive you and your apprentices. Respect me, take good care of me, learn how to play me and play with me - and you will be amazed."
In a way, my mission is accomplished. We got the Stradivarius - and we are now ready for an Aussie Paganini to play on it.
Thinking of becoming a watchmaker's apprentice? More than ever, we are looking for enthusiastic, keen and talented kids to join our project in January 2019. Time to apply - is now.