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Occupation Details

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Horologist

Job Zone

Education
Most occupations in this zone require job specific training (vocational training) related to the occupation (NFQ Levels 5 and 6 or higher), related on-the-job experience, or a relevant professional award.

Related Experience
Previous work-related skills, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, several years of full or part-time employment in the area may suffice.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognised apprenticeship or training program may be associated with these occupations.

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€20k >
Horologist
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€20 -
Related Information:
Data Source(s):
FAS

Last Updated: March, 2011

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

Designs, constructs, maintains, and repairs timepieces such as watches, clocks, or precision laboratory equipment.


Videos & Interviews header image

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The Work header image

A Watch and Clock Technician repairs, services and maintains all kinds of watches and clocks, from antiques and mechanical models, to the latest quartz electronic models. Although new parts are mostly imported, a trained repairer should be able to make parts if necessary.  
 
The trade requires wide experience of the various types of watches and clocks, intensive training and a high degree of skill.  
 
The wide range of skills that watch and clock repairers gain often leads them to specialise in a particular area. For example, a watch repairer will be expected to have gained the skills necessary to repair both mechanical and quartz watches but may decide to specialise in one area.

Some repairers specialise in electrical/electronic work. Other areas of specialisation include the restoration of antique watches and clocks.

Watch repair involves cleaning, oiling and fitting replacement parts. Repairers also fit and alter watch straps. The repair and maintenance of antique clocks is a very specialised job. Repairers would need to know how to manage all the original inner workings of such clocks.


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation

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Assemble and install components of timepieces to complete mechanisms, using watchmakers' tools and loupes.

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Observe operation of timepiece parts and subassemblies to determine accuracy of movement, and to diagnose causes of defects.

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Test operation and fit of timepiece parts and subassemblies, using electronic testing equipment, tweezers, watchmakers' tools, and loupes.

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Replace specified parts to repair malfunctioning timepieces, using watchmakers' tools, loupes, and holding fixtures.

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Disassemble timepieces such as watches, clocks, and chronometers so that repairs can be made.

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Clean and lubricate timepiece parts and assemblies, using solvents, buff sticks, and oil.

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Examine components of timepieces such as watches, clocks, or chronometers for defects, using loupes or microscopes.

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Bend parts, such as hairsprings, pallets, barrel covers, and bridges, to correct deficiencies in truing or endshake, using tweezers.

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Change timing weights on balance wheels to correct deficient timing.

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Adjust sizes or positioning of timepiece parts to achieve specified fit or function, using calipers, fixtures, and loupes.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.

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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.

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Controlling Machines and Processes: Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

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Handling and Moving Objects: Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

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Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work: Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

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Making Decisions and Solving Problems: Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

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Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships: Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

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Thinking Creatively: Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

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Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material: Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

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Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge: Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

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Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People: Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.


Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.

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Mechanical: Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

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Mathematics: Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

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Production and Processing: Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

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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.

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Education and Training: Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.


Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.

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Repairing: Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

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Equipment Maintenance: Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.

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Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

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Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

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Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

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Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

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Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

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Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

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Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

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Troubleshooting: Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

Repairers need to be patient, practical people with good hand skills and good eyesight. You must be able to work with accuracy, precision and an eye for detail. It is also necessary to be able to measure and calculate correctly and, in some cases, produce technical drawings. A mechanical aptitude is essential.  
 
Self-employed repairers need selling skills, a well-developed business sense and the ability to get on with many different types of customers. Repairers who visit customers in their homes need a pleasant, cheerful manner. You would need to be able to relate to customers and help them with their problems.  
 
Some repairers need to be able to spend long hours sitting at a workbench. All repairers must have good concentration and the ability to work on their own.


Entry Routesheader image

There are no specific entry requirements to get into horology.

One option is to find a trainee position with a watch/clock repair company who would then put you through their own training programme. 

You could also start with a course in watch and clock repair. [The Irish Swiss Institute of Horology was the main training ground in Ireland, but unfortunately it is no longer in existence].

A UK college remains an option for accredited training. After completing a basic repair course, you could move on to a more in-depth training like the Level 3 Diploma in Clock and Watch Servicing, which can take up to 12 months. The Diploma may be offered by the same training provider that offers basic courses.

It is also possible to do this by distance learning through the industry’s professional body, the British Horological Institute (BHI). The BHI also offers a number of short introductory courses.

 

Last Updated: October, 2014


Further Informationheader image

A detailed description of this occupation can be found on a number of online databases. Follow the link(s) below to access this information:

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Go..Watch or Clock Repairer - from: N.C.S. [UK]

Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

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Organisation: Irish Antique Dealers Association
Address:
Tel:
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Organisation: Design & Craft Council of Ireland
Address: Castle Yard, Kilkenny
Tel: (056) 77 61804
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Organisation: Irish Horological Craft Forum
Address:
Tel:
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Organisation: The British Horological Institute (BHI)
Address: Upton Hall, Upton Newark, Nottinghamshire NG23 5TE, UK
Tel: (440)1636 813795
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Engineering & Manufacturing
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