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What is Incabloc? Shock protection in Watches

Introduction

In the heart of horological innovation, a silent guardian emerges, revolutionizing the world of mechanical watches. Meet Incabloc, a pioneering shock protection system that has become the unsung hero in preserving the delicate harmony of gears and pivots within these intricate timekeeping instruments.


In an era where precision meets artistry, Incabloc stands as a testament to the relentless pursuit of excellence in watchmaking. Developed in the mid-1930s, this ingenious shock protection system has quietly taken its place as an industry standard, shielding the beating heart of mechanical watches from the unpredictable forces of the outside world.





An anti- 'shocking' development

At its core, Incabloc is designed to safeguard the balance staff, a critical component responsible for regulating the rhythm of a watch's escapement. In the symphony of gears and jewels, the balance staff's delicate pivots are vulnerable to the shocks and vibrations of everyday life. Incabloc steps onto the stage as the guardian of precision, absorbing and dispersing the energy generated during sudden impacts, ensuring that the intricate dance of timekeeping continues undisturbed.


Components of incabloc

Incabloc, a shock protection system widely used in mechanical watches, works by providing a flexible mounting for the delicate pivots of the balance staff—the component responsible for regulating the oscillations of the balance wheel within the watch movement. The purpose of Incabloc is to absorb and distribute the energy generated during a sudden shock or impact, preventing it from reaching and damaging the fragile pivots.


The balance staff is mounted on jewel bearings within the watch movement. These jewel bearings typically consist of synthetic rubies or similar hard materials that reduce friction and wear.

  1. Spring-Mounted Setting:

  • Incabloc incorporates a spring-mounted setting for these jewel bearings. The spring is strategically positioned to allow controlled movement of the balance staff in response to external shocks.

  1. Normal Operation:

  • Under normal circumstances, during regular wear and movement, the spring in the Incabloc setting maintains a stable position, and the balance staff operates within its intended range without interference.

  1. Shock or Impact Occurs:

  • When the watch experiences a sudden shock or impact, the Incabloc system comes into action. The force generated by the shock is transferred to the balance staff.

  1. Spring Compression:

  • The spring in the Incabloc setting compresses in response to the force, absorbing the energy of the shock. This controlled compression allows the balance wheel to move within the movement, preventing the full impact from reaching the delicate pivots of the balance staff.


Developed in the mid-1930s, Incabloc has become a standard feature in many mechanical watches and is widely used in the watchmaking industry. Different watchmakers may use variations of shock protection systems, but Incabloc is one of the most well-known and widely adopted designs.

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