To become a licensed professional, one must have worked in the Royal Institution of Engineering for at least four years. No previous education is required and the education is paid with minimal wages.
Most horologists start off in factories, working as quality monitors, calibrators or in repairs.
More experienced horologists open their own small workshops once they can afford the equipment, become product or manufacturing designers or specialise in precision ornamentation.
Elite professionals may often collaborate in larger workshops, researching new mechanisms, materials or methods and designing custom mechanisms.
Alingual horologists may work at the Royal Mint, designing and manufacturing Motions.
The design of instructions for cognitive mechanics also falls under their expertise, having the understanding necessary to operate such devices.
Payment & Reimbursement
Since good eyesight and precision motoring skills are required at all times, certain luxuries are prohibited by law for licensed horologists, such as consuming alcohol or other drugs. To compensate, the Empire supports licensed horologists financially, giving them a stable, albeit relatively low, income, even when unemployed.
Workers at the Royal Mint get a more comfortable salary to prevent classified information being spread and to compensate their alinguality.
Being able to repair, modify and develop one's own tools is highly economical and leads to reduced living costs and incredible service diversity in private workshops.
Custom mechanics and instructions for cognitive mechanics can be made highly expensive, especially when ornamented for rich customers, leading to great profits if one has the necessary reputation and the economy allows it.
Horologists form an important part of the modern Empire, since almost any device in daily use, from watches to telelenses, contains fine mechanics of one kind to another.
Although belonging to the lower class, successful horologists are often elevated to the middle class, granting them access to high society and pristine customers.
Originally limited to watchmaking, the tools and mechanisms horologists created contributed to the rise of miniature mechanics and it's implementation in daily objects.
Cognitive machinery also quickly became part of the trade, and with it the need to develop skills in instruction design. This lead to horologists becoming a vital part of the modern world, their mechanics being necessary to uphold critical infrastructure such as the government, water and electric energy, critical structures and health institutes.
Many highly specialised tools are required for basic work. Horologists often create their own tools based on needs. The following list contains commonly available tools and furniture used in this profession.
- Pincers (hence the informal name 'pincer') or movement scalers for precision assembly
- Gear mills
- Spring manipulators
- Various screwdrivers
- Card punchers
- Calibration box
- Various metals and alloys, in the form of plates, cylinders and wires
- Metal polish or buff
- Decorative materials such as rare metals or jewels
Private workshops are often cramped, with little light or airing. One often hears the pulsating screaming of the gear mill and the tapping of it's punch card reader and smells metal filings, lubricant and polish.
The desk lamp is often the only source of light, but it is magnified and refracted by the selection of telelenses hanging around the work desk and reflecting off the polished contraptions lining the walls, lighting up the workshop with intricate patterns.
The workshops of more esteemed horologists may be much grander, with a spacious assembly surfaces for multiple projects, drawing boards with blueprints stashed neatly in large filing cabinets, testing and calibration chambers sparkling with small contraptions. Other furniture may exist for customers or even the public to be astonished by the craftsmanship of the owner.
Any form of miniature mechanics, originally in the for of watches or other tools but also components for greater contraptions, may be acquired at an horologist.
All private horologists provide repair or calibration services, most construct specialised mechanisms and few have the expertise and licensing to design new products. Specialised horologists develop machine instructions for manufacturing designs en masse and are often designers of mechanised assembly lines.
A small amount of alingual horologists work in the Royal Mint, designing and manufacturing Motions.
Dangers & Hazards
When working with ultra-fine springs or screws, accidents can lead to metal fragments becoming buried under the skin. Gloves are available for protection, but impair the precision of hand-made work. Another alternative is the usage of movement scalers, but they are cumbersome to set up and often too large for a cluttered workspace.
- Alternative Names
- Pincer, watchmaker, fine mechanist
- Demand for horologists is high under ordinary circumstances, but 'pincers' are often viewed as 'pinchers' in a crisis and quickly lose income.
Unlicensed horology is forbidden and is punishable with imprisonment, due to the dangers that may occur to the offender or their customers through careless manufacturing.
Horologists are inspected in irregular intervals for conformity with safety regulations. Non-compliance may lead to a hefty fine and license confiscation.
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