mainspring

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mainspring

the principal power spring of a mechanism, esp in a watch or clock
References in classic literature ?
Here, in truth, lay the mainspring of this strangely-constituted organization.
If I was to go, that 'ouse would run down like a watch with the mainspring out.
The mainspring is vanity, assisted by the love of garlic and bread and butter.
HEEP, and only HEEP, is the mainspring of that machine.
For the mainspring of the story was that in spite of the man's absorbing selfishness, his wife (overpowered by his deportment) had, to the last, believed in him and had, on her death-bed, in the most moving terms, confided him to their son as one who had an inextinguishable claim upon him and whom he could never regard with too much pride and deference.
He was, indeed, the Custom-House in himself; or, at all events, the mainspring that kept its variously revolving wheels in motion; for, in an institution like this, where its officers are appointed to subserve their own profit and convenience, and seldom with a leading reference to their fitness for the duty to be performed, they must perforce seek elsewhere the dexterity which is not in them.
As watches got bigger, the potential for extending power reserve increased, since there was more space for larger mainsprings.
Mainsprings can be leaf springs or more commonly, coil springs.
Shooters who want even faster lock times, such as metallic silhouette competitors, sometimes fit even lighter firing pins and heavier mainsprings to current models.
But only one of the film's two narrative mainsprings could be called astute.
However, new mainsprings for a number of revolvers are available in Bullseye kits, and I recommend making the change any time you tune a single-action revolver.