In certain constructions, the mobile elements are assembled between two plates (two mainplates, a mainplate and a plate, etc.) connected by cylindrical or variously shaped columns – the pillars. Like the mainplate and the bridges, the pillars are structural elements of the movement. This construction principle predates the advent of wristwatches and bridges. While a bridge offers better rigidity due to its heel and direct attachment to the mainplate, pillars, on the other hand, allow for more surface clearance between the plates. Although the use of bridges has become widespread, some movement parts, and sometimes its entire architecture, can still be constructed using pillars.

Even before the emergence of the first watches, the construction of movements using pillars was well known. This type of construction is found in most clocks and marine chronometers. Therefore, logically, it was the construction method employed to produce the first watches in the 16th century. During the 17th and 18th centuries, constructions were often mixed. The movement was assembled between two mainplates connected by pillars. The balance wheel or the barrel could often be fixed on the upper surface of one of the mainplates by a single bridge. The use of bridges became widespread in the 18th century and watches built on a pillar structure became sporadic from then on.

The pillar is undoubtedly one of the simplest components to produce both by hand and using industrial methods. For the artisan, a simple lathe and, at most, a few hours, will suffice to manufacture and decorate a pillar, regardless of the material (brass, steel, gold, etc.).

Automatic lathe is the ideal machine for producing pillars. The simplicity of this component, which only requires turning operations, allows to production of one pillar in just a few minutes. Depending on the required level of finishing, decoration operations will be carried out by hand, after which the pillar can receive its surface treatment before being assembled onto the mainplate (T-0).