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  1. #141
    Member J. F. Sebastian's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Hi folks. I just thought it was time for a bit of an update on the wiki. So far I am quite happy with the progress which has been made on migrating over old material and on adding new information. I want to thank everybody who has contributed to the project, both by actually joining the wiki and editing articles, and also by contributing to threads here on the forum where we try to gather information to put up there, such as the recent "great Tongji documentation drive". Special thanks go to Saskwatch who has worked tireless on the lists of brands, factories and movements. These are starting to look like really exhaustive resources are brilliant (though, of course, there is plenty of scope for more contributions from other members of the community, especially those who are more knowledgable about modern factories and brands, as those parts of these lists are looking less impressive than the vintage parts at the moment).

    I thought I'd throw out a few ideas and ask a few questions about the future of the wiki here, for those who want to follow along and/or participate.

    First of all, on a fairly unimportant note, today I threw together a new logo for the wiki, and I was curious about what people thought. Here it is full size:



    I think it looks pretty cool at this size, but unfortunately Mediawiki's default theme requires the logo be no larger than 160 pixels in either direction, and at this stage it's a bit blury and, I think, less striking. I've set it up on the wiki so people can see how it looks at that size and in that context, but the old logo is there to revert to if people like. I'm keen to know what people think, in particular are people worried that this logo either (i) has uncomfortable political connotations that we don't want associated with the wiki; or (ii) makes the wiki seem only focussed on VCMs and not Chinese watches from all time periods? I worry that either of these may be the case because the logo bears a fairly strong resemblence to old propaganda posters from the Maoist days. Also, the Chinese text at the top is supposed to read "Chinese Watch Wiki". I know the "Chinese Watch" part is correct, but I have no idea if Google has given me a correct transliteration of "wiki", if any Chinese speakers can confirm or correct the current text, I'd appreciate it. I mostly just made this for fun, so if people hate it, plese be frank and I'll change it right back. Also, if anybody else has the inclination, please feel absolutely free to design your own logo and post it here. I'm happy to put whichever the logo the community likes most up on the wiki. Just remember the 160px size limit on either dimension.

    On to a few more substantial matters...

    I think that the Tongji documentation drive has turned out pretty well, we certainly saw some major changes and polish to the Chinese Standard Movement article - and there is no reason to think the work on that article is over! Do people like the idea of having these kind of targetted "drives" on a regular basis? If so, what do we think is a good kind of schedule: weekly? Fortnightly? Monthly? Does anybody have any suggestions for subjects of future drives? Ideally these should be subjects of broad importance or interest which many people in the community are either knowledgable about or interested in.

    I also just wanted to let people know that I've updated the Vintage Chinese watch portal somewhat recently and added the following links:

    * Vintage Chinese electronic watches
    * Vintage Chinese military watches
    * Vintage Chinese pocket watches

    The first two of these don't exist yet, and the last is just a stub. If anybody knows a bit about these subjects, please feel free to create those pages. With the electronic watches page, I am thinking in particular of Ron's quartz Baoshihua, of the 1979 digital watch made a Qingdao (which I know nothing about, but it's mentioned at the old wiki), and any other watches in that vein. With the military watch page, I am thinking about the famous 24 jewel Shanghai diver, the 1963 PLAAF chronograph and any other well-documented military watches, I am sure there must be more. I imagine all of these pages probably not being an awful lot more than an introductory paragraph or two and a list of links to relevant articles, but if anybody knows enough about these subjects to go into more detail, please feel free!
    monsieurxu likes this.
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  2. #142
    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Thanks JF for all the work that you've put into this so far, and thanks also to everybody else who has chipped in.

    Quote Originally Posted by J. F. Sebastian View Post
    ...as those parts of these lists are looking less impressive than the vintage parts at the moment
    Iinteresting to see how things have changed. When the old wiki was created, the focus was definitely on the current watch industry because that was perceived to be where the interest lay outside of this forum i.e. person buys watch, discovers that it is made in China, gets curious and hits Google, finds the wiki, tells friends about the joys of Chinese watch ownership. So the historical bits were only included to provide context for the current scene. For example I considered putting together a page on Zhongshan watches but there was no point because they were out of production with no descendents.

    First of all, on a fairly unimportant note, today I threw together a new logo for the wiki, and I was curious about what people thought ... in particular are people worried that this logo either (i) has uncomfortable political connotations that we don't want associated with the wiki; or (ii) makes the wiki seem only focussed on VCMs and not Chinese watches from all time periods?
    IMHO, it doesn't strike me as political, and one has to already be familiar with the Tongji to interpret the image as focussing on historical watch production.

    I think that the Tongji documentation drive has turned out pretty well... Do people like the idea of having these kind of targetted "drives" on a regular basis? If so, what do we think is a good kind of schedule: weekly? Fortnightly? Monthly?
    It will probably be only a rough schedule anyway, but I think a fortnight is frequent enough to sustain momentum without inducing fatigue, and allows enough time between to unpack the subject indetail with the help of less regular contributors.

    Does anybody have any suggestions for subjects of future drives? Ideally these should be subjects of broad importance or interest which many people in the community are either knowledgable about or interested in.
    I'd like to see some detail documented about the history of electric/electronic/quartz watches in China; however I'm aware that it is probably of lesser interest to the broader readership, is a difficult topic to research and the later quartz/digital part of the story lies beyond the scope of this forum. I guess the attraction for me is that I'm sick of all the quips about 'cheap Chinese quartz' thrown out in all the other forums, usually in reference to a watch with a Japanese or Swiss movement. Also I'm aware that there were some makers of what appear to be quality quartz movements who deserve to be distinguished apart from the likes of Swissebauches Ltd.

    I also just wanted to let people know that I've updated the Vintage Chinese watch portal somewhat recently and added the following links:

    * Vintage Chinese electronic watches
    * Vintage Chinese military watches
    * Vintage Chinese pocket watches

    The first two of these don't exist yet, and the last is just a stub. If anybody knows a bit about these subjects, please feel free to create those pages. With the electronic watches page, I am thinking in particular of Ron's quartz Baoshihua, of the 1979 digital watch made a Qingdao (which I know nothing about, but it's mentioned at the old wiki), and any other watches in that vein.
    Seems like we're thinking on similar lines.

    With the military watch page, I am thinking about the famous 24 jewel Shanghai diver, the 1963 PLAAF chronograph and any other well-documented military watches, I am sure there must be more. I imagine all of these pages probably not being an awful lot more than an introductory paragraph or two and a list of links to relevant articles, but if anybody knows enough about these subjects to go into more detail, please feel free!
    A thorough overview of Chinese military watches would be an excellent resource for collectors, and might even encourage on or two of the old firms to consider some more reissues
    monsieurxu likes this.
    Chascomm
    Moderator, Russian Watches & Chinese Mechanical Watches Forums
    (no, I am not going to list all my watches here)

  3. #143
    Member J. F. Sebastian's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Quote Originally Posted by Chascomm View Post
    Iinteresting to see how things have changed. When the old wiki was created, the focus was definitely on the current watch industry because that was perceived to be where the interest lay outside of this forum i.e. person buys watch, discovers that it is made in China, gets curious and hits Google, finds the wiki, tells friends about the joys of Chinese watch ownership. So the historical bits were only included to provide context for the current scene. For example I considered putting together a page on Zhongshan watches but there was no point because they were out of production with no descendents.
    I know that it currently must not seem like it, but when I rebooted the wiki, my intention was very much to expand its focus, rather than shift it. I'd like the wiki to be able to answer the questions of your hypothetical new watch buyer and to be a place for VCM otaku to geek out about exactly what year factory X switched from producing movement Y to movement Z. There's been a strong bias thus far toward updating and expanding the vintage section, but that's just because I personally find VCMs a lot more interesting than, say, mushroom brands. I assume that there are folks out there who feel the opposite way, and they are 100% welcome to step up to fill in the blanks in the wiki which are relevant to their interests. I've tried to do my best to highlight those blanks to make this clear. In addition to setting up Vintage and Modern portals, I also set up the High-end portal so we can work on educating the Swissophiles. :p


    Quote Originally Posted by Chascomm View Post
    I'd like to see some detail documented about the history of electric/electronic/quartz watches in China; however I'm aware that it is probably of lesser interest to the broader readership, is a difficult topic to research and the later quartz/digital part of the story lies beyond the scope of this forum. I guess the attraction for me is that I'm sick of all the quips about 'cheap Chinese quartz' thrown out in all the other forums, usually in reference to a watch with a Japanese or Swiss movement. Also I'm aware that there were some makers of what appear to be quality quartz movements who deserve to be distinguished apart from the likes of Swissebauches Ltd.
    I'd love to see this too. I suspect you're right that it's of less broad interest, but personally I am very interested in early quartz watches and the kind of material you described above is certainly welcome on the wiki as long as I'm at the helm. I have deliberately avoided putting any text in the wiki which would suggest that it is exclusively focussed on mechanical watches. I understand that this particular WUS subforum is for Chinese mechanical watches - feel free to use the Discussion pages on appropriate wiki pages as a kind of crude psuedo-forum to coordinate research efforts on electronic Chinese watches if you want.

    I have some concerns that this sticky page is a little "invisible" to most of the forum. I feel like "real threads" on wiki-related stuff get noticably more "likes" or replies in a given amount of time than anything I post in here. At the same time, I don't want to bombard the forum proper with wiki-related threads if there are not of interest to a lot of members. I wonder if a wiki-focussed subform would be appropriate, but that may not make things any more visible. It's also arguably not really appropriate, as the wiki is ultimately independent of WUS, even if a lot of contributors will come from here.
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  4. #144
    Member Seele's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    At a mom-and-pop watch shop off the main shopping areas in Hong Kong, I bought a NOS Chinese watch branded "Hero", and also marked "Fangzhen, 17 zuan" on the dial. A very pretty all-steel watch with no date complication, it is marked in an arc "Stainless Steel -Shockprotected" on the caseback around the Hero branding in the middle, and beneath it says "Jiangzu China, 1201".

    As we all known, the English "Hero" and pinyin "Yingxiong" were often used interchangeably in China, but the list of brands in the Wiki lists Yingxiong as a Hangzhou-based brand. In fact I had not encountered a Hero-branded example before. Perhaps one of my learned fellows can shed some light on this.

  5. #145
    Member J. F. Sebastian's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    I'm afraid I don't know much at all about the Yingxiong brand, but I can tell you this: the odds of you having your question answered in this particular thread are pretty low. I think most people do not check the Sticky posts for new content very often.
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  6. #146
    Member Seele's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    When I am home I'll start a thread on it, of course.

  7. #147
    Member LCheapo's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Is there an equivalent to this page in the new wiki? https://web.archive.org/web/20131023...title=Site_Map
    It seemed like a good portal to find things, in particular on modern Chinese movements and watches.
    Last edited by LCheapo; November 2nd, 2014 at 22:28.

  8. #148
    Member J. F. Sebastian's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Quote Originally Posted by LCheapo View Post
    Is there an equivalent to this page in the new wiki? https://web.archive.org/web/20131023...title=Site_Map
    It seemed like a good portal to find things, in particular on modern Chinese movements and watches.
    That page has, basically, been replaced by three separate "portals", which are supposed to be maps / overviews for three main topic areas:

    However, you can still see all the pages on the wiki (without any structure) here.

    There's not an awful lot of modern watch material on there yet (though I think the most important pages from the old wiki have been moved across), but we are working to fix that right now!

    I decided to move away from the approach of having one huge site map for the entire wiki because I hope that the wiki will grow large enough in time that having everything on one page would just be way too cumbersome, and also because I thought people would probably often be interested in either mainly vintage or mainly modern stuff, and being able to focus on their field of interest would be useful. If a number of people speak up and say they really prefer the old way, though, I'm not averse to changing it back.
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  9. #149
    Member kronological's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    Is there a problem with the Chinese Watch Industry Wiki? When I try to access it, I get this message:

    "This error (HTTP 500 Internal Server Error) means that the website you are visiting had a server problem which prevented the webpage from displaying.
    For more information about HTTP errors, see Help."

    Has this been abandoned?

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  10. #150
    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Chinese Watch Industry Wiki

    I got a timeout message when I tried.
    Chascomm
    Moderator, Russian Watches & Chinese Mechanical Watches Forums
    (no, I am not going to list all my watches here)

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