Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

Thread: Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

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  1. #1
    Member Vsanzbajo's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
    Berkeley, CA

    Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

    Are Elgin 1880s and 90s good quality watches? Or they are mid-grade? I am just trying to know if Elgin were good watches in general?

  2. #2
    Member perby's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
    BC Canada

    Re: Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

    Hi Vsanzbajo,
    Elgin like most others made some extremely good quality watches, so it would have to depend on the gtade of Elgin you are talking about. Any of the Father times, BWR, 349, 180, 150, Veritas, and many more grades all were great RR approved timepieces. They also made lesser quality working mans watches, so hard to answer your question really. I think all the watchmakers of that era, made a wide range of quality watches.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    NW Boulder, CO. mts.

    Re: Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

    My opinion well expressed by Perby. I have p.w. better grade examples from 1869 to 1950+. Unlike most competitors Elgin sustained highest practical quality all the way. They started well financed by B.W. Raymond and robbed Waltham of many of their best employees.First and last shown for the B.W.R.
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    Last edited by artb; December 12th, 2011 at 14:41.

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  5. #4
    Member Shangas's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Re: Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

    Elgin made tens of millions of watches that were all almost universally good quality.

    You can't go wrong with Elgin.
    "Pipes are occasionally of extraordinary interest...nothing has more individuality save, perhaps, watches and bootlaces."

    - Sherlock Holmes.

    'The Yellow Face'.

  6. #5
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Kentucky, USA

    Re: Are 1800's Elgin poket watches good in quality?

    As others are saying, they made some good watches and some not so good watches.

    One of my personal judges of movement quality is how well the pivots seat back in place when reassembling the movement. Elgin's 7j movements are notoriously bad at this.

    At the other end of the spectrum, though, I have two examples of the Gr. 69 B.W. Raymond movement. This was the first movement introduced by the company. My examples are from the second run of these made(SN 1986, from 1867), and then a later example from the same run Art shows above in the 19,000 range.

    I took both of these apart, and when I put them back together, the pivots on both just went right into place and required no additional effort to get them there. That, to me, is the mark of a high quality movement.
    Member National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors
    Member, NAWCC Chapter 149. Vice President and Secretary NAWCC Chapter 140. Member, NAWCC Convention Committee.
    Serious collector of American pocket watches-Waltham(and the predecessor companies) is my specialty.

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