After an EIGHT YEAR exhaustive search I can confirm that the "ADMIRAL EVANS" trench watch cases were in FACT made in the BEHEMOTH size 12s ! ! !
Just a few days ago I located one, secured it and it is now in my possession.
A few years ago I obtained and restored a "CROWN" size 12s trench watch, you guys might remember that one, the resto process was NOT an easy task to say the least.
But, you cannot put a size 12s Elgin, Waltham or an Illinois movement into a Philadelphia case that was made for the Crown Watch Company.
The "CROWN" size 12s is way different that the Elgin, Waltham or Illinois size 12s movements, it's like trying to put the round peg in the square hole, simply won't work.
On page 170 of my book "Elgin Trench Watches of the Great War" I discuss the behemoth size 12s trench watches..................
Specifically the size 12s trench watch cases that were by the Illinois Watch Case Company.
I knew that I had seen a size 12s Admiral Benson (square case) many years ago but at the time I did not think that it was real.
I thought that it was a "Ukraine Special" that never started out as a genuine trench watch that was actually made by the Illinois Watch Case Company.
No less than FOUR advertisements exist from the Illinois Watch Case Company stating that they did in FACT make size 12s trench watch cases.
The adverts state that the Admiral Evans, Admiral Benson and General Funston cases were available in sizes 12s down to sizes 3/0s and even some 6/0s.
But, the BEHEMOTH size 12s Admirals and Generals are pretty much impossible to come by.
When I told a few good friends that are SEASONED experts what I had obtained I think I heard their jaws hit the floor over the phone lines!
A SIZE 12s GOLD FILLED "ADMIRAL EVANS" TRENCH WATCH DOES IN FACT EXIST ! ! ! ! ! !
The 12s "Admiral Evans" case measures 53mm lug tip to lug tip, 43.5mm without the crown, with a 13mm lug diameter.
I have taken the watch completely apart and thoroughly inspected how the lugs were attached to the case center.
These lugs were in FACT attached at the IWCCo factory, the method used is IDENTICAL to all other IWCCo cases that use the lug style.
There are NO OTHER tooling marks and everything is EXACTLY as it should be for an Illinois Watch Case Company product.
I then took a VERY close look at the crown tube on the case to see if I could find ANY tooling marks that might indicate that the tube had been shortened for wrist watch use.
The crown tube is EXACTLY as it should be from the IWCCo factory and has NOT been modified!
With all of this being said I am officially certifying this size 12s "Admiral Evans" case as GENUINE ! ! !
I have ZERO doubts, it is in FACT the REAL DEAL and is 100% AUTHENTIC ! ! ! !
The movement on this 12s Elgin Admiral Evans Trench Watch is in very bad condition, somebody over the years swapped out the train bridge and the staff is broken.
This watch movement originally had 7 jewels, not 15 jewels, all of the serial number stamps except the train bridge start with "20" indicating 1917.
The train bridge has a serial number that is from 1919.
Now, the IWCCO cases were JOBBER cases so ANY Elgin, Waltham or Illinois movement would be 100% correct.
The movement that is currently in this watch will need to be replaced due to incorrect parts being swapped out over the years, I've already begun hunting for a suitable correct replacement.
I just happen to have a sterling silver swivel lug size 3/0s Waltham Admiral Evans here with me in the shop right now.
I pictured the NORMAL size 3/0s Admiral Evans next to the BEHEMOTH size 12s Admiral Evans to you can get a very good idea of the size difference.
The 12s Admiral Evans dwarfs the 3/0s Admiral Evans!
I have always hoped that one of the size 12s trench watch cases from the IWCCo would pop up one day...................
But honestly, I never dreamed in a million years that it would be an ADMIRAL EVANS ! ! ! ! ! !
ENJOY ! ! ! ! !