Help on Watch ID (pics)

Thread: Help on Watch ID (pics)

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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Help on Watch ID (pics)

    Hi All,
    So I told my brother (recipient of another one of my grandfathers watches) about how quickly and easily you all were able to ID my watch, that he sent me some pics of his. All we know is that this one might be a little older (maybe pre- WWI) because it was my Great-Grandfather's. I sifted through many of the large movements on Dr. Ranftt's site and the only thing that I saw that looks close is the IWC 66. We would love to know anything more about this watch. See pics attached

    ps I have no idea why one of the case's marks is all scratched up
    Attached Images Attached Images







    Last edited by DanielP; March 10th, 2008 at 22:30.

  2. #2
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Apr 2005
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    Re: Help on Watch ID (pics)

    Looks to me like a German gold case. Someone has scratched over the purity stamp and I couldn't tell you why. It looks like 0.583 which is 14K.
    It's probably from the 1890s, with a 15 jewel Swiss bridge movement. The hands are the Art Nouveau style common in that decade. Looks like someone has rather crudely lettered a 24 hour dial on the main dial. Why that would have been done I don't know.
    There don't appear to be any marks that would help us identify the maker and there were hundreds of them back then.
    That's probably the best I can do for you. We have other experts who might be able to tell you a bit more. I am more of an American watch guy myself.

    There are fathers who do not love their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson. ~ Victor Hugo

  3. #3
    Member JohnF's Avatar
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    Re: Help on Watch ID (pics)

    Hi -

    Not being that much of a pocket watch guy, can't help too much. There are a couple of interesting design bits on the calibre that might be mentioned, though: the click (that's the part that makes the noise when you wind it) shows some Glashütte influences with the long spring, but it's not a Glashütte click (that's done in one piece).

    Given Ray's dating, it's really hard to identify: as he mentioned, there were literally hundreds of manufacturers around back then, many largely family operations. It was the time of the transition of watchmaking from handmade individual pieces, no two alike, to industrially manufactured, standardized pieces that had interchangeable parts.

    Why did this happen? Simple: costs. A handmade watch would cost a wealthy man several month's spending money and could only be repaired by that particular watchmaker, and more often than not took a lot of care to operate properly. Only the very best watchmakers could make watches that didn't, subtly, vary fairly significantly depending on the position of the watch and the time of day. Industrialized watches, standardized, dropped prices significantly so that even a working-class man could afford a watch that kept fairly decent time (the so-called dollar watches of the day).

    Hence the probability of finding out who made this is pretty small, unless the calibre was an industrialized calibre and can be identified.

    JohnF
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