Illinois 18 size Model 4 Bunn
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  1. #1
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
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    Illinois 18 size Model 4 Bunn

    I bought this watch over the summer primarily for the private label marking(I have several other watches marked for the same Covington, KY jeweler). Visually, it can be identified as a Bunn grade by the gold jewel settings(I need to pull the dial and check the finishing on the keyless works, which is another hallmark of Bunn and Bunn Special grade watches) and available serial number references confirm it as coming from a run of Bunn grade watches. At this time in Illinois history, 16 and 17 jewel Bunns were often intermixed in the same runs depending on when the watch was sold, and this particular one is marked as 17 jewels.

    It didn't occur to me, however, when I bought the watch that it was a scarce Model 4 Bunn. All 18 size Model 4 watches are pendant set(this is their defining characteristic). From what I have been told, 18 size Illinois pendant set watches were produced for a relatively short time due to threats of lawsuits from Elgin and Waltham. Bunn grade watches in Model 4 are relatively low production. The "Blue Book"(Ehrhardt and Meggers) gives an estimate of 200 for 16j model 4 Bunns and 150 for 17j, although these numbers probably could be revised some in light of observations made in the 30 years since the Illinois book was published.

    I'm quite happy to have "found" such an interesting piece already in my collection! Incidentally, I bought the watch from a friend who is also a well-known dealer and a major Illinois collector(probably one of the most knowledgeable living Illinois collectors). I'm a bit surprised that he didn't point this out to me when I bought the watch.



    jesse1, Paleotime and chronophobia like this.
    Member National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors
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    Serious collector of American pocket watches-Waltham(and the predecessor companies) is my specialty.

  2. #2
    Member jesse1's Avatar
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    Re: Illinois 18 size Model 4 Bunn

    I never realized they were that rare !! Only 350 in total , that amazingly few .

  3. #3
    Vintage & NAWCC Forum moderator Ben_hutcherson's Avatar
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    Re: Illinois 18 size Model 4 Bunn

    Jesse,

    Some folks at another website-a former NAWCC chapter-claim that "no" pendant set Bunns exist. They are certainly around, just not common.

    By the way, while we're at it, here's an early Bunn Special that was made for the same jeweler not too long after the above was...these are quite different watches


    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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