Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

Thread: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

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  1. #1

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    Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Hi All,
    My grandfather recently gave each of his three grandsons a gold pocket watch. We all know nothing about them but from his information mine is the youngest. It was given to him on his 13th birthday which if new then should mean its from around late 1920's early 30's. Also mine has two chrome dials and my brothers don't (makes me think mine is younger). There seems to be some type of makers stamp and the numbers 3755 appears in a couple places Any information about who made it or anything is greatly appreciated. and now for the pics

    ps it runs fast even when i turn the regulator to slow (something i learned from you guys) i guess the only way to fix it is to take it in to an expert? If so anyone know any reputable repairer in queens, NY area?
    Attached Images Attached Images









    Last edited by DanielP; March 9th, 2008 at 19:25.

  2. #2
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    It certainly seems to be an inter-war pocket watch. Where are you located? Germany? The movement vaguely reminds me of some of the old Junghans calibres, even though the name doesn't appear on the dial (or the appropriate maker's stamp on the movement). Compare the bridge structure of:

    http://www.ranfft.de/cgi-bin/bidfun-...wk&Junghans_J9

    ...which shows a lepine calibre (crown at 12:00, small second at 6:00), but Junghans also made savonnette calibres like yours (crown at 3:00, small second at 6:00):

    http://www.ranfft.de/cgi-bin/bidfun-...Junghans_J49_1

    As for the stamps on the case, one shows that it is 14K gold (585/1000), the other may be a maker's stamp - of the case, that is! Still, it might show the exact date of manufacture if you know your hallmarks.

    Good luck, have it cleaned (it seems to need it!) and it will be a nice heirloom!

    Hartmut Richter

  3. #3

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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Hartmut,
    Thanks!! those hyperlinks are great.... My grandfather was born in Germany, so a German watch would make the most sense (I'm in NY though). It definitely resembles the Junghans 49 or 49/1 but all images of Junghans movements all have the "J" in like a 8 pointed star stamped on.

    It definitely can use a cleaning. That wouldn't help with the time keeping problem would it? Can I trust any watch repair person to clean and check the movements?
    Thanks again and sorry about all the questions..

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  5. #4
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Yes, a clean and oil job would help improve daily rates. Just because a movement is dirty, it does not necessarily lose time, it may gain it. It all depends on which side of the point of isochronism your balance spring is currently at.....

    As for the "J" on the movement (or lack of it), it merely shows that the watch wasn't made by Junghans, even if the movement was. It all depends to me on whether Junghans used all their movements in their own watches or supplied other makers and if so, who they supplied (selected makers or general availability). It is also possible that the maker's stamp is dial side (i.e hiding under the dial) - it often was in the days when that watch was made.

    Hartmut Richter

  6. #5
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Just to add to that: any good watchmaker should be able to clean and oil. If you are slightly worried about whom to give the watch to, ask around in your circle of friend about someone with a good reputation - it is unlikely that you will get spare parts if something goes wrong!

    Hartmut Richter

  7. #6
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    The crown mark on the case is a German gold mark. I'm just wondering why it says "Ancre de Precision" if it's a German calibre. Isn't that more a Swiss sort of inscription?
    Looks like something on the barrel bridge just under the click but I can't read it...

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

  8. #7

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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    Looks like something on the barrel bridge just under the click but I can't read it...
    Ray,
    Not sure exactly where u mean so I'm attaching a higher resolution pic of the movements. The only writing I see is for the regulator.

    see: http://snipr.com/21djm

  9. #8
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Looks like Greek lettering. It's at approx. 4 o'clock as you look at the plates on the watch, right under the click. I don't think it means much though.
    I still think it might be Swiss becasuse the regulator has the common AFRS type lettering you find on Swiss watches.

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

  10. #9

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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    I still think it might be Swiss becasuse the regulator has the common AFRS type lettering you find on Swiss watches.
    Ray,
    You have a very keen eye (which I guess you watchmakers need). While sifting through Dr. Ranfft's website I stumbled upon the Alpina 1110 movement which looks strikingly similar to both the Junghans J49 and my watches movement. My watch bears the same "swiss" type ARFS and may explain the lack of the Junghans 8 pointed star.
    So considering I don't know what I'm looking at maybe you know? Are they the same thing? I know Alpina had some years in Germany, I dont know if that means anything.
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  11. #10
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for help to ID my Opa's watch (pics)

    I'm not a watchmaker, just a fan of watches. You'd have to be much better at hand eye co-ordination than I am to fix watches.
    My partner JohnF does some work on his own stuff. For me that would be like attempting personal brain surgery.
    I note that both the Junghans and the Alpina do have the Swiss AFRS and neither are exactly the same as your watch. There were many Swiss and German watch manufacturers in the early part of the 20th century and the basic watch design they used was pretty much the same.
    The Alpina and Junghans have a separate bridge for the escapement wheel and yours doesn't. That may or may not mean anything.
    Very often we simply cannot identify the maker. Sometimes there is a mark on the side of the movement behind the dial but only a watchmaker will see that. We won't see it in a photo. But it may not be there either.
    What we can tell you is German case, possibly German or Swiss movement, probably 1920-1940.

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

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