Marks to ID cases? Metals?

Thread: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

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  1. #1
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    Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    I am just getting into this watch thing a little more seriously, and my wife is getting into older jewelry as well. Well, I was wondering what marks mean what inside of cases denoting certain metal types.
    For example, a sterling stamped into a case would mean its silver. Is that solid silver, plate, or what?
    Also, what are some of the marks for gold? I understand the 10k, 14k, 24k, etc, but that can all be plating marks as well.
    I hope I didnt confuse my question. Thanks. RIP

  2. #2
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    There are thousands of symbols that are stamped on cases.

    Most gold plated products are labelled (in order of frequency I see them):
    1. rolled gold plate
    2. gold filled
    3. waranteed
    4. a micron thickness
    5. HGE (hydrostatically gold electroplated .. I think)
    6. gold reinforced with metal
    7. gold supported by metal

  3. #3
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    Your best bet would be to refer to a book like Shugart's Complete Price Guide to Watches. You can buy it on Amazon or find it in your local library.
    It has a lot of different possible case marks outlined in it. it's too complicated for us to deal with in a thread like this.

    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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  5. #4
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    I've got an unmarked Waltham case I'd swear is gold.

    But I'm new at this, too.

    I need to find that book. Maybe Half Price has it...

  6. #5
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    Post photos of the inside of the caseback and maybe we can help. If there are no marks at all it's more difficult though.

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

  7. #6
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    The only marks are the Waltham name and a serial number. Some service engravings, too. But the only stamps are shown.

    Watch is a Model 1907 made in 1918.

    Click on the images for a larger view.






    I have a better, way better camera coming this weekend. I'll get better pictures then.

  8. #7
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    My sourcebook shows that the Waltham stamp on its own is a sign it's a solid gold case. No idea what purity though.

    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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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    Excuse me while I do my happy dance.

    Thanks for the info, Ray.

    A good buy for 27.00 off of the 'Bay.

    :thanks again.

  10. #9
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    It does seem odd to me that a rather generic quality 7 jewel movement would be in a gold case but there you go. I guess at the beginning of the wristwatch era folks weren't as fussy about the movement as they would be today.

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

  11. #10
    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: Marks to ID cases? Metals?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    It does seem odd to me that a rather generic quality 7 jewel movement would be in a gold case but there you go. I guess at the beginning of the wristwatch era folks weren't as fussy about the movement as they would be today.
    ... and it is a Waltham. I would be even more suprised if it were a Hamilton
    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

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