MAYBE I can stop now...
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Thread: MAYBE I can stop now...

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  1. #1
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    MAYBE I can stop now...

    A few weeks back, I posted about the Elgin 540 'Timemaster', their 16s 23j BW Raymond movement, top of the line in 1940 (well, excluding the CH Hulburds). I thought, "I'm done with the late 16s BW Raymonds."


    Then I had a thought - I have the late 478 with the regular cut balance and Elginium Y hairspring. And I have the 540 with its Invar balance and Elginium Y hairspring. And I have the 590 with its Elginium hairspring and monometallic, uncut balance. And I have the 571, the last of the 16s BW Raymonds, the keystone of Elgin's completely revamped 16s series, introduced in 1946.


    But I DON'T have an earlier 478, with the regular cut balance and blue steel hairspring! A


    As luck would have it, a 478 movement came up for sale on Ebay, part of a movement lot with an 18s Waltham, a late 19th Century English lever fusee, and an unnamed Swiss movement. It was from 1927, and not only did it have a blue hairspring, but also it had a Montgomery dial! I grabbed the lot with a price I thought good enough for just the 478!


    That same week, a WHITE gold filled version of the Elgin 'Mainliner' style 'B W Raymond Model' case came up for sale. I bagged it, too! It's the right age for the movement I bought, and the right model.


    When the arrived, I discovered the 478 was in great condition! Complete, no rust, no hairlines on the dial, everything great, except - Busted balance staff! NUTS! Well, with the others, it's still a bargain.


    So, I found someone selling the right balance staff, and bought 2 of 'em. And waited. And waited (they were coming from Australia). FINALLY they arrived!


    I took down the 478, cleaned is scrupulously, and checked the fit of the pivots. PERFECT! So, I went ahead and ever-so-carefully replaced the staff. The balance stayed true, and mostly poised! I put the whole thing together, and here it is!





    Note the cut balance and blue hairspring - I stopped the balance for the picture.


    And here it is with the others in the collection. It's the one on the far left. From 12:00 going clockwise: 23j 540 from 1940; 21j 478 from 1942; 21j 571 from 1950; 21j 590 from 1944; and finally, in it's WGF case, the 21j 478 from 1927!





    And here are the movements. Note how similar all but the 571 are. It stands out, with its friction-set jewels replacing the old screwed-down gold chatons, and the cap jewels all set in steel settings, screwed down from underneath.





    Now, I can stop. At least till the NEXT bug bites me!
    Don't take life so serious, son. It ain't nohow permanent - Pogo

    My Elgin Blog...

  2. #2
    Member YuriyV's Avatar
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    Re: MAYBE I can stop now...

    Great story! Thanks for sharing.
    Vintage Zodiac addict.

  3. #3
    Member Sansoni7's Avatar
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    Re: MAYBE I can stop now...

    Beautiful pocket watches.
    Congratulations.


    Step by step i will be there.

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  5. #4
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: MAYBE I can stop now...

    very nice pocket watches with great movements
    Omega the sign of Excellence since 1848. Jaeger Le Coultre Horlogerie de Luxe depuis 1833
    22 times Olympic games timekeeper, Nasa watch supplier and holder of several world records of precision, Omega has the world's trust
    Omega and Rolex for ever
    Eterna Nothing but Watchmaking since 1856
    Zenith Swiss Watchmaking and Chronometry champion since 1865

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