Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

Thread: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

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  1. #1
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    Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    I just got a Elgin 7 jewel pocket watch off Ebay. Needless to say the watch is in excellent shape. Thing is I'm a total newbie with watches and pocket watches in general. I wound it a little and it fires right up and works fine. My questions are; how many times should I wind it? My Dad used to have a nice pocket watch that was wrecked when he overwound it, I don't want to do that. Also how do you set the time?

    Here is the link to ebay for the auction so you can see what type of watch it is: Nice pocket watch Elgin - eBay (item 180549449730 end time Aug-25-10 21:11:23 PDT)

  2. #2
    Omega Forum Moderator emmanuelgoldstein's Avatar
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    First thing you need to do is have it serviced. It's very likely the watch hasn't been serviced in years. The watch was made in 1920 and is a grade 311 size 12 watch. It's one of the lower end movements from Elgin. This in no way detracts from the beauty of a pocket watch, but does effect value. I've never seen a dial like this. I believe it to be a replacement to the original porcelain dial. To set the time you need to unscrew the front crystal I believe on this watch. There should be a lever near two o'clock or five o'clock, pull out the lever, you can than use crown to set the time. There are plenty who know much more than me about pocket watches. They will probably chime in soon.
    Last edited by emmanuelgoldstein; September 9th, 2010 at 22:46.
    “Education is the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the indifferent by the incompetent”

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  3. #3
    Member Outta Time's Avatar
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    duplicate post
    Last edited by Outta Time; September 10th, 2010 at 00:14.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    duplicate post.
    yeesh.
    Last edited by Outta Time; September 10th, 2010 at 00:15.

  6. #5
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    Thanks for the reply. I have actually removed the front bezel and I can't see any lever or anything that can be used to set it, the same when I pop the cover on the movement, there doesn't appear to be a lever or anything there either. You can pust the crown down, I tried that but it won't do anything.

  7. #6
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    I can't say for sure, but that looks like a stem set. But before you go pulling on the stem, unscrew the bezel and see if there is a small metal tab that is the tip of a lever that slides out sideways from the dial. No lever, then it is stem set, like a modern watch. You wind it once a day. Pocket watches generally have a short power reserve, usually around 33-35 hours, although there are notable exceptions like 8 day movts, etc. You can't overwind it, but if you continue to apply force to wind it after resistance is felt, you can break parts inside, not the least of which is the mainspring. It's old, so be gentle with it. It also may not have shock protection on the balance, so don't drop it.
    If a seller tries to tell you a timepiece is not running or running poorly because it is 'overwound', they either don't have any idea what they're talking about, or are trying to scam you. Get is serviced if you plan to start using it, and you can hand it down to your kids. Hope this helps.

  8. #7
    Member Outta Time's Avatar
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    the crown should pop up when gently pulled, like a modern watch, to set the time.

  9. #8
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    Thanks for the info, I'll try that.

  10. #9
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    Hmmm...I tried pulling the crown out gently. It didn't come out at all, I pulled on it about as hard as I want to. Any other ideas?

  11. #10
    Member Outta Time's Avatar
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    Re: Questions regarding Elgin pocket watch

    Sometimes the keyless works, when they have no lube, or have been subjected to moisture, can be stiff, or seize up altogether. I would recommend taking it to a watchmaker, unless anybody else has any ideas?

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