Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

Thread: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

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  1. #1
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    Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    Seen hundreds of Verithins real and images. Never a 16 jewel marked Madretsch Verithin. Never saw a Madretsch marked Gruen Verithin or other model Mad. without the Grossmann poised pallet escapement. Here is one. Serial number is for 1915-18. Made to be a lower cost model, yet very fine quality. Has finest enamel dial I ever saw on a Gruen. Double back oddly marked case. Adjusted. Really strange fine quality lower grade watch. Indicates Gruen had a hard time at the time of this one making a low grade watch. Bet few were sold.

    Added 3 other Gruen 1915-20+ attempts for lower cost models. Watch Specialties fairly successful. (not mine). My Gruen Guild not common.
    Premo I know nothing about (not mine). Curious that they made better grade 19j adjusted versions of their cheaper models.
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    Last edited by artb; December 26th, 2010 at 14:07.

  2. #2
    Member radger's Avatar
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    Re: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    Beautiful quality steel work etc.
    Looks like the build quality remains the same whilst the spec is lower.
    The Grossman escapement would add significantly to the original cost no doubt.
    Nice catch.
    Last edited by radger; December 27th, 2010 at 00:59.

  3. #3
    Member Erik_H's Avatar
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    Re: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    That is an exquisite dial, beautiful. Thanks for showing, Art.
    Erik_H
    Member NAWCC Chapter 149

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  5. #4
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    Re: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    Art you are a very bad influence.

    I now have bought 2 Columbus (I got the first one wrong, it was 11j - even with the patent micro regulator) and 1 pre 1920 verithin due to the lovely watches you keep posting. I was going to ask you when Madretsch was replaced by Swisse marking on the movements, but seems there may be some confusion due to the comment re the verithin above.

    My verithin is a 478XXX and is almost identical to your example above except not marked Madretsch, it is only marked swisse. Again a cheaper model with 5pos and trempretures, but a very fine piece.
    Last edited by trim; December 27th, 2010 at 00:06.

  6. #5
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    Re: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    Leo Aeby of Madretsch was about same age as Dietrich Gruen and went through same Grossmann school training and experience working with Germans Assmann and Lange. He started as a fine watch manufacturer before Gruen did in 1876. Gruen got his first Columbus movements from him 1876-80+. When Dietrich started Gruen watches in 1894 he used movements from Assmann until Fred Gruen wanted to do smaller than 16 size about 1904 which Assmann would not do. So Aeby started supplying 0 through 16 size then and made the first Verithins that were 0,01" bigger than 10 size. Most wrongly call 12 size. 17 ligne. Swiss. It seems that design co-operation and genuine friendliness prevailed between Aeby and Gruen people for a long time. I believe Fred Gruen depended on Aeby people (do not know when Leo died) for a lot of specials, like this one shown here, including the prototyping of the unique 1924 50th gold mvnt. watch. Thus a constructive relationship from before 1874 to 1924+. The DC&s mark on Madrescht and other contracted movements lingered on some years after about 1911 when it ended on Gruen made mvnts. In general I prefer the quality of Assmann first, but next Aeby. Many specials were ordered from Le Locle makers such as Dietrich Gruens and other uniques marked in various ways.
    Last edited by artb; December 27th, 2010 at 04:37.

  7. #6
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    Re: Rare 16j Gruen Veri-thin p.w.

    Thanks Art, interesting.

    I would happily collect a couple more of these early pieces. Obviously many of the important ones such as the anniversary models are out of my grasp - but the more ordinary ones remain affordable. I doubt I will have the pleasure of owning an Assmann Gruen, but certainly wouldn't say no to one at the right price.

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