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  1. #1
    Member mike184's Avatar
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    Trench Watch

    Hi!

    Some guys here(they know who´s meant) presented very nice trenchwatches and a lot of information about this type of watch - and I have to consist that I felt infected after so much appetisers.
    So I bought my first trenchwatch today.
    No, not another expensive and exclusive high tech product of the 1905 - 1920-era with Borgel or Dennison case in sterling silver.
    It looks more like basic stuff for the common soldier. The case, 33 mm except crown, is from gun metal and not even in top condition from the seller´s description and the pics. The movement is in need of a repair, but dial and hands look very nice and just "spoke to me". Dial without hairline cracks from the description. And the whole watch hasn´t been really expensive. A way to see if I like to wear a (from the description) 1914´s WWI watch without paying too much for it.
    Here are the seller´s pics, better ones will follow when he watch has arrived.

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    Name:  trenchwatch b.JPG
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    Any more info so far, especially about the movement? Any comments are welcome.
    Last edited by mike184; August 30th, 2012 at 22:50.
    Paleotime likes this.
    Best regards, Mike

  2. #2
    Member Sparcster's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Hi Mike,

    All those temptations of nice trench watches being posted got too much for you..... damn those 'guys'

    As for your watch.... I cant help that much.

    I have never owned a 'gunmetal' case.... and am away that many cases described as 'Gunmetal' are not normally the real thing - I cant comment on your, as I dont know!

    The Movement looks in quite nice condition (when compared to the cases age related marks/rust) with a nice finish and looks to be above the base cylinder type movement!

    Im unsure how the watch has been aged to 1914.... its not like there are hallmarks to help pin down a year... Also, Im not sure if the design points to a military watch (thin hands, lack of lume.... etc), but thats not to say it could not have been a private purchase...

    I like what appears to be the original bevelled edge crystal.... and the radial design of the dial is a nice touch!

    Any ideas on a strap?

    Is it running?

    Look forward to your pics when it arrives!
    A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away...

    Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    Twitter: quickpicmarc

  3. #3
    Member john87300's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Looks like it will turn out nicely Mike. I can't give you any info, but like you, the guys you mention keep tempting me to plunge into the unknown
    I've bid on (and lost out on) a couple of "poilu" ManuFrance "75" non runners, but I'm still on the lookout for something not too far gone.
    John
    Watch Website: www.chambresdebelair.com/watches.html last update 07/11/2012

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  5. #4
    Member radger's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Not bad at all, it's a cut above my basic trench watch with
    cylinder escapement and brass case.....



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  6. #5
    Member pithy's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Do you call it a trench watch because it was dug out of a trench?

    Leave the rust on it. It will polish with wear. Lugs/hand/dial/crown look good. This is a much more legit, original watch than many that are seen.

    Don't try to over restore. If it will run to 30 seconds - that's close enough.

    I like it.

    p
    Courtesy of ULF.

  7. #6
    Member althaur's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    They are addicting. ;) I love my old Rolex trench and am anxiously awaiting my Hebdomas 8 day which is in route. Enjoy it.
    Josh Reis


  8. #7
    Member joeuk's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Damn I feel like the odd one out on here, I have become to like these trench watches esp the crown they used. I have recently looked on the Zenith website and found the pilot range, would love to own one, and the look of the watch just looks like a trench watch. What do you think.


  9. #8
    Member mike184's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Quote Originally Posted by Sparcster View Post
    Hi Mike,

    All those temptations of nice trench watches being posted got too much for you..... damn those 'guys'
    Yes, shame on you!
    As for your watch.... I cant help that much.

    I have never owned a 'gunmetal' case.... and am away that many cases described as 'Gunmetal' are not normally the real thing - I cant comment on your, as I dont know!
    Also my first gunmetal-case. I always had the association of a special, hardened high-quality steel alloy being used to make guns. But the Merriam Webster gives three definitions:
    1 : a metal used for guns; specifically : a bronze formerly much used as a material for cannon

    2 : an alloy or metal treated to imitate nearly black tarnished copper-alloy gunmetal


    3 : a bluish-gray color

    So if it´s not a high quality material, at least the dark colour remains.
    The Movement looks in quite nice condition (when compared to the cases age related marks/rust) with a nice finish and looks to be above the base cylinder type movement!

    Im unsure how the watch has been aged to 1914.... its not like there are hallmarks to help pin down a year... Also, Im not sure if the design points to a military watch (thin hands, lack of lume.... etc), but thats not to say it could not have been a private purchase...

    I like what appears to be the original bevelled edge crystal.... and the radial design of the dial is a nice touch!

    Any ideas on a strap?

    Is it running?

    Look forward to your pics when it arrives!
    The seller said "around 1914". My impression is that it is a military watch(not officially, but thought for soldiers) with it´s dark coloured(not to say gunmetal-) case. If that´s right, surely at the beginning of the war, so 1914, because indeed it has small hands and Roman, not Arabic cyphers and is not lumed.
    Maybe there are hallmarks, but that can be cleared not before it has arrived.
    The movement doesn´t run, needs a repair. Maybe it has marks to identify or can be identified with better pics. To wear it, I thought about a customised Bund-strap.
    Last edited by mike184; September 2nd, 2012 at 00:54.
    Best regards, Mike

  10. #9
    Member mike184's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Quote Originally Posted by john87300 View Post
    Looks like it will turn out nicely Mike. I can't give you any info, but like you, the guys you mention keep tempting me to plunge into the unknown
    I've bid on (and lost out on) a couple of "poilu" ManuFrance "75" non runners, but I'm still on the lookout for something not too far gone.
    Good luck on your French-trench!
    I also have let a lot of them go, simply too expensive. This time was the right time - I paid 20.- € and it comes with a Louis Rossel I bought from the same seller, so no extra shipping.
    Quote Originally Posted by radger View Post
    Not bad at all, it's a cut above my basic trench watch with
    cylinder escapement and brass case.....
    I like your basic trench watch, doesn´t look bad!
    Quote Originally Posted by pithy View Post
    Do you call it a trench watch because it was dug out of a trench?

    Leave the rust on it. It will polish with wear. Lugs/hand/dial/crown look good. This is a much more legit, original watch than many that are seen.

    Don't try to over restore. If it will run to 30 seconds - that's close enough.

    I like it.

    p
    I thought it had been the Middle Age with the iron trenches.
    The rust has to leave, but over restoring is the last thing I want to do with it. It would destroy the character of that watch.
    Quote Originally Posted by althaur View Post
    They are addicting. ;) I love my old Rolex trench and am anxiously awaiting my Hebdomas 8 day which is in route. Enjoy it.
    Curious to see pics!
    Quote Originally Posted by joeuk View Post
    Damn I feel like the odd one out on here, I have become to like these trench watches esp the crown they used. I have recently looked on the Zenith website and found the pilot range, would love to own one, and the look of the watch just looks like a trench watch. What do you think.
    The Zenith "Montre d´Aeronef Typ 20" is more a modern interpretation of the pilots watches in WWII. With 57,5 mm case dia(!) even larger than the famous German WWII-B-Uhr! Definitely not my style, apart from the price! I would prefer s.th. like this, a smaller remake of a famous original.
    Best regards, Mike

  11. #10
    Member pithy's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch

    Mechanical, chemical or galvanic, the question always is: Are you going to remove more blue or rust. I've restored numerous gunmetal cases and would rather work on gold, silver or platinum, be it solid, filled or plate. The rust base - that part anchored to the base metal certainly doesn't detract from the character of the piece but rather in the eyes of many enhances it. Similarly, the loss of the original bluing doesn't endear the end product. Blue - heat or chemical - newly deposited in the pits is a definite turnoff for me.

    p
    Courtesy of ULF.

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