Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?
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Thread: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

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  1. #1
    Member Hilts's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
    Sunny England

    Question Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    Morning All! I have a trench watch that I think is a Borgel however I would like your opinions

    1. The watch itself is a front loader, the crown pulls out which doesn't appear to have any other purpose other than releasing the stem so that the movement can be taken out. The movement does not tip out when the crown is pulled out (there is no way that I'm going to attempt prying it out).
    2. The bezel that would usually allow you to unscrew the movement is missing (crystal has been added to protect the dial).

    Here are a few photographs:

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    Any Help on this would be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
    Member mkws's Avatar
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    May 2014

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    If you want to know who made the case, you'll need to open it up, and take a pic of the inner side of the case back, where all the relevant markings are located. If you can't do it yourself- let a watchmaker do that.

    Without seeing the markings, there is nothing to be said, really- need maker's marks, patent numbers... Assuming they're there.
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  3. #3
    Member tinknocker's Avatar
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    Dec 2009

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    The button below the crown should open the caseback, I would think
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  5. #4
    Member Hilts's Avatar
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    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    Morning All, thanks for the feedback. The button below the crown is for setting the time (you push the pin in then the crown and turn to set the hands) - the only way to access the movement is through the front as the case is all one piece.

    Are there any other trench watches where the movement screwed in from the front?
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  6. #5
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Feb 2006

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    My mother has a small Zenith ladies' pendant watch from ca. 1910-1920 in a case made of semi-precious stone (with a metal inlay). Since the stone is in one piece, you have to get in through the front. That one has a screw down bezel and, once that's unscrewed, you get the winding stem out by pushing a small lever on the movement close to the crown. So, monocoque cases are older than one might think. I suspect that you will have to go in through the front on this one but unless there is a bezel to unscrew, you will need to lift the crystal.

    Hartmut Richter
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  7. #6
    Member James A's Avatar
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    Jan 2014

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hartmut Richter View Post
    . So, monocoque cases are older than one might think.

    Hartmut Richter
    Yeah right. That is very interesting.

    To the OP here is some info on Borgel...

    François Borgel and Louisa Borgel - inventor and makers of the Borgel watch case


  8. #7
    Member Hilts's Avatar
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    Mar 2013
    Sunny England

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    Thanks again everyone - always a nice wealth of information here :)

  9. #8
    Member HOROLOGIST007's Avatar
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    Apr 2013
    Costa Blanca Spain

    Re: Trench Watch Identification - Borgel?

    Your watch surely looks like a 2 piece Borgel case.

    You need to hold it in your left hand, dial facing upwards, and with your thumb and forefinger pull and hold the crown fully out (it will pull out about 1/4 inch).
    While holding it out and with your right hand unscrew the top of the case (and movement) anti clockwise. It will unscrew id you grip the top case beside the glass
    The bezel/glass and movement will come out as one piece.

    The small pin below the crown, as you say sets the hands, the crown can only wind the watch, it can not set the hands directly as the crown and stem are NOT physically attached to the movement.

    99.9% sure your will be BORGEL with the F&B marque depose

    Last edited by HOROLOGIST007; June 6th, 2017 at 01:12.

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