I really appreciate a high quality watch, especialy one which was born
from the days before the mass produced, machine made watch.
This is such a watch and this post will attempt to convey the quality
and attention to detail which the master watchmakers and artisans
working in the Locle C1875-1880 could achieve.
It is an Edouard Perregeaux, open faced hunter in a quality silver case,
my original post about this watch can be seen here.....
The movement is marked Meylan & Guignard FR and, courtesy of member
Kurtnz, this is what I know of this pair.
"Pritchard lists a Meylan & Guignard Freres, Le Lieu, Geneve.
The firm was founded as Etienne Meylan in 1847.
An ad in the Journal Suisse d’ Horlogerie in 1876 gave their name as
Meylan & Guignard Freres and called them makers of precision horology.
They could supply blank movements in all calibers used by Ulysse Le Coultre.
An ad in the JSH 2 they made simple watches and all complications in all
sizes; they specialized in stem winds, repeaters, independent seconds,
chronographs, calendars, chronometers etc.
The firm presented a remarkable collection of 32 movements at the Paris
Exhibition in 1878. These included 7 to 8 ligne movements, others with
diverse complications such as quarter repeaters, simple and perpetual
calendars and moon phases. One movement contained all the complications.
They won a Gold Medal first class from the National Academy in France
in 1879, a silver medal 1878, a diploma in 1878 and a First Class medal
for movements at the National exhibition of Horology at La Chaux de Fonds
Meylan & Guignard obviously made the ebauch, but in reality many
artisans would have had a hand in the production of this watch as several
aspects of watch production at this time, were specialised trades in their
As I dismantled the watch before I took a pic, the post will be a
pictography of assembly with macro pics attempting to show detail and
Here is the dial side of the dial plate.
Notice the plating and fine pearling. All screws, even on the dial side
are highly polished bevelled to the outer rim and chamfered to the slot.
The spring work is polished and bevelled and the intermediate hand setting
gears are highly polished with their own bridge, complete with Geneve stripes.
Although the end stone settings stand proud they are also nicely
inset and bevelled.
In most watches the hole in the plate which pivots the stem is plain
or bushed with bronze, these wear and it is a frequent repair re-bushing
On this watch the stem pivot is holed in a beautifuly made steel pivot
hole which is partly inset, pegged and screwed to the plate.
This system has worked as I can detect no obvious wear at this point.
I was surprised to find a sliding sleave mechanism and had expected a
rocking bar type set up, especialy since the watch is lever set but I'm
not to familiar with this type of watch and nowhere on the internet can
I find another Locle watch from this period dismantled so it could be
The crown and castle wheel are highly polished as is the stem and
everything slides and clicks into place as sweet as a nut.
The barrel is fitted with Geneva stopwork, this is set up with a half turn
to the spring and allows four full turns of the spring.
Although the spring looks to be to large for the barrel, as it occupies more
than the accepted norm of one third, I would say it is correct as I have
the four full turns required to fully wind the watch.
A tool had to be made to dismantle the barrel assembly as the barrel
arbour is made in three pieces rather than the usual one. The winding
wheel is riveted to the arbour whilst the centre 'drum' is unscrewed
clockwise from the arbour, probably a safety device in case of a
The whole barrel and winding assembly is very well made and extremely
The winding bridge, note the name of the ebauche maker underneath.
The following pics speak for themselves....
Notice the pearling even underneath the balance cock.
But what good is all that effort if the watch is a mediocre timekeeper!
Here is an analyser shot, I don't know the lift angle of the pallets and
so the balance amplitude is not neccessarily correct.
Checking manualy the amplitude is in the 290-300 deg region and is
not significantly reduced in any position.
The performance is superb and it times + or - 3 seconds in five positions and - 6 secs whilst upside down.
This could be got better by retouching the top pivot with a burnisher, or
changing the viscocity of the lube on one balance pivot but not by me.... at this time anyway.