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Revisiting an old hobby


AndyHull

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Sadly she found that out years ago. Its even more dangerous than you might imagine, since she likes to make patchwork quilts, which involves a lot of ironing or all of the pieces all the way throughout the process. I do get roped in to that from time to time. 

I might add, that I am currently wearing a crumpled tee shirt and a pair of equally crumpled trousers. I may know how to iron, but that doesn't mean I feel compelled to do so. 😋

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30 minutes ago, AndyHull said:

 

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I spent a couple of hours this evening sorting out the worst of the battle scars on the "new to me" watch desk.

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I would guess it was made in the 1970s or possibly 1980s, with the majority of it being made of real hard woods. The drawers are lined with hardwood too. There are four fiberboard blocks on the top of each drawer plinth to align them with the top section, suggesting it is relatively recent, but the lack of low quality fittings or hardboard drawer liners make me think '70s or '80s.

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The leather top does appear to be genuine leather, but not as high quality as something from say fifty years earlier. There were a couple of rather nasty "cup marks" on the leather, and lots of light coloured chips to the finish of the wood, on the front and sides. The leather had a few nicks and dings, requiring some careful stippling with the coloured pens.

In keeping with the 404 club theme, the damaged areas were fixed with acrylic paints, alcohol pens, and a few wax crayons from Poundland.

You can of course purchase specialist materials for this sort of fix, and I do have some, but the Poundland stuff coupled with a little artistic jiggery pokery finished the job quite nicely.  The alcohol markers were mainly used on the leather, and the acrylic paints were mixed to a suitable set of colours and applied thinly on to the damaged areas of the wood to blend the damage with the surrounding colour.

There are a couple of loose drawer fronts which I will glue up tomorrow, and I will probably also apply a little shellac or floor varnish to some of the more obvious chips in the finish.  All in all I'm quite pleased with the results. Well worth the not very much I paid for it.

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The white "cup marks" on the leather came out with the careful application of the heat of the nose of the iron, through a couple of layers of kitchen towel, and a fairly liberal application of neetsfoot oil.  I knew this technique worked with cup marks on wood finishes, but I was not sure it was going to do the trick on leather, but apparently it works like a charm. Just be careful with the heat though. Work slowly, and don't burn the surface.

Apparently, according to my wife "It looks like new", but I still think there are a few more dings to take care of before I am happy. After that I think I'll pop a cut to size acrylic sheet over the top of it to save the finish from further damage. That way I don't ruin all my hard work by spilling lighter fluid or some such on the thing.

Looking good Andy. 3 section writing ? dest, usually have an extra sloped seperate section on top. Dovetailed draws 👍. Stepped over moulded solid top 👍. The rest veneered ? 🤔 not so good but if been looked after and kept dry 👍.  I can see some burring on the veneer of the center draw front nice, possibly the second draw up on the right  Light walnut perhaps. I think you may be under aging it, definately not 80's unless a repo. 50' s ? I like it

35 minutes ago, watchweasol said:

Its looking good Andy, does the misses know that you can use an Iron? could be dangerous.

I made very sure i always made a crap job of ironing. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...
On 9/17/2022 at 8:45 PM, AndyHull said:

I've got guests staying at the moment, so I've  not got much spare time, however I still made time to watch this.
Its a beautiful little movement, and the video is well worth watching.

Good vid Andy. The guy makes his work look effortless or maybe his editing does or am i being cynical ?  Liberal oiling due to a large old pocket watch ?

8 hours ago, AndyHull said:

From the same source, "Beat Error".

.. and a trick to determine lift angle for any watch.

 

I've learnt a lot from Kalle, some great tips. Nice guy as well. Just had his 50th birthday and invited anyone that wanted to , to join in his celebrations in person at his workshop.

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Today's mystery watch is a "Tower Watch Co." which claims to be have Incabloc shock protection, however it looks a little odd for an Incabloc in my opinion.
Can anybody shed light on what the calibre is, and whether that is some kind of Incabloc or not. It also claims to be "waterproof", but we can take that with a very large pinch of salt, since it has no seals to speak of, nor any evidence that there ever were.

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The watch runs, with a good amplitude, but it stops after a while, so I'm going to have to give it a close "dental inspection" I suspect.

It got a fresh crystal, as the original had some interesting brown marks that might have been associated with the lume, which is possibly (probably?) radium. Don't worry folks, I didn't go licking the dial, and washed my hands after the operation.

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I don't recognise the maker's mark on the case either, so if anybody knows what that signifies, I'd be interested to know.

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Edited by AndyHull
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On 10/16/2022 at 1:24 PM, AndyHull said:

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Today's mystery watch is a "Tower Watch Co." which claims to be have Incabloc shock protection, however it looks a little odd for an Incabloc in my opinion.
Can anybody shed light on what the calibre is, and whether that is some kind of Incabloc or not. It also claims to be "waterproof", but we can take that with a very large pinch of salt, since it has no seals to speak of, nor any evidence that there ever were.

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The watch runs, with a good amplitude, but it stops after a while, so I'm going to have to give it a close "dental inspection" I suspect.

It got a fresh crystal, as the original had some interesting brown marks that might have been associated with the lume, which is possibly (probably?) radium. Don't worry folks, I didn't go licking the dial, and washed my hands after the operation.

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I don't recognise the maker's mark on the case either, so if anybody knows what that signifies, I'd be interested to know.

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Just had a skeg through my movement charts .What about this Andy ?  And that shock spring looks like the jaws of the Kraken, captain Jaaack. 

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Thanks. I think I've figured out the case. It appears to be Louis Lang SA


https://www.mikrolisk.de/show.php?site=280&suchwort=LL&searchWhere=all#sucheMarker

The shock.. I'm not so sure.

12 minutes ago, tomh207 said:

Looks like a free French cross on the dial too, but if shock protected that likely wouldn’t fit the time period?

It might be, a Free French cross, and the case may be from 1935 onwards.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross_of_Lorraine

Its interesting whatever it is. I've resisted the temptation to re-lume it so far, but I might. I'd need to do a pretty good colour match though or it would just annoy me.

According to Wikipedia Incabloc first appears in 1934 apparently.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incabloc_shock_protection_system

The Incabloc website claims 1928

https://www.incabloc.ch/en/

It is also possible that this is either not the original dial, or not the original balance cock and shock system, or both.

 

Edited by AndyHull
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  • 3 weeks later...

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Today I stripped down a decidedly Breguet-esque pocket watch mechanism that I picked up from the usual suspects for a pound. It is of course in a terrible condition as you would expect for that price. However underneath all the filth there is a rather fine, high grade movement.

The finish seen in the ebay listing suggested it was going to be well made. 

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The pallet fork turns out to be a work of art, all be it a rather grubby one. This is the part that perhaps more than the rest has me thinking Breguet, or someone closely associated with Breguet.

There are issues with the thing of course, not just the usual half a can of WD40, but also the hairspring has broken off right at the stud, so I will have to see if I can re-attach it.

More worryingly there are a couple of cracked jewels which I do not currently have the wherewithal to replace. I sense I may be about to purchase some more small but expensive tools.

Here are a few more images for you all.

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There is a letter, which looks like a P or possibly a P superimpose on an R, and a serial number (23606), on the dial side.
Oddly some of the wheels are "signed" with four dots in a diamond pattern.

I doubt if this sheds much extra light on the maker, but you never know.

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1 hour ago, AndyHull said:

More worryingly there are a couple of cracked jewels which I do not currently have the wherewithal to replace. I sense I may be about to purchase some more small but expensive tools.

Rubbed or pushed in ?

1 hour ago, AndyHull said:

image.thumb.png.be55f3ecf12700967073e166744c274e.png

Today I stripped down a decidedly Breguet-esque pocket watch mechanism that I picked up from the usual suspects for a pound. It is of course in a terrible condition as you would expect for that price. However underneath all the filth there is a rather fine, high grade movement.

The finish seen in the ebay listing suggested it was going to be well made. 

RIMG0207.thumb.JPG.772b14407b3a9505b8be025381f32a63.JPG

The pallet fork turns out to be a work of art, all be it a rather grubby one. This is the part that perhaps more than the rest has me thinking Breguet, or someone closely associated with Breguet.

There are issues with the thing of course, not just the usual half a can of WD40, but also the hairspring has broken off right at the stud, so I will have to see if I can re-attach it.

More worryingly there are a couple of cracked jewels which I do not currently have the wherewithal to replace. I sense I may be about to purchase some more small but expensive tools.

Here are a few more images for you all.

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There is a letter, which looks like a P or possibly a P superimpose on an R, and a serial number (23606), on the dial side.
Oddly some of the wheels are "signed" with four dots in a diamond pattern.

I doubt if this sheds much extra light on the maker, but you never know.

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Any idea if the snake's tongue as a purpose Andy ?

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2 hours ago, AndyHull said:

image.thumb.png.be55f3ecf12700967073e166744c274e.png

Today I stripped down a decidedly Breguet-esque pocket watch mechanism that I picked up from the usual suspects for a pound. It is of course in a terrible condition as you would expect for that price. However underneath all the filth there is a rather fine, high grade movement.

The finish seen in the ebay listing suggested it was going to be well made. 

RIMG0207.thumb.JPG.772b14407b3a9505b8be025381f32a63.JPG

The pallet fork turns out to be a work of art, all be it a rather grubby one. This is the part that perhaps more than the rest has me thinking Breguet, or someone closely associated with Breguet.

There are issues with the thing of course, not just the usual half a can of WD40, but also the hairspring has broken off right at the stud, so I will have to see if I can re-attach it.

More worryingly there are a couple of cracked jewels which I do not currently have the wherewithal to replace. I sense I may be about to purchase some more small but expensive tools.

Here are a few more images for you all.

RIMG0199.JPG

RIMG0200.JPG

RIMG0201.JPG

RIMG0202.JPG

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There is a letter, which looks like a P or possibly a P superimpose on an R, and a serial number (23606), on the dial side.
Oddly some of the wheels are "signed" with four dots in a diamond pattern.

I doubt if this sheds much extra light on the maker, but you never know.

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Its lovely Andy, the double cove detailing to the 2 cocks and 2 bridges is smart also the click and its spring is rather classy.

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Rub in, in the case of the escape wheel bridge, the other one is a cap jewel, held in by a small plate, so far as I can tell. I didn't fiddle with either of them. They currently work, but should be replaced.

The snakes tongue works as a counter weight to preserve  the energy from the impulse so far as I understand.

BTW You might like this  Breguet related article.

https://watchesbysjx.com/2019/08/breguet-natural-escapement-evolution.html

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15 hours ago, AndyHull said:

The snakes tongue works as a counter weight to preserve  the energy from the impulse so far as I understand.

That was all i could think of, just seemed an elaborate shape, but also the point of a quality movement. Lovely to see. I guess maker's of old had so much more time on their hands.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

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This evening I decided to take a look at a remarkably slim cylinder movement of unknown origin, with an engine turned silver dial, possibly from 1892, possibly considerably earlier, and maybe French. Any experts please chime in and let me know your thoughts. 
I picket this up for a few pennies, because I liked the look of the dial, and the blued screw construction. 
I have it working, but don't have any suitable hands for it yet. I presume it has had its original spring replaced, as the Maltese cross works are missing. 

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There are a couple of inscriptions on the back of the dial, one from 1892, and a couple of others that are less distinct, one may say 1820.
If anybody has any ideas about what they say, let me know.

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... and the star of the show, the  Guilloché dial.

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.. and a few more pictures for completeness.

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Edited by AndyHull
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I picked this orphaned Waltham 0s pocket watch mechanism up ages ago in a job lot, and never got round to looking at it.
The hands were mangled and the whole thing including the hands was filthy.

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It seems to have enjoyed a clean and polish, but now I'm left wondering what to do with it.

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I'm pretty sure the lift angle in this test is incorrect, but its probably roughly in the ballpark, and the thing runs well.
Not bad for a 115 year old or so mechanism, since the serial number suggests it was produced some time around 1908

It would make a very nice wrist watch if I can find, and/or adapt a suitable case for it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

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It was a little grubby and not running too well when it arrived.

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Sadly, as is all too often the case, the seconds pivot on this Rode pocket watch had been damaged.

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I guess I might be able to so something cunning with the pivot.

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Perhaps if I had a hand with a very long tube reach it might work, but as it currently stands it is handless.

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Other than that it is a very fine looking watch.

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Following a good clean and service it is also running very nicely, and considering how little I paid for it I'm pretty pleased with the result.

Edited by AndyHull
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AsPurchased1-l1600.thumb.jpg.84b105ab81577a3779384de0dd417b89.jpg

Junk.

To be precise three quids worth of junk.

But on the plus side you get a free key-wind Swiss pocket watch with it, all be it one with a couple of missing hands.

You guessed it, I've been trawling the most flea bitten end of fleabay again. Lets see if I got my moneys worth.
If not, there is also a weird little Altimeter watch in the pile too, and of course some "genuine" Faulex parts.

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