03-10-2002, 07:48 AM #1Barry GGuest
cuivre pocket watch identification
The watch does not appear to be marked with a maker's name and is likely a low grade Swiss watch from the mid to late 1800's.
The word "cuivre" means copper or brass, and indicates that the inner "dust" cover is made of one of these metals, as opposed to the rest of the case which might be silver or gold.
"Cylndre" indicates that the watch has a cylinder style escapement. Left to its own devices, the mainspring of a watch would wind down in a matter of seconds. The escapement is the part of the watch mechanism that keeps this from happening, forcing the mainspring to instead unwind at a slow, regular pace. The regular interaction of the various parts of the escapement is what literally makes a watch "tick." Cylinder escapements were popular on lower grade Swiss watches during the time period I mentioend. They were fairly cheap and easy to manufacture, but not as reliable as other styles.
"quatre rubis" indicates that the watch has at least 4 jewels, some of which were small doughnut shaped rubies that acted as bearings on some of the arbors [the "axles" of the various gears], and others of which were small chips of ruby used internally to provide a hard surface where various parts interact with each other. Higher grade watches would have 15, 17, 19, even 21 or 23 jewels.
My Online Pocket Watch Collection
[This message has been edited by Barry G (edited 03-10-2002).]
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