23 Jewel Repeater Movement Identification

Discussion in 'Complicated Watches' started by Niall, Jun 11, 2019.

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  1. Niall

    Niall Registered User

    Mar 16, 2019
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    Hi all

    I have had this movement for a little while now and have attempted a bit of research online but have had little (basically zero) luck!

    I found this amongst a lot of watch parts I have, it came together with the pictured dial on the movement however I have my doubts as to whether the dial is the original one for the movement.

    The dial is for John Hutton and the movement appears to be Swiss. I am assuming this is not a Hutton movement for certain based on his history and that it is unlikely this was a movement bought in by John Hutton that he put his name on?

    Really interested in the history of this and if anyone has any clue as to the movement maker? I can't find a comparable movement anywhere on the Internet!

    Many thanks

    IMG_20190611_110645.jpg IMG_20190611_110637.jpg IMG_20190611_110624.jpg IMG_20190611_110600.jpg IMG_20190611_110548.jpg
     
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  2. MartyR

    MartyR Moderator
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    Dec 16, 2008
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    I agree that the watch is obviously Swiss, and my first assumption would be that John Hutton (who was a chronometer maker between 1830 and 1858) bought in this repeater complete and retailed it. Tony Mercer records serail numbers including three in the 700s and going as high as 1121, so the serial number 774 on your dial would suggest a date in the late 1850s. That seems to me a feasible date for your movement, although I might be inclined to believe it was somewhat later?

    It seems most unlikely to me that a previous dial would be replaced by a John Hutton.

    Niall, if your thread receives little response in this forum in the next week, I will suggest to you that I move it to the Complicated Watches forum :)
     
  3. Niall

    Niall Registered User

    Mar 16, 2019
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    Thanks, Marty.

    I had jumped to the conclusion the dial had been added based on researching Hutton and also because the dial had feet which have been sawn off (very well) and replaced by a snap on dial ring.

    Movement wise, it seems to have some similarities with Patek Philippe repeaters, but the serial number on the dial side would make the movement an 1850s one if it was a PP which I think is too early.
     
  4. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Niall,

    English watches very rarely had snap-on dials whereas many good quality Swiss movements used them, so if Hutton wished to fit his own English dial to a Swiss movement, the feet had to come off.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  5. fuseefan

    fuseefan Registered User

    Dec 28, 2007
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    1850! I didn't know that the Swiss lever escapement was that old.

    Regards
    Aditya
     
  6. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Aditya,

    I doubt if it's as early as the 1850s, if only from the design of the keyless work; much closer to the end of the century I'd have thought. The divided lift ('Swiss lever') escapement was in occasional use far earlier in English watches and of course a lot of its development happened in France and Switzerland at the end of the 18th century, from A-L Breguet downwards.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  7. Audemars

    Audemars Registered User
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    First Louis Audemars stem-wound (bridge) movement was shipped on 25th March 1838.
    Paul
     
  8. Jeff Hess

    Jeff Hess Moderator
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  9. MartyR

    MartyR Moderator
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    Time to move this thread to the Complicated Watches Forum, I think.
     
  10. Philip Poniz

    Philip Poniz Moderator
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    Feb 22, 2012
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    The movement was almost certainly made by Piguet Frères.

    There are two features that are a typical characteristic for Piguet Frères - the recessed bridge securing the escapement from the dial side* and the ӆ-shaped (changing into a w-shape in some movements) bridge holding that rack. The recess is intended for the star-wheel jumper spring (not the original one in the watch).

    Piguet Freres MSR 201.jpg

    Another Piguet Freres movement of the same type.
    The recess and the bridge are circled in black.

    The repeating system is of an old style with a movable star (the 12-arm one, fixed to the hour striking snail).

    The invention of the Swiss fixed star system is attributed to Louis Audemars Co**. It took place no later than 1860. Thus, the movement could not have been made much later – the new system was superior and quickly ousted the old one. There is a watch by Piguet Frères made in 1866 or slightly earlier utilizing the new system (with the recess used for the all-or-nothing locking spring). Therefore, this movement could not have been made later than 1866. I would not date it much earlier taking into consideration the shape of the crown and the winding/setting system. Circa 1865 is a safe assumption.

    The movement has 30 jewels, not 23.

    ______________________________
    * Philippe Aubert also used a similar recess but not as deep.
    ** In 1876 Charles Guillaume from Fleurier claimed the priority saying his father (also Charles) made them "over forty years earlier". What is certain is that over a hundred years earlier Stogden in London had been using fixed star mechanisms in his repeaters.

    Philip Poniz
     
  11. dshumans

    dshumans Registered User
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    Sep 17, 2009
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    FYI - I count 30 jewels, including the cap jewels on bal, escape, and lever, the 8 jewels in the repeating rundown train, one for each hammer and one for the repeat mainspring.
     

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