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Edward East watch - London, end 17th century

rstl99

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I just received the watch I had alluded to in my previous thread about the distinctive pillars. It came as an early birthday gift to myself (tomorrow) and arrives on Shakespeare's birthday, so this is a great day.

With the watch in hand, I can now more confidently tell you about it and show you some photos. The signature is Edw'd (Edward) East London. I've read quite a lot about him and his times since winning the auction and waiting for delivery, and am thrilled to have an opportunity to own a watch coming from his shop, even if incomplete (no case, motion work, dial or hands). Obviously, if the watch was complete, it would either be in a museum or I could never have afforded to buy it.

Since the watch obviously is fitted with a balance spring, it must have been produced post 1665. I don't know if Edward East's firm continued producing watches and clocks after his death, but assuming this watch was produced while he was still alive, it would put it between 1665 and 1695, roughly.

I'm hoping that the photos attached will allow some of you more familiar with that era of English watchmaking to help pinpoint a bit more accurately when this particular watch may have been crafted. The plate is about 4cm wide, and there is about 1.1cm between the two plates.

The signature resembles very closely one that figures on a plaque accompanying a clock that East donated to Queen's College Cambridge in 1664. See this link:

Edward East clock 1664 | Queens' College

I look forward to your thoughts and impressions on the watch, which will obviously require some careful cleaning and inspection. All the components seem to be there, the balance springs freely, so who knows, maybe I can get this watch to tick again some day...

--Robert

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novicetimekeeper

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Certainly a name to conjure with. I once stood next to one of his longcase and got to inspect the movement. I was buying a clock from the owner and he trusted me enough to let me further into the house to see the only two clocks he kept after his collection was sold by Christies.
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

...Since the watch obviously is fitted with a balance spring, it must have been produced post 1665...
This is quite a find, and does indeed look absolutely right for the late 17th century. I'd put the date closer to 1685; the first hairsprings were being fitted around 1675 but they were few and far between.

The corrosion on the steel parts is a worry, but it may not be as severe as it looks, and if it's restricted to a few areas, such as the fusee stop lever spring, replacement isn't such a big deal. I think you'll find that the gilding is remarkably sound under all that dirt. Some screws are wrong replacements but that's more or less standard after more than 300 years.

It will be interesting to see the hairspring when you get around to removing the balance cock.

Regards,

Graham
 

SKennedy

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From the watches I've seen of this era, and references I have to hand, I would say this probably dates from around 1690 which is towards the end of Edw. East's life. That wide, winged balance cock with the outer edge having a continuous border seems to have only come into style around that date. Earlier than that and the edge of the cock tends to be more open engraving, like the edge of the regulator plate on this one. Decorative floral pillars like that were becoming a bit less common but by no means unusual.
If the internal parts are all there, seems no reason that it won't tick again. Good luck!
 

rstl99

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Thank you gentlemen, indeed this was quite a find for me.
I appreciate the insights into more accurate dating, which looks like later than earlier in my original range of 1665-95.
I find the signature very similar (other than the abbreviated Edw'd) to the one on that 1664 clock as I indicated earlier (see excerpt below). Not sure how consistent were the signatures on his watches in later years.

Yes, Graham, there is some corrosion of some steel components (not all though) but I'm sure it can be dealt with.
Have looked at the internals with my microscope, and the balance, crown wheel etc all seem to be free and working as they should. Unsure about the fusee chain or the mainspring at this time.
I will very carefully take this watch apart for further assessment, in weeks to come. And I can share photos of such as I feel some people here may be interested to look inside one of these watches.

Cheers.
--Robert

edwardeast1664sign.jpg IMG_0067.jpg IMG_0070.jpg IMG_0071.jpg IMG_0073.JPG IMG_0074.jpg
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

...Not sure how consistent were the signatures on his watches in later years...
It depends to a large extent on the engraver(s) he used.

I'm not too sure about the state of that contrate wheel pinion, but let's wait to see what's under all the muck.

Regards,

Graham
 

rstl99

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Certainly a name to conjure with. I once stood next to one of his longcase and got to inspect the movement. I was buying a clock from the owner and he trusted me enough to let me further into the house to see the only two clocks he kept after his collection was sold by Christies.
Nice. What were your lasting impressions after examining one of his clocks from close up? Anything that would be distinguishable from the other great clock-makers of that era?
I had found this incredible sale of one of his clocks about 10 years ago... 355,000 GBP, wow. Then again, that was before the 2008 financial downturn... ;-)
A rare Charles II ebonised pearwood architectural longcase clock , EDWARD EAST, LONDON. CIRCA 1665/70
 

novicetimekeeper

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Small and beautifully formed was my impression. It was the first external countwheel 8 day I had seen close up too.
 

rstl99

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Well, I'll get at my poor old neglected little East after I've given some caring attention to a couple of abandoned Parisian watches I've charitably adopted as well. Someone has to love and care for these old amputated survivors of bygone eras.
 

rstl99

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Lychnobius

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This is a precious thing! It may not itself belong to the very earliest generation of balance-spring watches, but it is the work of a maker who lived and worked through that historic transition, and the new technology could not have been more than twenty years old when it was made. East must have known Tompion and Hooke.

Oliver Mundy.
 

gmorse

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Hi Oliver,

...but it is the work of a maker who lived and worked through that historic transition...
Not to mention the Civil War, the Regicide, the Commonwealth and the Restoration, as well as fathering 13 children; truly 'interesting times'! I can't remember whether Pepys mentions him but they surely must have met at some point.

Regards,

Graham
 

rstl99

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Thank you Oliver, I agree with you that this is a precious little movement, from a historic period in English horology. East lived and prospered through challenging times: civil war, plague, Fire of London (which wiped out his workshop - though he likely had time to relocate and save his tools, timepieces, materials), and then the new horological technology as you say. A most interesting and long life which hopefully will be properly told in a book form some day. It's more than probable that he knew Tompion (the two were born, albeit 3 decades apart, in two small towns 3 miles apart; and both were prominent members of the Clockmaker's Company).
 

Allan C. Purcell

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Hi Robert, A belated Happy Birthday. This thread you have started is of great value if it convinces others to take part, and do something about some of there bits and bobs that have been laying about ignored or forgotten. A couple of weeks ago I too bought an old movement, just because of the makers name on the top plate.Nothing has nice has your Edward East, but in his way a pinoeier too, John Leroux. Almost to the day a hundred years after your East. Again a small verge only 34mm in diametre. It has no hair spring, in fact no spring, when I took off the cock , some joker had put a single roller balance wheel under it. Anyway I decided to take what was left of the movement apart and clean it. Like Graham said above the guilding was the saving grace. Where-ever it had been guilded the muck over the years came off quite easy.On this movement there is very little made in steel, and has luck would have it, it must have been somewhere dry, I think your East was somewhere damp. An old English Manson maybe. You see how small this watch is thanks to that roller balance, I layed it on top of the cock. So having read this thread a few times here is my first effort to clean a verge movement.

The first two photographs show that roller balance to indicate size.Then a few before and after shots.

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rstl99

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Hi Allan, thanks for the wishes! Yes, my East must have sat in a humid box at some point. Some of the steel bits do have some surface rust on them, but the rest of the movement, although dusty and dirty, seems pretty clean and ok.

That John Leroux who made your watch must have family origins in France, I see a couple of Leroux's in Paris in mid-1700's. The French had a thing about persecuting their protestants, which meant that many of them expatriated themselves to Switzerland, England, etc. It impoverished the French horology pool and enhanced the ones in other countries, especially Switzerland. Oh well, c'est la vie...

By the way, that's a gorgeous cock on that Leroux movement, really outstanding.

Glad you decided to take the plunge so to speak, and service your verge movement. I've taken 4-5 apart to this point and after a while have gotten fairly comfortable with them. They were built strong to withstand many decades of vigorous use, and servicing by watchrepairmen of varying degrees of knowledge and experience. Someone advised me not to take the potence apart when disassembling a verge watch, for ease of putting it back together and having it run reasonably well. The fusees can be a bit tricky to take apart and service, but the rest is reasonably straightforward. I like seeing the file marks of the original makers and previous repairmen when I disassemble and inspect the plates and parts. There is a very human and honest nature to these old timepieces, unlike the ones that came after mechanization and automation of the watchmaking process.

In my case, I primarily seek to preserve the old verge watches that fall under my care, and not necessarily restore them to accurate and daily-use timepieces. I have other watches for keeping time and wearing frequently. But these old verge-fusee watches are important to preserve for the future, I feel, since there are fewer and fewer of some of the rare and older ones (except those in museums). And I try as much as I can to keep them as original as possible, realizing that many hands have worked on them over the centuries, and that I don't want to introduce a botched repair of my own if I can avoid it.

I recently acquired the set of 3 books by Archie Perkins on restoring antique watches (on the good advice of Graham a while ago) so look forward to trying my hand at a repair or two at some point.

Anyway, glad my post stimulated something in you to get going on your verge watch(es). Have fun and enjoy the discoveries.

--Robert
 

rstl99

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p.s. maybe each of these old verge movements should have a discussion topic of their own, for ease of finding references to them in the future. Your Leroux probably deserves to be singled out.
 
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Allan C. Purcell

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Thank for the observations. I think though the "FORUMS" search engine does exactly what you sujested. If you put in East or Leroux, your thread will show up there. Let us hope more members will put their story on here. Best Allan.
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

...p.s. maybe each of these old verge movements should have a discussion topic of their own, for ease of finding references to them in the future...
There's an old thread by Lychnobius concerning his Leroux quarter repeater which I had the privilege to restore for him.

Regards,

Graham
 

rstl99

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Thank for the observations. I think though the "FORUMS" search engine does exactly what you sujested. If you put in East or Leroux, your thread will show up there. Let us hope more members will put their story on here. Best Allan.
Hi Allan. I suppose in working with several forums over the years I've generally tried to contribute to the topic subject chosen by the original poster. In this case, I wanted to share information about this particular Edward East watch, and any other information about East himself, the times he worked in, etc. Eventually I plan to post photos of the movement when I've had a chance to take it apart and inspect it, to get some thoughts from others on necessary steps to restore or repair certain components. It's my way of preserving and sharing information about specific watches that I've had a chance to acquire, and to work on.

I tend to search for information on the forums by just looking at the topic headings, or searching in those topic headings, which is why when I start a new topic I try to be as specific as possible.

Maybe someone should create a more general topic with a title like "Cleaning old verge movements", that could attract others to contribute their stories as you did? Just a suggestion, I'm not sure how others prefer to categorize and search for information on the forums here.

Best regards
--Robert
 

rstl99

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A closeup photo of the face of "old man time" on the cock (reminds me of a sculpted mask from an ancient civilization), and one of the birds. And a close-up of the signature.

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gmorse

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Hi Robert,

I think the bird in your second picture is reminiscent of the 'Ho ho bird' a motif popular at the time, probably inspired by Japanese decorative objects beginning to appear in Europe then.

Regards,

Graham
 

Allan C. Purcell

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Thank you Robert, that is very clear. I have to say its all my fault I thought you had put the East on to inspire others to dig out there treasures, and let us have a look at them. Even that did not work. I will though take your remarks to heart, and when I see your threads in furure I will know you are only looking for information on that topic.Talking of which here is a quote from Clutton and Daniels book "Watches"

" East Edward (1602-97), had such a long life that it has been suggested that he was earlly two people of the same name, but the researches of the late Alan Lloyd have shown fairly conclusively that there was only one of him. In 1631 he was founder member and junior assistant of the Clockmakers Company. He was Master in 1645 and 1652. He was a clockmaker successively to Charles I and Charles II. His work was of an extrmely high order, both mechanically and decoratively. Particularly beaitiful is the tall, sloping script signature which he put on all his work until about 1670. After about 1670, his later work is coarser in design, partly following the fashion, but suggesting that he had virtually retired at the age of seventy, and was no longer directly responsible for the work sold under his name. Balance spring watches, even nominally by him, are exceedingly rare.

I must say if you were looking for information I am surprised none was fourthcoming from other members of this board. Fond regards, Allan.
 

rstl99

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Thank you Allan, I appreciate you typing in the short bio of East that figures in Clutton and Daniels. I agree with their assessment of coarseness in design, when I compare my movement to some of his classic watches from his younger period, featured in many books. It's interesting that they say that balance spring watches by him are exceedingly rare. So perhaps mine will form an important part of what remains of his output, some day.

The excellent article by Alan Lloyd (1950) which is referenced by Clutton/Daniels in your quote, and which laid to rest the notion that there might have been two Edward East's working at the time, is available online and is very worthwhile reading.

https://www.queens.cam.ac.uk/files/downloads/one_and_only_edward_east_by_herbert_alan_lloyd.pdf

Perhaps most people on this board are more interested in discussing pocket watches that are more easily available, it's not every day that one can stumble upon something by an old master like East. I have a fondness for the older makers, and have posted a few topics on works of Parisian makers of the 18th century (Romilly, Caron, Lépine) with modest interest. Still, it's always satisfying when a few people like yourself express interest, and as I said earlier, I'm trying to bring some of this information forth so that others in the future may benefit when they come across it. My humble little contribution to the horological information out there.

All the best,
--Robert
 

rstl99

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I think the bird in your second picture is reminiscent of the 'Ho ho bird' a motif popular at the time, probably inspired by Japanese decorative objects beginning to appear in Europe then.
Hi Graham, thank you for that suggestion about the Ho Ho bird, which I will look up. I had always thought that Japanese decorative objects had appeared in Europe later, but perhaps you are right and a wave of them came in with the Portuguese during the 17th century. Always interesting to trace those cultural exchanges and incorporation into local art and artisan products.
Best regards
--Robert
 

Allan C. Purcell

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What is a Ho Ho Bird?
Posted on Posted on April 24, 2013 by Harriet Chavasse


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The Ho ho bird comes from the mythical Japanese version of the Phoenix. Although most commonly referred to as the Ho ho, the mysterious creature, with a long beak and curving neck, flowing tail, claws and crest takes on many other names, including hoo, foo, ho-wo, hobo, howo, ho and sacred river! Originally appearing as a motif in Asian decorative art (ceramics, woodwork and plasterwork), the bird was said to bring luck, symbolising good fortune; specifically longevity, fidelity and wisdom. It is often portrayed as an amalgam of several birds, including the phoenix, pheasant, stork, heron and bird of paradise.

Ho ho birds occur frequently within Rococo decoration from 18th century France, commonly on mirrors, mantel clocks and candle stands.

Ho ho birds first starting appearing in England in the 18th century on Georgian furniture and also on quality porcelain. The most common place for these birds to appear was on Georgian fret mirrors (many of which we frequently have in stock at Thakeham Furniture) These mirrors, dating from about 1760 onwards, usually incorporate a shaped cresting board in which the gilt Ho ho bird is mounted. (please see example) They are a simple decorative element that give a little lift to an otherwise understated classic Georgian design.

Posted in Antique Furniture | Leave a comment
 

rstl99

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Hi Allan, thanks for looking up the Ho Ho Bird, I was out today and hadn't had the chance. Sounds like my East and your Leroux have something in common!
Well the Ho Ho Bird's symbol of good fortune and longevity certainly is a good reflection on Edward East's long life (through often challenging times) and good fortune in the end. It is said that by the time he died, he was a millionaire in today's terms, and would have left a sizeable fortune to be shared among his many descendants.
Cheers,
--Robert
 

rstl99

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Portrait of Edward East (The Worshipful Company of Clockmakers’ Collection, UK):

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rstl99

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I managed to get the screw out that holds the cock in place (it hadn't been removed in a looong time, so a bit of penetrating oil was needed to free up the threads).

The balance wheel and hairspring don't look young. After all, if this watch is dated when we think it is, it only came out a few years after the introduction of the balance hairspring in watch horology (Huygens having published his article in 1675). Hard to say if the balance and hairspring are original to the watch, however - I'm not sure what the maximum lifespan of a 330 year old hairspring...

Enjoy the view.
--Robert

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gmorse

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Hi Robert,

One and a quarter turns is what I'd expect in a watch from this period. The question of who originated the hairspring, (or pendulum spring as East would have called it), has never been settled with any certainty, but you can probably guess where my preferences lie from my signature below!

Regards,

Graham
 

Omexa

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You are so modest Graham. I have somewhere a movement that has a similar amount of turns (One and a quarter turns; maybe one and a half) I will see if I can find it. Regards Ray
 

Keith R...

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Robert, I certainly like seeing these 17th,18th & 19th century makers appear on
the board. I have not ventured into the 17th, but I certainly like to soak it in. Thanks
for posting these old makers.

This one is a someday project. Thanks for sharing, to all of you guys. I'll also have
to read of Mr. Hooke from an early period.

Keith R...

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rstl99

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Ah yes, Graham, the old Hooke versus Huygens versus Abbé de Hautefeuille debate. Certainly makes for some interesting reading looking at the pros and cons of each claim to the invention. I remember reading with great interest the small chapters that Chamberlain devotes to these three in It's About Time (probably my desert island horology book).

Well, whichever of those three thought of it first, it's fun to go back in time to that period where such innovations were moving horology along its evolution in very big steps, with practitioners at the time possibly not fully realizing the large strides that were being undertaken, adding precision and practicality to these portable timepieces.

So here's to all the early Giants upon whose shoulders the future of horology was built upon.
 

rstl99

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Keith I love the flourishing signature on your Romilly watch! Reminds me of the funny anecdote of when Washington was looking to buy a new watch and had charged his emissary in Paris Governor Morris to find one for him. Morris had looked at Romilly, and I believe Gregson. He had been told that Romilly was a little out-dated, and that he should choose to buy from Lépine, who was considered on the vanguard of watch-making at the time (this was some years before Breguet's prominence). And so Washington owned a Lépine, but could well have owned a Romilly instead. I love Romilly's life and have written about him in another post here.
 

MartyR

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Ah yes, Graham, the old Hooke versus Huygens versus Abbé de Hautefeuille debate. Certainly makes for some interesting reading looking at the pros and cons of each claim to the invention.
Those were indeed the days! The time when scientists worked for the cause of science and humanity, not for money and advancement. Possibly all three of the "inventors" of the equiangular spiral spring learned from one another, from their writings, and from casual scientific interchange. In a sense it matters not to us which of the three was "the inventor", and not least because it clearly did not matter to them.
 

Allan C. Purcell

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Hi Marty- I really would like to say the above is true and how things should be. It´s sad to say it was, and is, just a dream. Pages 29-30 of The Marine Chronometer its history and developments by Gould Antique Collectors club edition or 24-25 in the Second edition.. Believe me when I say I wish the above really was true. Best Allan.
 

rstl99

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The balance wheel and hairspring don't look young. After all, if this watch is dated when we think it is, it only came out a few years after the introduction of the balance hairspring in watch horology (Huygens having published his article in 1675). Hard to say if the balance and hairspring are original to the watch, however - I'm not sure what is the maximum lifespan of a 330 year old hairspring...
One and a quarter turns is what I'd expect in a watch from this period.
If I'm eventually going to disassemble the movement further, I'm going to need to remove the balance wheel and verge, which means de-attaching the hairspring. I'm concerned that because of the age and fragility of the spring, any tampering may in fact cause it to break. Any words of advice in how to tackle this delicate operation while minimizing risk of damage? My aim with this watch movement is cleaning and preservation, not full restoration. Removing bits of rust deposits; dismantling, documenting and checking components; oiling and reassembling.
Thanks.
 

gmorse

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Hi Martin,

...and not least because it clearly did not matter to them...
Oh, I think it mattered a great deal to Robert Hooke, especially in relation to Huygens, who he called Monsieur Zulichem.

Regards,

Graham
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

...Any words of advice in how to tackle this delicate operation while minimizing risk of damage?
If you can extract the taper pin from the stud without actually touching the hairspring there should be no risk of damaging it. It's when tweezers or fine pliers slip and contact the hairspring that bad things happen. If it's reluctant to come out try pulling it with sharp side cutters, or if there isn't enough 'tail' on the pin to pull it out, try pushing it with as much control as you can.

Regards,

Graham
 

rstl99

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If you can extract the taper pin from the stud without actually touching the hairspring there should be no risk of damaging it. It's when tweezers or fine pliers slip and contact the hairspring that bad things happen. If it's reluctant to come out try pulling it with sharp side cutters, or if there isn't enough 'tail' on the pin to pull it out, try pushing it with as much control as you can.
Thank you Graham, I'll proceed as you suggest, and carefully. I've taken 4-5 verge watches apart (mostly French but at least one English) and the components resemble themselves after a while. I just want to be extra careful with this one given probable historical significance. And I need to see the internal components and assess condition, construction styles, small details, etc. To document and share, because I rarely have seen historical watches displayed in this open manner - you usually only see the beautiful case, dial, pillars, and balance cock, and rarely get a chance to peek inside the internals.

It's funny, in the various watch repairs book I own, when it comes to the balance spring (hairspring) they all say that if there is any rust on the spring it should be discarded and a new one installed etc. That is perfectly understandable because oxidation would affect the way the spring operates, and translate to timing issues with the watch. But obviously with an old surviving watch like this one, I want to keep as much of the original components as possible and as intact as possible, in a spirit of preservation or conservation. Still remains to be seen whether the balance spring on this one could feasibly be the original one, or whether it's been replaced once or several times during the life of the timepiece.
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

...It's funny, in the various watch repairs book I own, when it comes to the balance spring (hairspring) they all say that if there is any rust on the spring it should be discarded and a new one installed etc...
Many of these books were written in the days when a repairer could pop round to the local materials dealer with the balance and get a new hairspring fitted and timed while he waited, all for a couple of shillings. Those days are long gone, as are all those little shops staffed by people who knew their business inside out.

You're right to try and keep the original fabric of the watch as far as possible, but I'd make one exception to this in the case of taper pins; these should always be replaced with new ones, cut to the correct length and nicely rounded at both ends.

Regards,

Graham
 

MartyR

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Still remains to be seen whether the balance spring on this one could feasibly be the original one, or whether it's been replaced once or several times during the life of the timepiece.
Is it possible to have the matgerial of the spring scientifically dated after removal? Would the British Museum be able to help?
 

rstl99

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Many of these books were written in the days when a repairer could pop round to the local materials dealer with the balance and get a new hairspring fitted and timed while he waited, all for a couple of shillings. Those days are long gone, as are all those little shops staffed by people who knew their business inside out.

You're right to try and keep the original fabric of the watch as far as possible, but I'd make one exception to this in the case of taper pins; these should always be replaced with new ones, cut to the correct length and nicely rounded at both ends.
Hi Graham, yes you're no doubt right and those service books related to a very different context. My neighbour, a retired watch-repair-technician (definitely not a watchmaker, but someone who cleaned and serviced thousands of watches in his working days), told me that when someone brought in a chronograph for service to the jewellery shop he worked in, he figured it wasn't worth the effort to take the movement apart to clean oil and service it, so unbeknownst to the customer, he would just order a new replacement movement from their favourite supplier and replace it outright. I was shocked by this practice and asked him if he ever told the customer, and what he did with the movement, and his answer was a shrug and "pffft", as if to say "who cares, I just threw it out". Different times indeed, and I'm sure not all repair places were that lackadaisical about it. At least for the old verge watches that interest some of us, repairmen over the decades and centuries could not order replacement parts so the movements had to be honestly repaired, and parts fabricated when needed.

I agree with you about the taper pins, I always try to put new ones on, it's a nice touch.

Is it possible to have the matgerial of the spring scientifically dated after removal? Would the British Museum be able to help?
WHo knows, maybe a museum would go through the trouble of dating things like that, to get a more accurate dating on the items in their collection. I do hope I hear back from the British Museum curator of Horology, who is apparently very interested in life and work of Edward East (according to BM website), as I sent him an email with photos of the movement telling him I had recently acquired it, wished to service it for my own use and collection, and wondered if he could offer some informed opinion on possible period of manufacture. We'll see...
 

rstl99

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Edward East stripped naked ;) Bit dirty and grimy, will need a good bath!

Fusee chain incomplete-broken, but not a big surprise. It's probably a big reason these old watches get put aside back in the days... (that and stripping them of their gold cases, fancy dials, etc.).

This watch is a true survivor, and deserves care and respect in spite of its dirty state.

Potence is quite simple looking on it. Wheels and pivots all look good. No hidden marks that I could tell at this stage. Look forward to seeing these parts shining clean again, especially those lovely pillars!

A few photos for your enjoyment - what a late 17th century Edward East watch looks like unadorned...


IMG_0079.jpg IMG_0096.jpg IMG_0105.jpg IMG_0109.jpg IMG_0114.jpg IMG_0115.jpg IMG_0122.jpg IMG_0127.jpg IMG_0132.jpg IMG_0076.jpg
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

This is well worth seeing. Is the fusee square hollow with a cross drilling, and is the collet on the other end of that arbor pinned on? If it is it's very unusual.

This confirms that the worst bit of corrosion and the most critical to getting the watch running again is the contrate pinion; how do you plan to deal with the rust?

Regards,

Graham
 

rstl99

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Hi Graham,
For the rusty contrate pinion (and another couple of bits) I will first gently scrape off any loose rust with a small watch broach, then soak in a de-rusting solution which removes and neutralizes the rust. Then brush and apply a bit of oil to preserve. Hopefully the leaves of the pinion will be intact enough to mate against the teeth of the other wheel.

I attach other photos of the fusee to satisfy your interest. The fusee square is indeed hollow and is drilled through at the top. The collet at the other end (underneath the fusee wheel) does not seem pinned on, maybe pressure fit? The fusee cone assembly with the hollow square just slips on the long shaft attached to the wheel, and the ratchet wheel at the bottom of the cone seems to operate against the click and spring assembly on the top side of the wheel.
It's an unusual construction that I've not seen before, however I haven't taken apart a 17th century English watch before. Perhaps you have seen this kind of construction before?

Cheers.
--Robert

IMG_0132.jpg IMG_0133.jpg IMG_0134.jpg IMG_0135.jpg IMG_0137.jpg IMG_0138.jpg IMG_0139.jpg IMG_0140.jpg
 

John Matthews

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Robert - thank you for posting such an excellent set of comprehensive photographs. I commend your photographic skills and your conservation efforts.

John
 

gmorse

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Hi Robert,

It's an unusual construction that I've not seen before, however I haven't taken apart a 17th century English watch before. Perhaps you have seen this kind of construction before?
Yes, I've seen it once in a movement by a Huguenot immigrant working in Southampton. It was a pre-hairspring verge made around the same time as your East and it surprised me when I dismantled it. It's only held together by the two plates, with just enough endshake to let it turn freely.

DSCF1419.JPG DSCF1420.JPG

The way the barrel was made is also interesting:

DSCF1422.JPG

For the rusted areas, have you investigated the possibilities of electrolysis?

Regards,

Graham
 

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