Elgin BW Raymond Military 23J Pendant Set Wind Indicator

Wes

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Aug 19, 2002
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Here is a neat 23J BW Rayomnd Pendant set wind indicator made for the military.

Anyone have any ideas as to its origin?

It seems like this was a lever set (as indicated by the dial plate and the Elgin database) that was converted to a pendant set. As the dial plate looks to have been milled as an afterthought or conversion, likely at the factory to accomodate the pendant setting parts.

The last photo is a photo of another 23J WI made in the same era, possibly the same run, that was left as a lever set.

Anyone wish to share their thoughts on this?

Seems pretty rare. Never heard of a 23J Pendant Set BW Raymond Wind Indicator...

http://www.pocketwatchsite.com/mbimages/m1das.jpg
http://www.pocketwatchsite.com/mbimages/m1dbs.jpg
http://www.pocketwatchsite.com/mbimages/m1dcs.jpg
http://www.pocketwatchsite.com/mbimages/m1df_s.JPG
http://www.pocketwatchsite.com/mbimages/m2dfs.jpg
 

Wes

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Aug 19, 2002
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Here is a neat 23J BW Rayomnd Pendant set wind indicator made for the military.

Anyone have any ideas as to its origin?

It seems like this was a lever set (as indicated by the dial plate and the Elgin database) that was converted to a pendant set. As the dial plate looks to have been milled as an afterthought or conversion, likely at the factory to accomodate the pendant setting parts.

The last photo is a photo of another 23J WI made in the same era, possibly the same run, that was left as a lever set.

Anyone wish to share their thoughts on this?

Seems pretty rare. Never heard of a 23J Pendant Set BW Raymond Wind Indicator...

https://mb.nawcc.org/
https://mb.nawcc.org/
https://mb.nawcc.org/
https://mb.nawcc.org/
https://mb.nawcc.org/
 

Don Dahlberg

NAWCC Member
Aug 31, 2000
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According to the Elgin Database it is a grade 494 dating about 1933. Five runs of 1000 each were done.

This looks like a Navy torpedo-boat watch. The specifications were set in 1904 and modified in 1931. According to Whitney's "Military Timpieces" Elgin used 21 J, grade 367 Father Times in most of these. They also used grade 239 Veritas and B.W. Raymond. All had 40 hour up and down counters. He did not comment on a 23 jewel version.

Don
 

Wes

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Thanks Don!

What is most strange to me is that these two watches, SN 34900495 and 34900227, were made in the same run, which are noted as Lever set in the DB. I am really trying to figure out why someone would convert one of these to a pendant set version. I am assuming it is a factory job, as the dial plate would have to be milled out for the pendant setting (as seen in the photos).

If any has any more input or even theories, would love to hear it.

Thanks!
 
J

John III

Wes,

I also have one of these watches, S/N 34900757, which is also a pendant set, although the case is made for a lever set. Since inheriting it from my Grandfather, I have wondered how many of these Grade 494 23J watches were made for the military.

I asked Ed Ueberall about my watch a few months ago and this was his reply:

John,
I don't know a lot about these military Grade 494 wind indicators. We have three examples in our database, all from the 34,900,XXX run, with the last three digits 495, 713 and 765. One of these sold for $1,250 in 2001, the latest example for which we have a sale price. There are regular (non military) examples mixed in with these numbers, so it appears that Elgin pulled numbers at random to fill the contract, but I do not know how many were made. At least one was noted as being pendant set, they may all have been, as the others aren't noted.


I think this watch is very rare since it doesn't show up in Whitney's book, and there are only a few serial numbers out there so far.

Thanks for posting.



Regards,

John III
 

Timm

Registered User
Nov 19, 2005
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Here's a theory:

Perhaps a serviceman brought it home after the war, just loved the watch and could not part with it, but detested the lever set.

Thus, when he got home, he had a watchmaker alter it to "pendant set" making it so much easier to alter the time instead of fiddling with removing the bezel, pulling out the lever etc, etc.

It is also possible that more than one person thought the same way (out of millions of servicemen) and altered their favorite watch accordingly. It might explain why there is so few of these around.

Maybe farfetched but stranger things happen.

Tim.
 

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