Elgin Father Time need Help identifying model - No Serial Number

Jeff Eby

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Jan 27, 2012
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I aquired this movement on E-Bay and was listed with no serial number. Looking in the Shugart book, I assume it is a 16s model 15 grade 454?? But am guessing. Any idea of what model this is and how it may have left the factory without a serial number?
 

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doug sinclair

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Aug 27, 2000
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There will likely be indications of the serial number under the bridges. I can see it has been marked 21-jewels and adjusted, but a lot of the other engraving one might expect to see (Elgin, and grade name such as B W Raymond) etc. have been omitted.
 

Kent

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Jeff:

I believe that somebody has replaced the barrel bridge which should have contained the serial number. Looking carefully at your pictures, I can see the word "Temperature" on the barrel bridge, at the rim near the crown wheel. This only appeared on Elgin 16-size watches starting in the mid-to-late 1930s, by which time the 16-size Father Time was long discontinued. Also, the damaskeening on the barrel bridge doesn't seem to match that on the train bridge.

When you pull the dial, you may find the full serial number on the pillar plate.
 
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Jeff Eby

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Jan 27, 2012
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Well, if you look clsely, it does have the typical "Father Time" on the movement. i am not a watch maker and would not tale the movement apart to find other markings. Based on the Shugart book, looking at the identification section for Elgins, it is defintily a Father time, just not clear on model and potential time period it was made.
 

Kent

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Jeff:

I apologise for my answer not being more carefully worded.

Overall, the movement is probably a Father Time movement (without seeing serial numbers of the parts, one can't be sure).

The barrel bridge, bearing the word "Temperature" and lacking a serial number is from a much later date and has replaced the original barrel bridge that contained the movement serial number.

It may be a grade No. 388, of which 19,000 were built; but it is more likely to be a grade No. 454, of which approximately 63,700 were made.

You may find the following article helpful: "Railroaders' Corner - The Watch That Gets Forgotten: Elgin's Father Time," Ed Ueberall and Kent Singer, NAWCC Bulletin, No. 348 (February 2004), pp. 63-72 (available online to NAWCC members who are currently logged in).

Good luck,
 

Nick23

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Jul 21, 2009
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Jeff,
I have a Father Time that is identical to yours with the same damaskeening pattern and Father Time in gold script, apart from the barrel bridge on your watch, which as Kent explained is a replacement from a different, later watch. My Father Time is a grade 454 which I believe were produced between 1917 and 1922. The serial number of mine is 22791107 which dates to 1919.

Shiner DSCF0002.JPG
 

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