Elgin Wristwatch...What and how do you know?

Discussion in 'Wrist Watches' started by f.webster, Jul 13, 2020.

  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  1. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Here is that new guy around wristwatches asking an elementary question:

    If you have a wristwatch, how do you research what it is?

    I know that it is an Elgin (it says so on the face and on the back). Now, how do I find the model and the estimated date of manufacturing? Once I open the case, how do I know what movement number it is?

    I am envious of those that know the make model and movement of the watches they wear. Thank you for your kind guidance.

    20200713_111437.jpg 20200713_111504.jpg 20200713_111521.jpg 20200713_111534.jpg
     
  2. richiec

    richiec Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Feb 24, 2007
    6,741
    559
    113
    Male
    automotive warranty inspector
    Brick, Ocean, NJ
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Take the back off, take a picture and post it, that is the best way, then the experts can look it over and tell you.
     
  3. John Arrowood

    John Arrowood Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Dec 14, 2001
    745
    162
    43
    Based on the type face for the "E" on the dial I suspect the watch has a swiss movement and was produced by a maker other than the original Elgin Watch Company. The rights to the Elgin name were used by other companies after the original company ended. RGP means rolled gold plate. That is a step above electroplate (microns of gold) and below gold filled. What is printed on the bottom of the dial, below 6?
     
  4. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Take the back off...hmmm. Not sure that it comes apart like that. I have studied it and don't see a seam where I can open it that way.

    Under the six on the dial it reads..Ra Swiss Ra.
     
  5. diveboy

    diveboy Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    May 25, 2014
    135
    202
    43
    Male
    Melbourne, Australia
    Country Flag:
    dating Elgins in the 60's is tricky, yours dates to around 62-65 at a glance.

    you'll need to open it up and see what movement is in it, it will be a swiss movement with an Elgin grade number, the inside case back will be stamped "Cased and timed by Elgin National Watch Company" and it will also have a 4 digit case style number. Once you have the 4 digit case style number, we can start looking for a model name.

    it may be a front opening case (remove the crystal with a crystal tool) and have a split stem. confirm you can't get into the back first.
     
  6. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    After getting the right tool for the job...

    I removed the crystal and dropped the movement (not literally) out, here is what I found.

    20200717_151500.jpg 20200717_151516.jpg
     
  7. diveboy

    diveboy Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    May 25, 2014
    135
    202
    43
    Male
    Melbourne, Australia
    Country Flag:
    you have a Factory model, the movement grade has Elgin's import code YXY
    upload_2020-7-18_12-33-50.png

    it should take GS PA 457-30 crystal (confirm the measurements match).

    This ad from March 1966, has a very similar model in the center
    upload_2020-7-18_12-44-51.png
     
  8. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    The crystal measures 28.14 mm.

    What is meant by "Factory Model"?
     
  9. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    I found an image on the web of this watch for auction. The description read, " yellow metal expansion bracelet". Any guess who provided the bracelet for Elgin? I think it loos sharp.

    21656_9395121.jpg
     
  10. diveboy

    diveboy Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    May 25, 2014
    135
    202
    43
    Male
    Melbourne, Australia
    Country Flag:
    means it was issued by Elgin National Watch Company.

    you have phases with Elgin

    1864-1874 National Watch Company
    1874-1969 Elgin National Watch Company (1969 is when you can consider the original Elgin dead)
    1969 - 1971 Elgin National Watch Company - A division of Elgin National Industries

    after that, the name was leased out to several owners over the years.
     
    GeneJockey likes this.
  11. f.webster

    f.webster Registered User
    NAWCC Fellow NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    780
    27
    28
    Male
    Service/Restoration of Clocks and Mechanical Music
    Louisville, KY
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Sorry to report that this timepiece is not repairable. My skills keep me from turning this watch into a wearable treasure. When wound, the watch will run; however, only the second hand moves...briefly. The minute hand, hour hand, and date never move. Turning the winding stem only allows the watch to be wound. I took it to a watchman who explained that the movement was designed to be low profile. There were no parts available to replace the broken (half) wheel. New to watches, I need to listen. I will place it back in my "box of stuff" and keep an eye out for another that I can use as a "parts" watch.

    Until then... Thank you all for the support and education here.

    Let me see what else I can find to learn on while restoring....
     
  12. PapaLouies

    PapaLouies Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Apr 14, 2010
    971
    338
    63
    Country Flag:
    I think you will find a Swiss Logo underneath the balance wheel.
    Regards, PL
     
    Tomxhar likes this.

Share This Page