First Run 1908 model

Dr. Jon

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I was recently looking at my 1899 Maximus when I discovered it is really a 1908 despite begin classed as an 1899 in the data base. Its serial number dates to early 1908.

FullMvt.png


It has screwless chatons and 6 position Lossier Balance Spring and appears to ahve original 6 position marks. So, is this one of the actual first run?
 

Jerry Treiman

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Did you verify the model by checking the crown wheel tooth count?
 

Dr. Jon

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No, as per Chris Carey, who discussed this in a recent Chapter 8 talk, I rely on the click. This form requires a different winding bridge from the 1899. I asked him whether this click form is definitive and he stated that it is. This, and the manufacture date of 1908 is the base of my identification.
 

Jerry Treiman

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It turns out that the recoiling click was also used on some later 1899 model movements (and I have several examples). The definitive difference is in the crown wheels and associated winding pinions.
1899_1908.jpg


Here is my 1899 model Vanguard, just a little earlier than your Maximus, also with a recoiling click.
16106297.jpg
 
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DTSPatrick

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It has screwless chatons and 6 position Lossier Balance Spring and appears to ahve original 6 position marks. So, is this one of the actual first run?

I have a movement 9 away from yours with same features. How many teeth should the 1908 crown wheel have? Can it be counted without dismantling movement?

4A1344BA-55D5-4F85-B269-6BCFFAB9EA19.jpeg
 

Jerry Treiman

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Can it be counted without dismantling movement?
You do not have to dismantle very much. You don't even need to let down the mainspring. All you need to look at is the underside of the crown wheel to see which style it matches in my photo, above.

Alternatively, if the dial is off you can compare the winding pinions.
 

Rick Hufnagel

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This is such an interesting topic. Thank you for bringing it up Dr. Jon.

Since Mr. Carey's meeting (which was very enjoyable) I have been searching for, and learning a bit about the model 1908 to participate in his teardown exercise. This isn't something I would normally buy, or look at really... But a chance to learn the ins and outs of a new model is always fun.

So far I've learned this... I seem to like the 1899 model. Hahaha. Every movement I really like is listed as an 1899. I did pick out a spiffy model 1908 which is on the way, so it should be fun to inspect when it arrives.

The indicators he mentioned... The hairspring stud, regulator, recoiling click... These all seem to intermix for a while between the models. This has made it difficult to find the right watch. If that meeting is recorded please let me know, I would love to go over it again.

Page 155 of "American Pocket Watch Identification and Price Guide" by Roy Ehrhardt, there is a reprint of the 1917 Oskamp Nolting catalog. This shows a model 1899 Maximus with the recoiling click. I don't know how he came about the distinction, but that's what's labeled in the book.
 

Jerry Treiman

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It is interesting to compare two movements that are seemingly so close. Keep in mind, though, that Waltham tended to finish movements in groups of ten, in this instance 16,177,711-720 and 16,177,721-730 so these two movements were likely finished at different times. There are finishing differences to support this. Jon’s has the “6 POSITIONS” label underneath the word “Maximus” and Patrick’s is marked along the edge of the bridge. Winding wheels also have a different finish.
 

DTSPatrick

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need to look at is the underside of the crown wheel to see which style it matches

This will be a fun weekend project. There are definitely differences between the 2 movements as you noted Jerry — maybe only 1 or both of us (me or Jon) have a stealthy 1908 Maximus.

This is the first I’ve heard of the 1908 Maximus and it’s very close similarity to the 1899. Is it a more desirable version and/or more scarce?
 

Dr. Jon

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I have my watch handy so here is the underside of the wheel.
wheel.png


It also has the hub in place.

Thanks to Jerry for explaining this. Looks like mine is a 1908.

When I bought mine I did not know the difference and and using teh serial number guide I identified it as an 1899.

If I had to make a choice the key feature would be the Lossier balance spring rather than the model ID.

I took a quick look at the hard copy Waltham list in Ehrhardt and did not see an earlier run of 1908's. The first I found is a run of 625's which do not seem the ones Waltham would made in a new model. I realize there are more accurate lists especially those on line
 

Jerry Treiman

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It appears that you guys have revealed a pretty significant error in the Waltham material catalogs. The 1930 and later catalogs state (erroneously) that the first 1908 model was #16,188,001. However, Rick has shown that the gray book (source for the NAWCC database), in fact, lists 1908 models with lower serial numbers than indicated in the material catalogs, and Jon has demonstrated that his ’08 Maximus is incorrectly shown as an 1899 model.
 

Dr. Jon

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i checked the NAWCC data base which reports the first run of 1908 Maximus as starting with 17083501 for Hunting and 23100001 for open face.

Is the run, 16177701 to 1618000, the first 1908 OF Maxiumus run? Were they all 1908 models? The two reported ****20 and **** 40 are low numbers in the run suggested they are all 1908's unless they ran out of materiel.
 
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