Fridlander pocket watch

Duayne Cloke

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Aug 13, 2020
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Hi all

Can anyone please tell me anything about this pocket watch. My father in-law has just received it and it belonged to his grandfather.

thanks in advance
Duayne

image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg
 
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Dr. Jon

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Welcome this forum
It is nice gold watch. Fridlander was a very fine retailer. We can tell you more if we can see the movement and the marks on the case. They will tell the year the case was tested for gold.

The movement is accessed from the front. The crystal bezel comes up and is hinged.

The hands are mismatched. This is not a good sign but may not be serious.

The watch is wound with a key which is not expensive but has to be the correct size. An antique watch jeweler can do this or you can buy a set of keys for small money and pic the one that fits.
 

John Matthews

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Fridlander was a very fine retailer
It would definitely help to see a photograph of the movement.

If it is Alfred Emanuel Fridlander, he was rather more than a retailer. He was one of the most successful Coventry watch makers manufacturers at the end of the C19th beginning of the C20th. He supplied many fine watches to retailers in London and elsewhere, both single rollers and karrusels. He was successful in the Kew Observatory trials. He became a very wealthy man having switched to the motorcycle trade and was a director of the Triumph Cycle Company. I have seen his watches signed 'Fridlander, London', but not 'Fridlander & Co., London', they are more often signed with the retailers name.

John
 

Dr. Jon

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Welcome to this forum.

You have a very nice watch. My guess the case hallmark is 1879.

It looks to be a woman's watch with a fusee and lever, either English or Swiss made in the English style. This is a much more accurate watch than is typical for small watches of this time.

Its value depends on its size for two reasons. First, larger watches have more gold in their cases. Second, yours seems to be a woman's watch and collectors are usually less interested in them.

Most of its value is in its gold case, but its a very fine watch.
 

John Matthews

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Jon is correct your case carries a genuine set of London hallmarks for 1879/80. The case made of 18K gold with the maker's mark of Alfred Fridlander of Holyhead Road Coventry. The mark registered at the London assay office on 21 August, 1872.

1618638323740.png

As I indicated above Fridlander produced very fine watches which obtained high marks in the Kew trials.

This watch is not one of his top of the range examples, but it is a well made Coventry 3/4 plate single roller jewelled to the 4th wheel with a capped balance. It is similar to many watches produced in Coventry at the time. It was produced somewhat earlier than the top quality watches that Fridlander finished and submitted for trial. I suspect at this time he may have only performed minimal work on movements of this type, and the company's focus was on casing movements made in Coventry and supplying them into the wholesale and retail trade.

John
 

Mmr29

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Welcome to this forum.

You have a very nice watch. My guess the case hallmark is 1879.

It looks to be a woman's watch with a fusee and lever, either English or Swiss made in the English style. This is a much more accurate watch than is typical for small watches of this time.

Its value depends on its size for two reasons. First, larger watches have more gold in their cases. Second, yours seems to be a woman's watch and collectors are usually less interested in them.

Most of its value is in its gold case, but its a very fine watch.
45 mm it's woman or men ?thank you for your answers guys
 

Mmr29

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Jon is correct your case carries a genuine set of London hallmarks for 1879/80. The case made of 18K gold with the maker's mark of Alfred Fridlander of Holyhead Road Coventry. The mark registered at the London assay office on 21 August, 1872.

View attachment 649677

As I indicated above Fridlander produced very fine watches which obtained high marks in the Kew trials.

This watch is not one of his top of the range examples, but it is a well made Coventry 3/4 plate single roller jewelled to the 4th wheel with a capped balance. It is similar to many watches produced in Coventry at the time. It was produced somewhat earlier than the top quality watches that Fridlander finished and submitted for trial. I suspect at this time he may have only performed minimal work on movements of this type, and the company's focus was on casing movements made in Coventry and supplying them into the wholesale and retail trade.

John
And any ideea about it's value?
 

Dr. Jon

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At 45 mm it could be for a man or a woman or an adolescent. Most likely but not certainly it was intended for a woman who had a lot of things to do and wanted to be on time.

Fridlander was an excellent maker but is not one of the stars and small watches like this are not in high collector demand (in my view because they are idiots).

Value is mostly gold if you want a quick sale but the value depends on whether you want to sell it or insure it.

I looked at some auction results and some similar go for a little under $1000.

Some very high end wrist watch makers are reviving fusees as a constant force device, which they are. There watches got for $50,000 and up.
 
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John Matthews

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but is not one of the stars
Jon - do you mean the watch or the maker?

If you mean watch, I agree.

If you mean maker/finisher, I disagree. He is perhaps not so well known as some of the 'fashionable makers' favoured by some collectors, but he was a maker of top quality English chronometers and watches and those he submitted to the Kew trials obtained some especially good ratings. In addition to supplying the Admiralty and retailers, he also supplied the Royal Geographical Society with explorer's watches, having water tight cases. As I implied previously, many of these higher quality watches, appear later than this example.

John
 

MrRoundel

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My experience on British watches is pretty limited. That said, I did buy a watch that was a private label attributed to Fridlander 6 months or so back. I bought the movement very inexpensively. The case had been melted for scrap by someone who had purchased it at an auction not long before. Based on what they paid for the complete watch, I doubt that they made any money on the melt-model.

As far as value, if I were selling it, and with my limited knowledge of British watches, I'd probably be asking $1,500 or so for it. If it were heavier than most of the type, them perhaps a touch more. The engraving design on this one is a bit of a standout, so a melting would be a shame indeed.

My Fridlander movement weighs about 40 grams with the dial and hands. Yours probably weighs 75-80% of that, say 32 grams (WAG). If you can get the weight of the complete watch in grams and subtract the ~32 grams, plus another few grams for the crystal and non gold case parts, you can get the weight of the gold content.

Overall, IMHO, you'd be best off trying to sell it complete to a collector who will pay a bit over scrap for it. And gold seems to be trending up again right now, so you might be getting paid while you wait for the right buyer. JMHO. Good luck.
 

Dr. Jon

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I was unclear but I meant to say that Fridlander was a very good maker but does not have the name recognition of Frodsham or Kullberg. I think his quality is top but he is not so well known.

The watch, at least to me, is complex. It looks quite good for a small watch but it is a small watch.

I should also have menioned that it center sunk dial is unusual and high grade.

I would love to know why the dial has only a serial number on it.
 

MrRoundel

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FWIW, the Fridlander movement that I have has a dial that displays only the serial number, which is 13100. The movement is marked with that serial as well as the seller, Bryer & Son.

Movement 13100
 

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