Hamilton Watch - can’t get it open

TennisGuy

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Mar 21, 2021
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I purchased this Hamilton watch. Trying to get the front and back opened. Does anyone know of this is a screw on case or pop open? I tried with my little rubber tool unscrewing the front and back and didn’t budge. Wanted to ask before trying to pop off. The seams are barely visible. 3D10CFE3-0DCA-4704-9971-1A4D3D70A0D0.jpeg 08A9970B-13AE-41CC-A2DA-576D5AFD9A2D.jpeg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Rubber pad or
Lighter fluid around the seam or
Put it in your palms and press and twist or
Hot glue a paint stick to it.

There's a few threads that are pretty recent with a bunch of different creative ways people get these open.


If it's a snap bezel, normally you will find a little groove around the seam to pry it open. Yours looks like the normal screw on type.
 

TennisGuy

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Thanks! I was able to finally unscrew the front, raise the lever, and set the watch. Is it possible the back doesn't unscrew and there's something other way to access the movement? Perhaps from the front? I can clearly feel a seam for the front. But I don't see or feel any seam for the back.
 

DoughBoyWatches

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if there is no groove or lip it is a screw type.....I deal alot with vintage WWI and WWII watches. I have come across dozens of NOS cases such as WWII star and keystone cases for A-11s and Fahys for WWI some with the original black japanning. These cases are all semi hermetic *(screw type) the threads are almost always seized since they havent been opened in 75-100 years. What i find works best is laying the watch down flat on a rubber non slip pad while holding the case in place with one hand i use my thumb and index finger of my other hand to unscrew the bezel or back. While doing this iam putting as much pressure as I can with my turning hand from the "sides" not from the top or center. (This why its not opening since rubber balls puts pressure on the center not focusing the pressure where it should be which is on the side of the threads. and its even worse on bigger cases such as yours since the back will bow inward putting even more stress in-between the threads.)

WHILE DOING THIS IAM USING SKIN TIGHT NITRILE GLOVES! Which is the secret ingredient in this recipe.
 

musicguy

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It is a swing out case the back does not open.


Rob
 
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musicguy

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Pull the pendant out(pull on the crown) to the setting position(I know it's lever set)
Very carefully put your thumbnail in the grove at the bottom of the dial and VERY CARFULLY
swing the movement out. DO NOT force it.


Rob
 

Skutt50

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When opening a swing out case be careful not to damage the stem. You should be able to pull the crown to an outer position. Then carefully lift the movement at the bottom and swing it out. If the stem has not released fuly yet, try to turn the crown and the movement should swing out.
 
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musicguy

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It should look something like this

1619122777482.png



Rob
 

TennisGuy

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Success! popped right out. seems to be running well. Looks like a very nice watch. 21J, railroad grade. very cool. Thanks to all of you for helping me learn a new case opening procedure.
 

musicguy

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We need pictures!!!!!! :)



Rob
 

MrRoundel

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Nice. It looks like a 992, which came before the perhaps more common 992B. I like the models with the concentric rings on the winding wheels. And it looks to be in very nice condition. Additionally, I don't recall seeing a lot of Hamiltons in swing-out cases. That said, I'm not Hamilton expert, but there are plenty of them on the forum.

I'm curious as to what the case markings are. Perhaps an image that takes us down a bit further into the case back? Cheers.
 

viclip

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Nice item, glad you were able to open it up.

I can't quite make out the serial number on the movement.

If you let us know what it is, we can tell you much more about your watch.
 

terry hall

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"looks like" 2307203

Mid twenties movement, noting the MIUSA marking around the winding wheel...
appears 'original' to that well worn case, crown probably replaced at some point.
careful on closing it back up you may need to rotate the stem a bit to seat it in the movement.

movement serial too late for Ledger record, but would be in finishing records confirming date...(page 61, september 1924 to finishing)
 
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viclip

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Assuming SN 2307203 the following link brings up info respecting this circa 1925 RRG model 992:

Ham 992

A very nice find!
 

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