Help with Elgin ID ?

Discussion in 'American Pocket Watches' started by theshivelys, Jun 2, 2012.

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  1. theshivelys

    theshivelys New Member

    Jun 2, 2012
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    Ok I am so new to learning about pocket watches and so far it is very interesting. My dad bought a pocket watch today at a moving sale and came across a Elgin hinged 17 jewel gold/gold plated pocket watch and I was wondering how to get information about this watch like how do we determine what a grade is and size and other things like that. We are clueless as you can tell. It is hinged and has the serial number of 16120046 on the back of the watch, not the case. Where did this watch come from and is it a remake? Help....Thanks for any information given.
     
  2. theshivelys

    theshivelys New Member

    Jun 2, 2012
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    Re: Elgin Pocket watch Grades

    This may sound dumb but where can I find out the grade of a pocket watch?
     
  3. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    Re: Elgin Pocket watch Grades

    Have you clicked on the link: Elgin Watch Co. Encyclopedia article and looked at the links in the References section at the bottom?
     
  4. Jim Haney

    Jim Haney Registered User
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    Re: Elgin Pocket watch Grades

    theshivleys,
    I started a new thread on your inquiry and combined your other posts with it.

    All questions about your watch should be asked and answered in this thread. Thanks
     
  5. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    theshivelys:

    Let us know what you find out and we'll see if we can add to the informaiton. Also, if you tell us the markings stamped inside the back of the watch case (or post a picture of them), we may be able to tell you something about it. You can ignore any "hand-scratched" characters, they're probably watch repairers' marks.
     
  6. Larry Treiman

    Larry Treiman Registered User

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    #6 Larry Treiman, Jun 2, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2012
    Hi, Shivelys,

    I realize that all this information can be somewhat daunting to someone who is very new to the subject.

    To find out the grade number, which is used to identify all watches that were made to the same specifications as your watch and which is assigned arbitrarily to those watches and has nothing to do with relative quality, I looked up your serial number in an Elgin factory list of serial numbers and grade numbers., reprinted in "Elgin Watch Company Grade and Serial Numbers" by the late Roy Ehrhardt, a book written by collectors for collectors back in the mid-1970s. The list told me that your watch is grade 335.

    I then looked up grade 335 in the same book and found out that the grade 335 was an 18-size, hunting model (means it fits a case with a cover over the crystal/dial and has the winding stem at 3 o'clock) with nickel plates, is the 4th model 18-size, and has 17-jewels. The same book told me that there there were 86,000 grade 335 watches made in 64 different runs or batches, and that watches with serial numbers in the 16 millions would have been made around 1911.

    An Elgin catalog from circa 1913-14, reprinted in Ehrhardt's book shows that back then, the Elgin grade 335 movement alone (without case) sold for $11.70. It could have been cased by the jeweler/seller in any appropriate case selected by the buyer.

    If you post all the markings stamped in the case back(s), maybe we can tell you something about the case, such as whether it is gold-plated, gold-filled or solid gold, and maybe about the case manufacturer. Disregard scratched markings; they were coded notes left by repairers and only have meaning to the repairer.

    Needless to say, photos of the movement, dial and case would be appreciated.


    Larry Treiman

    [EDIT] For the second time today, Kent was posting while I was, and again beat me to the post! Please excuse any redundancies!
     
  7. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    Now that Larry has found out that it is an Elgin, 18-size, 17-jewel, grade No. 335, you can see a catalog description of the movement, along with a picture and where it fit within Elgin's line of 18-size watches, on pages E-3 and E-2 of the Oskamp-Nolting Co. 1917 catalog.
     

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