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Ingersoll-Trenton pocket watch quality?

watchme78

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Dec 26, 2010
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Hi all. I have a chance to purchase an Ingersoll-Trenton which is from 1898. It is a 15 jewel, 16s and Bridged movement (what is "Bridge movement"?). Serial number 3402120. It appears in good condition and from what I am told, it is working. I have only seen pics and it seems like a nice clean watch.
What can you all tell me about these? Thanks in advance.
 

doug sinclair

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Ingersoll was the firm that did more to popularize the "dollar" watch than any other company. A lot of their stuff was made for them by the Waterbury Clock Co., and I believe they were the biggest volume producer of watches of all the American watchmakers. Trenton produced watches for the "popular" priced watch market, and some of their stuff is better than Ingersoll, but the quality of their better watches didn't really compare with the quality of the top American producers. Perhaps you might do a bit of research before you buy. The Shugart, Engel, and Gilbert bible gives a thumb nail sketch of both firms. Incidentally, they both ultimately became part of Timex which hardly constitutes a ringing endorsement of their quality.
 

Kent

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As Doug indicated, I-T (Ingersoll, the chief manufacturer of the dollar watch, bought Trenton in 1908) was not in the top tier of watch suppliers. In fact, they weren't in the second tier either. Nevertheless, there are some collectors who are interested in their products.

A bridge model movement has separate "fingers" for the train pivots, while other movements have a 3/4-plate or a full plate design. Also, see the Watch Models Encyclopedia article. 81620.jpg
 
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49stude63

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If you take the lngersoll-Trenton apart you find they are a well made watch. Some people get extremely hung up that these were not top tier watches, they aren't and were never intended to be but in the time they were produced to purchase one depending if you made 15 cents or 25 cents per hour took at least one week or more of you paycheck depending on what type of case and jewel count you selected.
These watches served a market segment above the dollar watch types and below the (it will take months of my paycheck to pay for this watch) top tier types. Ingeroll-Trenton use cost saving measures where costs could be saved, dials are porcelain but Swiss made, saving costs over American made dials. For the bridge fingers either metal or real jewel sets could be pressed in making for 1 part multiple jewel configuration. If you look at the bridge or main plates there are only two types of screws used, one for the balance cock and 5 others that will interchange with any of the others on the bridge or main plate. You still had the two typical movement hold down type screws that are used by nearly all other brands.
These watches were engineered to fall into a more of a low middle market segment. Well made watches for the segment they were produced for and probably shunned like the plague my most watch collectors.
 

nico22

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Jun 10, 2021
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Hi there! I recently acquired an Ingersoll Trenton jeweled pocket watch. It's one of a kind. I love it.
There are several old paper ads you can find online about it and that makes owning these models more fascinating to me.

On 2019 I bought an Ingersoll wristwatch named "The Trenton" Online searching more information about this wristwatch model brought me into collecting old Ingersoll Dollar watches as the modern day "The Trenton" wristwatch looks identical to old Ingersoll dollar watches specially the "Yankee Radiolite" However, I found out that there is also pocket watches named "Ingersoll-Trenton" luckily ebay is a pocket watch heaven for beginners like me. Got it for USD52. I really liked it!

I love knowing about the past the stories etc. Knowing that the wristwatch I bought last 2019 is inspired by watches in the distant past makes me so much engrossed on having these old stuff in the past.

Old Ingersoll-Trenton Pocket watch
64B3B9AE-4218-411A-BAA3-BA2142D5753F.jpeg 45C5F09B-6015-4D11-AA25-3A506A9586DA.jpeg

Old Ingersoll Yankee Radiolite Dollar Watch
BBCD2CE9-1748-4C95-91BC-920B4B027393.jpeg

Modern day Ingersoll "The Trenton" wristwatches
E4D5A642-50B1-4B37-B0C2-DEEEF14D8347.jpeg
 

luvsthetick

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Mar 31, 2010
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The company made watches from dollar watches to very fine 16 size 19 jewel watches.

Their 16 size bridge movements were available in 7, 15, 17 and 19 jewel versions (refer to the ad Kent posted).

Hope you enjoy yours.

Here is one of my 19 jewel watches.

EDIT - Just saw the date of the original post, ooops!

DSC_0005 (2)a.jpg
 
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PatH

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Very nice watches pictured in this thread!

Here are a few ads that I have collected along the way down my Waterbury/New England Watch Co/Ingersoll path. The year is included in the file name - 1909, 1910 and 1911.

If you are an NAWCC member, you can log in to the NAWCC.org site to access several Bulletin articles related to the Trenton Watch company.

1909 Ingersoll Trenton - best 7 and 9 jewel.jpeg 1910 Ingersoll-Trenton - elite watch.jpeg 1911 Ingersoll Trenton - superior 7 and 15 jewel.jpeg
 

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