Interesting Barraud in Lakeland

Discussion in 'Chronometers' started by Tom McIntyre, Feb 10, 2019 at 10:50 PM.

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  1. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    This interesting Barraud pocket chronometer was on display in Lakeland last week.The chronometer itself is a fairly "ordinary" Earnshaw type detent with a John Roger Arnold style of balance. Part of what makes it special is that it is in an original gold case hallmarked for London 1819/20 and carries the serial number 527.

    There is a Barraud "hanging detent" in my collection that is in its original silver case with the hallmark for 1814/15 and serial number 684.

    So there are 127 serial numbers between the two watches and 5 nominal years between the marks (in the wrong direction), From general experience, the Barraud numbering can be confusing and appear random, but this seems like an extreme case.

    Barraud 527
    face.jpg front1.jpg front2.jpg innerback.jpg innermark.jpg Marks.jpg movement.jpg movementside.jpg
    Barraid 684
    dial.jpg front.jpg inner back.jpg inner front.jpg movement.jpg oouter back.jpg outer mark.jpg
     
  2. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Tom,

    Both very handsome! The serial number question is something of a mystery, but not so surprising if you take into account how long it could be to make and finish a chronometer at the time.

    By the way, does your 684 have a Pennington 'L' balance?

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  3. MartyR

    MartyR Super Moderator
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    Both great watches!

    I note Graham's comment about manufacturing time, but my bet would be on #527 having been made in a silver case in (say) 1810 and then recased in gold in 1820. I assume that all Barraud chronometers (marine and pocket) were made to order, and that a purchaser of a pocket chronometer would therefore specify the case at point of order. Is it reasonable to assume that mst Barraud customers would have been buying "working" chronometers and would have wanted a silver case? If those assumprions are right, then perhaps #527 was delivered to the buyer (a ship's officer?) in silver, and then when he retired(?) 10 years later he had it recased (obviously by Barraud) in a gold case.

    That's a whole lot of asumptions :) but I think they provide a more pleasing scenarion than the assumption that Barraud wasn't numbering sequentially, or that he took 10 years to make this chronometer ;)
     
  4. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    IMG_2172.JPG
    If the Pennington "L" is the one with the extension of the arm to capture the other arm with a screw and a "free" hole, then yes. I am happy to have a name for it since it takes a lot of words to describe. Here is a picture of the same balance on loose movement 725.

    This movement is also a hanging detent.

    Marty, I think I may like your explanation better than mine. It does seem like a very long time in the shop with the implication of a very patient customer or a piece created on spec.

    The other possibility is that when it came time to make the preliminary payment before the piece was sent to be cased, the client that ordered it did not come through and it went into stock as an available movement. Then the idea of it resting a while while the newer Pennington designs were sold might be plausible.
     
  5. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Tom,

    I did mis-name it slightly, it's a 'double L balance' and it's nothing to do with correcting middle-temperature errors, it just allows the free ends of the rim to be safely held whilst adjustments are made to the screws.

    I think Martin's explanation is indeed more plausible than mine.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  6. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    Good! We are on the same page. Indeed the screw touches nothing in normal operation of the balance. It is just a, probably unnecessary, safety device. I think that is why it was used for such a short period. I am happy if we all agree to call it "double L." :)
     
  7. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Tom,

    That's what Vaudrey Mercer called it in his article on the Penningtons and their balances in AH vol. 12 no. 5, pages 514-522.

    Regards,

    Graham
     

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