John Sizer Grimsby with special dial and dustcap marked SPICER

Halda Sweden

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Dec 30, 2008
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Dear Horological friends,

Last week I was fortunate and bought several watchmakers cabinets with old parts and repair objects from a retired hobby watchmaker. It´s like Christmas Eve to check every drawer....

This pocket watch is rather large (54 mm) and heavy (153 gram) and even if the movement looks rather ordinair there are some interesting details that make me curious.

The multicoloured dial is made of silver and gold. There is a dust cap marked; SPICER on the inside. Movement is signed: "John Sizer Grimsby No 2340". The watch case from London, year 1878, and I beleive it was made by Alfred Gurney.

Questions:

Where was this movement made?

Who was SPICER?

Best rgds

Peter B.

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gmorse

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Hi Peter,

I had a rather later Sizer from 1899/1900 on the bench 3 or 4 years ago, and that movement was probably made by Samuel Yeomans in Coventry; he was also responsible for the case. However, yours may have started life in Lancashire and been finished in Coventry. I can't clearly see the movement maker's stamp on the pillar plate, is it 'ET'? The name 'Spicer' in the cap is the man who made it; cap making was a separate specialised craft. Sizer was probably the vendor.

I think you're right about Alfred Gurney making the case, but he wasn't working in London even though that's where the case was assayed, he was in Coventry.

Regards,

Graham
 

Halda Sweden

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Dec 30, 2008
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Dear Graham,

Yes, Spicer made the dust cap but is he known? There was a case maker with the same name I believe...

Photo isn´t 100% clear but i think F.T or E.T

There is also a mark S... under the balance cock...

Rgds
Peter
 

gmorse

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Hi Peter,
Spicer made the dust cap but is he known? There was a case maker with the same name I believe...
There are two Spicers listed in Loomes, but they're both in the 18th century. I don't know whether John Matthews can shed any light on him or her. Unfortunately Priestley's book on case makers is organised alphabetically by the first initial of all the marks, not the second. He can probably also help with the mark on the pillar plate, because he maintains a database of these.

Regards,

Graham
 

John Matthews

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Sep 22, 2015
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I believe this movement was Coventry finished for Sizer by Rotherhams.

Spicer is the family name of Coventry cap makers ~1880. They predominantly, possibly exclusively, made caps for Rotherhams made/finished movements.

FT is probably Francis Twirlwind snr who is listed as a watch frame maker in St Helens at this time.

Does the silver dial have any marks on the underside, is it hallmarked?

John
 
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Halda Sweden

Registered User
Dec 30, 2008
164
95
28
South Sweden
Country
I believe this movement was Coventry finished for Sizer by Rotherhams.

Spicer is the family name of Coventry cap makers ~1880. They predominantly, possibly exclusively, made caps for Rotherhams made/finished movements.

FT is probably Francis Twirlwind snr who is listed as a watch frame maker in St Helens at this time.

Does the silver dial have any marks on the underside, is it hallmarked?

John
Dear John,

great information, thanks!

I have to check the dial again...
Best rgds
Peter B
 

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