Need info on old 18k gold pocket watch

Kent

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jtb821:

It would be helpful if you could post a picture of the movement, the clearer and sharper, the better. For an open-face, screw back & bezel watch you can get good results by placing the movement on a flatbed scanner. We may be able to better identify it by the shape of the plates. A hunting-case movement, or an open-face movement in a hinged case would have to be removed from the case for this to work. Larry Jones has written up a useful article on Image Posting, which may be helpful. If you have a problem posting the picture, you can attach it to an e-mail to me (by clicking on the speeding letter at the top of my post) and I'll post it for you.

Its also helpful if you can post all the markings that are on the movement (the "works") in case they can't be seen in the picture(s). I know that you mentioned some maerkings, but its not clear that these are on the movement rather than the inside of the case.

Kent
 

Jeff Hess

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"Superfine Equilibrium Lever; 21; Fine Rubies; Balance Compensated; Isochronal Hair Spring; N 17451; Fred. Nicoud; Chaux-de-Fonds"

Wow. not too much to go on, but I love these "guessing games" and "mystery watches".

Lets see: Nicoud made (or retailed) complicated watches for export in the late 1890's to early 1900's including repeaters and enamels in both 14k and 18k. I have one that was a low carat gold also, a ladies version with enamel and seed pearls.

Keywind suggests 1860's to most folks but many companies continued to make keywinds clear up until the 1910 or so! And the 21 rubis designation suggests they were trying to compete in the American market and the USA's penchant for many "jewels" which was WAY later than the 1860's.

The term "Isochronol" suggest a alter time period as well.

You have elected to omit what the case is made of and just exactly what is meant my "second timer". (Another train? A chronograph function? A simple seconds hand?)

My guess, based on limited info, (boy this is fun!) is that you have a late 1890's ladies keywind enameled gold hunter made for export. If there are no other compications of the movement, it is desirable (if the enamel is in good shape) but not "rare".

One mans opinoin. (guess:???:) LOL) Jeff Hess
 

Kent

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Here are the pictures of jtb821's watch. This is quite a nice timepiece, judging by the beautifully enameled 18K case (according to the topic title Jeff). The inscriptions on the cuvette (inside back) certainly give it the aura of high quality. Unfortunately, jtb821 doesn't understand how to open the cuvette and is concerned about possible damage if he tries to do it. So, we're still unable to see just how nice the movement is.

Front Cover

Back Cover

Dial

Cuvette

Kent
:)
 

Jeff Hess

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Kent,

Thanks.

Just as I had suspected, it is an enamel watch and probably from the 1895-ish era.
The small vignette of enamel is nice but again, small. Some of the outer enamel appears to be chipped. I would love to see the "superfine equlibrium lever" though. ;)

Jeff

Funny about these enamels.They seem to be way underappreciated and hence undervalued as well. I would love to wee the
 

Kent

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And now......

I'm pleased to present three views of the movement that arrived late last night:

1st View

2nd View

3rd View

Can anyone tell us more about this watch or its maker?

Kent
 

Jerry Freedman

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In the back of Ehrhardt's book 3 are copies of ads for Nicoud and Howard. They show the company as sole importers of Fred Nicoud and Arnold nicoud watches. No indication as to the maker. They had a New York City address. The cuts do not match the image of the movement in quesstion.
 

Julian Smith

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Kent and all,
Check out Shugart vol 21 pg 494 left side.Also pg 493,lower right.
These look very much like the subject watch.They probably came from the same ebauche maker.
J Smith
 
S

Steve Maddox

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There are exceptions to every rule, and as Yoggie Berra would say, this one's no exception, but every watch I've ever seen with the unusual double-headed bridge this watch has, has been a Longines product.

If anyone ever finds this bridge used in anything EXCEPT a Longines, I'd very much like to hear about it.

------------------
Steve Maddox
VP, NAWCC Chapter #62
North Little Rock, Arkansas
 
B

BUZZ BAZARNICKI

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Just the fact that it has 21 jewels tells me that it was made after 1895 ish....

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BUZZ BAZARNICKI
ANTIQUARIAN HOROLOGIST
HAMILTON SPECIALIST
MEMBER #120851 NAWCC
PAST V.P.CHAPTER # 52
 

astonvilla

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This movement was made from an ebauche
made by the firm AUBERT FRERES
from DERNIERE-LA-COTE.
This type of movement is typical
for watchmakers from Locle in Switzerland.
Jules Jurgensen, Ulysse Nardin ,Huguenin
among others , used this type of movement.
I believe the watch is much older than 1895.
I believe it was made around 1870.
The reason for this is that it is a key wind watch. If the whatch had been from 1895,
it hould have had a winding crown.
 
S

Steve Maddox

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I have enjoyed the various replies about this particular topic, and have found it interesting how so many knowledgeable watch collectors have had such varying and different opinions. Of course, many European watches are easily identifiable, but instances such as this seem to be indicative of how relatively little is really known today about European watches. I'm sure that if the watch mentioned here had been made by ANY American company, it would have been easily and certainly identified much sooner.

SM
 
S

Steve Maddox

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Dave,

I couldn't agree more! In another topic, Larry Jones writes: "Bob Ravel had detailed information on the [Hamilton] Model 21 chronometers, but I don't know where the information is now."

Let's hope Bob's information isn't lost forever, but that situation is an example of exactly what you're talking about. When important horological information isn't widely shared, things can happen that result in its loss. Those who share their information are doing a great deal to perpetuate horology for future generations, and to my way of thinking, deserve much credit and many thanks. (Thanks guys!)

As for European watches, do Europeans know more about them than we Americans do, or is there just not much surviving information about them anywhere to be had?

SM
 
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