Sharing (my first purchase)

SauronBlack

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Jun 13, 2020
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I am new to the hobby, never collected or repaired watches. Somehow, during quarantine go interested in the subject and made my first purchase. I tried to do my research and learn as much as i can by googling and reading the threads here.

Spotted this guy on one of the estate auction. Got exited about the great condition of the dial and working movement and somehow did not do a proper research on the case itself. Now, after the watch has arrived it appears that this is not an original case (which probably for an expert was obvious from the photos). And turns out one of the case screws is missing.

Despite this, still very exited about the pristine dial and great movement. I am wondering if i should try to get an original case of an ebay and get the movement refitted or just get it serviced and keep in the current case. Any opinion would be appreciated.

88824879_DSCN0397.JPG 64814497_DSCN0388.JPG 82621607_DSCN0394.JPG 32211304_DSCN0391.JPG 82621607_DSCN0394.JPG
 

Bila

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You are correct, not the right case but a good pick-up for an everyday use watch if you did not pay to much for it. As for changing the case, that would be up to the individual, if you intend to use it everyday I would be inclined to use it as it is (once you get a case screw). Also a clean, service and adjustment would always do the old watch justice, although this is not a cheap exercise and would be worth more then the watch.

p.s. Welcome to the message board:)
 

SauronBlack

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Thank you for the tips! I guess i could have found a slightly cheaper option (auction bonus and taxes + shipping are taking a lot) but indeed it was not that bad. Will have to think how to wear it. The mechanism is also surprisingly loud, did not expect that.

Frankly, i will wait with the service. Will probably set this one aside and get some skills as well as tools and knowledge to service it myself. It seems like an interesting and rewarding hobby (pricey though). In addition, large pocket watch movements look like a good "cadavers" to learn the intricate details of watchmaking!

Happy to join you here guys, hope to learn a lot!
 

Greg Frauenhoff

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Hello and welcome to our message board. Watch collecting is crazy addicting.

Regarding your watch, I would leave it as is (case wise). It's not especially high grade or rare, but as a working timekeeper it looks fine. If you stick with collecting old watches you'll no doubt discover a particular area of interest that appeals to you. Carry on. You're off to a good start.

Greg
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Welcome!

No matter what case you put it in, it will never be original again, so may as well leave that one be. It looks good!

Will have to think how to wear it
Put it on a chain, clip it to your belt loop and drop it in your pocket! Or use a leather fob.

The chains are not just a nice decoration, they are a safety feature to keep it from hitting the ground. These old watches don't fair well when dropped. They are not water proof, and magnetism will effect time keeping. With that being said, I use one almost everyday and haven't had any outstanding issues.


Congrats and enjoy, thanks for sharing your new watch!
 
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musicguy

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Hey SauronBlack,

I would also like to add my welcome to the NAWCC Forum with the others above!

A case screw will be very easy to find, you can contact Dave's Watch Parts and Tools
and ask them. They can recommend the correct one.


Rob
 
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Downing

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I agree with everyone above. You'll never find the original case so there's no point. Just replace the screw.

We all collect watches for different reasons. I'm not so interested in all original parts, although it's cool if that's the case. I focus more on looks. I like a clean dial, preferably no cracks or chips although I have made exceptions for watches I really like, and cases that are in very good to pristine condition. I'm willing pay a premium for 100+ year old watches that look nearly brand new and pass on ones that look like they've been rode hard and put up wet no matter the pedigree. I've slowly evolved towards full hunter cases because they're easier to set since you don't have to unscrew the front bezel and they're more to play with. Other folks don't even have these criteria anywhere on their list. If you stick with this you'll develop your own interests.

And yeah, get a chain with a belt loop clip for casual wear and an Albert type chain for formal wear.

You really should get it serviced if you're planning on using it. It doesn't matter that a good service may cost as much as the watch. I drove the same Jeep for twenty years. During the last half of its life, the Jeep was technically totaled every time I took it into the shop or got new tires. Didn't matter. Needed to be done.

It's a beautiful watch. We should all look so good at 108 years old. Wear it in good health.
 
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Kevin W.

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Nice find for your first watch. I agree hang on to it and one day learn how to clean and oil your watches.
 

Kent

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Hi SauronBlack:

Please add my welcome to those from the others.

To add to the good information posted by them:

Please excuse me if I repeat some of what you already know, it's easier for me this way. Checking the references listed in the Waltham Watches Encyclopedia article (and looking at your pictures), Waltham movement serial number 18,770,925 can be seen to be
a 16-size,
model 1908,
grade No. 620,
Unadjusted,
pendant-set,
open-face movement,
having 15 jewels,
and a Starwheel Patent Regulator.
The movement is fitted with a single-sunk, Arabic dial having a R5MT (Red 5 Minute Track).
It was built in about 1913, give or take a year or so. This was a popular movement of which over 201,000 of this variation were made from about 1908 to 1932.

You can see a very brief catalog description of the No. 620 grade, along with a picture and where it fits in Waltham's line of 16-size movements, on pages W4 (see below) & W3 of the Oskamp-Nolting Co. Great American Jewelry Catalog 1917.

I believe that the Defiance replacement Watch Case, was made by the Star Watch Case Co. I would leave it in this case, at least for now.

Unless you know that it has been properly cleaned and oiled within the last few years, you should have the watch serviced before running it very much. It may be helpful for you to read the Encyclopedia article on Watch Service and its related links, especially the one to the message board thread on the subject. The Encyclopedia article on Choosing a Pocket Watch Repair Person may be useful as well.

Unfortunately, many of the links in our Encyclopedia articles were disrupted when we changed to the current version of our Message Board and its been a long process getting them all reinstated. So, if you come across a broken link and want to see what it led to, just let us know and we'll try and post it.

Please feel free to ask about anything that isn't clear to you.

Good luck,

pg_W4_Waltham_16S.jpg
 

Tom Huber

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Welcome!

No matter what case you put it in, it will never be original again, so may as well leave that one be. It looks good!



Put it on a chain, clip it to your belt loop and drop it in your pocket! Or use a leather fob.

The chains are not just a nice decoration, they are a safety feature to keep it from hitting the ground. These old watches don't fair well when dropped. They are not water proof, and magnetism will effect time keeping. With that being said, I use one almost everyday and haven't had any outstanding issues.


Congrats and enjoy, thanks for sharing your new watch!
I must add something to Rick's post. When he said "drop it into your pocket". Pants with a watch pocket are preferred. If you drop it into a regular front pocket, be sure that pocket does not have any other hard item in it, ie change, pocket knife, or money clip. These items can badly scratch the case and crystal.

Tom
 

topspin

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Dec 14, 2014
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Thank you for the tips! I guess i could have found a slightly cheaper option (auction bonus and taxes + shipping are taking a lot) but indeed it was not that bad. Will have to think how to wear it. The mechanism is also surprisingly loud, did not expect that.

Frankly, i will wait with the service. Will probably set this one aside and get some skills as well as tools and knowledge to service it myself. It seems like an interesting and rewarding hobby (pricey though). In addition, large pocket watch movements look like a good "cadavers" to learn the intricate details of watchmaking!

Happy to join you here guys, hope to learn a lot!
If it is loud, this could be a good sign that it might have been serviced not-so-long ago.
It it looks to be running vigorously, this is another good sign.
If the watch keeps good time even with the regulator in the middle of its range, this is another good sign.

Regarding learning the art of servicing it yourself - this topic has been discussed a few times in past threads here...
For the timid, a broken movement is sometimes suggested as starting point to learn disassembling & reassembling it, because at least there is no danger of breaking something that's already broken.
A good step two is doing the same with a not-broken movement. The idea being, that after correct reassembly (and winding), it should start running again.
If you buy up a spares movement (running or otherwise) of the same or similar grade, you can grab one of the case screws to fix the watch you already have.
 

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