Swiss Hampden 10 1/2 L movement. FHF

MrRoundel

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Dec 28, 2010
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Greetings all,

I trust everyone is enjoying their springtime holidays.

I recently did an impulse buy on a pendant watch, nun/nurse style, that I found intriguing. I took a chance that the staff would be intact but am paying the piper on that leap. Bad staff and buggered HS. Live and learn.

Anyway, the intriguing part of the watch was the Swiss-made Hampden movement. It is 17J and has very polished nickel plates. They're like the mirror field in a proof-like silver coin. My research, based on the set-bridge, tells me that the movement was made by Fontainemelon/FHF for Hampden. This suspected 10 1/2 ligne model 150-1/150.1, is probably a decent little movement, as it appears as if it was used by Rolex in some of their early watches. That said, I'd feel better about it if it was running, or at least with an intact hairspring. Oh well...I think this watch is from the forties.

Would the experts concur with the FHF 150.1 attribution? From my early searches, it doesn't seem like a lot of examples have the gold balance that this Hampden does, FWIW. Any comments are welcome. Cheers.

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MrRoundel

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Am I sure that the balance is gold? No, but it is gold colored. Other movements seem to not have gold-colored balances. Granted, I've only been observing for a few days now. Thanks for your response. Cheers.
 

Rick Hufnagel

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Hey, MrRoundel.

Same scenario. Saw a neat center sweep watch marked Hampden. Thought it would be fun to try and bring it back to life, but the balance &H.S. are kaput on mine as well. 20210407_220147.jpg 20210407_220128.jpg

Unfortunately I don't have the ambition to tackle this. If you find yourself needing parts (minus balance and hairspring that are broken) just give a shout.
 
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roughbarked

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Am I sure that the balance is gold? No, but it is gold colored. Other movements seem to not have gold-colored balances. Granted, I've only been observing for a few days now. Thanks for your response. Cheers.
Gold coloured balances usually were used on more expensive movements.
I found an FHF 150 balance complete professionally cleaned and checked on ebay. The price looked reasonable to me.
In fact you could buy the whole movement. Note it was the 150. So even if you purchased the whole movement, there would be no 4th wheel pinion for sweep seconds.
 
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MrRoundel

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Thanks, Rick H., for your generous offer. Yes, we are in similar quandaries. Whenever I get in involved in a new watch, I realize how important is it to have lathe and hairspring skills. Now all I need to do is take the time to learn and move some stuff aside so I can get to my lathe. Oh, and spend a lot of time with manipulating hairsprings.

And roughbarked, thanks for checking on that movement and stopping me from melting my "gold" balance wheel and buying 1/12,999,888th of a Bitcoin with the proceeds, give or take.... ;) Cheers.
 
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Rockford's early high grade movements by Greg Frauenhoff