Unicorn Wristwatch

Discussion in 'Wrist Watches' started by gmorse, Apr 9, 2013.

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  1. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Jan 7, 2011
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    Hi,

    I have on the bench just now a so-called "trench" watch with a silver case. The case hallmarks are for a Glasgow import dated 1925, and a sponsor's mark of "R.W.C.Ltd" in an oval frame, for the Rolex Watch Company Ltd. The movement barrel ratchet wheel is marked "Unicorn", which I know is a Rolex name. Now Mikrolisk shows this trademark as being registered in 1934, but the movement and the case do appear to go together, so I'd appreciate people's thoughts on this, as well as any suggestions for the actual maker of this movement.

    IMG_0759.jpg IMG_0738.jpg IMG_0740.jpg

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  2. Sparcster

    Sparcster Registered User

    Mar 31, 2012
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    Hi Graham,

    I cant really comment on the discrepancy between date letter (which does look like 1925 to me also) and trademark registration.... as I dont know - I would only be guessing that the case and movement did not start life together - but that would only be a guess from my limited knowledge. But someone may be able to expand on the 'Unicorn' name...

    As for the movement... it does look similar to a rebberg movement I have (rebberg movements were used in early rolex watches - which you may already know) but not the same. It may be a different cal to the one I have? I find that many watches from this period look very similar... sometimes making it impossible to ID.

    However, I did find this interesting thread, which seems to imply this is not a Rebberg -

    http://www.network54.com/Forum/207593/thread/1253309064/early%20Rolex%20watches%20-%20and%20the%20NON%20rebberg%20movement%20-%20long

    Hopefully someone will be able to provide some actual facts!!

    Marc
     
  3. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Marc,

    Thanks for that, the movement in the first set does look very much like mine, (and the dial in the second set is also very close), so it could well be a Beguelin. I know Rolex was using a variety of bought-in movements in their early days.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  4. Adam Harris

    Adam Harris Registered User
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    According to Dowling/Hess
    The 'UNICORN' name was registered
    4th Oct 1920.
    That ties up with my silver 'UNICORN' marked Rolex
    Movement is correct Rebberg movement

    Acknowledgements Hess/Dowling - Best Of Times
     
  5. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Thanks Adam, would you say then that the first watch in Sparcster's link is also a Rebberg rather than a Beguelin?
     
  6. Cary Hurt

    Cary Hurt Registered User

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    It was typical in those times for a name to be well established before being registered. Some names were in use for years before the owner decided it was worth registering. I wouldn't worry about the apparent discrepancy.

    The movement is by Beguelin, although I've generally seen the early 13 ligne Unicorn movements attributed to Damas (which was a Beguilin trade name). Particularly the Damas 3.

    I've not seen a movement authoritatively identified as a Rebberg/Aegler movement that did not match their familiar pattern. There are a lot of close ones, but none that I am convinced are by Aegler. Both Rolex and Gruen sourced movements from many other contractors during this time. And in my experience, most movements marked Unicorn, or ROLCO, or Marconi use something other than the familiar Rebberg.

    I don't believe any of the movements in that other (quite interesting) thread are by Aegler/Rebberg. I see Damas, Font, A. Schild and a couple I'm not sure of, but nothing I'd say was Aegler.
     
  7. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Cary,

    Thanks for the clarification. I suspected that everything did match up, and the registration date discrepancy was just as you said. I knew I'd get good answers here!

    Regards,

    Graham
     

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