Unknown Key wound Pocket Watch

Discussion in 'European & Other Pocket Watches' started by susns, Jan 15, 2020.

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  1. susns

    susns Registered User

    Sep 23, 2014
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    Retired
    Bangor, Pennsylvania
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    I would appreciate any information on this unknown pocket watch.
    The markings are as follows:
    Inner cover is marked: "Cylinder / 4 Jewels
    There are no markings on the back movement
    Inside both case covers has the number 3066
    There is nothing that reads Sterling but the case cleaned up beautifully as though it was Silver.
    Key measures 1 3/8" long and approx 1/16" diameter at key end.
    Thank you in advance for any help.
    keywatch1.jpg keywatch5.jpg keywatch6.jpg keywatch11.jpg keywatch.jpg keywatch8.jpg
     
  2. Les harland

    Les harland Registered User

    Apr 10, 2008
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    It looks Swiss
    Are there any marks such as a bird, bear or moon and crown on the inside of the back case?
    The first two are Swiss silver marks and the last one German
    You may find The Swiss Grouse and the German mark there
     
  3. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Jan 7, 2011
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    Hi susns,

    Les is right, it's a very modest Swiss pocket watch, with a cylinder escapement, (a type now long obsolete), in what looks like a silver case. The Swiss had (and still have) standards for precious metals including silver, but their basic purity was only 800/1000, as opposed to the sterling purity of 925/1000. From 1880 until 1933 the mark for 800/1000 silver was a grouse and for 875/1000 was a standing bear. There were local marks in effect earlier than 1880 but there was no national standard. There's more information about Swiss hallmarks here. The inner cover with the engraving on it, (the 'cuvette'), probably isn't silver, but simply plated base metal, to reduce costs, (something found even on quite elaborate gold cases).

    The movement, in common with almost all Swiss exports of this type, has no signature, so you'll never know who actually made it, (it would have been the product of many specialist workers anyway). The '4 jewels' refers to the jewel bearings for the balance staff; two with holes and two flat ones to control the ends of the pivots. This style of movement, with each wheel under a separate cock, is known as a Lepine calibre, originated by a French watchmaker of that name, and enabled the watch to be much thinner than the fatter verge watches of his time. However this is a generic name and doesn't indicate who made yours.

    Cylinder escapements, although superseded by levers, will still perform quite well if serviced, the problem is finding someone who will undertake the job.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  4. susns

    susns Registered User

    Sep 23, 2014
    22
    0
    1
    Female
    Retired
    Bangor, Pennsylvania
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    Hi and thank you, Les and Graham, for your information and helpfulness.
    There is an incised mark, on the inside of the back case. It is so small and difficult to photograph and even see that I really didn't bother to look at first. I do believe it is either a Grouse or possibly a bear. More likely the Grouse. I did think the outer case is Silver and you have given me just enough information that I can use when I go to re-sell it. I really do appreciate your help.
    I love this site. I have used it a number of times and always seem to be lucky enough to get the information that I am looking for.
    Best regards and Happy New Year!!
    Susan
     
  5. Les harland

    Les harland Registered User

    Apr 10, 2008
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  6. susns

    susns Registered User

    Sep 23, 2014
    22
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    1
    Female
    Retired
    Bangor, Pennsylvania
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    Les,
    Yes, thank you, again. I have used that site in the past. Even though, I know there is a mark, it is so tiny that even with the loop, I cannot quite tell. Neither my husband or myself can tell exactly what it is.
     

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