Whats best RAILROAD watch made and why?

Discussion in 'American Pocket Watches' started by George, Jan 4, 2010.

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  1. crazyacres

    crazyacres Registered User

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    I probably wont have has much trouble posting to the site as I am with this new Digital camera and getting them to my computer, but try and get them out to you ASAP !! Ive found out more about this watch on this site in a few days then I had since we pulled it from our farms floor boards back in September..Thanks Tam
     
  2. crazyacres

    crazyacres Registered User

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    Hi Folks, finally got some pictures of the Pocket Watch I was asking for info on, not able to post them directly into a comment here, so added them to an album under my profile, please take a look and let me know anything you might know of this watch..Thanks !!
     
  3. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User
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    Hi Tammy another cannuck, what part of Canada are you from?
     
  4. crazyacres

    crazyacres Registered User

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    Im just North of Belleville Ontario, in small town farm country !!!
     
  5. RON in PA

    RON in PA Registered User
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    Just couldn't resist, but you know folks that if RR time standards were still in effect this is the type of watch they would use and I strongly suspect that contemporary RR employees probably do use a watch like this or the Seiko equivalent.
     

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  6. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    No ifs, ands, or buts about it, the Citizen Railroad Approved model was listed in a 1994 Norfolk Southern employe timetable.
     

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  7. Robert Sweet

    Robert Sweet Registered User

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    Kent,

    I noticed there is a "Bulova" quartz pocket watch listed, are you familiar with this watch?

    Robert
     
  8. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    I have only the smallest knowledge of Bulova watches. However, I looked at the railroad grade Bulova pocket watch in a jewelry shop once, with the thought in mind of getting it. I think it was a wristwatch movement fit into the pocktet watch case and I dropped the idea of owning one.
     
  9. Robert Sweet

    Robert Sweet Registered User

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    Kent,

    Thank you.

    Robert
     
  10. Surf Monkey

    Surf Monkey Registered User

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    Well, this thread certainly went off topic...
     
  11. Robert Sweet

    Robert Sweet Registered User

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    Hello Chris,

    Since the "Bulova" quartz pocket watch was listed as an approved timepiece for the "Norfolk-Southern Railway" for time service, do you not think that it would be within the bounds of your topic "Whats best RAILROAD- watch made and why?.

    If you still object to my question, I will ask the moderator to remove it.

    Robert
     
  12. Surf Monkey

    Surf Monkey Registered User

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    LOL

    No need to do that. I agree that the discussion is relevant and that some drift is expected in every topic.
     
  13. mlapolla

    mlapolla Registered User

    Feb 24, 2014
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    Hello. I am new to watch collecting. I have decided to narrow my focus to Waltham watches (and it's predecessor companies), hunter 18s, 16s, and railroad watches. This seems the perfect thread to ask my question. I am interested in collecting watches used by the railroad prior to 1887. For example, what would be the highest quality watches, earlier the better. Or would you suggest that I start my collection in 1889? I saw the other threads on this topic but the earliest watches there were from 1887 when the standards were codified. Thanks.
     
  14. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    Hi mlapolla:

    Welcome to the NAWCC American Pocket Watch Message Board!

    There were plenty of watches, mostly 18-size, available prior to 1887 that were suitable for use in railroad time service. A few would be:
    • Several models of the Waltham AT&Co grade
    • Waltham model 70 Crescent St. grade
    • Several models of the Elgin B.W. Raymond, such as grades No. 69 and No. 70
    • Several models of Hampden Rail Way and Railway grades
    • Several models of Illinois Bunn grade

    There are additional examples which I'm sure will be pointed out by others.

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

    Good luck,
     
  15. mlapolla

    mlapolla Registered User

    Feb 24, 2014
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    Perfect. Thanks. I wasn't sure about the AT&Co grade. Was there a fifteen jewel minimum at that time? Thanks again and thanks for the welcome.
     
  16. Kent

    Kent Registered User
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    I don't thank that there was much in the way of pre-1887 watch requirements, although watch inspection is known to go back at least as far as 1853.

    Nevertheless, watch company advertisements provide a look at what was being used in railroad service.

    There is a quote from an 1875 Springfield Watch Co. catalog on page 6 of 100 Plus Years of Railroad Watches and Railroad Watch Standards in North America, Greg Frauenhoff, Sedalia, CO, 1999 which states of their 18-size, Currier grade, 11-jewel movement "It is also largely used by Railroad and Expressmen. Pages 6 & 8 of the same book quote from a September 15, 1880 Rockford Watch Co. brochure referring to an 11 jewel movement, "... recommended for the use of those railroad employes whose limited salaries preclude them from the purchase of the more expensive full-jeweled movements"
     
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  17. Tom McIntyre

    Tom McIntyre Technical Admin
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    movement.jpg dial.jpg cuvette.jpg back.jpg

    This watch is very likely to have been purchased by the Pennsylvania Railroad around 1860. It's case carries the engine number and cuvette mark as do several American examples. It looks like a pretty low jewel count and likely a Massey III lever escapement.

    movement.jpg dial.jpg cuvette.jpg back.jpg
     
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  18. prideofmatchingham

    prideofmatchingham Registered User
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    #68 prideofmatchingham, Feb 26, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
    I donot think the number (22) on the back of the case refers to the engine number, unless ofcourse practices were different over the various Railways. My limited knowledge on the Railway stores/stocks/inventory and its management leads me to believe that it is the Tools & Plants Number (T&P Number or Stock Number or what some may call Inventory Number) 22 among the watches.

    Railways have had detailed system of keeping all their T&P (Tools & Plants) and numbering them serially category wise. Once in a year normally, there used to be (and still is) a massive exercise of stock taking where staff and officers used to go to different installations and physically and manually check the stocks of that particular stock holder.

    So an Inspector of Stores Accounts (ISA) or a Stock Verifier (SV) would accompany the officer and demand to be shown the T&P register. He will see that there are (for example) 50 Watches on the books/stocks of that stock holder. The Stock Verifier would want to physically see and verify all the 50. Suppose, watch number 22, as indicated above, is missing. There are four scenarios

    1. Either the stock holder would say that this was issued to Mr XYZ and is lost. In that case stock holder is safe but debit to the tune of the cost of the watch would be raised against Mr XYZ and recovered from his salary. This debit would be noted against his service register so that even if recovery escapes notice, at the time of retirement and final settlement this would be recovered.

    2. That it is issued to Mr XYZ and is in his possession. Confirmation would be obtained from Mr XYZ. Then no action taken as stock exists.

    3.That it is not issued to anyone but is lost. Now, if the present stock holder while assuming his charge from his predecessor had signed the register (called Charge Handing Over-Taking Over Register) indicating that he has received 50 watches, in that case present stock holder is responsible and the cost of the watch would be recovered from his salary.

    4. Watch 22 is available in store and is shown and verified as 'available'. If its in unusable condition, a separate process of deassetting of the watch will start which will write off that item from the books of the stockholder.

    It was/is a beautiful system of stock taking built on a judicious mix of trust and physical verification.

    Sorry for digressing. But unless the American Railroads followed an entirely different system, this 22 should be the stock number. I am attaching one of my John Walker pocket watches of the then Great Indian Peninsular Railways having the similar T&P number.

    DSC06895 (1024x768).jpg DSC07758 (1024x768).jpg

    Am open to correction pl.
    POM

    DSC06895 (1024x768).jpg DSC07758 (1024x768).jpg
     
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  19. mlapolla

    mlapolla Registered User

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    Thanks again for all the information. I appreciate it.
     
  20. Kingleo49

    Kingleo49 Registered User

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    D07A58E8-B81D-4DCE-90DD-F490659B58FF.jpeg AF000EF5-72EE-4813-95F2-4F8FBE22CE9E.jpeg I certainly appreciate everyone’s comments but even in my limited experience everybody knows that the Hamilton 950 B is the best railroad watch ever made
     
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  21. Keith R...

    Keith R... Registered User
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    Well, pretty old thread popping up here. What came first, the chicken or the egg?

    Illinois Bunn 15J KWKS.

    Keith R...

    100_2368 (800x600).jpg 100_2402 (800x600).jpg 100_2388 (800x600).jpg 100_2386 (800x600).jpg
     
  22. musicguy

    musicguy Moderator
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    #72 musicguy, Jan 27, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
    I agree you have some nice chickens(I mean watches)

    Larry says back in Jan 4, 2010 in post #2 page one in this same thread
    Whats best RAILROAD watch made and why?

    I read what Larry wrote very carefully (since I own one)
    now I'm done collecting RR watches. ;).

    18634B92-D21F-42FF-BF96-916D6121677A.jpeg F23684C0-D324-431B-BE23-54794A08E803.jpeg




    Rob
     
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  23. Keith R...

    Keith R... Registered User
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    Read post #16 by Dr. Jon! ................................And thanks Rob.

    Kingleo49, welcome to the NAWCC message board. We are some good rascals.

    Note, Rob is close with a Waltham.

    Keith R...
     
  24. kevin h

    kevin h Registered User

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    I am partial to Bunns , like all the watch co's from the early era they all had a "great one" , whether it was a sangamo , a seth thomas Maiden Lane , rockford stamped thiers RG to indicate railroad grade , waltham might have even made a good watch ; ) (big grin ) aurora's made expressly for the railroad , and who can forget Webb Ball that took anybody's watch and "hopped " it up , I still like Illinois best - here is one I just picked up , a 19j Bunn - this should get things stirred up !

    20190125_142249.jpg 20190125_142159.jpg
     
  25. Maximus Man

    Maximus Man Maximus Man

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    I have to put my two cents in since I only get on here a couple times a year it seems. Best ever made. I like odd combinations that at one time or another were railroad approved and the not.
    Premier Maximus and 60 hour Sangamo Special both in original gold cases (both allowed for RR service).
    Riverside Maximus wind indicators.
     
  26. CentreKeystone

    CentreKeystone Registered User
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    The San Angelo TX railroad museum had these railroad wrist watches on display... Seiko Sports 50 on left, Accutron on right. Both marked Railroad Approved. Not a single pocket watch. I was disappointed and found it rather sobering. That would have been Santa Fe at the time.

    railroad watches.jpg
     
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  27. Keith R...

    Keith R... Registered User
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    See, Rob had the answer all along.

    Waltham.

    Keith R...

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