Classic watches, watchmaking, antique tools, history, vintage ephemera and more!

Learn about mechanical timepieces and how they work, the history of the American watch industry and especially all about the Elgin National Watch Company! Check back for new content daily.

Although this is technically a blog, the content is not generally in a time-based sequence. You can find interesting items throughout. Down the page some is an alphabetical word cloud of keywords used here. A great way to dig in is to look through those topics and click anything you find interesting. You'll see all the relevant content.

Here are a few of my favorites!

There are some large images on some posts, so that might impact your load times, bit I think you will find it worth the wait. Thanks for visiting!

New Arrival

In for service...


A watch owner sent me this photo of the box a watch arrived in. The watch was fine.

This is really exceptional though. I don't think I have seen anything like this in the over 10 years I've been shipping watches.

I send and receive multiple packages every week. Normally USPS does an exceptional job in my experience.

New Arrival

This Waltham is one of the last in the queue for 2017.

It's missing a crystal (aren't they all?) but likely I found one (one and only one) in my remaining inventory. Hunter crystals are vanishing from the world. I wish I could impress on people just how fragile they are. They are literally like eggshells.

Hunter cases, with a front cover, are not more durable than open face cases, quite the opposite in fact.

Job Number 170063

This is an example of Elgin's grade 417, 3/0 size, 7 jewels, made about 1916.

The balance cock was pretty damaged from prior repairs. The threads on the stud screw were stripped and so someone put in a larger screw with a very uneven, worn out slot - very difficult to turn...

Then the hairspring was damaged too, bent at the stud and a cracked collet. I just replaced the spring assembly altogether. These smaller Elgins are so difficult to get going.
See the whole album for this project here.

Find more content about vintage watches here.

Job Number 170125

Here's a nice later model Hamilton, 992b, 16 size, 21 jewels, made about 1957.

Later American pocketwatches are interesting to work on because of how refined the designs are. Springs that needed to be stronger finally are. The steel seems higher quality. On this watch the difference between lever-set and stem set has been significantly simplified, no doubt reducing costs.

See the whole album for this project here.

Follow vintage watch service and repair projects here.

Find more content about vintage watches here
Also, there the Vintage Watches Community on Google+ here.


Click "Older Posts" just above for more, or use the archive links right here.

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