Friday, September 19, 2014

Elgin Grade 100, A Convertible Movement with Animation

Here's the bottom plate, dial side, of an Elgin grade 100 pocketwatch, convertible. This unique movement can be assembled in either hunter or open face configurations.  The difference between the two is that the stem is 180 degrees from the seconds dial (the forth wheel) in an open face watch, but 90 degrees from the seconds in a hunter case movement.

This plate allows the winding arbor to be in either of two positions, 90 degrees different from each other. 

In this image we can see a linkage of two similar parts connecting both stem positions to the "snap" mechanism for the crown to snap in and out.  Among the many unique features of this movement, the "snap" is here in the movement, rather than provided by a sleeve spring in the neck of the case.
The "snap" is provided by the business in the upper left.  The hunter position for the winding arbor is directly pointing left.  The open face position is facing down in this image.  The jewel for the lower forth wheel, which is the seconds hand, is at the upper most in the image.

The Elgin convertible models have the ratchet in between, inside, a two part barrel bridge.  The trick to converting from hunter to open face is that a main wheel, which turns the ratchet wheel, which winds the mainspring, can be positioned at one side of the other inside the bridge - a 90 degree difference.
This watch is being assembled in open face mode.  The stem is facing down in these images.  The unused void for the hunter configuration is to the right. 

Adding to its uniqueness, the winding mechanism is on the top, or back side, of the movement, opposite the dial.  

When in setting mode, a pin pushes up from the other side and lefts an arm, causing a main wheel to move up, off of the ratchet wheel, and engage a wheel in the center.

The cannon pinion on the other side rides directly on the arbor of this exposed center setting wheel, thus turning the hands.
Find more examples of Elgin's convertible movements here...

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Elgin Grade 150, Animation

This is an Elgin grade 150, a grade sometimes marked "Father Time" or simply "150".  

This one is unnamed, but it is the 21 jewel version.  It's railroad grade and one of the best watches of it's time. It's always nice to see one of these.

This example was made about 1896.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Elgin Grade 223

There's a lot of character in this silver watch case, but it's still working fine.

The movement is an Elgin  grade 223.  It's a 0 size, 15 jewel, design.

This example was made about 1900.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Elgin Grace 336, Animation

Elgin's grade 336 pocketwatch movement is an 18 size, 17 jewel design.  This example was made about 1911.

The Google+ auto-awesome turned out particularly well I think.  More here!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Elgin Grade 312, Animated

The grade 312 Elgin pocketwatch movement is a 16 size, 15 jewel product, often featuring gold flashed screws, as this one does.

This near mint example was made about 1911



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Fitting Parts

Very often a replacement part is not available, but you can alter a part that is close to fit.  This is a stem from a pocket watch case.  It's an odd size; extra long with small threads for the crown.  The threads have a tighter than usual pitch, just to be extra different.  I found only one stem that was close.  It's a hair shorter but should work.  It has the right threads.  It just needs the shape changed a little.

Elgin Grade 308, Pretty Dirty

Here are some "before" shots.

How's a watch get this dirty. Interestingly, I have found nothing so far that is actually broken. This watch may have just been in regular use until dirt stopped it. 
This is a grade 308 Elgin, 18 size, 17 jewels, made about 1905

Monday, September 8, 2014

Elgin Grade 109, Animated!

Here's some images of a grade 109 Elgin movement.  It's a 0 size, 7 jewels, piece made about 1897

These movements are usually found in hunter cases, as ladies watches. 

Occasionally they are also found in very early wristwatches. 

These animated GIFs are created automatically by Google+ when multiple images are uploaded of the same content.  I just use the burst mode on my Samsung Galaxy S3 phone, and off they go, pretty handy!


Friday, September 5, 2014

Hairspring Stud Vise

This is a handy and hard to find tool for holding hairsprings for work.

I used it here to move the stud a little.  The outside end of the spring passes through a hole in the stud.  A brass pin follows and is driven friction tight.  The pin can be removed to adjust the stud.

This is not a real common task, and a tool like this is not used often, but when the need does come up, there's nothing like having the right thing at hand.

Elgin Key-Set Minute Hand Fitting

This is a key-set movement, meaning that the time is set using a key that fits over the square hub in the middle of the hands.  The hands are then turned directly.

Such watches have a minute hand with a square hole at the end (the "boss") to fit on the hub.  In this case it looks to me like a normal round-holed hand, for a stem-set movement, has had the hole filed roughly square.  It didn't really fit though, and would not go on far enough to allow the use of the key.

In order to preserve as much "as found" as possible, I expanded and squared to hole a bit rather than stick a new hand, or the expected type, on there.

This is a case where this past repair does no harm, and is just part of the history of the individual piece.

See more creative repairs here!