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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.

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Elgin Grade 92, With an Arbor Adaptor

This Elgin grade 92 has a unique feature.

Older Elgin movements have a male winding arbor built into the movement.  It sticks out in the form of a square shaft that goes into a square hole in the arbor in the case (the stems for this type of case are pretty hard to come by, by the way).


Later American movements typically have a square hole in the winding arbor in the movement, and the square shaft is part of the stem in the neck of the case.  This is much more common.

This watch is interesting because it's the later movement type.  The female part is in the movement.  But the case is the other kind.  Its arbor is also female.  So some watchmaker long ago made a little adapter, shown in this first photo.  It's a small square shaft that goes into the square holes in both the case and the movement.  It's likely a cut off stem.  I've never seen this before...

This grade is a 16 size movement with 11 jewels.  This example was made about 1895.



It's worth mention here perhaps that early American watch companies did not typically make cases.  The case and movement were purchased separately by the original customer, and fit together by a watchmaker at the time. 


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