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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.

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.

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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!

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