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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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An Early Elgin, Grade 69, Part 3

This Elgin B. W. Raymond movement is the earliest I have seen. It is from the very first production run in 1867. One interest difference from even slightly later grade 69 examples is the shape of the top plate.

The plate's cut out for the mainspring barrel is exceptionally close around the barrel at the outside edge. This prevents the usual assembly procedure from working out. Once the upper plate is in place, the barrel can not be slipped in. The upper plate has to be set with the barrel in place.
Here are some other, later, 18 size Elgin plates for comparison. The first-run plate is in upper middle.




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