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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.

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!

I Heard...

I heard that a watchmaker that does very similar work to myself, mostly antique pocketwatches, tells people to expect an error as much as +/- 10 minutes per 24 hours. I was surprised, that seems like a lot. It doesn't take extreme effort to get to +/- 1 minute on the majority of watches, and the majority do less than +/- 30 seconds. Occasionally there's a good reason for a larger error, such as with an especially primitive or old watch. But even then +/- 2-3 is achievable in all but the most extreme cases, in my experience, without spending a lot of time. There is diminishing returns for ever greater efforts yielding ever smaller improvements.

More about watch accuracy and rates here...



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