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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!

Elgin Grade 97

These first photos taken before cleaning show the gritty gunk old oil turns into over time.


This is an Elgin grade 97 pocketwatch movement. It is 18 size, 7 jewels, and was made about 1887. It is key-set and key-wind.





The watch is set by directly turning the hands using a key. Note the square arbor in the center.

This is a very delicate operation as it is very easy to damage the hands!

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