Apologies for the lack of updates (I seem to be saying this everytime I post something!), this is solely due to the volume of work that keeps coming in. I have a huge backlog of work that I think you’d find interesting so I’m making a concerted effort to pull my finger out and get posting again starting with this gorgeous Laurel from (we think) 1915. I say we think because I’m assuming Seikosha was using the same dating system back then as they do today which would mean this was produced in August 1915. This may not be correct but it would fit with what we know about the history of the model, the Laurel was the first wristwatch Seikosha ever produced and production began in 1913 pretty much straight after they had started producing enamel dials in house. The first Seikosha wristwatch with Seiko branding on the dial came in 1924 and was smaller in diameter at 24.5mm. The Laurel is 29.5mm in diameter with a 12 ligne movement which is small by today’s standards but back in those days it was a generous size for a gents watch.
Todays article features a Junghans cockpit chronograph which dates from the WWII era. It arrived in a bit of a sorry state, flooded with oil, quite a few parts missing and it’s been hacked about a bit in its long life with scratched plates and bruised screws. However the fact it survives at all is a minor miracle! The brief was to try and get it running, but not to throw too much (any!) money at it. It came with a donor movement which provided all the missing parts. The instrument itself has a rotatable ‘count up’ bezel a chronograph with a centre seconds sweep and 15 minute sub register. The chronograph hands weren’t delivered with the watch but I’m assured the owner has a set. The knurled wheel at 6 o’clock serves two functions, the first is to wind it up, the second is activated by pulling the cord attached to a lever by the wheel. Once this is pulled down the wheel can be used to set the time, once it’s set the lever can be pushed back in. The brass button below the wheel starts, stops and resets the chronograph.
This veteran 9k gold cased gents watch came in for a bit of tlc recently. The name Bravingtons Renown as far as I can establish was taken from Bravingtons the London jewellers who had a shop in Pentonville Road, and Renown was the name they gave to their wristwatches. Renown was actually registered by Bravingtons as a trademark in 1955 but they were using the name long before then.
Hamilton began manufacturing and selling watches in Lancaster Pennsylvania back in 1892 when it bought the Keystone watch company which was facing bankruptcy. The company was named after James Hamilton, the owner of a vast amount of land (including what is now the city of Lancaster) that had been granted to him by William Penn, an English settler, Quaker and real estate developer who founded the province of Pennsylvania. The Milton featured here was manufactured when Hamilton was a watchmaking powerhouse in America producing 100% American made watches, but by 1966 Hamilton had acquired the Swiss watch manufacturer Buren and began utilising Swiss movements in production. Fast forward to today and Hamilton watches are still being manufactured, but now as a brand name of Swatch Group, the huge Swiss watch manufacturing company.
This particular Milton which was manufactured in the late 1940’s came in for a movement service and a bit of a spruce up.
This gold cased veteran from circa 1939 came in for refurbishment recently, It’s powered by an A Schild 554 movement and the 9k gold case was manufactured by Stolkace in the Midlands.
I refurbished this charming oblong cased Revue earlier in the year. As you can see it was looking a little tired with a marked dial and glass, and it didn’t run for more than a few seconds. It was decided that the watch would benefit from a replacement crystal, a dial refinish, a complete movement service and a clean up of the case.
With the movement removed from the case you could see the amount of damage to the dial, and the bent seconds hand. (more…)