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Author Topic: Watch Found ... Now with more pictures!!!  (Read 1276 times)
Merkk
Officer
***
United States United States


Go Science!!!


« on: November 28, 2010, 04:00:59 am »

Long story short, I've been looking for a watch for the last few weeks as a birthday present to myself.  Today, I found was I was looking for!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I'll add more photos later on when I get to a better camera, but it is a 23J 18s Waltham.  The serial number 12540259 places it at 1903!  Best of all, the store I bought it from didn't know that it was a lever set watch and thought that the stem was broken.  They had priced it low at $300.  My budget still wouldn't let me take this home at that price, but this particular store also offers a birthday discount for people who sign up for their newsletter or something.  Like I said, it was my bday this month, so I took their 50% discount and walked out of the store with this amazing find for $150!

This leads me to a question though.  The movements serial numbers have their database, but is there somewhere I can look up the case to determine what it's made out of?  The movement isn't cheap, I think it would be silly to put it in a cheap case.  Thoughts?

Edit:
I've added 4 more pictures.  The first two are of the movement.  The detail on this movement is exquisite!  I think it is such a shame that it's always hidden behind the case.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The second two are of the inside of the case.  The make and ser no. of the case are clearly viewable in the first and some jewelers etchings are barely visible in both.  It's plain to see that this watch was very well taken care of.  I know I probably should have had it serviced before winding it, but I couldn't help myself.  Amazingly, this little guy has been dead on for the last two days now!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: November 29, 2010, 07:16:34 pm by Merkk » Logged
watch_guy
Deck Hand
*
United States United States


« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2010, 03:57:59 am »

You have a Waltham model 1892 Vanguard.

The model 1892 was Waltham's premium 18 size model intended primarily for the Railroad market. It's one of my personal favorite 18 size designs.

The 23 jewel 1892 Vanguard was considered to be the second best 18 size RR movement made, right behind Elgin's 3/4 plate 23 jewel Veritas.

As far as price-I think that you did great. I don't own a Vanguard, although I have two other 1892 models-a 21 jewel Crescent Street and 17 jewel P.S. Bartlett. I feel like I paid fair prices for both, and paid around $300 for the CS and $150 for the PSB. I currently have a Vanguard on hold here locally at a price of $350. So, draw your own conclusions, but I'd have bought at the original price.

Your case is most certainly gold filled(notice the wear through to brass right under the crown). There are few if any case company records to my knowledge, so you have to go by case markings and other clues.

 Incidentally, your watch was originally made for a hunting case. Although the open faced case isn't strictly correct, it may be original(it looks period-correct for the age of the watch IMHO). The 3:00 winding version of the '92 Vanguard is much less common than the 12:00 winding version. If you can post a photo of the movement, I can probably offer another opinion as to whether or not the movement is original to the case.

In any event, though, it looks to me like you have a great find.
Logged
Prof_Von_Grumbleflick
Snr. Officer
****
United Kingdom United Kingdom


London & Western Home Counties Steampunk Society


« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2010, 04:44:14 am »

Hey, Congratulations.. Great find!

Going by Watch Guy's reply (who, being called "watch_guy", I would presume he knows his stuff) it seems that you got an excellent bargain. I've only really seen watches with the winder at 12:00... Don't think I've noticed any at 3:00. Nice unusual touch! The railroad element just makes it all that little bit Steampunkier, doesn't it?!

I'm on the lookout myself in various pawn shops and the like, but can only find cheap chinese quartz things in base metal. Not knowing the very first thing about pocket watches, I do know that quartz just isn't groovy as part of an SP getup. My digital wristwatch serves me well enough at work and whatever, but it doesn't tick! Sad hhaaha!
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Quote
No matter how far you push the envelope, it remains stationery
Merkk
Officer
***
United States United States


Go Science!!!


« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2010, 10:30:36 pm »

Why is it that when a post get's edited, it doesn't show that it's been updated?  Meh, either way, new pictures above.   Grin
Logged
watch_guy
Deck Hand
*
United States United States


« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2010, 07:35:54 am »

Thanks for the additional photos.

Unfortunately, your case isn't original to the movement(as evidenced by the additional case screw marks on the case rim).

There's a good chance that your movement was originally in a solid gold hunting case that fell victim to either the Great Depression or the 1980 gold rush(or even the recent gold rush).

Even though not original, the case complements the movement nicely.

The Vanguard is indeed a beauty. As I said, the '92 model is one of my favorites. The Vanguard would be the best looking '92 if it weren't for the two-tones. Interestingly enough, the Vanguard is the only '92 model to have gold lettering(the same is true for the 1899 and 1908 models), something which I think adds a nice touch.

I mentioned above that that hunting cased Vanguards were less common than the open faced version. The total production of 23j OF '92 Vanguards was in the neighborhood of 49,000; hunting cased production of the same was 10,000.
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Merkk
Officer
***
United States United States


Go Science!!!


« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2010, 06:50:58 pm »

Thank you for all of the information!  I love learning about the history of something.  Even if I don't know who the person is, you get a chance to look into their lives and imagine who they were and what they did. 

I've been debating on either keeping this for myself or trying to sell it.  I love the watch, but I have to look at the financial aspect of such a rare find.  But to make matters worse, I did a quick check of the ser no. last night and found out that it's a prime number!!!!  Shocked  For most people, that isn't that big of a deal.  But for someone who is going to school with a double major in Physics and Mathematics, this just screams out at me as unique and maybe a slight bit of serendipity.  It makes the decision that much harder.

Either way, for now, I'm just going to enjoy the watch and not worry about anything else.
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Damien Frey
Guest
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2010, 07:46:44 pm »

Its pretty and I want it!!  Smiley
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