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Always"watching"

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  1. Nice one, Davey, and thanks for showing us those great pics of what is a rather nice Casio number, Roger. I just wondered, Rog @Roger the Dodger, could you just tell me how you flipped up the end of the clip in order to remove the battery in the watch. I have had problems with trying to prise up the end of the thin metal band that holds in the battery on so many digital watches, I would appreciate a heads-up on the knack of doing this.
  2. Thanks Scott @scottswatches and Norman @spinynorman for your assistance. Most helpful. As you indicate, Scott, I have noticed that over time, photographs I have used to illustrate topics inevitably tend to disappear, leaving gaps. I therefore do try and compensate by writing a text that is still useful and worth reading... You have both put forward helpful suggestions and I will pursue the matter more vigorously. I have tended to be a bit "philosophical" about needing to have copies of my topics, perhaps with a bit of low self-esteem thrown in. But now, I am wanting to have a record of at least some of my Forum work on paper, even if it is only me acknowledging myself, so to speak.
  3. Roy has kindly been trying to sort out a problem for me with regard to printing out a selection of my Forum topics and/or complete threads as hard copy. I am using a setup with a Canon printer, Windows 7, plus Firefox and am having problems when it comes to downloading material obtained through Google to the printer. I go to the relevant thread and click on "Control P" to bring up the printer menu. Once settings are as I want them, I press print or print review and in both cases, what is downloaded for actual printing is merely the first page of my topic/thread and the last few relevant pages, all sequentially numbered but with the middle pages completely blank. I have tried using the "select all" approach, copying the topic/thread to be printed into Word, but once again, the topic/thread does not download to Word properly and includes blank pages. What I don't understand is the inconsistency of the problem. I am able to download some online topics from various sites without a hitch, but the Watch Forum UK and certain other sources seem to block me from printing out copies. Roy himself is not having any trouble himself with this problem, and he mentioned that he uses Google Chrome. If anyone out there can help me with this, I would be most grateful. I have recently started thinking that I should have hard copies of at least some of my Forum articles, just in case the worst should happen and the Forum machinery breaks down and loses some of its archived material.
  4. I agree with gimli - Amazing! You are clearly mastering the art of hand engraving. Also impressive is the fact that your Seiko bracelet is stainless steel, which is surely a tricky metal to work with.
  5. In 1900, a watch company under the name of M. Gunzinger-Hug was founded by Melchior Gunzinger at Welschenrohr in the Swiss Jura canton of Solothurn, Switzerland. The firm started manufacture of wristwatches in 1918 and in 1920, the watch manufacturing facility passed to Melchior's son, Joseph Gunziger, and became, “Gunzinger Bros Ltd” (Gunzinger Frères SA). Joseph Gunzinger registered the trademark, “Technos,” in 1924, at the same time launching that brand as an individual company title, Technos SA. With the success of that brand, he started to expand production of watches such that the firm became a leading employer in the area. We also know that, at least in the earlier period of Gunzinger frères, the brand name Pioneer was registered in 1938 and used by the firm; other stand-alone brand names were probably also in use by the firm. Finally, it should be noted that Mikrolisk continues to denote Gunzinger Frères SA/Technos SA as being engaged in both the production of watches and watch parts throughout the period up to the sale of the company by Joseph Gunzinger. An Technos wristwatch in military style and dating to the Second World War period; chrome plated 32mm case and 15J hand-wind movement (pics from i.ebayimg.com): A 1959 advert for the Technos Atomium wristwatch (pic from s.ecrater.com): The story linking the history of Gunzinger and Technos with Brazil began in 1956 when Brazilian businessman, Mário Goettems, founded Centauro Importadora of Rio Grande do Sul and began to exclusively represent Technos watches in Brazil. Sales and the company expanded through the 1960s and into the 1970s, until in 1973 it was the largest brand distributor selling half a million watches per year. This firm was to become Technos Relógios SA, and we rejoin it later below. From just after World War Two until 1975, we find a slew of tradename/brand slogan registrations for Gunzinger Frères SA/Technos SA, and these (together with examples not given registration details) are as follows, according to Mikrolisk: Technos Alarmdate; Technos Atomium (1958); Technos Clinic (1957); Technos Cougar, Technos/ein Unterscheid, der zält (1975); Technos Fair Lady (1964); Technos Fair Ladys (1964); Technos Goldshield (1962); Technos is tops (1962); Technos/La Marque qui se distingue (1975); Technos/Le distingue porque se distingue (1975); Technos Masterpiece (1962); Technos Neutron; Technos of Switzerland (1958); Technos Partner (1962); Technos Perpetron; Technos Popular (1957); Technos Positron; Technos Sea Lady (1964); Technos Select (1955); Technos Slim Dandy; technos Slim Lady; Technos Slim Master; Technos Slim Mate; Technos Slim Neat; technos Star King (1963); Technos Star Lady (1962); Technos Supercron; Technos T; Technos Technograph; Technos Technotron; Technos/The brand with a difference (1975); Technos The Queen (1963); Technos Trans-World (1956); Technos Univision (1962); Technos Univista (1962); Technos Vacuum Sealed (1958); Technos Vacuum Tested (1958); Technotron T Tested; Ultramar Technos (1947). This list clearly does not include brand name registrations that do not include the word, “Technos,” which means that we cannot reference the company name in order to find out all the stand-alone brand names used/registered by Gunzinger Frères SA?Technos SA. Interestingly, under Technos in the Mikrolisk directory, we do find the transfer of Technos from Joseph Gunzinger to The General Watch Co., in the (unfortunately not dated) reference for “Technos” as: “La Generale Watch Co./Montres Helvetia/General watch Co. SA – Taschenuhren, Kleinuhren; Biel, Reconvilier und Tramelan, Schweiz; Wien, Österreich”. Although not dated, we can assume that the above Mikrolisk entry dates to 1970 or just after because it was in that year that Joseph Gunzinger sold his company to General Watch Company,at which time the Gunzinger concern employed 450 people and exported watches on a worldwide basis, especially to Japan and Brazil. General Watch Co (previously of Helvetia fame) had recently joined the ASUAG group of Swiss watch companies, but even this established grouping of Swiss firms could do little to stem the increasing competition from Japan and the new quartz watches. Technos SA (now the sole title of the company after the Gunzinger connection had been broken) found itself losing market share until, ironically, only the Japanese market was providing any substantial export orders. An early 1960s Technos Popular hand-wind wristwatch with separate seconds register, steel screw back and 33mm (excl. crown) stainlesssteel case, powered by a 15J FHF caliber 70 movement (pics from assets.catawiki.nl): In 1977, the Technos company was transferred to Biel/Bienne where it was located in the premises of Montres Edox SA. Both firms were reorganized under new joint management as a strategy for survival, and in 1980 they were joined by Certina in this short-lived ad hoc arrangement. In 1982, the company was sold, with all its rights to the Technos trademark, to its long-time Japanese importer, Heiwado & Co, Tokyo, Japan. The new owners then passed on a limited licence to the importing company in Brazil allowing them to design and manufacture their own Technos branded watches. Thus, Technos Relógios SA opened an assembly and distribution plant at Manaus and started production of watches in Brazil from 1984/85; by the end of the 1980s, they were the leading watch producer in Brazil in monetary terms. The Manaus manufactory of Technos was operated by the subsidiary company, Technos da Amazonia Indústria e Comércio Ltda (or Technos da Amazonia Industria e Comercio SA as it is sometimes now designated) which was founded in 1983. A 1974 Technos wristwatch in 9 carat gold (pic from images.antiquesatlas.com) and below, a 9 carat gold Technos Goldshield wristwatch hallmarked for 1965 with 33.5mm (excl. crown) case and powered by a 25J automatic movement (pics from loveantiques.com). Note the "flattened" 'T' logo above the name on these two watches, which was registered as a trademark by Technos. Earlier use of this mark tends to have a smaller T logo kept well within the borders of the name beneath, as in the bottom watch here below, while later watches using this trademark, including modern examples, tend to have a bolder letter T, widened to extend over more of the brand name, Technos, beneath. This arrangement continued until 1995 when Heiwado sold the rights to the Technos brand throughout South America and the Caribbean to Technos Relógios SA; followed in 2002 by the sale of the remaining worldwide rights to Technos, through a sister legal/intellectual property rights company, Technos da Amazonia Swiss Sàrl, established in 2001, in Neuchâtel. From this time onwards, Technos was a Brazilian watch brand produced and marketed from Brazil. Also in 2002, Technos began exploring third-party brands, starting with the licensing of the Moraii brand and the acquisition of distribution rights for Seiko products. In 2008, control of Technos Relógios SA passed to Fundo de Investimentos e Participações GMT (GMT FIP), that had among its shareholders two well-regarded asset managers, DLT and Dynamo, as well as a group of Technos managers/executives. The Technos brand continued to thrive in Brazil, with the licensing of ladies' fashion market brand, Euro, in 2009. In 2010, the Mariner brand was reintroduced, which had been a great success back in the 1980s and which was now targeted towards the younger audience and customers who liked the notion of interchanging straps. Also in that year, a Technos subsidiary was launched in China. A 1970s Technos chronograph wristwatch with a 42mm steel case and screw-on steel caseback, powered by a Valjoux 7750 automatic movement (pics from poshtime.com): 2011 was a most important year for Technos SA/Technos Relógios SA as it marked the launch of the (newly reconfigured) Technos Group (Grupo Technos or GrupoTechnos) as a publicly traded company. Unfortunately for us, this is where the history of Technos becomes “muddled,” partly because of the different company names/structures involved, but I shall endeavour to “muddle through” this period in Technos history as best I can. Firstly, we have the continuation of Technos Relógios SA, seemingly as the watch manufacturing arm of the Technos Group but apparently also engaged in other non-watch activities. Then we also have the Fundo de Investimento e Participações GMT, which in December 2011 held a controlling 58.38% stake in Technos Relógios SA. This organisation seems to have changed its title to GMT Equity Investment Fund and reduced its stake in Technos immediately prior to the launch of Technos Group as a public limited company in 2011 thus freeing Technos from its control. Finally, to make things more complicated, during this period the term Technos SA reappears, which is here presumably a shortened version of the title, Technos Relógios SA. As for Grupo Technos itself, this seems to become the controlling umbrella organisation after the end of 2011, comprising the various Technos watch and jewellery businesses/activities. In 2012, Technos relaunched the Allora brand of ladies' watches, catering to the less expensive fashion sector. The Technos Group also signed a distribution agreement and right to use the Timex brand throughout Brazil, reinforcing the group's position in the sports' sector of the market, and finally in that year, the company, Touch, was acquired by Technos – this being a firm that develops and markets watches and glasses through a franchise network. A 1970s automatic Technos Spider day/date wristwatch with dark grey dial and stainless steel case and back (pics from scondtime.ca at cdn.shopify.com): In 2013, Grupo Technos acquired the Dumont Saab Group, which greatly boosted the number of watch brands now owned and/or distributed by Technos in Brazil. Dumont Saab owned the Dumont and Condor brands, and distributed, in Brazil, watches by international watch brands including Fossil, Diesel, Marc Jacobs, Armani Exchange, DKNY, Emporio Armani, Adidas and Michael Kors. As for the link with Seiko, in January 2015, Grupo Technos abandoned the exclusive distribution agreement with the Japanese Seiko company. I shall end this history of Technos in the year 2015; readers who wish to see the current status of GrupoTechnos can easily look online and view the group's website. A Technos Highbeatron 36,000 automatic wristwatch from the mid 1970s made for the Swedish market with a waterproof 40.5mm (incl. crown) steel case and powered by a rare 25J ETA/Zenith high frequency automatic movement, caliber ETA 2832 (pics from Neo Classic Watches at cdn.shopify.com): NOTE: The brand name, Technos, was not wholly exclusive to the companies discussed in this topic. In particular, we have an undated registration of the name by “Stoltz Freres SA/Angelus” cased at Le Locle, Switzerland, and also a 1958 Technos name and trademark registration by J. Engel Company/Jacob Engel in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. It is not known whether this latter registration, which relates to wristwatches, relates to a distributor of Technos watches in the USA produced by the company discussed in this topic. A fast-becoming collectable classic is the mid-late 1960s Technos Skydiver dive watch; this example is the Skydiver 500 model with 37.5mm steel case and 500 metres water resistance (pics from s.songwatches.com at cdn.shopify.com): Just to remind collectors that Technos entered the quartz market in addition to producing mechanical watches is this sweet little gold plated quartz ladies' watch probably made in the 1980s in classic vintage style with a 23mm case (pics from i5.walmartimages.com):
  6. Welcome, dear Steve @Steve Halfpenny. I fear you may be with us for a long time... The treatment is actually worse than the disease and rarely effects a cure so you might as well grin and bear it - at least you will be in good company here on the Forum. As an aside, I do like your story and it echoes my own feelings that women's watches can be a great way in to watch collecting generally. It is amazing how inexpensive good quality ladies' watches can be, even those from great names in watchmaking history.
  7. Thanks for showing us that Longines, Bernie. It may be the "flatness" of the photograph but I do find that watch a bit...well..."dull." I myself am not a great fan of having blue hands over black numerals/markers and would have preferred hands and markers to be same-coloured, black or blue. The style of the numbers is also not one of my favourites. I know I shouldn't be so "picky" but feel there are so many choices out there for Longines money, including other watches by that seminal company...
  8. Eduard Kummer was born on 16 March 1845, in Bettlach, a municipality in the canton of Solothurn, Switzerland. At the age of 15, he commenced a watchmaking apprenticeship which resulted in his becoming a Master Watchmaker, and followed this with a number of years spent in Reconvillier and Grenchen. For a while, Kummer worked as a postman in Bettlach and innkeeper/bar landlord in Grenchen before finally returning to watchmaking in 1882. In that year, Kummer started work at the watch and watch parts company, “Obrecht & Cie,” a firm that he later wanted to take over himself but was thwarted by the interests of his partners. Mikrolisk gives a trade mark registration by P. Obrecht & Cie of Granges, Grenchen, dating to 8 April 1897, when the firm is listed for watches and watch parts, and it is known that Obrecht & Cie produced complete watches, some of them with simple Roskopf-type movements. Kummer had left Obrecht & Co some 9 years prior to 1897, and it may be that while he was active there, the company was only involved in the production of rough watch movements/movement-blanks. A rare glimpse of Eduard Kummer himself, date unknown (pic from uhrenpaul.eu): Eduard Kummer was apparently lured back to Bettlach by the local Bettlach authorities who requested him to establish an ébauche factory in Bettlach, the place of his birth, in order to contribute to its development. For this purpose, they provided building land on which had stood “Lehnipeters Grits,” a double house made of straw, before being burnt down in 1886 in a village fire. Kummer was in business in Bettlach by 1888, in which year he was employing 20 people and promising the local citizenry that he would bring esteem and well-being to the area. Initially, the company made rough watch movements and watch components and was named, Eduard Kummer Bettlach (EKB). Production of complete watches commenced at about the turn of the century in addition to the manufacture of parts/movements and the company went from strength to strength, becoming an AG – Ed. Kummer AG, Bettlach – some time before 1912. Additional buildings were subsequently added to the original factory in 1890, 1902, 1905, 1910, 1917, 1920 and 1929, and at the time of World War One, the company was employing 720 workers with Inventic and Ariston being the main watch brands (using anchor, cylinder and and Roskopf-type escapements) while EKB was the main brand for movements. The expansion of production also necessitated a change from water power by pressure line to steam, and Kummer acquired a steam engine plant, Lokmobile, which brought a continuous power of 900hp. A marvellous small signage for the Inventic brand, date unknown but probably c.1920 (pic from largevintagewatches.blogspot.com at 3.bp.blogspot.com): In an advert for Obrecht & Cie, at which time that firm claimed to employ 800 workers, the term “système americaine” is used to describe the working practices being employed, and this form of mass production (of interchangeable parts) was evidently used by Kummer later, at EKB, where output demands on staff were considerable - an eleven hour day, six days a week, being the rule, with staff absenteeism on Mondays being common. In general, EKB was regarded as one of the most innovative companies of its time, partly expressed in the honours gained. In 1908, the manufactory received a gold medal from an exhibition in London, with a diploma awarded by a Brussels exhibition in 1910. In 1911, the “Almanac de l'Horlogerie et la Bijouterie” mentions a branch of the Kummer company in Besançon which was producing watches with the then revolutionary “interchangeability” system which meant that all watch parts were interchangeable. Ed. Kummer, Besançon also sold two different qualities; quality 'A' with a certificate of the Besançon Observatory and adjustments also in temperature, and quality 'B' regulated to an accuracy of +/- 2 seconds in 2 positions without temperature. Also in 1911, the firm was awarded the Grand Prix in Turin. From 1920 stopwatches branded Aristo were produced. The addition of new brand names for watches by the Kummer concern began early and was to continue until Ed. Kummer and his eponymous company had registered more than 100 different brand names. Ariston seems to have been the first, in 1897, followed by Eximia, Speciosa, and Veridica in 1905. Pernix was registered in 1906, and even the name, “The Policeman” joined the ranks in 1910, with Inventic being used from December 1914 and registered in 1915 (see illustration of US Patent Office document for Inventic). More will be said later concerning brand names of the Ed. Kummer company, but for now it is important to note that we do not now how many of these brand names were actually used on watches and/or watch parts. Note that it has been claimed that the Kummer company abandoned the production of pocket watches in 1914, subsequently concentrating on wristwatches only; this is contradicted by the survival of post-1914 pocket watches by the firm, such as the example immediately below: An Ed. Kummer SA gunmetal pocket watch with rose gold highlights dating to about 1922-25 and marked with the "Dollar" brand name which was registered by Kummer in 1922 (pics from images.antiquesatlas.com): A US Patent Office document from 1921 registering the Inventic trade mark in that country. Ed. Kummer and his company seem to have been sticklers for ensuring the "property rights" of their brand names/marks, as this document and other mentioned in my text concerning the Magnific brand name (pic from tsdrsec.gov/ts/cd) During the 1920s things did not go all Kummer's way, in spite of continued expansion of factory buildings and some innovative products. As early as 1922, the company sought a moratorium or debt deferral to allow it to deal with debt amounting to 2.5 million Swiss francs; this was granted with a dividend of 40%. Then, in 1927, a senior employee and two customers embezzled monies to a sum of over 500,000 francs from the firm, although once again the company managed to struggle through and save itself from bankruptcy. Unfortunately, the turn of the decade did not see an improvement in company finances, and on 28/30 July 1931, the manufactory was integrated within Allgemeine Schweizerische Uhrenindustrie AG (ASUAG), in its time the largest holding company or group in the Swiss watch industry, set up with the assistance of the Swiss government and banks to ameliorate the effects of the Great Depression. Under this takeover, ASUAG split the Kummer concern into two. Firstly, the “Rohwerkeabteilung (Cylinder- und Ankerwerke)” or rough movements division, was absorbed into Ebauches SA, a company established in 1926 and already comprising around ten movement manufacturers by the time EKB came on board. And secondly, the watch finishing/completed watch department became Ed. Kummer SA, later to be retitled Atlantic SA. Under the umbrella of Ebauches SA, “Ebauches Bettlach” (as the Kummer movements division now traded) specialised in the cheaper movements, marking them “EB” within a shield from 1937. In 1939, Ebauche Bettlach also took on the group's department for production of the Roskopf pin-lever movements, having already been set up for the manufacture of this type of movement. The Ed. Kummer factory at Bettlach in 1930 (pic from atlantic-watch.ch): Before concluding this topic with a further look at brand names devised and accumulated by the Kummer concern, I will take a look at the fate of Ed. Kummer SA/Atlantic SA and Ebauches Bettlach, the two arms of what had been EKB/Ed. Kummer AG. Ebauches Bettlach under the ASUAG umbrella was a successful enterprise right up to the Quartz Crisis finally caught up with it. This success was partly due to specialisation in 6 basic calibers in which 80% of the parts were used in all of them. In addition, Ebauches Bettlach concentrated on producing the more inexpensive movements, successfully competing in a boom market whereby such movements could be sold in double-digit million quantities, especially in the third world. Unfortunately for makers of cheap mechanical movements, the writing was on the wall by the beginning of the 1980s with the advent of cheap mass-produced quartz movements, and Ebauche Bettlach went bankrupt. The other Kummer branch, Ed. Kummer SA, having suffered severe staff cutbacks in the transition to ASUAG, launched its “Atlantic” watch collection in 1932 which contained some of the first water-resistant watches ever produced. This collection proved popular and was so successful that in 1952, the firm decided to adopt the name, Atlantic, adding the trading title “Atlantic Watch Ltd” to its appearance in the commercial register. In the 1940s, the “Worldmaster” collection was launched, with similar success to the Atlantic collection, and in addition to the water resistant watches, the company innovated in other areas. In 1960, Atlantic developed and introduced the “Speedswitch” system of date-change whereby in addition to a quick-set mechanism for setting the date, the date moved on to the next day within minutes rather than over several hours in the case of some systems; a revolutionary new procedure, this was soon imitated by other watch companies and is still in use on many watches today. It is important at this point to note that the company name Ed. Kummer SA did not suddenly vanish on the formation of Atlantic SA, and these two sister firms were legal or business entities, though obviously bound together, right up to the late 1960s. Interestingly, Atlantic watches soon became popular in the Eastern Bloc (especially in Poland), at first smuggled through Sweden, then later, directly sourced through a rare import deal with the Communist authorities. From an original print advert of 1957 advertising the Atlantic watch brand (pic from i.ebayimg.com): An Ed. Kummer SA/Atlantic promotional advert announcing the new Speedswitch system and showing an Atlantic wristwatch branded for the new mechanism, c.1960 (pic from atlantic-watches.ch): Atlantic continued to seek and find export markets from the middle of the 20th century and the main clients included Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, South America and the Middle east; the brand being one of the most popular in Poland for almost thirty years. This focus on exports meant that Atlantic watches were, and still are, relatively little known in the Swiss domestic market. The success of Atlantic SA continued until the Quartz Crisis began to seriously impinge negatively on the Swiss watch industry. In 1983, on the insistence of the Swiss banks, a merger took place between ASUAG and the second most important Swiss watch group, Société Suisse pour l'Industrie Horlogère (SSIH), but this merger did not benefit the fortunes of Atlantic, which in 1988 fell into the hands of private investors, and since that time, Atlantic has been managed by Jürg Bohne, who is one of the shareholders. The Atlantic watch company has been based in the Bernese town of Lengnau/Longeau since 2008 and readers can find current Atlantic watches for sale online. As a conclusion to this topic, I must return to the question of brand names devised or claimed by the Ed. Kummer concern. This “activity” of brand name acquisition was probably started by Eduard Kummer himself and then continued as a company practise. Unfortunately, the date of Eduard Kummer's retirement and/or death is unknown to me as yet, and we don't have a full list of Kummer company brand names, together with their dates, taking us from 1888 up to the time when Atlantic SA was the sole company title. Ed. Kummer SA obviously took brand names seriously, as a 1928 document headed “Avis important” (Important Notice) testifies; this states categorically that the brand name, Magnific, is legally owned by Ed. Kummer SA for watch movements and parts as well as for complete watches, and has been registered with the Federal Bureau for Intellectual Property, in Berne. An 1951 advertisement for the Ed. Kummer SA listing no less than 8 brand names; note that Inventic was a particularly long-lasting Kummer watch brand, with examples known from the 1970s (pic from largevintagewatches.blogspot.com at1.bp.blogspot.com): A 1952 Ed. Kummer SA advert for Atlantic watches showing, on the left, a calendar wristwatch (pic from old-pocketwatches.com): One of the more important sources of information about the Kummer concern (uhrenpau.eu/Uhrenseite/Unterseiten/Subseite_Bettlach.php) provides a useful list of many, but not all, Kummer brand and company names but does not date them; this list includes names that postdate the company trading name of Atlantic SA as well as the early names acquired by Ed. Kummer, Bettlach (EKB). I quote this list here below: Other names of the manufactory were: “Atlantic SA”, “Fabrique d'Ebauches de Bettlach”, “Manufacture d'Horolgerie de Bettlach”, “Ariston Watch Co.”, “Atlantis Watch Co.”, “Aristo Import Co., New York”. Brands of the manufactory were: Accurate Lever, Alacris, Alpari, Atlantic, Amicitia, Ardua, Arista, Aristex, Aristo, Ariston, Aristonia, Artiflex, Athletic, Atlantic Rip, Artelux, Atlantic Watch, Atlantis, Atletic, Biemson, Bombay Mail Regulator, Bostonia, Butterfly, Cummersa, Cummer Times, EKB, Eximia, Fabulosa, Flambeau, Friendly, Gotham, Integra, Inventic, Invention, Kummersa, Laudata, “Mailguards”, “Miracle”, “New Cyl”, “New Friend”, “NEWCO”, “OKO”, “Opus”, “Right Ahead Lever”, “Sea Hunter”, “The Policeman”, “Timely”, Timeroy, Times, Timestar, Vivax, Worldmaster, Worlstime [sic]. A Swiss magazine advertisement by Ed. Kummer SA for Atlantic watches from 1956 (pic from s.ecrater.com): An Ed. Kummer SA Atlantic Worldmaster wristwatch from the mid-late 1950s powered by a hand-wind 17J Schild caliber AS1188 movement and with a plated 36mm case (excl. crown) (Pics from sellingantiques.co.uk): As a final postscript to this topic, I must just say something about the illustrations I have chosen which, in the main, are original period advertisements/documents. My reason for using these is two-fold; firstly, there is sufficient period material available, and secondly, This topic leans towards the subject of Kummer company brands/brand names. Over the history of the Ed Kummer watch and ébauches concerns, the actual watches produced were very similar to those currently produced by other Swiss watch companies of the same market level; thus having a handle on the various brand names is the key to identification and attribution of Kummer company watches. Oh, and don't be surprised to find movements from various companies in Ed. Kummer company watches including ébauches by Unitas and Schild.
  9. I've got one of these rather nice Sekonda dive watches which I bought some time ago for a bargain price at the time, via Amazon. I am surprised to see that this model is still available on Amazon, currently priced at £49.95 (pic from images-na.ssl-images-Amazon.com):
  10. Thanks for that interesting piece, dear @spinynorman. I am in the process of writing an article for the Forum using a source that can come either in the original German or as a Google translation. Unfortunately, as is so often the case, the automated translation just can't hack it and I have been forced to go back to the original German and retranslate parts of the text in order make full sense of what has been written. All credit to you that you also worked on the translation from the French yourself in order to give us a good sense of this - I'm sure your linguistic skill at French is far greater than my knoweldge of German.
  11. I do hope that your Omega will not end up in the gold-scrap bin, dear Bambino. From the photo, it would seem that the watch is in very clean order and, like Scott, I would date it to the 1960s. The higher the scrap value of gold goes, the more vintage gold watches will vanish into the melting pot and the more difficult it becomes to hold on to a complete history of watches.
  12. Interesting question posed there, Martin. I do have a few bits of watch memorabilia or ephemera in my collection, such as certain old manuals and ads, plus a few old boxes with period flavour. I do like such items but lack of space restricts me from too much collecting zeal when it comes to this sort of thing - I do like your bits and pieces shown here though. What I would say is that ephemera and memorabilia can be most useful when it comes to research into the history of watches, and hopefully, there will be enough people as mad as myself who refuse to throw ephemera away even if we don't avidly collect it.
  13. Wow... Now you know why I never try and repair old watches. Amazingly detailed advice there from a Forum member; makes me feel all warm inside. And good luck with that Longines, Brahma.
  14. Many thanks @johnboy24, sounds like a decent recommendation to me.
  15. I just wondered, have any of you based in the UK bought a watch online from Gearbest? I have no experience of Gearbest and would like to know if they are a good company to deal with as I might be tempted to purchase an inexpensive Chinese mechanical watch from them after Christmas. Thanks for any advice...
  16. I still don't have a working electric/electronic watch in my collection. What an omission!, especially judging by the posts on this thread.
  17. Sorry I got to this thread a bit late - I was dealing with a certain member who shall remain nameless, who was reported for putting Christmas messages on the Watch Discussion section of the Forum... Tut tut, and slapped wrist, but I think we can let that one pass judging by the responses on here. I myself will join the throng on this thread and wish every member of the forum a great Christmas and a happy New Year. Many thanks must be expressed to Roy, the other moderators, and those members who keep this space a lively, friendly and informative place to be.
  18. All this talk of cooking has persuaded me to tear myself away from this roller-coaster thread and go an cook our supper. 'Bye folks!
  19. Dear Graham, he didn't do a Christmas song did he..?
  20. I agree with Scott above. This seems like something from the late 1920s into the 1930s but, like Scott, I have not come across the brand name, Korana. The key to dating the watch more accurately may lie in the nature of the gold marks or perhaps in the identification of the movement.
  21. This thread has become one of the most extraordinary mixtures I have ever seen. If anyone thought that there was a Forum slowdown, they haven't looked at this thread. The heat is most definitely ON.
  22. Thanks for that, Bernie. It'll be interesting to see where Timor pitch the prices for these two versions of their military watch.
  23. Thanks for that little video, Rog @Roger the Dodger. The pomander watch shown in the clip is one of a tiny group of surviving examples of this type of very early watch. These watches were carried around the neck, then in order to obtain a stable period of timekeeping they were set on a table or other firm flat surface as they didn't "like" being moved around. Melanchthon's watch, shown in the video clip above, is dated 1530 and has been attributed to Peter Henlein of Nuremberg but with no certainty that he was the actual maker. Melanchthon's watch ran for 12-16 hours with a single winding and told time within the nearest half-hour. The oldest kown watch in the world is now thought by some to be another pomander watch rather similar to the Melanchthon watch and apparently also made by Peter Henlein, in 1505, though experts differ on both attribution and date for this piece which has been dubbed "Watch 1505." This pomander watch only surfaced relatively recently, in the 1987, and is still the subject of some controversy in spite of the positive note expressed by an expert committee which examined the watch in "forensic" detail. I did some preliminary research myself into the oldest watches known and the evidence for and against Watch 1505 being genuine, with the intention of writing a Forum article. Ultimately, I decided that this whole subject, including Peter Henlein himself, is too complicated and problematic to be fitted into an article of reasonable length, but those who are intrigued by this area of antiquarian horology are fortunately quite well-served online. A series of pictures from Quill & Pad showing "Watch 1505" - the case, of gilded and silvered copper measures 45mm in diameter (pics from quillandpad.com):
  24. Nice one, dear @Nigelp - good to know that you are not going to "tart it up" so to speak.
  25. I have heard that the good old Compact Cassette is coming back into vogue for audio listening - being compatible with old Walkman’s and other personal tape players and hi-fi cassette decks but differing in the cassette innards to improve performance. Unfortunately, the cassette that fits my new old gadget is not coming back - just as well that I have a spare one then, bought together with the machine itself. The machine in question is the Grundig Elektronische Notizbuch 3 dictaphone, translated as “Electronic Notebook 3” and shortened to “EN3, and what a chunky lump it is, the measurements of my example, without case, being 16.2cm long X 6cm wide X 3.5cm thick. The Grundig EN3 was one of the first recorders to use interchangeable tape cassettes and it was launched in 1964, a year after the standard Compact Cassette tape came out. In spite of the, now obvious, problem that the EN3 faced with the emergence of the more convenient Compact Cassette, it actually survived in production until some time in the 1970s. The Grundig EN3 dictaphone together with its fitted case, and four other pictures of the same example (pics from arch.callcut.net): The EN3 was designed purely for voice reproduction, and it features a large detachable microphone at the top of the device, which doubles up as a speaker for voice output. All functions are controlled by a single thumb-operated red lever on the side which can be locked in the stop position via a black slider switch. A simple two-track recording system was used with the double-sided cassettes such that they can be turned over and thus recorded on both sides, and each cassette held enough quarter-inch tape for up to thirty minutes recording time. The EN3 is powered by 3 AA batteries and is protected by a fitte leather case in such a way that it can be used both with and without the protective case. Over the years subsequent to its launch, the Grundig EN3 gradually became less competitive, such that in the 1970s, with the Mini-cassette and Microcassette, portable dictation machines became smaller and more truly “personal,” with an accompanying improvement in sound quality. When new, the Grundig EN3 was apparently quite expensive, and examples like my own in good condition and working order are seemingly becoming collectible, judging by the prices being asked online. I paid £4 for mine… For the obsessive collector of such things, I should just add that there were apparently optional extras that could be bought for the EN3 including a carry case, typists playback unit, connecting cables and alternative microphones. Finally, Grundig brought out slight variants of the EN3 over it's lifetime. For example, my EN3 does not have the two additional connectors under the base (shown in the above pics of the EN3) which were perhaps added on later examples, and there was also an EN3 Luxus, which featured a sound level meter in the microphone and certain other very slight differences. A Grundig EC3 cassette with box - I too, have a boxed spare cassette - and note that when inserted, the cassette essentially forms part of the dictaphone's body (pic from upload.wikimedia.org): A differently branded example of the EN3 dictaphone and, on the right, the EN3 Luxus (see text) - pic from vintage-technics.ru at i.ytimg.com:
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