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Pete57

My Great Grandfathers Pocket Watch

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Hi there chaps. I've just registered to this forum for two reasons. The first is I want to share with you what I think is a beautiful watch and secondly maybe you could all offer a little more information about the watch such as its movement type, value, (not that I would part with it as it has been in my family since at least 1870). I have enjoyed researching its hall marks. The watch has two cases and both bare the same hall marks. I can establish that the watch cases were made in 1834 and assayed to Birmingham and the watch case maker was James Heales from Coventry. The movement shows the maker as B Musson from Louth. I was wondering if the watch would be the same date as the case? Can this be established by the number on the movement next to the makers name? See photo. I have only just inherited the watch and rightly or wrongly I wound it up and it ticks beautifully. I have not adjusted the hands as I do not know how to. Any advice here? Please look at photos of its service history? This adds intreage and interest to the watch. I hope this photos upload ok or I will look silly! Oh well here goes........

Didn't work. Using photobucket and I get a message saying that the administrator does not allow this website!

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It looks a fine movement, hope you get the other photos up. There are some experts on pocket watches here so information should be forthcoming.

Welcome

Paul D

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pockerwatch012.jpg

Managed to upload this one from photobucket but the adminstartor still won't allow the others. Will keep trying.

pocketwatch004.jpg

pockerwatch006.jpg

pockerwatch011.jpg

pockerwatch014.jpg

i do have more photos if you need to see them let me know.

Pete

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The only way to date these is by the case marks.And some time's you are lucky to find the maker and when he made watches that matches the date marks.It's a Fusee.Most fusee wind to the left or counter clock wise,using a key and to set the time you use the same key on the center of the hands the key will fit and you turn the key to move the hands.These are rare watches and it has a chain that winds up on a mainspring barrel,and there is a fusee wheel that looks like the gears in a bike and as the watch powers down it will feed that chain to those gears until the watch stops.I would have it serviced the chain can brake or something else they were hand made you can not find parts most of the time.You would have to find some one that makes parts for the if you mess it up and those watch makers are hard to find.Make sure who ever you take it to has worked on fusee's before.

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It's certainly a beautiful watch. If you're intent on using it, GET IT SERVICED, by, as River Rat says, a person who knows early fusee pocket watches. These things are CRAZY delicate. A good jolt or one bad drop is all you need to smash these things to pieces. This watch would most likely have been hand-made. As such, spare parts are almost non-existant. If you want it repaired, the watchmaker will literally have to make the part by hand. This will drive up any repair-costs CONSIDERABLY. So make sure you have a spare few hundred stashed away first, before you start hunting for a watchmaker.

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Lovely watch. I don't know too much about the mechanics of these, but I can help you with the value - it is beyond price (cheesy but true).

You are holding a piece of family history that is irreplaceable. So, within reason, you should try to spend whatever it takes to keep this piece in good order. I recently inherited a Services pocket watch from a grandfather that died in WW2, and I know it will cost considerably more to repair and service than I could ever get if I sold it.

But that doesn't matter one jot. Like you, I won't be selling it. And if I have my way, neither will my grandson... whenever he comes along :lol:

When you hear that lovely ticking you are listening to the same sound as generations before you. Living history mate!

Blimey I'm in poetic mood this morning. Must be the sunshine :wub:

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Guest Rabbit

It looks to me like it's a 'Verge' movement. I have a verge watch and it was recently serviced by my watchmaker see photo

IMG_0658_edited-1.jpg

He told me when winding these watches open it so you can see the chain while winding and stop just before last few links on the chain, this way prevents the chain from coming off the barrell. I certainly would get it serviced, in good condition probably worth around £300.00 to £400.00.

:D

Rabbit

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Paul, riverat, shangas, abingtonlad and rabbit, I thank you all for your nice comments, sound advice and information regarding my pocket watch. I now know how to adjust the hands(thanks to river rat) and the watch has been ticking for 40 mins (good advice on watching the chain as you wind it, thanks rabbit) so far and is keeping good time! (early days).I have just cleaned the watch cases with a silver cleaning cloth and it has transformed the whole watch. I wished I had cleaned it before posting the photos.

Tell me, is it good to keep the watch ticking all the time or can long periods of inactivity be adverse to its reliabilty etc?

On the movement next to the makers name and town is a number. Is there a directory where I could look up the maker and put a date against the number?

I was told that dating the watch case didn't necessarily put a date on the movement as many makers put their watches into older cases. The cases are definately 1834. I live in Nottingham. Can anyone recommend a good watch repairer who would service it.

Might need advice on regulating the time if loses or gains. Ok so far.

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Can anyone recommend a good watch repairer who would service it.

Based on personal experience - Steve Burrage in Leicester, Phone: 0116 267 7673 Mon-Fri 08:30-17:30.

Julian (L)

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Hey there.

Servicing a watch as old as yours MUST be left to a professional. However, regulating it (getting the watch to keep accurate time), is a comparitively SIMPLE operation and it is one that you can do yourself. All you require is a keen eye, bright lights, a clean, dust-free environment, a needle or a thumb-tack, and an accurate master-clock to time against.

I would personally suggest using the master clock of the United States Naval Observatory as your time-standard. You can access it online at: http://tycho.usno.navy.mil/simpletime.html

It refreshes every few minutes, to compensate for any lag, and is, as far as I know, the most accurate time-standard there is. Your computer-clock and your wristwatch may lose or gain seconds, this clock is always accurate.

Be mindful that the SLIGHTEST nudge of the regulator arm can speed up or slow down a watch considerably. So take your time with the regulating and move the arm only a milimeter at a time. This requires patience, and may take days to get right. Set the time, then run the watch for an hour or half an hour, then check it. Reset, if necessary, move the arm, run it again...keep going until it's accurate to your satisfaction.

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Thanks for the advice Shangas. I went on the United States Naval observatory link. Next to my PC monitor I have a radio controlled digital clock which I think tunes into Rugby UK. It was reading exactly the same as your link so I will use this to calibrate my watch which incidentally gained 20 mins in one day! Talking of remote controlled clocks I bought one in France for a fiver some years ago. That one is tuned into Frankfurt and is always one hour out! My friends think it funny that I have this clock thats always an hour wrong. (to the second though). Pete

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