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About

Time Antiquarian is a small shop offering exceptional antique pocket watches from the 1800's to the 1940's. All of the watches offered are in working condition.

CHOOSING A POCKET WATCH
A little bit of knowledge to help you pick out a pocket watch that suits your needs:


JEWELS
Jeweled movements are prevalent all of the pocket watches in our shop. Many times, you will see this noted as a number followed by the letter "j." Jewels are hard minerals that are added to the mechanics of the watch to prevent wear at pivot or collision points. The number of jewels is usually an indication of the quality of the watch. A low-end watch will have usually have 7 jewels. Quality movements will have at least 17 jewels. And, premium watches will contain 21 jewels or more. Watches with…

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  • Joined August 23, 2011

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About

Time Antiquarian is a small shop offering exceptional antique pocket watches from the 1800's to the 1940's. All of the watches offered are in working condition.

CHOOSING A POCKET WATCH
A little bit of knowledge to help you pick out a pocket watch that suits your needs:


JEWELS
Jeweled movements are prevalent all of the pocket watches in our shop. Many times, you will see this noted as a number followed by the letter "j." Jewels are hard minerals that are added to the mechanics of the watch to prevent wear at pivot or collision points. The number of jewels is usually an indication of the quality of the watch. A low-end watch will have usually have 7 jewels. Quality movements will have at least 17 jewels. And, premium watches will contain 21 jewels or more. Watches with more jewels tend to be more reliable and last longer.


SIZE
Pocket watches come in various sizes, usually noted as a number followed by an "s." This is a standardized sizing used in the industry, much like shoe sizes. The larger the number preceding the "s," the larger the pocket watch. The size is based on the measurement of the movement inside the watch, and not the watch case. A 16s pocket watch is a common size for a gentleman's watch, while 12s is more suitable for a lady.

18s - 44.86mm (1 23/30 in.)
16s - 43.18mm (1 21/30 in.)
14s - 41.48mm (1 19/30 in.)
12s - 39.78mm (1 17/30 in.)


ADJUSTED MOVEMENTS
If a watch has been "adjusted," it is a sign of quality. An adjusted movement has been tuned to keep accurate time under various positions and conditions. Medium grade watches usually are adjusted to 3 positions (dial up, dial down, pendant up). After 1908, all railroad pocket watches were required to be adjusted to at least 5 positions (dial up, dial down, stem up, stem left, stem right).


CASES
Pocket watches come in a variety of case types. Two of the most common case types are the open-face and the hunter case.

Open-face cases allow the face of the watch to be exposed at all times.

Hunter cases contain a metal covering that snaps on top of the face when it is not being observed. These cases usually have a "pop-open" mechanism that is engaged whenever the stem is pressed.


TERMINOLOGY
The following list contains terminology that may be used in our listings. Hopefully, this will assist you in choosing the perfect watch.

Face - The side of the watch with the dial and hands.

Dial - The surface that contains the hour count and usually the maker brand.

Single-Sunken Dial - This dial has been "sunk" in the area of the second hand.

Double-Sunken Dial - This dial has been "sunk" in the area of the second hand and a more decorative area around the minute and hour hands.

Hairlines - Dials are commonly made of porcelain. Thus, after time, very small hairline cracks will start to emerge. Many times, these are not noticeable until inspected closely.

Chips - Chips are small pieces of the dial or crystal that ave chipped off due to wear. Many times, chips occur on the edges and are not extremely noticeable until inspected closely.

Crystal - The crystal is the clear covering on the face of the watch. This is usually made of glass or, in modern replacement parts, acrylic.

Hands - The long pieces extending from the middle of the face that marks the hours and minutes on the dial.

Movement - The movement is the piece inside the watch that contains all the mechanics... basically, it is the "brain" of the watch.

Serial Number - Almost all movements contain a unique serial number that can be used to identify and date the watch. Cases commonly have serial numbers as well, but these are less important and not usually included in our product descriptions.

Stem - The part of the watch that extends from the case, usually at the 12-hour mark. On "Sidewinder" models, the stem is located at the 3-hour mark.

Crown - The crown sits on top of the stem and is used to wind the watch. Additionally, on stem-set watches, the crown can be pulled upwards to engage the setting mechanism, and then turned to adjust the time.

Lever-Set Movement - This is a movement that is set by pulling out a small lever-like mechanism located on the outside of the dial and then turning the crown to adjust the time. This is slightly different than the more common stem-set watches.

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