Sunday, 16 February 2014

Watch Face Construction

An item for potential watch anorak's (or watch buyers).

Since the middle of the 19th Century pocket watch faces were usually ceramic (not porcelain!) with a few made in various metals and  "Dollar" watches often having a paper dial stuck onto the movement. Here are three examples from Waltham watches, you may need to click the image to see the detail.

The first two are "Normal" dials with the secondary dial recessed slightly for affect and to give the second hand a little more room under the hour hand, the third dial, on the right, has a lower section in the centre as well as having the recessed secondary dial which looks very good. Now lets look at the backs:

Now we can more easily see that the two on the left are made differently, the first had the recess simply pressed into the surface of the enamel whilst the higher quality middle dial has a separately made subsidiary dial fixed into the main dial which gives a much more pleasing effect in "real life". The right hand dial takes this a stage further and has a third recessed section in the centre of the face and on this example it is again a separately manufactured piece.

On older watches you can also get dials with no recess and lower quality dials can be found with two recessed sections can be made from one or two pieces but this does not give such a crisp finish..

The number of pieces matters!

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