A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby 4brokenow » Mon Feb 12, 2018 3:01 am

Wanted to show off this interesting '83 that has been engraved with "17 J" on the barrel bridge. Was wondering if anyone might have ideas of what is going on here. Watch was in a run of 15J At&Co's starting in March of 1893. Watch is NOT17 jewels (Yeah I was hoping). Also note the Hunting to Open-face conversion dial. Assuming it may be original. Would like to hear thoughts on this interesting watch.

movement.JPG


face.JPG
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby Marty101 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:29 pm

Any AT&Co. is cool in my book. I don't collect them but have a couple...everybody should. :)
The only criticism I can make (concerning originality) are the h/m hands. Certainly they are after market;I think someone just wanted heavy RR hands on her. That's not uncommon. I get a lot of guys who demand heavy hands on pocket watches. Sure doesn't look bad.
-And a very cool dial. Who made the case?
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby rrwatch » Mon Feb 12, 2018 2:23 pm

In the database that Kent Singer and I maintain we have 15 examples recorded in the 6,534,001 to 6,536,000 range. All are 15 jewels and none are recorded as having a "17 J" marking.I would guess that someone with an engraving machine may have used the barrel bridge for practice, but we will never know for sure.
Where hand type is recorded, most had the Morning Glory style hands.
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby 4brokenow » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:47 pm

Marty, Definitely agree the hands are after-market. I believe it is a Crescent tip-out.

Here is one theory I have:

We all realize that it was 1893 when the requirements for the railroad changed. 17J was minimum jewel count as well as the requirement for open-face. Also Waltham had already released the wonderful new-fangled 1892 which would have been at minimum 17 jewels. Hmm... :?: What is a jeweler going to do with all these expensive AT&Co 15 jewel 1883's in inventory?? :twisted:

The other theory I had is that the watches' owner had it engraved to get by inspection. Maybe he got a killer deal on it. Throw the conversion dial on it and voilà!

What is most likely?
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby Marty101 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:43 am

I'm with Ed here,Phil-I think someone did it privately over a jeweler trying to push old stock. I have seen this kind of thing before and it makes me grind my teeth. Very rarely do these add-ons look legit enough to pass a closer look.
Still-it is,no matter what,an AT&Co. :)
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby 4brokenow » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:53 pm

A few more pics.

Also seems like the number puncher guy at the factory needed more Monday morning coffee. Funny how he just gave up and got out his scribe. :lol:

Watches with original character are more interesting to own.

17J.jpg


BAL_COK.jpg


PLATE.jpg


piller.jpg
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby Stephan » Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:22 am

I believe that when hunter cased watches fell from favor there were some shady characters getting about that would
convert your old discarded hunter watch into a new shiny open faced watch for free.

They supplied all the new shiny bits and all they asked in exchange was that crappy old gold case that you didn't need any more.

Perhaps they offered an up jeweling service as well ????????????
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby 4brokenow » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:39 pm

Stephan,

I have never heard of such a thing as trading this service just to get the old case? Has anyone heard of this before? An interesting Hypothesis anyway.

This is an original case from the screw marks at least. The case looks to be proper for the age. I am thinking a crooked jeweler was involved never-the-less. If someone paid for a 17J upgrade they got ripped-off. I am sure the majority of the masses would have not known any difference.

Can someone tell me if the 83' crescent street would have been considered higher grade than the 83' AT&Co manufactured at the same approximate time? Just curious to what would have been competitive grade to grade at the time.
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby Stephan » Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm

They only traded solid gold cases which many hunters were.
Hence the conversion dial.
Can not find the article where I read about this.
They made enough from the gold to pay for the new silveroide case, the conversion dial and the labor.
They used the fact that hunters were old fashioned and out of date to push their service.

Legit sellers also used conversion dials to move old stock of hunters which people wouldn't buy any more.

To me the dodgy upgrading points to one of the former gents.
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Re: A model '83 15J At&Co with "17 J" Marking

New postby 4brokenow » Wed Mar 28, 2018 5:50 pm

That is an interesting part of history related to conversions! I will have to do some research and see if I can find the article. Thanks for pointing it out here Stephan.
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