Crown pops out question?

Vintage Illinois Watch Discussion Forum
Message
Author
Gabe
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:46 am

Re: Crown pops out question?

#11 Post by Gabe » Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:00 pm

What's further confusing me is when I asked a very nice guy on eBay if I could use a movement that he has for parts as a donor for a 0 size Illinois stem sleeve, he explained to me that the stem and sleeve are part of the case they are put into (they are not on a movement), and although he may have one on an old watch case, there would be telling if it would fit the 0 size Illinois case without trying it. :?:

Are there different stem sleeves for a 0 size Illinois?

Was my watch guy wrong to tell me to find a stem sleeve for an 0 size Illinois?

441victor
Posts: 1111
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:56 pm
Location: Orlando, FL

Re: Crown pops out question?

#12 Post by 441victor » Sat Aug 04, 2018 2:36 pm

This type of winding system is called negative set. The only thing the specific movement determines is the size of the square section of the stem. It has to be the right size to fit into the square hole of the movement and it must be the right length to actuate the setting/winding mechanism inside the movement. The sleeve is what holds the stem in setting or winding position by popping over the bump you see between the square section and the threads. So the fingers of the sleeve must be the right size to slip over that bump easily and hold it on either side. They slip when worn causing the problem addressed by this post. The sleeve's other dimensions are determined by the specific case you are trying to mount the movement into. Its outside diameter must match the inside diameter of the case tube. The length of the sleeve is determined by the length of the case tube and the type of crown you want to use. Specifically how it fits inside and over the case tube. If it has an extension where the stem screws in, it will take away room inside the case tube from the sleeve. All of these variables decrease the chances of a random sleeve you buy on ebay working on your watch. Negative set movements will almost never have a stem and sleeve included when offered as a bare movement. You will have to buy a case that still has its sleeve and stem. For other brands, that's a reasonable way to collect stems, sleeves and crowns that you can use to fix up better watches. With Illinois, you will have a hard time finding junk cases for spare change. Almost everything you run into will be precious and restorable or fought over. The bright side of this quest is that all 3/0 cases made by a manufacturer should have the same case tube dimensions, so a large enough collection of junk Wadsworth cases should yield a sleeve that will work in your Wadsworth cases Illinois. Just don't sacrifice a 1930 Boy Scout Elgin case to get a sleeve, please. Joel

PS One thing that hasn't been mentioned here is the possibility of making a stem with a larger bump to make up for the sleeve wear. That's not beyond the capabilities of a good watchmaker or even a hobbyist with a lathe. Making and heat treating a new sleeve should also be possible but will take more skill.

semroc
Posts: 307
Joined: Sat Apr 22, 2017 1:21 pm
Location: Washington

Re: Crown pops out question?

#13 Post by semroc » Sat Aug 04, 2018 3:49 pm

Great info 441victor. Im still trying to get mine working. You're right about it being hard to find the sleeve. Kinda fun though.

Gabe
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:46 am

Re: Crown pops out question?

#14 Post by Gabe » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:44 am

So was my watch guy not entirely right that I need to find a replacement stem sleeve for an 0 size Illinois?

He thinks a materials house should be able to procure one.

Is the reality that I need to find a whole entire new case? If so, what case would I be looking for?

What's sad about this for me is that the current case maintains a good amount of its enameling.

Gabe
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:46 am

Re: Crown pops out question?

#15 Post by Gabe » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:56 am

This is what the watch looks like:
s-l1600 (5).jpg
s-l1600 (5).jpg (234.69 KiB) Viewed 437 times
s-l1600 (6).jpg
s-l1600 (6).jpg (422.49 KiB) Viewed 437 times
s-l1600 (1).jpg
s-l1600 (1).jpg (74.49 KiB) Viewed 437 times

441victor
Posts: 1111
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:56 pm
Location: Orlando, FL

Re: Crown pops out question?

#16 Post by 441victor » Mon Aug 06, 2018 5:11 pm

No, your watch guy wasn't wrong, just being simplistic and optimistic. Here's some more context. This is the page from Waltham's material catalog explaining about how to order a bar (stem) and sleeve.
Waltham Sleeves.jpg
Waltham Sleeves.jpg (199.95 KiB) Viewed 393 times
The problem, this is from 60 years ago when the factory was still operating. No one is making new sleeves now and the supplies of NOS materials are drying up as we post. Here's a recent ebay auction for a typical set of replacement sleeves that a materials house would have sold to a watchmaker.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/-/382531699314 ... 675.l10137
And the picture:
Sleeves.jpg
Sleeves.jpg (183.41 KiB) Viewed 393 times
Bottles 44 and 47 still have some reverse sleeves so for $72 you have a chance of getting a sleeve that might fit your case tube and a 0 size stem that would have to come from a different auction. The bright side is the stems are usually identified as to the movement they work in. So, I have no easy solutions to offer even after doing this very dance for 6 years of Waltham collecting. My best advice would be to pass on any restoration projects that don't have a working stem, sleeve and crown. Joel

Gabe
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:46 am

Re: Crown pops out question?

#17 Post by Gabe » Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:37 am

Thank you for that answer.

So am I correct in thinking that since the parts in the auction in that link are for a Waltham pocket watch, they will not fit an Illinois wristwatch?

that I would do better trying to find someone to make a replacement stem for it with a larger bump to make up for the sleeve wear?

or do eBay sellers say "pocket watch case sleeves" when they really mean "watch case sleeves" that could be for either pocket or wrist watches?

441victor
Posts: 1111
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:56 pm
Location: Orlando, FL

Re: Crown pops out question?

#18 Post by 441victor » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:52 pm

The typical set of sleeves like this would not be for a particular movement as they must fit into the case. A 6/0 sized movement from Waltham, Elgin or Illinois will all fit into the same 6/0 sized case that might take one of these sleeves. The set of stems from a material house would have 50 bottles like these but each would hold stems that fit a particular sized movement from one manufacturer. So 6 bottles would cover the range of movements from Elgin, 7 from Waltham, etc. The supply case would have a legend telling which bottle fits which movement. When they show up on ebay, most have empty bottles. Usually the exact ones you are needing as they were the most popular. So what you end up with is a crap shoot as well as what they will fit into. Joel

Gabe
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:46 am

Re: Crown pops out question?

#19 Post by Gabe » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:51 am

Just wanted to report that Dave Coatsworth (daveswatchparts.com) managed to fix this very well, and reasonably at that.

Nice guy to do business with.

Highly recommended!

441victor
Posts: 1111
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:56 pm
Location: Orlando, FL

Re: Crown pops out question?

#20 Post by 441victor » Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:33 pm

Gabe, have you been following PerdoA's thread about his Burlington?
http://www.vintagewatchforums.com/viewt ... 16&t=12291
Both he and JackW have posted good descriptions about how to make a replacement stem. I'm still hoping to get my lathe skills sorted out. Joel

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests