Q: WATCH PARTS: I am looking for a part for my "______" watch. Is there a source?
A: Yes. Please see section titled "WATCH PARTS" for more detailed info regarding finding parts for your watch, or contact the company below. They have almost anything you might be looking for.
2550 Civic Center Drive
Cincinatti, OH 45231 USA
Q: WATCH REPAIR: I have an old watch that is wound too tight, can you tell me what is wrong with it or how I would go about getting it fixed?
A: The three most common problems I see in old mechanical watches are 1) the inner workings are dirty and gummed up preventing them from running. This requires a cleaning. 2) The balance staff is broken from being dropped, and needs replacement, and 3) The watch has a broken mainspring.
If you don't have the knowledge to fix a watch yourself see section titled "WATCH REPAIR SHOPS" for detailed information on locating a good watch repair person in your area.
Q: DIAL REFINISHING: I was wondering if you knew anything about watch dial refinishing, if it's a good idea, and if you have an opinion as to which dial refinishing company to use?
A: Please see titled "Dial Refinishing" for a detailed discussion regarding dial refinishing. Or, If you have the skills to remove the dial yourself and are looking for a good company to use, contact
INTERNATIONAL DIAL CO., INC.
58 W. SUGARTREE
P.O. BOX 970
WILMINGTON, OH 45177
I have had many dials done by them and they are quite good! They charge about $30.
Q: WATCH VALUE: "I need help with locating the value of this watch. Briefly, the watch measures 26.35 length x 21.75mm width. Three Diamonds are set as show 3-9-12 o'clock. These #'s were on the back K21212 Any help would be appreciated."
A: If your question is remotely relating to value, please, please DO NOT send me an email. Instead please see section titled "WATCH VALUES"
Q: BRAND NAME HISTORY: Do you know of anyone who might have more information about Benrus watches? I have inherited a rather old-looking one, and I would like to learn more about it. (no picture provided)
A: ****Any information that I have been able to collect on brand name watches has been added to the site already. PLEASE don't e-mail me asking for additional info - I would love to help, but I just don't have the time to answer the volumes of emails that I often receive****
Q: "NO NAME" WATCH HISTORY: I was given my uncle's old watch as part of his estate. It's made by ______ and has gold hands, and black numbers on a white face. I was wondering how old it is, when it was made, how much it is worth?.
A: Literally THOUSANDS of watch companies have existed. Some actually "manufactured" watches while many other companies "pieced together" components that were manufactured by other companies. They would purchase the movement, dial, case, hands, etc. from different suppliers and assemble them in their own factories. Watches were sold under whatever name they had chosen to put on the dial. These are collectively referred to as "generic" Swiss watches, or "assembled" watches. The movements inside these watches are referred to as "ebauches" (pronounced ay-boshe). Ebauche, S.A. at one time was an affiliation of 17 firms manufacturing raw Swiss watch movements. It doesn't mean they are "bad" or of poor quality either as some ebauches were used in Rolex and Breitling. The longer a company was in existence, the better the chance that history is available, and that the watch is collectible (and has a higher value). Most of the "mainstream" wrist watch companies histories are already listed on this webpage. Otherwise, beyond the name, I have little or no information about many, many companies. If you have detailed info on a watch company, please provide it to me and I will devote a page to it.
Here are some examples:
Baldwin = Louvic Watch Company
Belforte = Benrus
Bifora = Bifora was a German company. J. Bidlingmaier established a factory in Schwabisch Gemund, not far from Stuttgart, in 1900. They purchased movements from Switzerland before manufacturing their own and later specialized in electric clocks and watches. Bankrupt.
Dogma = Arthur Dorsaz & Co, La Chaux de Fonds
Keystone Standard = Manufactured by E. Howard & Co.
Medana = brand of Meyer & Studeli. 1888 - Solothurn, Switzerland. Bankrupt
Roamer = brand of Meyer & Studeli. 1888 - Solothurn, Switzerland. See www.rrtime.ch
Smyth = Gallet & Company
Tavannes = CYMA
Tradition = Manufactured for and sold exclusively by Sears Roebuck & Co.
Wakmann = Breitling
...and thousands more..
Many companies would change the name of the watches they were making to keep things "new". Some even went out of business several times. They would pack up and reappear at a different location under a different name. It was very common. This makes finding any information on "Generics" just about impossible.