Page 6 of 6 FirstFirst ... 456
Results 101 to 112 of 112

Thread: Flyaway Smiths at Cotswold auction room today

  1. #101

    Default

    Question for the (many) Mk.X owners.

    Am I correct in thinking the serial number of these movements is hand-scratched/stamped on the flanged top-plate, covered by the dial. If so, could you let me know the number (PM me if you prefer) to add to my database for my Smiths research.

    Many thanks,
    Barry

  2. #102
    Moderator Revo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    1,237

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Brenellic2000 View Post
    Question for the (many) Mk.X owners.

    Am I correct in thinking the serial number of these movements is hand-scratched/stamped on the flanged top-plate, covered by the dial. If so, could you let me know the number (PM me if you prefer) to add to my database for my Smiths research.

    Many thanks,
    Barry
    Many? That'll be seven but three of those are inaccessible. Plus some, but not all, of the "Smith" ones. But you'd be asking them to remove the hands and dials which people might not be willing or able to do.
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

  3. #103

    Default

    Thanks Revo,

    Many is more than two...! Yes, I do appreciate concerns over raising the hands/dial, but I am sure curiosity has long ago got the better of 'many' owners!

  4. #104

    Default

    296 for my Smith which I started the servicing of today.


    Also interesting to see the number is repeated on the underside of the various cocks and bridges


  5. #105
    Moderator Revo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    1,237

    Default

    I think that the numbers are to match together best fit components?

    "All the plates have scratched on them the serial number so the watch will go together when assembled."

    source: https://gearhead.engineering/smiths-...1-calibre-600/

    and: "The movement number tended to be scratched on the bottom of the balance cock, presumably it was made to suit or at least selected using banded tolerances as per the original Waltham production technique (apparently this production technique was used for Jag XK engines, that is what you have to do if you utilize cut price 30’s Standard machinery)."

    source: https://gearhead.engineering/smiths-...12-15-everest/
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

  6. #106
    Senior Member Flightpath's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Aussie in Norway
    Posts
    2,607

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Revo View Post

    Were there any mwr members who weren't skulking round Cheltenham earlier this week?
    Maybe they will make a show about MWR members like 'Storage Wars'

    -John

  7. #107

    Default

    marking the number of the components was most likely because there was a degree of fettling going on, to make the mechanism run smoothly.

    Obviously if you've done a lot of work getting parts to work together then you want to reunite them after they've (say) gone off for gilding as part of a batch.

    It's something you see fairly often on pocket watches, or pre-war English watches but there the number is generally stamped in, so less ad-hoc than this. The pictures below are from a 1930s English (Rotherhams) watch where the number is marked on everything!




  8. #108

    Default

    Thanks MrJones - we Joneses stick together!

    The fact that these are hand-scratched is certainly indicative of prototype/pre-production work where a high degree of fettling is required. In volume line-production with defined tolerances, there is no need to mark each component as they either fit or don't - and in the latter case go for rectification.

    Re Jaguar engines, it was common practice in the high grade motor industry for one man to assemble an entire engine (I believe Aston Martin and others still do). Those 'out of tolerance' parts were set aside and in odd lunch breaks best-fitted/matched with their mating parts... and in this way, some of the best performing engines were built for off the production line work's riders/drivers.

    As an aside, Rolls Royce hand fettled their engines during assembly but in WW.II Ford was contracted to volume produce Merlin engines for the war effort. Ford famously confessed they couldn't work to Royce's standards and tolerances... for Ford worked to far high standards straight off the production line and their engines did not require any fettling!

    Tea break over....!

  9. #109
    Moderator Revo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    1,237

    Default

    But the "Everest" watch in the second link was made in late 1951 or early '52 -- by which time Smiths' production line was well established: yet here we see a C-series 1215 with numbered components?
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

  10. #110

    Default

    Oliver, you need to take a sabbatical and work on a production line for a while!! Only kidding!

    The DeLuxe was not 'mass-produced' in the accepted sense - it still had a large element of hand-assembly by skilled craftsmen (and many women). The later Astral and the Empire/Ingersoll were by design less so demanding in specific skills. Don't forget that Smiths were skilful in volume production engineering across a wide range of products/industries - they had a large specialist Production Engineering Services department at Colindale to call upon!

    'Serial numbers' evolve from a hand-marked number against a day book production ledger to a fully fledged Production/Stock Control Job/Serial Number - mainly for QA purposes - against which are charged/ordered individual components... until one day a once identifiable individual watch becomes just one of a faceless batch of 1,000 disposable products. Stock Control is pretty soul destroying!!

    Keep up your good work in collecting Smiths' watches (Avalon, Benson, Garrard, Sears, H Samuels....) - you've only 100 more pages of the catalogue to 'cover'... and even some of those pages are missing! Leave some for me!!

    Barry

  11. #111
    Moderator Revo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    1,237

    Default

    Barry, yes this way outside of my field of expertise and bow to your knowledge and experience.

    The only thing I can add is that the number(s) scratched on the "Everest" watch in the Gearhead link seem to be unrelated to the Cxxxx "serial" number on the movement plate. (I know because that watch is now mine.)

    Cheers

    Ollie
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

  12. #112

    Default

    The Cxxxx 'serial' number would most likely relate to a 'job number' for stock/production control (even at times for HM Customs and Excise purposes in exports) and was engraved before assembly. It was possible these were then uncerimoneously dumped in batches into a tote bin to be drawn at random along with the requisit parts for assembly. Different companies work in different ways.

    It is quite likely the hand scratched numbers are assembler's (or rectifier's numbers) which may likely not relate to the job number! I don't know! Serial numbers, their prefixes and suffixes are rarely straight forward and often only fully understood by those who create them!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •