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European RR Grade Pocket Watches European Pocket Watches that would have met the criteria for RailRoad Grade.

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Unread 01-11-2008, 10:26 AM
Frank Menez Frank Menez is offline
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Default English RR Grade Pocket Watches

I believe that the First Grade Watches made by Nicole, Nielsen & Co.,Ltd 14, Soho Square London would qualified as RR Grade watches.
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Unread 01-11-2008, 10:41 AM
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rrwatch rrwatch is offline
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Admittedly I know little about the Nicole, Nielson & Co. movments.
On the movment that you are referring to, what is the manufacture date and the technical specs (size, jeweling, setting method, adjustments, etc)? This data will help determine if the watch would have met North American railroad standards at the time it was manufactured.
Non American made watches were allways allowed, at least on some railroads, and there are a small number of German and a respectable quantity of Swiss made watches that we know were accepted, even as late as the 1970's.
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Unread 01-11-2008, 02:30 PM
Frank Menez Frank Menez is offline
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Default Nicole, Nielsen & Co., Ltd Watches

I have a cataloge that shows various watches by Nicole, Nielsen. Here is the following information from this catalogue-


All our First Grade Watches are timed within the limits required by the National Physical Laboratory for granting an A Certificate and are carefully compensated at the temperatures of 45o and 90o Fahrenheit, and are timed in the following positions-Pendant right, Pendant left, Dial up, Dial down.

One of the pocket watches in the catalogue is described as follows-

20 size, keykess , Arabic figures, 3/4 plate movement, 12 holes jeweled. diamond endstones , steel club tooth escapement, Breguet balance springs, compensated for changes of temperature and adjusted for position errors.

A closer look at these watches shows they are not lever set, which I assume would disqualified them for RR Use.

There is a 16 size with up and down indicator

Do the Swiss and German watches you refer to meet all the requirements for a RR watch???
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Unread 01-11-2008, 05:19 PM
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Yes, not only do the German and Swiss movements meet all of the North American railroad requirements when they were built, but many were actively advertised for the railroad market. Some were built by Record for Ball and were marked "Official RR Standard".
This is why the date of your watch is important. The standards (guidelines actually, for each railroad could and did customize their specifications to their individual needs) changed over the years. The standards that most people consider "RR grade" came into wide use during the 1906/8 time period. Prior to that Roman numerals, hunting cases, single rollers and private label markings were all accepted, as were movements adjusted to three, rather than the later 5 positions. Lever setting also became a requirement in the same time frame, so movemets built earlier with pin or pendant setting would have been accepted.
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