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I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

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I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  VonHart on Sat Oct 04, 2008 6:21 pm

'ello all.

So here's my dilemma: I wear a wrist watch. I'd like to carry a pocket watch as they are more pleasant to look at and the vintage on all the ones I own makes me happy when I wear it knowing that the thing ticking on my hip has been doing so for just shy of 100 years, and is still doing it accurately. It's inspiring as an engineering student to know that some engineer's designs are so robust and reliable, even for something that is subjected to such heavy abuse in a daily basis.

Now! I have to wear a wrist watch. I often need to quickly check the time during tests, while riding my bike to make sure I'm not late to my next class, while I'm driving, etc.. I've recently been wearing both, under the excuse that I'm trying to make the pocket watch keep correct time (I've of course done this already, but it's an easy excuse for a short time). I check the pocket watch every once in a while, and if I'm noticed, I'll take off the back and pretend to adjust the balance. This works for a week or so at a time, but eventually the weird looks and rolled eyes return.

I feel a bit like I'm wearing a belt and suspenders, and I need a better excuse to wear both. I don't want to have to explain my idiosyncrasies and anachronistic tastes to others in passing, so I'd like an easy excuse.

Any ideas? Am I the only one who wears both?
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Zwack on Sat Oct 04, 2008 7:51 pm

I'm afraid I only wear one (usually a pocket watch at the moment) but I also use my cell phone to check the time, and wear a wrist watch sometimes...

I'm afraid you're either going to have to cave in or just get used to the odd looks. You could always carry something other than a pocket watch on a chain. A small pen knife, a pocket ammeter/voltmeter, a compass.

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  VonHart on Sat Oct 04, 2008 7:56 pm

it's not the chain that attracts me, it's the watch.

I often have to check my cell for the time as well, since I only wear mechanical watches, none of which have been serviced any time recently. Rolling Eyes
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  HAC on Sat Oct 04, 2008 8:04 pm

VonHart wrote:'ello all.

So here's my dilemma: I wear a wrist watch. I'd like to carry a pocket watch as they are more pleasant to look at and the vintage on all the ones I own makes me happy when I wear it knowing that the thing ticking on my hip has been doing so for just shy of 100 years, and is still doing it accurately. It's inspiring as an engineering student to know that some engineer's designs are so robust and reliable, even for something that is subjected to such heavy abuse in a daily basis.

Now! I have to wear a wrist watch. I often need to quickly check the time during tests, while riding my bike to make sure I'm not late to my next class, while I'm driving, etc.. I've recently been wearing both, under the excuse that I'm trying to make the pocket watch keep correct time (I've of course done this already, but it's an easy excuse for a short time). I check the pocket watch every once in a while, and if I'm noticed, I'll take off the back and pretend to adjust the balance. This works for a week or so at a time, but eventually the weird looks and rolled eyes return.

I feel a bit like I'm wearing a belt and suspenders, and I need a better excuse to wear both. I don't want to have to explain my idiosyncrasies and anachronistic tastes to others in passing, so I'd like an easy excuse.

Any ideas? Am I the only one who wears both?

Continually removing the back is a bad thing... if its a mechanical watch, that can cause lubrication to dry out, or worse, become an abrasive due to the bits of dust and grit that can be floating around in the opern air.
Just do what I do, and wear the darn thing on its own, whenever you feel like it. If you need to check the time continuosly (IMHO, thats a sign of poor scheduling of classes..), then wear a wrist watch. Lots of nice vintage ones around, if that interests you..
Even better, would be to find one of the early pocketwatch conversions to a wrist watch.. This Elgin is one I enjoy, and its not a lot larger than some of the horrendous fashion watches you see nowadays.. Note that this pic is BEFORE the crown/stem repair..



Cheers
Harold
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  VonHart on Sat Oct 04, 2008 8:32 pm

I have been looking for a conversion / wire lug watch, but funds are short right now and it would mean selling some others, which I don't want to do right now.

I have been just wearing it for now, no one has really given me a hard time about it. I do get rolled eyes from my wife though. That happens so often that I'm not sure it's because of the superfluous watch. I don't often take the back off, so I'm not too worried about the grime inside. But I will keep that in mind.

So when you say "wear the darn thing, whenever you want" does that mean you wear both, or that you just wear a pocket watch. It's not the wearing of a pocket watch that makes me feel silly, its the wearing of both.

on a side note, my schedule is quite poor at the moment. I have 10 minutes to get cross campus from my 8am class to my 9:30 class. Then I have an hour break, so I'm checking to make sure I leave early enough. then I have a 2 hour break til my last class. Only way I could work it out this semester though. Wink
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  markf on Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:22 pm

One alternative would be a new wrist-worn pocket watch. Nautica makes a nice one (see link below) which is far too pricey new but can be found on Ebay for much less than 1/2 the new price. The pocket watch comes out of the leather strap/circular pocket watch holder from the rear. This style was popularized with the British and later US troops during the end of WWI and after.
http://www.watchplanet.com/Nautica-Mens-Box-Set-watch-N15008/M/B000PFBDCE.htm?utm_campaign=froogle&utm_medium=organic&utm_source=froogle

My version of this watch is the earlier model "Nautica Vintage Cover" - a parchment type of retro watch face/fonts/hands and 2 subdials. The downside for some is that it uses a quartz timing mechanism and battery, making it anathema to steampunkers who don't want to stray too far afield of strict Victoriana rules of engagement, on the other hand it does not need winding and mine lost approx 2 minutes during the last year I've owned it. It is also a dive watch, though you would not want to ruin the leather watch holder and strap via submersion. Here's a pix of it (plus a bunch of other fluff no one really needs on their watch) from a project I did with it on the Steampunk Forum. markf
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2279/1872995601_4fc4c7a339_o.jpg
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  VonHart on Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:26 pm

I have looked into those markf. I was watching a few on e-bay a while ago, but sadly they left my price range. I have considered making a band similar on my own, though I'm not sure it would work on the watches I have (a hunter and 2 side winders). I did see your project back on the forum, thats what sparked my interest in those nauticas.
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  HAC on Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:36 pm

VonHart wrote:I have been looking for a conversion / wire lug watch, but funds are short right now and it would mean selling some others, which I don't want to do right now.

I have been just wearing it for now, no one has really given me a hard time about it. I do get rolled eyes from my wife though. That happens so often that I'm not sure it's because of the superfluous watch. I don't often take the back off, so I'm not too worried about the grime inside. But I will keep that in mind.

So when you say "wear the darn thing, whenever you want" does that mean you wear both, or that you just wear a pocket watch. It's not the wearing of a pocket watch that makes me feel silly, its the wearing of both.

on a side note, my schedule is quite poor at the moment. I have 10 minutes to get cross campus from my 8am class to my 9:30 class. Then I have an hour break, so I'm checking to make sure I leave early enough. then I have a 2 hour break til my last class. Only way I could work it out this semester though. Wink

All of my watches get worn, depending on the day. Pocket watches get worn, on their own, as the mood hits. The watch of the day could be anything from 1940's dress gold watch, a railroad watch, a Timex <gasp!> chrono, or the Rolex Explorer.. I do have a few "beater" watches for those times when I might be doing something that I wouldn;'t want to put a good watch through. Its also nice to have some nice restored vintage pieces for those "special" occasions..
And yep, that sounds like the typically poor class scheduling that Universities often to end up with. I can remember having dyas when there were two or three hours between classes, and others where it was phsyically impossible to not be late for a class that had too lirttle time, and too much from the previous one)

Cheers
Harold
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Dax on Sun Oct 05, 2008 7:45 am

If you want to be considered somewhat eccentric, by all means wear two watches.

One of the gimmicks on the old Addams Family show was that Gomez Addams would check his wrist watch, then his pocket watch (both timepieces would be set widely apart), then announce the average of the two timepieces as the current correct time.

If you want to start wearing a vest, then go with the pocket watch. Otherwise, keep it for formal occasions, or for a costume affair.
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Zwack on Sun Oct 05, 2008 7:48 am

I understood that you said that you liked the pocket watch, not the chain, but perhaps a modification of my suggestion would work for you.

Wear a waistcoat with a double Albert chain with a pocket watch on one end and something useful on the other. Then you can use the excuse of "I'm wearing it so that I have my X with me." Whether X is a knife or a compass or a locket is entirely up to you.

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Cyril Fotheringay-Phipps on Sun Oct 05, 2008 8:56 am

My suggestion, for what it is worth, is if you want to carry a pocket watch, then jolly well do so!
If you want to wear a wrist watch, then go ahead!
If you want to carry both, call yourself Phineas Fogg and what do you care what others think?
I mean, the main question is what is best for you.
Do you want to live your life in such a hurry that you are a slave to a digital timepiece attached to the distal end of one of your arms?
I say, if your life is so busy you cannot slow down to look at the face of a pocket watch, then maybe you are living too fast.
I used to live that way. Grad School--do not get me started there.
One of the changes I made that helped me cope was acquiring an Elgin pocket watch, circa 1920, with a hunter case. The very act of checking the time was slowed to a deliberate pace. And after a few days, I forgot to check my wrist, and instead automatically reached for the watch pocket.
The reason pocket watches are a rarity these days is that the world has sped up so bally much. Seems to me the slower pace is part of the charm of our adopted way of life.


Last edited by Cyril Fotheringay-Phipps on Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:01 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typos)

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  The Kernel on Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:32 am

I'm a wrist watch wearer (sorry).
At work there was reciently a trend to try and stop us wearing wrist watches (don't ask), with the intent that we should wear nurse type fob watches.
I was all ready to protest by using a pocket watch (worn on a lanyard type chain) but the busibodies became distracted by something that was actually important and lost interest.
Bet you'd never thought of a pocket watch as a protest item!
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Dr. Oliver Cross on Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:56 am

I don't think I'm ever without my pocket watch, and I've found that carrying one has lead to me being on time for many more events than usual, as it has encouraged me to check the time with great frequency.

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  VonHart on Sun Oct 05, 2008 4:20 pm

Dax wrote:If you want to be considered somewhat eccentric, by all means wear two watches.

One of the gimmicks on the old Addams Family show was that Gomez Addams would check his wrist watch, then his pocket watch (both timepieces would be set widely apart), then announce the average of the two timepieces as the current correct time.

That is Bloody Awesome! There's my excuse. I think I've decided to hang the sense of it and just wear both.

Cyril Fotheringay-Phipps wrote: Do you want to live your life in such a hurry that you are a slave to a digital timepiece attached to the distal end of one of your arms?


actually, the wrist watches are all mechanical as well. Smile But like I said, It's mainly the school schedule, which was unavoidable this semester, which causes me to have to wear a wrist watch. In the midst of a test in Deformable Bodies, or senior level Acoustics class, the 15 seconds it takes to take a pocket watch out of my pocket is quite valuable. And in the 10 minute bike ride across campus, it'd be hard to take a pocket watch out of my pocket mid-pedal to see if i have time to stop by the vending machine or not.
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  CaptZaphod on Sun Oct 05, 2008 6:12 pm

VonHart wrote:'ello all.
I feel a bit like I'm wearing a belt and suspenders, and I need a better excuse to wear both. I don't want to have to explain my idiosyncrasies and anachronistic tastes to others in passing, so I'd like an easy excuse.

Any ideas? Am I the only one who wears both?
Hello VonHart;
Excuses needed?
I've got a million of 'em, and only a shilling each. jocolor

How about?

  • "You didn't know it's anachronism day?"
  • "If you carried what I have in my pants, you'd know why I need suspenders hold my pants up.
  • "Suspenders are the new black."
  • "I have so much time on my hands, that I have to keep some of it, in my pocket."
  • "It's a day that ends in "Y", that's why I'm wearing them."
  • "Go stick your head in a pig."
  • "It's an elegant watch, from a more civilized age."
  • "Belts are for peasants."

In other words...who needs an excuse? Or as a chum of mine in high school (a lonnng time ago) told me, "Who cares what the other guy thinks?"

As the adage goes; "and it harm none, do as you will."
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  HAC on Sun Oct 05, 2008 7:47 pm

I often carried a pocket watch at work, however, I did decied to make sure that it was an "approved" watch, in keeping with the spirit of the CROR rules, (Canadian Railroad Operating Rules), even when really didn't need to. (you only need an "approved" watch if you are on operational duty).
Most times, the pocket of choice was my 1950 CPR-issued Hamilton 992b, and occasionally my Zenith Extra 56 RR, also a CPR watch.



Wristwatches were either the 218RR Accutron (1973) or Wyler, again, all on the approved list.




I was given a while back by one of my old work cronies, a 1970's Rodania ralroad watch. This was quite the find, as CPR only ever acquired a few hunderd of these.
Most of the electronic watches that one saw (in addaition to the Accutrons) were Valima, Cyma and Wyler.
This one will be getting a complete restoration, I have sourced the correct movement (an ETA 955.102 7J metal plate, adjusted) and all it needs after that is a new crown, case tube, and crystal, all of which are pretty easy to do.




Cheers
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Shameri on Sun Oct 05, 2008 8:01 pm

Heh, I wear both quite often! Everyone expects eccentricity from me anyhow. Also, whenever I only wear one I always find myself going to the wrong place to find the time Laughing
But perhaps you could just don the wristwatch for bike journeys? That would get people confused, "wait, where did your watch go?"
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Cyril Fotheringay-Phipps on Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:01 pm

Here's to the day you graduate and get to find the time to enjoy the rest of your life!

In the meantime, two watches seems a perfectly fine alternative. Cheers!

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  CaptZaphod on Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:01 pm

markf wrote:
My version of this watch is the earlier model "Nautica Vintage Cover" - a parchment type of retro watch face/fonts/hands and 2 subdials. The downside for some is that it uses a quartz timing mechanism and battery, making it anathema to steampunkers who don't want to stray too far afield of strict Victoriana rules of engagement, on the other hand it does not need winding and mine lost approx 2 minutes during the last year I've owned it. It is also a dive watch, though you would not want to ruin the leather watch holder and strap via submersion. Here's a pix of it (plus a bunch of other fluff no one really needs on their watch) from a project I did with it on the Steampunk Forum. markf
My good sir, is that available as a kit? It looks marvelous!
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Keithe on Mon Oct 06, 2008 4:03 pm

Another valid reason is to set your pocket watch to GMT, or another timezone. You can then use your wristwatch for mundane tasks and use the pocket watch for checking GMT. It also can be used to reinforce the statement that 'it is 5oclock somewhere and thus time for a [insert beverage of choice]'.

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  markf on Mon Oct 06, 2008 8:34 pm

CaptZaphod wrote:
markf wrote:
My version of this watch is the earlier model "Nautica Vintage Cover" - a parchment type of retro watch face/fonts/hands and 2 subdials. The downside for some is that it uses a quartz timing mechanism and battery, making it anathema to steampunkers who don't want to stray too far afield of strict Victoriana rules of engagement, on the other hand it does not need winding and mine lost approx 2 minutes during the last year I've owned it. It is also a dive watch, though you would not want to ruin the leather watch holder and strap via submersion. Here's a pix of it (plus a bunch of other fluff no one really needs on their watch) from a project I did with it on the Steampunk Forum. markf
My good sir, is that available as a kit? It looks marvelous!
The only bits that come with the Nautica box set are the watch, pocket watch holder/band, and the chain. The other parts I found on Ebay.

I just transferred my Steampunk Forum builds to this freebie Google website. While it is not quite ready for prime time, you can see the completed watch photos there (it is Project #1). markf
http://sites.google.com/site/steampunkretrofuturedesignsmd/
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Dr Quack on Mon Oct 06, 2008 9:12 pm

Invent some enormously convoluted tale involving you being given the pocket watch as a dying gift from "The last of the old mountain men"/ "The only survivor of the Little Big Horn"/ The grandaughter of a man who once sold the Eifel Tower for scrap" or some such. You can then say that you made a promise to "wear it always". This will have the dual effects of making you a much more interesting, romantic figure and discouraging anyone who knows you from passing any comment for fear of being subjected to the full length version of the story again.

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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  CaptZaphod on Wed Oct 08, 2008 7:01 pm

markf wrote:
The only bits that come with the Nautica box set are the watch, pocket watch holder/band, and the chain. The other parts I found on Ebay.

I just transferred my Steampunk Forum builds to this freebie Google website. While it is not quite ready for prime time, you can see the completed watch photos there (it is Project #1). markf
http://sites.google.com/site/steampunkretrofuturedesignsmd/
Well assembled page sir!
I want 1 of everything!
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  magister on Thu Oct 09, 2008 1:26 pm

Keithe wrote:Another valid reason is to set your pocket watch to GMT, or another timezone. You can then use your wristwatch for mundane tasks and use the pocket watch for checking GMT. It also can be used to reinforce the statement that 'it is 5oclock somewhere and thus time for a [insert beverage of choice]'.

I wear two watches to work for a similar reason. All the clocks in my office are set five minutes faster than the official local time. I suppose it was born out of both necessity and stubbornness, specifically in not wanting to be late every day, but not wanting to live out of sync with the actual time. Of course then, I never check the pocket watch while I'm work, and take off the wrist watch off as soon as I get home.

I imagine one could use a similar excuse, though if the difference isn't significant enough, it might make you look like you're wound up a bit too tight, so to speak.

Now if I could just get authorization to adjust the clock in my computer at work... For some reason, they have it set twenty two minutes faster than the rest of their clocks, and rigged so that only a manager can adjust the time. Now that really threw me for the first couple of weeks.
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Re: I need an excuse to wear a pocket watch

Post  Mr Clockwork on Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:32 pm

I recently bought my own pocketwatch and have been using it to keep time for all of my general needs, including university tutorial times and lecture times, the only responses I've gathered from using it have been positive in relation to actually having a pocketwatch.

My advice is to simply say "Screw those who oppose it!" and just go along with being just that little different, people who see you on a daily basis will eventually get used to it and you may well be known as the pocketwatch man, which, in my oppinion, is a fairly complementative acknowledgment.

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