For sale we have have a circa 1920 Silver Borgel case trench style watch, with a white enamel dial and clear, lumed Arabic radium numerals. It measures 30mm x 3omm, with a lug-to-lug measurement of 33.25mm. Inside it has british hallmarking for London assay office and makers mark ‘AGR’, meaning it was imported by Arthur George Rendell of Clerkenwell Road, London. The manual wind movement is a Fontainemelon calibre which has been recently serviced and is functioning very well.
The watch is presented on a new genuine leather bund strap.
It is of neat proportions, smaller than the standard cases being 30mm x 30mm. The main body of the case is solid, with wire lugs. The thread is also in good condition with it screwing down as it should. To the right of the case is the traditional large crown tube on the Borgel patent. The onion style crown is original and functions as it should.
The enamel dial is original and is in good condition with slight hairline fractures. It is a bright white tone, with railroad minute track. It has Arabic numerals with aged Radium lume in-fill. The sub-second dial is neatly in-set into the dial, with 10 second graduations in Arabic numerals.
The Borgel case is the most well-known patented attempt at water and dust proofing from the early 20th century. The design consists of a solid main section, with the movement contained within a carrier ring, with movement, dial, hands, bezel and crystal. This movement section screws into the solid section of the case. There is a whole in the carrier ring for the stem and pin hand setting. It also has a tube projecting from the case with the winding crown constantly mounted within the end. This is necessary to aid with water/dust proofing and to allow the crown to be pulled out, to turn the bezel and movement section to remove it.
The bezel should never be levered off. The correct method is to pull the crown outwards and hold it out. You then unscrew the movement section via the bezel.
Full condition report below. Please see the images as these compliment and aid the description provided below.
The dial is enamel and is original. It is in good condition with only some hairline fractures, but no visible chips. The lume on the hour markers is original and has some wear.
The hands are of cathedral style and are original. They were thermally blued but this has darkened with age. The Radium lume in-fill is original and intact with a good tone.
The acrylic crystal is a modern replacement in perfect condition.
The crown is an original Borgel crown which winds the watch as it should and pulls out to unscrew the movement.
It is a Borgel style case which functions as it should, with no signs of major wear to the thread where the front section screws in.
The bezel is in good condition for the age with clear coin edge finish. There are no dents to the case or deep scratches. The case is tarnished and has not been polished. The wire lugs are strong and have no signs of repair or damage.
The silver case back is one solid piece which the bezel and movement screws in to. It is in good condition. It has tarnishing.
The watch comes on a new, handmade bund style military strap in a soft leather.
The movement is a Fontainemelon calibre of good quality. It has a neat bridge layout and a good standard of finishing with bevelled bridge edges and perlage finishing.
The movement has been serviced by ourselves. It’s keeping time to -40 seconds a day, with an amplitude of 300 degrees and a beat error of 0.6m/s.
Case width: 30mm
Case width with crown: 34.5mm
Case length: 30mm
Case length lug to lug: 33.25mm
Case Depth: 10mm
Lug width: 11mm
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