Dear old Dad's TIMEX

Dear old Dad's TIMEX

Lead65sled
Lead65sled

January 20th, 2004, 5:03 pm #1

Gentlepeople, I was recently introduced to your forum by compatriots of the SEIKO Forum because I have recently acquired a Vintage TIMEX from my father. He doesn't remember when he got the watch but knows that he had it through the early 70's.

Would you be able to date the watch for me? I am unable to post digital photos, since I am still int he anologue world. Domed acrylic crystal with lightly bronzed, round face, date only with thin numbers at the 12, 6 and 9 positions. On dial "TIMEX, WaterProof, Automatic". Below 6 posiiotn in very small print "4114 1769". On Reverse "Waterproof, Stainless Steel Back."

I'll do my best to try and get a digital photo for you.
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Jack from Philadelphia
Jack from Philadelphia

January 21st, 2004, 1:40 am #2

Always glad to help out somebody from teh Seiko forum, at which I am an occasional lurker. Own a few myself, including a Bullhead chrono. Some of you guys need to switch to decaf! :') But I digress. Your father's watch was made in 1969. I know that from the last two digits of the number from the dial. The two digits to the left identify the movement number, and the remaining numbers comprise the catalog number. I don't have any catalogs but somebody here should be able to help you. Offhand it sounds like a nice piece. I own a couple of Timex autos and they run pretty well. Hope this helps!
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Lead65sled
Lead65sled

January 21st, 2004, 1:20 pm #3

say that Dad's watch was made in 1969. That same year, in April he bought a Seiko DX 25J from the post exchange in Vietnam. He remembers the DX but doesn't remember the Timex. (?) On most days he is very practical, I wouldn't have thought he would have bought a second watch if he had one that functioned. I suspect he had the Seiko as his dress watch, then the TIMEX as his beater.

He used the TIMEX very hard for about ten years then went to a quartz movement. Aside from scratches in the crystal, which I was able to polish out, the watch seems to keep time very well.

Questions:
1. The power reserve is about12-14 hours. Was that normal for that model?
2. Do you know what the original band would have looked like? It currently has the Speidel twist-o-flex with the calendar that has been on it as far back as I can remember.
3. What would the original price have been?
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RonD.
RonD.

January 21st, 2004, 1:37 pm #4

Funny how in those days everyone used the Timex watches as "Beaters" and now they are becoming very collectible, and bringing in some nice prices. I found myself babying my own Timex watches. Even at 30-40 years old, they can still take a lickin, and I am now starting to take a few chances with them and wear them when I am doing things like the lawn or going to the gym.

Regarding the reserve of the watch, I think most of my Timex autos will run for at least 24 hours after I take them off. Maybe you have a broken mainspring.

Ron
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Dorsey H.
Dorsey H.

January 21st, 2004, 2:26 pm #5

Gentlepeople, I was recently introduced to your forum by compatriots of the SEIKO Forum because I have recently acquired a Vintage TIMEX from my father. He doesn't remember when he got the watch but knows that he had it through the early 70's.

Would you be able to date the watch for me? I am unable to post digital photos, since I am still int he anologue world. Domed acrylic crystal with lightly bronzed, round face, date only with thin numbers at the 12, 6 and 9 positions. On dial "TIMEX, WaterProof, Automatic". Below 6 posiiotn in very small print "4114 1769". On Reverse "Waterproof, Stainless Steel Back."

I'll do my best to try and get a digital photo for you.
Greetings LeadSled and Thanks for posting on the Timex Forum. As Jack correctly wrote, your watch was made in 1969. The third and fourth numbers from the right are apparently incorrect. Your Numbers should read "4114 3269". Look at the numbers again under high magnification. It's possible that the numbers might also read 4117 3269. The #4114 is the Timex Model number for a watch in the Timex "Viscount" series. These Chromium-Plated (Silver-Colored)with a Timex #32 self-wind/auto movement were manufactured from 1967 to 1970. An identical gold-toned model had Timex model 4144 or 4147.

The technical specifications in the Timex Service manual says, "The Reserve power of the mainspring when the watch is worn by a normally active person is sufficient to run the watch for a full day." Does "full day" mean daylight hours or 24 hours? Nomatter what the manual says, my experience has been that you frequently need to do some deliberate winding of these old watches either by winding the crown 10 turns or so each night or by rotating the watch vigorously for a couple of minutes to set the internal winding rotor in motion. My experience has been that simply wearing the watch for a normal day and expecting that limited motion to sufficiently wind your watch is probably expecting too much. A few might be sufficiently well-made, cleaned and adjusted to enable them to be that efficient but those are rare.

Ron cleans his watches thoroughly so his long-running watches might be more like those models ran when they were new. The efficiency of the rotor is the key. If the rotor is properly aligned and lubricated it will rotate with the slightest wrist movement and with little internal noise except for a pleasant whirring sound. If it's out of alignment it will make a lot of noise and will not easily rotate. Ron's right in writing that there might be some mechanical problem if your watch has very low reserve.

You describe your Dad's watch as having numbers 12, 6 & 9. That corresponds with a dial that was only manufactured in 1969 and 1970. The numbers are light inside a dark box background.

The drawings in the Timex Service Manual only show that watch with a leather watch band. The 1974 Timex Sales brochure shows Chrome-Plated date-function Viscount watches with both a dark leather band and a stainless steel stretch band. Your Dad's model had been discontinued by 1974 so the only clue I can give you is the dark leather band shown in the Timex Service Catalog drawings. Actually..upon closer observation it appears that your particular model was shown with an alligator-grained band, probably black, in that drawing.

The prices for similar models in the 1974 sales brochure run between $14.95 and $16.95. One could assume that they might have been slightly cheaper in 1969-1970.

It's always heart warming to hear that someone has saved their parent's vintage Timex watch and is interested in preserving and keeping it as a family heirloom. Those old watches might not be worth much monetarily (although the prices realized at auction are increasing rapidly) but they are Priceless Treasures to those who remember their loved-ones through them. I have my own Dad's vintage watch on my dresser and I have kept it running constantly since he passed away in 1990. I would wear it except that the original band is too small for my wrist.

Thanks again for posting on the Timex Forum. Check out Alan's links at the introduction. Alan is the Web-Master/Owner of the Timex Forum.

Dorsey H.
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Joined: January 21st, 2004, 4:28 pm

January 21st, 2004, 4:28 pm #6

Wonderful information! I can't thank you enough. I am truly impressed with the level of detail. How did you ever become such a font of knowledge? I am humbled to be associated with you, thank you so very much.

I have one son and another on the way. I can only pray that they have the passion we have for these great little machines.

I am inclined to believe that this watch is running very well and with in design operating parameters. In your experience, would you say that these machines given their sealed environments, would need infrequent serviceing? This Viscount, at 35 years old, has never been serviced yet runs within a few seconds per day. I am loathe to open the case. To quote another "If it's running, leave the hood down."
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Dorsey H.
Dorsey H.

January 21st, 2004, 9:03 pm #7

Thanks so much for the kind words. I acquired my knowledge by buying up everything I could find about Timex watches...Old Service Manuals, Sales Catalogs and Brochures, books, and tons and tons of old scrap Timex watches on which I've learned the long-lost art of Timex watch repair. Self Taught all the way. I've also learned A LOT from the fine people who post here on the Timex Forum. We're a brotherhood (any sisters out there?) who thrive on sharing information.

The old saying goes..."If it ain't broke...don't fix it". That's ABSOLUTELY TRUE as far as your vintage Timex goes. If it's accurate to within a few minutes a week...you can't hope for anything better than that. Just ENJOY IT. If it ever stops running there are Timex addicts here at this Forum who can help you get it running again.

Let those children of yours hear the "magic" of a ticking watch. I guarantee you NONE of their peers will ever have heard that beautiful sound. Sooner or later I bet they'll be hooked too.

Thanks for stopping by the Forum. Come again soon...and often.

Dorsey H.
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RonD.
RonD.

January 22nd, 2004, 12:48 pm #8

Totally agree.. if it's working, leave it alone. There are plenty of folks here who could repair it if/when it dies on you.
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lead65sled
lead65sled

January 29th, 2004, 3:41 pm #9

Thanks so much for the kind words. I acquired my knowledge by buying up everything I could find about Timex watches...Old Service Manuals, Sales Catalogs and Brochures, books, and tons and tons of old scrap Timex watches on which I've learned the long-lost art of Timex watch repair. Self Taught all the way. I've also learned A LOT from the fine people who post here on the Timex Forum. We're a brotherhood (any sisters out there?) who thrive on sharing information.

The old saying goes..."If it ain't broke...don't fix it". That's ABSOLUTELY TRUE as far as your vintage Timex goes. If it's accurate to within a few minutes a week...you can't hope for anything better than that. Just ENJOY IT. If it ever stops running there are Timex addicts here at this Forum who can help you get it running again.

Let those children of yours hear the "magic" of a ticking watch. I guarantee you NONE of their peers will ever have heard that beautiful sound. Sooner or later I bet they'll be hooked too.

Thanks for stopping by the Forum. Come again soon...and often.

Dorsey H.
I will indeed leave the hood down. So far it is keeping an accuracy as good as my Seiko 7s26 movement. One could not ask for better.
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