Sent in by a returning customer this Jaeger had seen better days and the plan was to bring it back to form with a great deal of effort. Having previously belonged to customers grandfather, this watch carries with it more than just a financial value but one that has memories and sentiment. Like so many treasures and trinkets, watches can often mean far more than the sum of their parts, reviving what was once forgotten can rekindle our link to the past as well as our future.
The watch had many problems, of which i list below is just a few, but each one had to be taken in turn before the next could be approached.
Dial - Dirty and loosing paint
Glass - Cracked & damaged
Casing - Dull and dented
Crown - All chome worn away
Movement - Destroyed 3rd wheel upper pivot/ Missing Seconds Retainer Spring/Missing Upper Wheel + More !
The first port of call would be to remove the movement and have a thorough look over what needs to be done. Once the movement can be restored to working order the cosmetics can be done thereafter.
Without stripping the movement down fully it was clear some searching for new parts was in order and this would probably take a fair amount of time due to the rarity of such pieces. Fortunately i was lucky to find some parts overseas but the delay in their arrival meant the movement and watch would have to wait. Moving forward we can take a look at the main issues >>
The dial side parts were in fairly good shape, a little surface rust but nothing that could not be cleaned up. The setting lever acts also as a spring which is a great piece of design for which JLC are known.
On the working side it is clear the watch has had some misfortune as the upper seconds wheel and third wheel are both damaged and missing, surprisingly the seconds pinion remains despite the spring having snapped off.
As can be seen above the third wheel had absolutely no pivot left !! In some cases the watch could be converted to hour and minute only by polishing the remaining pivot down but in this case there was nothing left.
With new parts arriving it was time to get to work on the movement and first on the agenda was a new spring for that seconds pinion. Using some 0.3mm brass foil several strips could be cut and drilled prior to shaping, the key factor here is practical and not the cosmetic look of the part.
Cleaning surface rust can be done in a few ways but if you get lucky you can easily brush it off with some glass fibre >>
With the majority of the work done it was time to assemble and adjust the movement and see how she runs :)
With the movement running well again and new parts fitted the remaining cosmetics could be finished and bring this watch back to good order once more. Below is a list of the cosmetic works involved >>
Dial - Refinished with new print and polished indices
Hands - New hour & minute in same style /Seconds repaired
Case - Casing polished and side brushed by hand as original / New Crown
Glass - New acrylic glass fitted
Strap - Nice calf leather in black
After such along wait it was nice to see such a good result, it gives a certain pleasure to know a watch is back in the land of the living. Whilst not without some imperfections the watch could now be enjoyed as intended. Enjoy >>
Comparison Before & After
It has been a longer than normal job but one that has come out on top in the end, once returned i hope the watch brings as much awe and joy as it has for me to restore it :)
Hertfordshire based watch restorer. Follow my blog for new watches under restoration/repair