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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

We recently purchased this Illinois watch at an antique shop in Toronto and would love to know more about it — the model name, production history, anything! We've done our best to find this out ourselves, but as absolute newcomers to the world of vintage watches, we've only had limited success. It seems close to a model called the Whippet, but we haven't been able to find an exact match to photos or old ads online. A peak inside the watch tells us it has 17 jewels and the serial number is 5124274. One online serial number look-up told it was likely made in 1929, another told us 1927. We don't have the experience (or the reference books) to solve this mystery alone. Would any of you watch sleuths care to take on the case?

Many thanks,
Mike & Christine
Toronto
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Watch Analog watch Clock Finger Rectangle
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Hello Mike & Christine,

Congrats on the purchase and welcome to the American forum and
the wonderful world of vintage watches.

What you have there is called a "Whippet" and it has also been referred to as
a "Barrel/Tonneau"

I highly suggest you get yourself a copy of Fred Friedberg's incredible book
on Illinois watches. It is the "Bible" of all things related to this brand.

Anyway, the nice 17 jewel movement is dated to 1928 and the crown (winder) looks
to be period correct/original as well as the hands
The dial looks to be an early re-dial, that was done long ago.
It is hard to see from the photos, but hopefully there isn't
too much wear on the case bezel (front)
The range on these go from $150 to $400
the better the shape, the better the value.
I would get this to a watchmaker for a cleaning, oiling and quick checkup
before doing anything else with it, as it's service history is unknown(?)

Congrats on a nice Illinois, they are addictive, believe me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow, thanks very much for that information! This is fascinating stuff.

One more question: Would the replaced dial be the reason we had trouble finding an example of our watch online? We found photos of several Whippets, but none of them had the sub seconds at 9, like ours?

Thanks and all the best,
Mike & Christine
 

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Wow, thanks very much for that information! This is fascinating stuff.

One more question: Would the replaced dial be the reason we had trouble finding an example of our watch online? We found photos of several Whippets, but none of them had the sub seconds at 9, like ours?

Thanks and all the best,
Mike & Christine
Exactly!

These came in a sub 6 and sub 9 configuration and the originals
will (generally, but not always) have that little circle in the sub area "silvered" in color.
This is usually a giveaway that the dial has been re-done.

 
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