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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey guys !

This one is so over the top crazy rare it's not even funny ! ! ! !

The ONLY one that I've EVER SEEN ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

We have all seen Integrated Shrapnel Guard Trench Watches before but have you ever seen one in 10k GOLD FILLED ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

With SWIVEL LUGS ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

With a THREADED BEZEL & CASE BACK ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

With Elgin's RAREST RED 12 dial, the RED 12 Large Font BOLD Arabic Enamel Dial ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

Oh yeah, it also has a grade 263, 17 jewel, size 0s movement with a SOLID GOLD TRAIN ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !


Every single Integrated Shrapnel Guard Trench Watch that I've ever seen has either been Sterling Silver or a form of Nickel, NEVER 10k GOLD FILLED.

I've NEVER seen one with SWIVEL LUGS before either, they always have fixed lugs or pin bar.

And I've certainly NEVER seen one with a THREADED INTEGRATED SHRAPNEL GUARD BEZEL & CASE BACK, these parts are ALWAYS "pop" on/off.

Having them THREADED is a FAR superior design!


The case was manufactured by the Illinois Watch Case Company out of Elgin, Illinois, probably in mid - late 1918.

Illinois patented their Swivel Lug design in September 1918.

It is a "GIANT" grade case meaning that it is 10k Gold Filled.

Shocking that ALL of the gold fill is still in tact, no wear spots ! ! ! (you are only seeing glare, no wear)

NOBODY over the years has tried to open the case the WRONG way by prying it open, the threading is in SUPERB condition, smooth a silk!

It's a three piece case, the crystal is fixed underneath the Integrated Shrapnel Guard Bezel.

Very large case for a size 0s, it measures 45mm lug to lug, 34.5mm without the gold filled crown with a 14mm lug diameter.


When I first got this watch it had a size 0s Illinois movement inside with a common civilian dial, not original to the case, the two movement case screws did not match up with the indentations.

So, I re-installed an Elgin movement which was original to the case, the screws and indentations match up perfectly now.

It has a size 0s Elgin, grade 263 with a Solid Gold Train.

(Jobber case, so technically a Waltham, Illinois or Elgin movement would be correct)


The dial on this watch is one of the rarest of it's kind, the Large Font BOLD Arabic RED 12 with a "USA" stamp just below the Elgin signature.

Usually when you see a RED 12 enamel Elgin dial it is the very common small font variety, NOT the Large Font version, these are quite hard to come by.

The dial is flawless!


Truth be told, my hands started shaking a little bit the first time I put watch on my wrist!

Now I know how Santa Claus & the M&M candy guys feel in that commercial........................................ THEY DO EXIST ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

























And now for the WRIST SHOT ! ! ! ! ! ! !




This picture shows the difference between the very common small font on the left and the RARE Large Font on the right.

The Large Font is VERY difficult to locate, especially in this pristine condition.

 

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This one takes the cake my friend!!!

Stan... I am simply speechless over this one!

I have seen many of these, but never one in YGF... A true RARITY and I don't
Use that term very often!

The case, dial, hands and total package are simply jaw-dropping!

Congrats on a fantastic watch!!!:thumbup:

G
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Greg,

VERY tiny clues lead me to believe that this type of GOLD FIILED case did in fact exist, only in theory though as I've never seen one, that is until now.

If you look at ALL of the advertising material from the Great War era for the Illinois Watch Case Company as a whole one would believe that this case was possible.

I've never been able to locate an advertisement from the IWCCo for ANY of the Integrated Shrapnel Guard cases whether they were sterling silver, gold filled, round or cushion shaped.

BUT, below is a picture of an Illinois Watch Case Company advertisement that has a slight clue!

The watch case on the top left side of the advert!

This one features a "FLIP UP" Integrated Shrapnel Guard with a solid lid (much like a pocket watch) but the guard is not pierced.

It's the closest thing to what we would call an "Integrated Guard" that I've found from the IWCCo.

The advert states that these cases were made in Sterling Silver, Gold filled and believe it or not SOLID GOLD as well (would be 14k)

This is also the 3rd advert that I've seen from them stating that SOME of these case designs were available in a WHOPPING HUGE Size 12s ! ! ! ! ! !

So, now that we know a 10k GOLD FILLED INTEGRATED SHRAPNEL GUARD CASE with SWIVEL LUGS does exist logic would say that they did make the HUGE 12s versions.





I've seen the case on the bottom right hand side of this advert in sizes 0s & 3/0s both in gold filled and sterling silver, NEVER solid gold though.

The sterling silver barrel cases weigh a WHOPPING 21 grams without the movement, dial & strap ! ! ! !

That is insane heavy considering that your average size 0s sterling silver case weighs around 9 - 10 grams.


The straps featured on these two watches above are CRAZY rare, the last original one I saw sold at auction for $350.00 and it was only in moderately good condition, it was the compass version.

That $350.00 auction price was for the STRAP ONLY without a watch attached ! ! !

You MIGHT see one strap like this per year if you are lucky.
 

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another rockin' piece Stan.

you're going to end up cornering the market if this keeps up.

:thumbup1:
 
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I know we've discussed this before but the size 12 thingy is very interesting. Has anybody seen one yet?
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I may have saw one on the bay several months ago maybe.

At the time I did not know exactly what it was and I had not found the other IWCCo adverts about the size 12s wrist watches.

Here is one of the other size 12s wrist watch case adverts from the IWCCo.

The one that I believe that I saw was the one on the bottom right of the page, the big square one.

It was yellow gold filled but with massive brassing wear spots.

It was rather beat up and in very poor condition.

Wish I knew then what I know now ! ! ! !

 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I put a bit more thought into this size 12s enigma last night and this morning..............................

The watch case on the bottom right of the above advertisement is the subject.

Now, everything that I know about the Illinois Watch Case Company would tell me that the lug diameter on this size 12s square case is 14mm.

Every case that the IWCCo made with swivel lugs and fixed pin bar lugs ALWAYS had a lug diameter of 14mm in sizes 3/0s, 0s & 6s.

Now, taking that 14mm lug diameter as a constant logic would lead me to believe that the dimensions in this picture are correct for a size 12s wrist watch case.

But, please take into consideration that this is an artist's rendering so his/her dimensions of the case might be off here or there a bit.

Fixed pin lugs like these stick out on average 4.5mm on each side.

This square case pictured below would measure approximately 55mm lug tip to lug tip, 46mm without the crown with a 14mm lug diameter.

Now, sense a size 12s Elgin movement measures 39.78mm the above case measurement estimate would be correct when you take everything as a whole.





I might be going out on a limb here but I am going to say that a size 12s wrist watch case from the Illinois Watch Case Company does in fact EXIST.

It might take me a few years to prove this but I'll locate and obtain one ! ! !
 

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Stan,
I only have 2 Illinois that are not silver/white metal...
The YGF Admiral Evans on the left is one of a few known (the only one I have seen)


3 Illinois YGF, Sterlings 'Admiral Evans' (8 sided)



And this is a one of a kind 8 sided SOLID ROSE GOLD Admiral Evans



Here is that Cushion with Swivel lugs, Illinois Enamel/Porcelain dial
Period correct band and clasp in sterling/white metal it is one of 2 known.



 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks Adam !

This one is simply the BEST of everything.

Certainly NOT an enlisted man's watch, a sniper would have picked him off in a New York minute with this one gleeming in the distance!

Rarest of the rare my friend ! ! ! !
 
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