Slim Swiss silver openface case with London import stamp (date letter rubbed), the importers cameo stamp ALF and the casemakers stamp HF conjoined. Nickel barred ‘hunter set’ movement jewelled to the centre with gold train wheels. Club-tooth, double-roller detached lever escapement. Elinvar balance-spring, uncut monometallic balance with Ditisheim’s Patent compensation affixes. Enamel dial signed (printed) for its London retailers, original blued-steel hands. 51 mm diameter.
William Birch and Henry Martin Gaydon, “chronometer makers, goldsmiths and jewellers” began their partnership in Fenchurch St in 1883. The firm used the retailing name “Land & Water” on both pocket and wristwatches in the first part of the 20th century and continued to trade until 1959 when it was purchased by Asprey & Co Ltd. The workbooks of the firm survive and are now part of the Clockmakers’ Company Library, see also the important article on the Turner and Birch workbooks by Alun C Davies in Antiquarian Horology, vol 17, page 478.
Paul Ditisheim SA, Fabrique d’Horologerie Ditis & Solvil. Formed in 1920, after more than twenty years of the greatest success in the English and Swiss watch and chronometer Trials, in which Ditisheim developed a series of improved and Patent balances. Swiss Patent No 91169, August 1920, described by Ditisheim in his article ‘Demonstration of (a) A New Balance for Compensating the Temperature Error of watches and Chronometers… published in the Proceedings of the Physical Society of London, Vol 35, Part 5, August 15, 1923. See also the book on Ditisheim by Osterhausen, pages 68-9.
NB: Ditisheim watches came first in the Kew/NPL Trials in 1903, 1912, 1913, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1920 and 1924.
Dial with hair crack, the dial printing a bit faded and some of the expected general signs of use. Otherwise a well made, accurate and slim ‘side winder’ cased watch. Serviced and guaranteed.