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• FIVE GENUINE ILLINOIS 161 AND 163 VARIANT DIALS INCLUDING "23J" DIALS IN DETAIL • "Click" to Login or Register 
IHC Member 750
posted
In Shugart's price guide, do the prices listed for the Illinois 161 and 163 include the marked 60 hour dial or do you have to add to those prices if the watch has that dial? I don't know if that dial was standard on those watches. Trying to come up with a fair price for this type watch in top condition. Thanks
 
IHC Life Member
Picture of Robert V. Jones
posted
Robert the dial definately adds to the value. Value always depends on which dial case or movement you have and also the condition of it. Post some pictures most of those dials add great value to your watch. Rob
 
IHC Life Member
Picture of Cooksey Shugart
posted
Robert, Not all varitions are listed. Some "things" affect the value more than others. Also each buyer- collector is different and some variations make a watch more collectable or valuable. It depends (supply and demand ?).
Cooksey
 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

Robert,

I agree with Rob Jones and Cooksey Shugart, the dial is always a big part of watch value. Many collectors tend to assume one of four specially marked variant dials will be found on nearly any 163 but a variant dial is not always expected on the 161 movements as they were not quite as likely to have come with one originally.

We have recently reached the point where the dial alone can easily make a $3,000.00 or even greater difference in value of an individual watch. In addition to the marked only as "Illinois" dial there is one marked variant that was made for the 21-Jewel 161 movements and the 23-Jewel 163 movements have four variant possibilities. We will now post each of them right here. The five dials shown immediately below are from my personal collection.


The 161 marked "21-Jewel 60-Hour" dial...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted


The 163 marked "23-Jewel 60-Hour" dial...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted


163 Montgomery "23-Jewel 60-Hour" dial...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted


The "23J" marked "60-Hour 6 Positions" dial...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted


"23J" Montgomery "60-Hour 6 Positions" dial...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

One final point about these original variant dials...

As mentioned above, we have reached the point where the dial can make a $3,000.00 difference in value of an individual watch. We must use great caution because there are dials floating around that have had variant markings added to them, we will show some later in this topic. There are also recently crafted counterfeit metal dials with ground sunken areas and other near-worthless fakes that bear the same markings as valuable original dials. More about that later.

Always examine the dial very carefully before making your buying decision.

Wink
 
IHC Member 750
posted
Thanks to all who responded.

You have been very helpful. Lin, thanks for the pictures and phone call.

Bob
 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

Now we will discuss dials that have had markings added to them...

It is important to understand a couple points, for example looking closely we believe there were no "arrows-in" variant dials, the "arrows-in" design is considerably earlier than "arrows-out" versions.

Secondly, I can tell you that both the "Bunn Special" and "23-Jewel, 60 Hour" markings were added to the eBay auction example shown below in order to deceive. The dial you see in the next three images fooled quite a number of those who thought they knew what they were looking at. Roll Eyes What I am about to share below will explain why I am always skeptical of any dial with "fuzzy" markings such as these next examples have. Be sure to study the text and images which follow very carefully and please do share your thoughts.


Intense magnification shows some differences...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted


Next, we compare a suspect dial to a known to be correct factory original. Remember, with genuine porcelain-enamel dials there is a glaze over the numerals and other markings. On these dials with added markings the additions are paint, added on top of the porcelain which is very important to recognize. As you will see in the image below, the differences become far more obvious Razz when comparing these two dials very closely.


Compare suspect on top with "real deal" below...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

In this image below you can see absolute proof of fakery. Eek Not only do we find the "Bunn Special" part of the signature is not under the glaze, just painted on the surface and because it is painted-on it can actually be flaked away. (Note below, In order to demonstrate this more clearly I flaked off some of the paint forming the top of the "S" in "Special" with use of a sharp blade!)

The seller of this dial, a well-known, self-styled "Illinois Expert" (and former IHC Member, you can probably figure out who it was) brought it to my home thinking he could fool me as he had previously fooled others with his trick dials. Next day at a watch collector's event I flaked off part of his additions as you see in the image below, in front of assembled on-lookers, and was his face red!

I have formed the belief this deceptive paint work was being done using a silk-screening process and rubber-based paint because the paint is very durable, even resistant to some solvents.

This undeniable evidence makes it clear we should very carefully inspect every "variant dial" with the greatest care and a fair amount of skepticism. With some of the correct, original variant dials selling for thousands of dollars, as buyers we have every reason to use extreme caution before buying.


"Bunn Special" was just painted on the surface...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

Below on the left, another earlier dial with added markings that was recently in an eBay auction.

Upon close examination, the "inward-pointing arrows" are the first indicators that this one has been faked. In this instance both "Bunn Special" and "23-Jewel Sixty Hour" were added in attempt to fool an unsuspecting buyer. Compare this altered dial on left to the genuine article on the right and in the second image above in this topic. Altered dials have little if any collector interest and are worth a small fraction of the genuine article.


On the left, faked markings, genuine markings on right...


 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

Another image of the altered dial shown on the left immediately above this post. Compare the image below to those of the first altered dial we shared in three views above. Once again the "fuzzy-looking" markings are clearly above the porcelain. Like the previous example added markings can be flaked or scraped off with a sharp blade.


Another view of the second dial with added markings...


 
IHC Member 1101
Site Moderator
Picture of Steve Middlesworth
posted
Lindell,

Couldn't the 21 jewel marked variant dial also have been available for the 21 jewell 60 HOUR TYPE IIIB? Also was the 21 jewel variant dial available in the Montgomery style?

Steve
 
IHC President
Life Member
Picture of Lindell V. Riddle
posted

I would agree with you Steve, the 21 and 23-Jewel Type III B movements could be entirely proper with one of the first three variant dials shown in this topic. At the time we began this topic three years ago the "Type III B" had not been recognized let alone named. Smile You and I did that about this time last year right here...

BUNN SPECIAL 23 JEWEL MOTOR BARREL 60 TYPE I, II AND III BOTH "A" AND "B" VARIANTS!

Quote from October 25, 2008 in that topic...

"Going forward we should then assign "Type III A" and "Type III B" designations to them for identification purposes. So that a Type III marked with "Illinois Watch Co." signature is hereafter designated as a "Type III A" and those with "Illinois Watch" signature become known as the "Type III B" variant..."

So far as we know the 21-Jewel variant dial came only in the first design shown in this topic.

Like you, I find these dials and movement markings fascinating,

Lindell

Wink
 
IHC Life Member
Certified Watchmaker
Picture of Chris Abell
posted
The machine to do this fakery only costs a couple of thousand now and would quickly pay for itself so it is time to look closely at dials & plates, close examination will show poor alignment, bad fonts etc, for now but as time passes and machines get better...
 
IHC Member 1124
posted
Would anyone like to start a debate regarding the value of an IHC membership? Big Grin Thanks guys!


©harles
 
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