Update on an old friend

Remember this Chronometre Royal desk watch?  I had been working with a very competent woodworker-restorer to recreate the distinctive burl wood stand and the results were received just this week.

Aside from locating a choice piece of Canadian maple, the wood had to sit for several months to dry.  Measurements were made from a photograph and, when ready, the wood was cut and shaped.  After assembly, a classic french-polish finish was applied with shellac, covered by a final layer of wax.  I'm very pleased with the results!

Update on an old friend

Update on an old friend

Update on an old friend

The Annales of Vacheron & Constantin reveals an interesting sidebar to this timepiece.  I'll leave Charles Constantin to reveal the story from his journal entry from 1937: "One idea would lead to the next, and in order to look for a method of using the 300 movements of 22-lignes that had been prepared for Brazil and had not been sold since 1914, I came up with the idea of creating some office clocks with four knobs, on a wooden base, reminding one of the navy chronometers.  The wholesale price was fixed at 150 Francs - and they were sold quickly."
Looks Absolutely fantastic
12/09/2012 - 06:04
Great work. A real beauty. Best, Joe
Beautiful desk watch
12/09/2012 - 06:11
Love the way you take care of it and restore it! Beautiful watch and very rare I am sure Best regards Robin Wong
Much appreciated Robin nt
12/09/2012 - 19:50
nt
Thanks Joe :-) nt
12/09/2012 - 19:49
nt
Woah! The wood work is fantastic and complements your watch superbly!
12/09/2012 - 10:56
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Thanks Alex, it was worth the wait. (nt)
12/09/2012 - 19:47
nt
Dean, your friend looks good!...
12/09/2012 - 13:31
A beautifully grained piece of Maple is always a great starting pointyes. No question - this was worth the wait! Tony
A tactile medium
12/09/2012 - 19:45
I love wood Tony; its amazing how much our finger-tips can tell that our eyes would simply pass over.  Any interesting bits of woodwork that you'd care to share?
There are so many talents ...
12/09/2012 - 14:10
I am envious here , you are enjoying the hobby much more than I do . Haha ! I must stay your restoration is so tasteful , you have a good eye and taste ! Enjoy and congrats on a fantastic table watch !
There are so many talents ...
12/09/2012 - 14:10
I am envious here , you are enjoying the hobby much more than I do . Haha ! I must stay your restoration is so tasteful , you have a good eye and taste ! Enjoy and congrats on a fantastic table watch !
LOL, a double dose of accolades!
12/09/2012 - 19:42
Much appreciated smiley.  If you make a project in the New Year to do a story about something V&C, you may be surprised how much fun you will have.  Of course, all the resources available in the Lounge will be at your disposal.
Another fantastic project, Dean! I am amazed with your passion towards
12/09/2012 - 15:56
all things VC Bravo, your new stand is looking great!!!
Thanks Radek
12/09/2012 - 19:37
and here's to your inner "&" passion as well yes
Congratulations, Dean.
12/09/2012 - 18:39
What a wonderful desk watch.Your "woodworker-restorer" has indeed done a good job. The wood stand is gorgeous. It's a good idea that the watch can be turned both ways. Two watches for the price of one smiley. I hope that the beauty of the movement, the dial and the wood stand, standing on your working desk, will bring you even more inspiration for your upcoming articles.  One question: what book is this line from  "One idea would lead to the next, and in order to look for a method of using the 300 movements of 22-lignes that had been prepared for Brazil and had not been sold since 1914, I came up with the idea of creating some office clocks with four knobs, on a wooden base, reminding one of the navy chronometers.  The wholesale price was fixed at 150 Francs - and they were sold quickly" ?  Can't seem to find any references in my books and I do believe I have them all but one can only hope I have missed out on one. 
Annales Vacheron et Constantin
12/09/2012 - 19:34
Charles Constantin, great grand-nephew of Francois Constantin and a director with V&C, created an anthology of V&C's history from the company archives and his personal journals.  You are probably familiar with the selection published as the foreword to Antiquorum's Art of Vacheron Constantin catalog.  This quotation is from a chapter not included in the auction catalog.  A complete copy of the Annales de la Maison d'Horlogerie Vacheron & Constantin 1785-1938 can be found in the Bibliothèque de Genève.
Thanks.....
12/09/2012 - 19:43
smiley
Beauty Dean! That Canadian Maple really sparkles
12/09/2012 - 20:51
with all that sugar in the wood. Nice work and congratulations. Best, Tim
In a word, "sweet"! Thanks Tim :-) nt
12/11/2012 - 00:22
nt
Re: Update on an old friend
12/10/2012 - 00:45
Avery nice hunk of what looks like curly burl maple. Not so easy to work with on a lathe because of the shifting grain patterns, but very well done and a real complement to the clock. Congrats to the wood-worker too! It does make a very beautiful desk clock. With the french polish technique, careful you don't get any liquid on it, although the wax may provide some protection. Joseph
It was your suggestion Joseph
12/11/2012 - 00:24
In my original post you suggested french polishing as an appropriate finish and my woodworker agreed.  He mostly restores vintage furniture so was well versed on period finishes.  Thanks for the tip!
It's a lovely result!
12/11/2012 - 01:59
And in addition, yours is made from one piece whereas the original looks to be two sections fitted together (much easier to make). Probably mahogany or more likely cherry. But the burl maple is outstanding!
Great work great patience...
12/10/2012 - 01:29
...great result !
Who has more fun Berny
12/11/2012 - 00:25
then us vintage types angel