Always Know the Correct Time With a Collectible Railroad Pocket Watch

Railroad pocket watches had to be accurate to keep trains on time, and you can stay on time when you use an antique railroad pocket watch. These watches, generally made after 1900, often feature a push-lever setting, easy-to-read numbers, and a beautiful design. When you shop for reasonably priced railroad pocket watches for sale on eBay, you can find many stunning examples.

Iconic railroad pocket watches

There are several manufacturers of old railroad pocket watches and wristwatches that you may want to consider, including:

  • Ball Illinois - You may want to consider a Ball Illinois antique railroad pocket watch, like the model 810. This lever-mechanism, 60-hour watch features a jewel flower case and 23 jewels.
  • Elgin National Watch Company - For more than 100 years, starting in 1864, Elgin National Watch Company made B.W. Raymond model watches. Their Raymond watches usually contained 17 jewels.
  • Waltham - This American manufacturer made many antique railroad pocket watches for sale. While some of their models had open faces, others came in intricately engraved cases.
  • Hampden - If you are looking for a cheap antique railroad watch, then this company's 21-jewel New Railway watch may be for you.
  • Hamilton Watch Co. - This company's top-of-the-line watches, like their 960, 970, and 990 watches, met most railroad standards.
What sizes were approved in Union Pacific pocket watches?

A Union Pacific pocket watch had to be either a size 16 or a size 18. Most other railroad companies had the same requirements. A size 16 watch has a movement measuring 1.766 inches across, while a size 18 watch's movement measures 1.70 inches across. Only the clock movement's size is measured, and these watches come in various size cases. The measurement should be taken on the dial side of the movement.

Factors to consider when looking at railroad pocket watches for sale

There are several different things you may want to think about when looking at used antique railroad pocket watches, including:

  • Adjustments - Many collectors put a premium on railroad pocket watches that have more adjustments.
  • Jewels - Most manufacturers put more jewels in their higher-end railroad pocket watches. You may find options with up to 25 jewels available on eBay.
  • Brand name - Some brands were known for making extremely accurate old train pocket watches that are still running strong.
  • Alterations - Generally, you may want a watch in its original condition unless you want to wear the watch as a wristwatch.