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      E-Mail Tony@lathes.co.uk 
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      American Watch Case Company Lathe

      Surviving from their inception in 1893 until 1939, the American Watch Case Company was based in Manhattan, New York,  and specialised in the manufacture of fine-quality gold pocket watch cases. Lathes must have been a sideline for the Company - or perhaps were a bought-in item - for only one is known to survive. Of around 3-inch centre height and 6  inches between centres the lathe was of unusual construction with a flat-topped instead of bevelled-edged bed and a compound slide rest with the cross slide (and not the top slide) appearing to be mounted on a swivel. The lever for the headstock collet closer was also in an unusual position - pivoting beneath the headstock pulley and connected to a bar that passed through the left-hand wall of the headstock casting.
      More details of this very interesting machine in due course. If you have an American watch Case Company lathe the writer would be very interested to hear from you.
      Rick Smedberg wites:
      Another Company with a similar name "Star Watch Case" had a factory in Ludington MI. I have seen photographs of its inside with a row of women sitting in front of these lathes with small round belts off the end going down through the floor. My mother and sister both worked there - but it was, apparently, shut down by the Swiss and then torn down to build the New Ludington Marina Project. I think the lathes were made for them for a special purpose, there is a similar one in the local antique store with some other watch tools from the watch case factory. I'm sure that most of the old machinery was scraped and the floors burned to recover the gold. In the early 20th century Ludington had lots of machine shops building machinery - so they may indeed have been manufactured locally.

      American Watch case Company lathe - less the original headstock pulley

      E-Mail Tony@lathes.co.uk 
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      American Watch Case Company Lathe
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