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Shoelaces make the perfect pocket-watch chain
One must not drop a mechanical watch onto the floor as it can suffer severe internal damage when it hits the ground.
It is therefore a long tradition to carry a pocket watch on a chain and attach it to the belt or to a button hole in the jacket.
A metal chain rubs slightly over the case of the watch when
you walk or move. This is not a problem when the chain is made of a soft metal such
as copper, brass or silver and the watch case is made of hard steel or crome steel. Some Russian
Molnija watches cases are e.g made from crome steel.
Most of the old Swiss and American pocket watches are not just watches but as well jewelery and have gold filled case. This is usually
a brass base material with a thick layer of gold rolled on top (like a sandwich).
This thick layer of gold allowed the manufacturers to warrant the watch cases for
20 or more year.
Gold is however a very soft metal and any metal chain banging constantly against the
case will scratch and damage it over the years. I have therefore long been looking for a chain that is
convenient and more gentle.
Thin shoelaces 30inch [76cm] long make perfect pocket watch chains
Thin shoelaces are the perfect chain replacement! The material of good quality shoelaces is
such that a knot can easily be tied and it will hold. At the same time it is
much more gentile to the watch. The above picture shows an old Elgin watch. This watch
is almost 100 years old and still keeping time. A nice old watch that I want use and
preserve at the same time.
I tie the watch at one end to the shoelace and I make a loop at the other end. The belt of my pats goes through the loop and I carry the watch in my pant's pocket.
I find that shoelaces are much better than chains even for watches with steel cases.
Ordinary thin nylon strings are not usable because knots tied to such a string will open them self over time when
there is no tension on the string. Thick strings or laces are not usable because
they get in the way when you want to wind the watch.
© 2004-2023 Guido Socher