1930s 9ct gold early waterproof vintage JW Benson watch
An early cushion 9ct gold vintage JW Benson waterproof watch. The case measures 32 x 32 mm. The case is signed F.B. (Francois Borgel), Patent Applied For, hallmarked Glasgow 1932 and numbered. The Swiss movement hinging out from the case with another hinge securing it under the bezel, is adjusted with 16 jewels and has a protective dust cover. The white enamel dial has black open Arabic numerals, with a subsidiary seconds dial. The dial is signed JW Benson, London above the centre.
A rare early example of a ‘waterproof’ watch designed by Francois Borgel and retailed by JW Benson. A striking similarity to the cushion Rolex Oyster watch of the same period!
Francois Borgel designed these cases and patented them in October 1891 in Geneva, with a Swiss Brevet or patent number 4001. They were then patented in London in November 1891 with patent number 20422. The Borgel case was an early design to try to make wrist watches resistant to dust and moisture. It is a one piece case, where the movement and bezel are mounted on a threaded ring which screws into the case from the front. Borgel cases continued to be manufactured after his death in 1912, initially by his daughter Louisa, and later by Taubert & Fils. Taubert & Fils was a reknown Geneva-based case makers and specialized in water-resistant cases.