Contact MeCopyright © David Boettcher 2005 - 2023 all rights reserved.
My grandfather's 1918 and grandmother's 1917 Rolex wristwatches. My grandfather's watch is on one of my Type B straps. Click on the picture for an enlarged view.
Hi, I'm David. I am always happy to hear if you have comments on this web site, or questions about a watch, or about British or Swiss hallmarks.
I live in Cheshire, England. I am a Chartered Engineer with a background in Nuclear Power Station design and construction, nuclear safety and systems analysis, and also Information Technology. I am interested in history, engineering and technology generally. I got interested in early wristwatches when I inherited my grandfather's and grandmother's vintage 1917/1918 Rolex wristwatches, shown in the picture here.
I needed a strap so that I could wear my grandfather's watch, but I couldn't find one so I had some made, but in the process of researching what a strap should look like for an early fixed wire lug wristwatch. I got so interested in old watches that I now have a significant collection of early wristwatches, I have learnt to service and restore my own watches, and I write about the history and technology of watches and the watch industry.
In January 2019 I was made a Fellow of the British Horological Institute (FBHI). I am also a member of the Antiquarian Horological Society (AHS) and the American National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors (NAWCC). I am particularly interested in early wristwatches, especially those with water resistant features. In addition to the research published on this web site, I have also had a number of articles published in the NAWCC Watch & Clock Bulletin and the British Horological Institute's Horological Journal.
22 May 2023 Some new straps have been placed in stock today, mainly with sterling silver buckles but also some with standard buckles, so if you have been waiting for one of these grab it now before it goes. Orders for stock items are being processed as normal but orders for custom made items are not being taken at the moment.
Comments and Questions
If you want to ask a technical question about a watch, or about a hallmark, I am happy to try to answer.
I do not offer appraisals and I don't give valuations – if that is what you want, ask an auctioneer, or try earshing on eBay for similar items that have sold recently - there is an option in the left hand menu for “Show Only: Sold Items”.
Before emailing, please read the points below.
To avoid overloading my email inbox there are limits on the number and size of images: send no more than three sharp and clear photographs taken in daylight! These must be high resolution but no more than 10MB in total. If you ignore this and send lots of large images, I will not receive your email.
Before Emailing . . .
- I am interested in the history and technology of old watches not their value, please don't ask for valuations, ask an auctioneer.
- I can't usually help with modern (post-WW2) watches, or electrical, battery or quartz watches.
- If the watch case has marks that you think might be hallmarks, start at this page: Case Marks
- If there is no obvious maker's name or brand, start at this page: Who Made My Watch?
- The meaning of the letters F.S.A.R, or A.F.R.S, on a movement is explained at Regulators
- If you have an English watch and are puzzled about how to see the movement, see English Lever Bolt and Joint Cases.
- Send only three photos of the face, the inside of the outer case back, and the movement.
- Don't send partial images, I need to see the whole context. Do not send more than three (3) images.
- Images must be detailed, sharp and clear (in focus) taken in daylight avoiding direct sunlight.
- Hold the camera far enough away that it can focus on the subject. Click this link about Taking Close Ups.
- Many anonymous Swiss ébauches (movements) look very similar, to start please read Movement Identification.
Make sure any photographs are sharp and clear, say the country where you live, or where the watch was purchased, and please make sure you have read all the points above before emailing me questions at .
I usually won't reply over a weekend, but if you don't get a reply within a few working days, check your junk or spam folders, and make sure that you followed the points above. Please refer people to this section rather than just pass on my email address. I may add interesting details of images to the website to help others; if you don't want this, please let me know.
I am happy to answer questions for free, but if I have answered a question or you find the information on this web site useful and would like to express your appreciation, then of course I am happy to receive a donation. You can use the PayPal button below to make a donation.
Watch Care and Servicing
A watch is a complicated and delicate machine and it needs cleaning and oiling every so often to reduce wear and prolong life, even if it appears to be working perfectly well. Read more about this on my page Looking after a mechanical watch. There is also advice on that page about how to find a reliable watch repairer to service and repair your watch. Don't rely on qualifications alone, a certificate only shows that someone put in enough effort at one time to pass a test, it doesn't tell you about their approach to looking after a customer and their treasured watch. Do some background research.
CopyrightCopyright © David Boettcher 2005 - 2023 all rights reserved.
Some people seem to feel that anything published on the internet can be copied freely; this is not true. Everything belongs to its author or creator and, except where noted otherwise, all the text and images on this website are my copyright. This extends to images that I have obtained from original sources such as adverts, patents etc. that are out of copyright where I have found or scanned the original image, edited it to remove defects and make it clearer, rearranged elements to make it more suitable for a web page, coloured parts for easier understanding, etc., etc. My copyright is the resulting unique image.
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You are welcome to use limited quotes or an image from my web site for non-commercial use (including blogs and private eBay listings) so long as you include a statement Information / Image from VintageWatchstraps.com © David Boettcher. If you use an image this must be in a caption of the picture.
For any commercial use please contact me first. I use low resolution images on the web site because they are appropriate for computer screens and reduce loading time. These are not suitable for print medium and higher resolution versions may be available on request.
If you have any comments or questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch via my Contact Me page.
Copyright © David Boettcher 2005 - 2023 all rights reserved. This page updated May 2023. W3CMVS. Back to the top of the page.