South Bend 16S 17J lever set (LS) adj grade 298 pocket watch #516209, impressive nickel split plate movement with a fancy plate layout, screw-down jewel settings and an unusual bar and crosshatch damascene design, double-sunk (DS) porcelain enamel dial with bold roman numerals and a subsidiary seconds register has some faint hairlines, fancy blue steel hands, yellow gold filled (YGF) South Bend "Panama" model screw back & bezel (SB&B) case with engine turning around the blank round monogram shield and a French-style bow, case is showing normal even wear with a small bit of brass on the front bezel and frame, unfortunately the back cover has been cross-threaded at some point; we have smoothed the case threads some but if the cover is screwed down flush with the frame it can be very difficult to turn it back, measures approx. 49mm in diameter x 62mm long x 15mm thick (crystal included). A high quality South Bend in very good condition, perfect to carry everyday!
- Company: South Bend
- Jewels: 17J
- Setting/Movement Type:
- Adjustments: 1-3 positions
- Model/Grade: grade 298
- Serial #: 516209
- Movement Finish: nickel
- Dial Material: porcelain enamel
- Case Style:
Gold Filled - Yellow
South Bend "Panama" model
49mm (1.93 inches)
Case Length, bow included:
- Crystal Material: plastic
- Year Made: 1908-1909
The South Bend Watch Company was in business from 1902 until 1929. Originally the Studebaker
family in 1902 and was moved to South Bend, Indiana. The watches produced under the South Bend name started their serial numbers after the end of the Columbus numbers, 380,500, and the company produced approximately 900,000 watches before it succumbed to the downturn of the Depression and closed in 1929.
As an additional resource, we've posted a Serial Number Production List
which includes information for South Bend serial numbers and dates of manufacture.
The NAWCC also has a about the company.
out of Columbus, Ohio, the company was purchased by members of the
This watch is in good running condition, unless otherwise noted in the description. This means that on receipt, pending any item-specific running conditions noted in the description, you can expect the watch to be winding and setting properly and to run smoothly while keeping reasonable time. We consider "reasonable time" to meet these basic guidelines:
- Railroad Grade Watches will be keeping +/- 5 minutes per day
- Pocket and Wrist Watches with 15 or more jewels will be keeping +/- 10 minutes per day
- All key wind watches and watches with 14 or fewer jewels will be keeping +/- 15 minutes per day
The above guideline is the lowest standard in which we would ship out a watch, however in most cases, you will see much better timekeeping. Most of our watches have been in storage for many years, so if you plan on carrying/wearing them everyday, you should consider having them cleaned and oiled soon, and then once a year thereafter to keep them in top running condition. If the watches will be for occasional use or display, they should be cleaned and serviced every 3 to 5 years depending on use.
We do have a professional watchmaker that does all of our cleaning and repair work for us. To have your watch serviced before shipping, simply add this Cleaning/Service Agreement
to your shopping basket. The cleaning and timing service is $95, and depending on the time of the year, has a turnaround time of 1 to 3 weeks.
Please note that we provide this service in addition to the listed purchase price of our watches. If you do purchase this option and later decide to return the watch, this fee is non-refundable.
Unlike modern quartz watches, most vintage watches need daily winding in order to keep the watch functioning for timekeeping. Additionally, there are a number of different ways to set the time other than simply pulling the crown away from the watch body. We are happy to provide an overview of each of the different setting types on our "How To Use" page
, where we also provide information on proper winding techniques for each style and some suggestions for the proper long term care and storage of your watch.