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MAKER: Invented by Herman Haefliger

c. 1920


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DESCRIPTION: This is a small microscope with fittings built in to the foot to facilitate the positioning of parts of watches and other objects while under magnification. It arises from the C-shaped lacquered brass foot on a single black-painted pillar. The microscope can be adjusted left or right and has adjustible inclination. The foot is signed 'PAT. MAY 18, OTHER PAT­S PENDING, MADE IN U.S.A.' on the left side of the foot, and on the right side 'WATCHMAKER'S DOCUMENT.' Word 'DOCUMENT' is in a lighter impression and appears to have been added later than the first word. The focus is by rack and pinion from the knurled knob found only on the right side. There is a single fixed ocular and objective. Arising from the end of the foot on one side is a device with two points to allow suspending a gear or balance wheel, while the device on the other side is designed to accomodate watches of various diameters. In the original patent specifications, a third form of object holder was also available.


patentThis instrument was an attempt to make it easier for a watchmaker to study defects and imperfections in watches and parts of watches. Patented in 1918, it was, according to the patentee, usual for watchmakers to use a simple magnifier of lower power for such a purpose and his 'invention' combined the microscope and the holders into one integrated piece of equipment, making it easier for the user to study and leaving both hands free to maker repairs. It was patented in May 1918. By this time, stereo microscopes were readily available and could be used for this purpose, yet they were likely much more expensive and the fittings herein provided were usually stand alone items. Herman Haefliger was a Swiss citizen who was at the time of the patent, residing in Denver, Colorado.