196. “It’s PETERSON Time”: the New Pocket Watch (and a glimpse of the POY 2020)

196. “It’s PETERSON Time”: the New Pocket Watch (and a glimpse of the POY 2020)

Throughout its history, Kapp & Peterson has issued a variety of branded accessories, from the original Patent “Compliment” 3-in-1 pipe tool to playing cards, pipe racks and ceramic pipe holders, ashtrays, mirrors, matches, tobacco and combination pouches, lapel pins, cuff links, pajamas (!) and coffee mugs. Some of these were available for sale and some promotional items, but as a dedicated Pete Geek, you should always be on the lookout. Just a few weeks ago, Peterson of Dublin (the shop on Nassau Street in Dublin) released a shop-only incredibly affordable pewter mechanical pocket watch that’s just way too much fun.

As a teenager I gave up on wrist-watches because I had small wrists and am left-handed. Wrist watches are made for right-handed people, and wearing one that spun around my writing wrist just didn’t work for me. Not surprisingly, when the nostaglia craze of the late 1970s hit, pocket watches made a bit of a comeback. For me, as a lover of everything “old-timey” from fountain pens to silent movies, they were a godsend. Soon I made a curious discovery: with a pocket watch, time remains a servant, hidden and out of the way until you need it, while a wrist watch works more like a manacle, making time your master.

I wouldn’t be surprised to discover that pipe smokers actually prefer pocket watches over wrist watches, but that’s probably only my wishful thinking—I still believe that all pipe smokers ought to be, by their very nature, contemplatives, men (or women) with a philosophical or reflective take on life, folk who know what easy does it means and act accordingly. Like I said, that’s just my own idea.

Thankfully, however, the gentlemen at the Nassau Street Peterson shop got the idea to work with Mullingar Pewter, a family business northwest from Dublin up the M4 in County Westmeath. Mullingar makes other, similar pocket watches in the style we used to call a “hunter’s” watch because it has a hinged front cover. It even has a beautiful works window in the back of the watch, where you can watch your watch at work.

As an old pocket-watch guy, I would have preferred to have the 12 not under the crown, like this one, but where the 9 is, simply because it makes it easier when opening the watch with the right thumb to get a look at the time. But that’s a minor quibble. I had forgotten how good it is to hear a mechanical watch tick. And to see the wheel spinning through the clear back cover—delightful!

The pewter chain is long enough to fit in your pants pocket and the clip fits quite tightly over your belt or the waist band of your pants. It’s not long enough to make “a statement”—I like my chains to hang down a bit so folk know I’m wearing a pocket watch—but I doubt these days if anyone would know that’s what it it’s connected to anyway.

At €24.39 ($28.36, under $40 including shipping), I know the works inside the watch aren’t impressive, but that big P on the front cover is all I need to see to know “it’s Peterson time.” You can order yours through Smokingpipes.eu HERE.

It’s also about time for the POY 2020 / 9BC homage to appear. It should be available in the US in the next few weeks. Here’s a glimpse, courtesy of Kopp, Peterson’s German distributor, that I thought you’d like to see:

 

And speaking of old-timey, recently I’ve discovered some great old Petes from an eBayseller new to me, Pens, Pipes & More, bearrs7. Milos “Mike” Beara, who runs the store from Belgrade, Serbia, offers an array of vintage marques and he does great restoration work at outstanding prices. The wait time here in the US isn’t bad, under three weeks, and you can watch it as it makes it way to you courtesy of the USPS’s tracking service. Here’s photos of just three of great Petes that have been on his site in the past two months:

A Kildare 02 XL339, c. 1978, with a well so deep I had to use pipe cleaners.

This is the never-seen specialty XL301 from c. 1978 with a massive 22mm-wide chamber. Too big for me!

And here is a Killarney 02BB. I have yet to determine why some oom pauls are “02” and some “02BB.”

Mike has a deep and fascinating inventory and he and his father do fantastic work. You can listen to Brian Levine chat with him on a recent episode of Pipes Magazine Radio Show (#413).

“Mike” Beara
(photo courtesy Pipes Magazine Radio Show)

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Jorgen Jensen
Jorgen Jensen
3 months ago

Good morning. About 45 years ago I had a pocket watch. Good bye watch
when I threw my trouses on a hard bathroom floor.
The pajamas were sold to people from Japan Brian told me.

Linwood
Linwood
3 months ago

Have finally come out of the fog, and the extended house repairs to take time to open – what great surprises! I would have snatched that xl339 out from under you in a desperate minute! Another one missed…BUT the 9BC is coming! Thanks ever for informing! Pocket watch, hmm – might I be old enough? – but you did mention that it’s mechanical – not the darn battery things!

Jim Vetrovec
Jim Vetrovec
3 months ago

Couldn’t help myself. I roared off and ordered the pocket watch. Hope it gets here alright. You’re right the price is in Euro’s. Hope they don’t have trouble making the conversion to US bucks.

Bob Cuccaro /TLIP
Bob Cuccaro /TLIP
3 months ago

I love my pocket watch!!! Make sure to rewind it throughout the course of the day so it doesn’t die over night 🙂

paul
paul
3 months ago

link to watch not working?? Have they sold out all ready,no watch found if search used

paul
paul
2 months ago
Reply to  Mark Irwin

thanks back in stock now at 30 euro ,just ordered one

paul
paul
2 months ago
Reply to  paul

watch arrived but unfortunately didnt work.I e-mailed Smokingpipes.eu and received a reply offering exchange,refund or store credit within minutes of them opening for business after the weekend.i requested an exchange.
great customer service ,just hope this one is ok

DOUG OWEN
DOUG OWEN
3 months ago

Hi Mark: I just heard from my Peterson representative at Laudisi and he is trying to obtain some of these watches for the US market. I am going to visit Beara’s website after I finish this communication so thanks a lot for what will probably cost me and all the other Pete geeks out here another major hit to our bank balances. LOL Take care and seriously, thanks all these wonderful adventures through the land of Peterson lore.

Marlowe
Marlowe
3 months ago

A pocket watch! I love them and own two. One, a turn of the century gold Waltham which is pretty unique- I have never found another quite like it, and a silver later 1800’s model that winds with a key from the back. The silver one is a bit larger than I like and heavy.I’ll check out the Peterson’s when they restock.

John Schantz
John Schantz
3 months ago

Hmm, What do you know. I have a small collection of pocket watches also. A Gold hunter cased 1884 Columbus lever set sidewinder that was my Grandfathers then my Fathers (railroaders they were) now mine. A smaller Sterling Silver hunters cased 1908 Elgin side winder, and an old Viking (Swiss?) Nickel open face top winder. Like you said, sounds like these things are common similar interests among “us types”? Are antique straight razors and “fancy” pens prevalent as well 🙂 I just saw the first POY 2020 on EBay a few minutes ago.

Marlowe
Marlowe
3 months ago
Reply to  John Schantz

Hey John,

I think it’s a good observation about us pipers. Maybe it also has something to do with an particular age group? I have always been interested in trying a straight razor, ( my wife increased the life insurance policy when I bought one several years back – a vintage Boker King Cutter) but haven’t gotten around to having it professionally honed for use. My good pal, a pipe smoker found 3 NIB Gillette Fat Boy razors at a flee market and bought all three for $25 ea. He gifted me with one. He also enjoys vintage fountain pens.

John Schantz
John Schantz
3 months ago
Reply to  Marlowe

Yes, I know, this is a bit off-topic. Marlow, I have about 30 straight razors, the one I use most is an antique Friedrich Wilhelm Engels 5/8ths Spanish point with horn scales. It’s old, so old that the handle spacer is made of lead. I refurbish and sharpen/hone them myself. One thing I really like about a good straight razor…they will take off a full beard in one pass. I have a personal motto in refurbishing/repairing tobacco pipes and razors and other antiques. “Saving History One (Pipe/Razor/Tool/etc.) At A Time”. Just a quick tip on using the Boker with the… Read more »

John Schantz
John Schantz
3 months ago

Hmm, What do you know. I have a small collection of pocket watches also. A Gold hunter cased 1884 Columbus lever set sidewinder that was my Grandfathers then my Fathers (railroaders they were) now mine. A smaller Sterling Silver hunters cased 1908 Elgin side winder, and an old Viking (Swiss?) Nickel open face top winder. Like you said, sounds like these things are common similar interests among “us types”? Are antique straight razors and “fancy” pens prevalent as well 🙂
PS-I just saw the first POY 2020 on EBay a few minutes ago.

James
James
3 months ago

Is the XL301 different from the 301? I recently acquired a black sandblast 301 via an uncontested eBay bid for the starting bid value at $40. It is visually identical to the one pictured but is stamped 301 and does not include the XL stamp.

Paul Dorion
Paul Dorion
2 months ago

I am trying desperately to order the Peterson pocket watch but the link seems to be nonexistent I really would like that watch as a birthday gift for my great grandson. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

paul
paul
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul Dorion

in stock again

Gianluigi
Gianluigi
2 months ago

Hi Mark, thank you for this nice article. Hope to meet you soon in Dublin.