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hartley353

Military stopwatch.

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I have just acquired a stop watch, the case back has engraved a broad arrow with the letter F on the shaft, over the number 161.  Then T.P.  1/10.  A web search found a number of enquiries from others over the years none had received a definitive answer.  Any one got a clue.

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Single action Stopwatch 1/10th split second, T.P. = Time Piece. I would think F=a specific regiment/ troop  and 161 the issue number. :thumbsup:

From Google searching 1/10 minute military stopwatch...........

41558328025_827c7afdc8_o.jpgst211005_1 by Paul, on Flickr

Edited by brummie1875
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After further reading the Pheon with integrated letter F and numbers ranging from 161-164 appear on many makes of watch but only Stopwatches as far as I can see, including 1/10 and 1/5 variants.

.                     ^^^^ (he means Googling) 

Still no diffinitive answer though sorry.

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Thank you brummie. I also noted that series of numbers 160,16i, 162, 163, So you have added one more. A puzzle indeed.

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On ‎30‎/‎05‎/‎2018 at 10:31, hartley353 said:

2125316912_Stopwatch.JPG.47e2fd7ba7afaf25218922c0e43c6444.JPG1554622157_Reverseofstopwatch.JPG.b5196ca02d263d0e9ed5d6826f26143c.JPG

      nice stop watch!  had one apart?  they have a mvt. quite similar to a pocket watch.  vin

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On ‎30‎/‎05‎/‎2018 at 23:10, hartley353 said:

Thank you brummie. I also noted that series of numbers 160,16i, 162, 163, So you have added one more. A puzzle indeed.

Found a 158 Elgin now too. And a Waltham, which makes me wander if the F in the arrow denotes Britsh issued Foreign watch.

Elgin.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/i/253604197993?chn=ps&adgroupid=48771894937&rlsatarget=pla-399861008851&abcId=1130086&adtype=pla&merchantid=6995734&poi=&googleloc=9045491&device=c&campaignid=1030307890&crdt=0

Waltham.

https://mullardantiques.co.uk/shop-products/vintage-clocks/ww2-waltham-british-issue-stopwatch-for-spares-repairs

Minerva.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Military-1-5-second-C-VC-2530-stopwatch-ww2-working-no-glass-/202318331002?nma=true&si=4mLaDlSDbIK5NdzGs88BgdcJ04k%3D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

Another Waltham.

https://www.ima-usa.com/products/original-u-s-wwii-waltham-1-5th-sec-tp-british-issue-stopwatch-military-timer?variant=26170666181

As you can see from this site, entering 'Stopwatch' into the search box produces several but only the 'british issue' watch has the pheon and F as do the other examples above. "British Issue" + Foreign made Watch?

I don't know for sure it's best guess atm but at 1am Friday morning I'm knackered and the plumber is coming in the morning .:swoon:

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Hi,

 

New to the forum, stumbled across this on one of my regular trawls for info and thought I may be able to bring something to the discussion. I have built up quite a large collection of military watches, including stopwatches, now over the years and the majority of them I have stripped down and rebuilt. So I have a pretty good understanding of the technical aspects of ‘what makes them tick’ and have also noted some observations from working with them. I stress though that I’m an amateur! So that’s a bit about me…

 

I own several of the stopwatches marked up with the ‘F’ merged into the military pheon, alongside various numbers ranging from 159 to 163. These come from different manufacturers (Smiths, Elgin, Lemania) and I also have been flummoxed by the lack of info available on them. However, one of mine - a Smiths marked VC/2530 – came with its original box stating it was provided to the ‘M of S’. After a bit of debate with myself I decided this most likely referred to the Ministry of Supply. I may be completely wrong but it seems to fit. The M of S was established in 1939 to provision the British armed forces, with the notable exceptions of the RAF and Navy who were provisioned by the Air Ministry and Admiralty respectively. The Smiths-made VC/2530 watches that I own are identical, bar the references on the reverse, to the Smiths-made Air Ministry 6B/221 stopwatches, examples of which I also own. The Admiralty did not issue, as far as I know, an equivalent stopwatch with a navigation dial marked out in degrees like this.

 

Brummie’s idea that the ‘F’ may have meant Foreign-made is interesting but in my opinion not correct, based on the fact that Smiths were English, and also that almost all GSTPs and ATPs were also foreign-made and British issued, but not marked up with the ‘F’. I’m also not convinced that T.P. means timepiece, for a couple of reasons. Most people agree that the letters ‘TP’ in ‘GSTP’ refer to Temporary or Trade Pattern. If this is correct, it seems unlikely to me that the army-issued wristwatches marked ‘ATP’ and the stopwatches marked ‘TP’ would then refer to Timepiece and not the same Temporary or Trade Pattern. Lastly, Timepiece is written as one word and as far as I am aware always has been, why would it be abbreviated to two letters? I put these thoughts out there for debate, I’m not asserting they are correct.

 

So, turning back to the letter ‘F’, my take on this is that those stopwatches marked up with the ‘F’ merged into the pheon were provided by the manufacturer (Smiths, Waltham, Elgin, Lemania etc) to the Ministry of Supply for onward provision to the Army. Why an ‘F’ – no idea, if it is even an ‘F’ at all, but I’ve read that it could refer to ‘Fire Control’ as in direction & range finding for guns. Stopwatches provided to the RAF and Navy did not have the 'F' as they were provided by the Air Ministry and Admiralty respectively.

 

I hope this generates some debate and thought on this as I’d love to have my theorising confirmed by someone! There must somewhere be Ministry documents from the WW2 period that exist to confirm this.

 

Best wishes,

 

Mark.

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As a stopwatch collector myself, may I thank everyone who has contributed to this thread. A most interesting conundrum.

When I look at this particular watch, I am struck by the hands in particular, which are quite distinctive and may assist in identifying the maker/producer of the stopwatch. I also feel that T.P. is not likely to mean, "Time Piece." It is frustrating that the stopwatch evidently bears no country of origin designation or marks that might relate to a manufacturer. Looking at the piece just from a photograph, it seems to be very much a post-War item and if one could close in more accurately on its date of manufacture, where it was made and by whom might become clearer.:)

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Hi again, looking at the hands in your photo, the minute recorder and seconds recorder are different. It’s possible one has been replaced at some point in its life, possibly the seconds hand as it looks too long to me. The minute hand looks like a Smiths design. If you pop the back off it I may be able to identify the movement?

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