[ Professor David Smyth Torrens, Irish horologist; Robert Gardner, clockmaker. ] 36 items relating to horology and chronometers, including a booklet of manuscript tables, apparently by Torrens, showing tests (of Vacheron Constantine chronometers?).

David Smyth Torrens (1897-1967), horologist, Professor of Medicine, Trinity College, Dublin [ Robert Gardner (1851-1931), Scottish clockmaker; Vacheron Constantin of Switzerland; Leroy & Cie, Paris ]
Publication details: 
[ Brassus, Switzerland; Paris, France. ] Between 1912 and 1935.
SKU: 19899

36 items, in fair overall condition, with some evidence of age and wear. ONE: Manuscript tables of trials, presumably in Torrens's autograph, apparently of Vacheron Constantin chronographs. 8pp. in landscape 8vo, with a final page folding out to large 4to. With additions in red ink and pencil. On nine leaves, wrapped in grey paper and stitched together. In fair condition, aged and worn. On front cover in pencil: ''Dr. Torrens | Dr. Torrens'. Dated at head of first page 25 April 1912, with heading: 'Best Vacheron trial movt. | Escapement cleared;' and the page divided into four sections, dealing with: 'Bal. Spring', balance, mainspring; vibrations. The first section begins: 'Bal. spring – terminal adjusted to my own designed one copied from published drawing Fig. [blank] | exactly ½ turn of outer coil; mark between the pins. Develops well' Containing a seven-page table of 'Preliminary' trials, followed by the fold-out page of trials proper. The preliminary trials are headed: 'From April 25 to May 1 brought to approximate meantime | a/c gains 1 sec. In 24h. | Regulator rate | Compensation trials have preceded this | Trials for isochronism. Middle temperature'. The preliminary trials are divided into seven columns: Date; Time; Duration; Vibrations; State; Rate in 24h; Notes. A typical note reads: 'Leave for the present and try again when mercurial regulator has steadied low | black figures in sketch are showing -1.0 as they ought to because rate of small reg. Is +1.0'. Another note may provide a clue: 'Mr. Wright looked at it.' The table of 'Trails proper' is divided into the same seven columns, and gives information for the date range 22 July to 7 September. TWO: Printed pamphlet in French, titled 'Iinvitation a L'Exposition de Chronometres de Marine du 7 au 15 Decembre 1935', produced to celebrate the '150e Anniversaire de Pierre Le Roy le createur de la chronometrie'. 8pp., 16mo. On shiny art paper. In company envelope addressed to 'Monsieur Robert Gardner | 20. Lloyd Square | London | W. C'. THREE: Black and white photograph of the movement of a pocket watch, mounted like a carte de visite on 10 x 6 cm card. With oval stamp on reverse: 'PHOTOGRAPHIE | A. REYMOND | BRASSUS'. Aged and worn, with rust marks from paper clip. Accompanied by a duplicated copy of a worn page from the journal of the Federatio Horlogere Suisse, carrying a photographic reproduction of the same movement, accompanied by a diagram, and text stating that the mechanism was conceived and executed for the first time in 1896 by 'L: A: au Brassus'. FOUR: Thirty-two miscellaneous black and white photographs, each showing the movement of a pocket watch. Ranging in size from 12 x 16.5 cm to 8 x 6 cm. Some wear and damage, but the collection in fair overall condition. In envelope with word 'Repeaters' in pencil on front. See image on my website. Notes: a. "Vacheron Constantin, the oldest manufacturer of fine watches"; b. See Peter Froggatt and Alun C. Davies, "David Smyth Torrens: physiologist and horologist" (Hermathena, No. 140 (Summer 1986), pp. 11-31).