Weather Watch Pocket Barometer by Negretti & Zambra No 16004 c1915
Weather watch pocket barometer with 2” tri-concentric silvered dial, the outer section calibrated in inches of mercury with a range from 28″–31″, at 29½” marked “Sea Level,” the lower portion with settings for “Direction of Wind,” the inner rear dial with letter codes visible through three semi-curved rectangular windows cut into the centre forward dial positioned at 3, 6 and 9 o’clock, further marked with altitude correction scale “+/- 500FT,” “N&Z” monogram, “Patent 6276/15,” serial “No 16004,” and signed in full by the maker “Negretti & Zambra.”
Fine blued-steel pointer set beneath bevelled glass. Rotating bezel, enabling setting of wind direction and causing interpretation codes to alter in the three windows. The case circumference with altitude correction scale from 0 -3,000ft; rear section may be turned causing the whole movement to turn within the case, thus altering the position of the pointer relative to the dial. Verso of the case with compensation screw set at 8 o’clock and letter codes set to forecasts, also included upon a celluloid disc fitted to the inside of the leather case. The centre dial rotated via the crown. Suspension ring. The movement driven by a single capsule with bimetallic compensation. All contained within its original dark ox-blood Moroccan leather over wood and green velvet lined case.
The dial in near perfect condition, the case retaining virtually all its original lacquered finish, the leather case in exceptional condition. Crisp overall and functioning correctly in all respects.
To use the weather watch, first note whether the barometric pressure is steady, rising or falling. Then set the station altitude using the circumferentially-marked scale and rotating the rear of the case aligning the index point the correct station height. Note the direction of wind by rotating the bezel so that the arrow for wind aligns with the correct compass cardinals. Finally, read from the window marked “Fall” “Steady” or “Rise” as appropriate – the letter shown can be then related to the forecaster messages on the rear of the barometer or on the celluloid disc.
Marketed as an especially sensitive aneroid barometer, the movement was manufactured to provide a greater degree of accuracy than standard, and of interest is the extremely short but clearly very effective bimetallic temperature compensation on the main connecting lever. At the point of purchase, this was a substantially more expensive instrument than standard pocket barometers.
These instruments are seldom seen and have achieved a near cult status amongst collectors. Certainly produced as early as 1915 and probably remaining in production into the 1930s, modest numbers were produced. There is no doubt as to the collectability of this fascinating weather watch.
Dimensions: 2½” wide x 1″ high
Stock No: PB0430
Price: Vavasseur Archive