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Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks! I have been updating (thus far mostly re-organising) the article on the Chinese Standard Movement on the new Chinese Watch Wiki. I would really like to make this page an encyclopedic source of information on everything to do with the Tongji, and I have a whole boatload of questions that I would like to solicit input from the community on. If you know the answer to anything I ask below, please help the wiki cause by either registering an account an adding the information to the article (I've put enough structure in place that it should be clear where the information should go), or post your answer below and I will add it to the wiki myself. Here we go!

1) Let's document all the Tongji movements which have more (or, if it ever happened, less?) than the standard 17 jewels! So far I know of Beijing's 20 jewel ZB-1, Shanghai's 19 jewel ZSH and I have an Jinmao watch from Qingdao with a 19 jewel movement as well. Were the others? Which factories made them? Did those factories also produce 17 jewel versions, and if so did the non-17 versions have a distinct factory code? Which watch brands were they used in?

2) Let's document all of the calendar Tongji movements! Which factories made these, do we know the model numbers, which brands watches were they used in?

3) The old wiki article on the Tongji mentions that some factories made middle-sized movements instead of the usual man's size movement. I've never seen one of these, does anybody know anything about these? Factories, model numbers, codes, brands?

4) Let's document all the automatic Tongji movements! So far I know about Beijing's infamous 40 zuan SZB-1C used in Shuangling watches. The old wiki mentions a 33 jewel automatic from Liaoning, but I don't know a model name or what brands it was used in. I've found a full listing of where all the SZB-1C's 40 jewels are at the end of this article, and I intend to put this on the wiki at some point. Does anyone know where I can find this information for Liaoning's 33 jewel auto? Does anybody know of any automatic Tongjis? The usual questions: factories, codes, brands...

5) Let's document all the Tongji movement markings! The three-character factory codes are already documented at this page and the two-character date codes seen on ZSH movements are also documented, but there's a lot more still to be documented:

5.1) I know that at least some of the Tongjis used in Budlet brand watches have that brand's little flower logo stamped on the wheel-train bridge. Are there any other brands which have their name or logo stamped on the bridge instead of a factory code? I know I've seen this on SS1s (e.g. HaiShi sometimes have a little seal on the bridge), I figure there must be more Tongji brands who did ths.

5.2) I need to take another look to know exactly what it is, but I have a Jinmao which has a 5 or 6 digit number (or maybe an alphanumeric string? There are some characters which might be an 8 or a B) underneath the balance wheel. Does anybody know what this number is and how to interpet it? If nobody knows what this number means, let's try our best to figure it out! I would invite anybody else with a Jinmao Tongji watch (or quite possibly any other Tongji watch with a Qingdao movement in it) who is comfortable removing the caseback to check their watch's number and post it here. If we get a large enough sample, we may be able to figure something out, e.g. there may be two consecutive digits which are always within the range 01, 02,..., 12, in which case we can assume this represent a month, etc. Even if it just appears to be a sequentially increasing number with no structure, this is then a so-called "German tank problem" and we can use the sampled numbers to estimate how many movements were produced.

5.3) I have a Yanan watch with a ZHQ Tongji in it, and underneath the balance wheel is stamped (above ZHQ again) the two-digit code WI. Is this a Shanghai-style date code? If so, does anybody know the year production started so that we can make a table like the SS1 and ZSH ones here?

5.4) Does anybody know of any other Tongji movement markings which are well documented or well understood? Date codes, that sort of thing? If so, post the details here! If you know of any which are not well understood, post about them too! Maybe other people can post more examples and we can figure something out.

Of course, if anybody else has any other interesting Tongji facts, or if there are any other Tongji-related mysteries we can work together to solve, then please feel free to post them here, too! Let's work together to make an excellent one-stop source of information on anything that anybody might want to know about this iconic vintage Chinese movement!
 

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Hi folks! I have been updating (thus far mostly re-organising) the article on the Chinese Standard Movement on the new Chinese Watch Wiki. I would really like to make this page an encyclopedic source of information on everything to do with the Tongji, and I have a whole boatload of questions that I would like to solicit input from the community on. If you know the answer to anything I ask below, please help the wiki cause by either registering an account an adding the information to the article (I've put enough structure in place that it should be clear where the information should go), or post your answer below and I will add it to the wiki myself. Here we go!
That's a lot of information! I'll share what I know, but there's a huge amount I don't know too.

1) Let's document all the Tongji movements which have more (or, if it ever happened, less?) than the standard 17 jewels! So far I know of Beijing's 20 jewel ZB-1, Shanghai's 19 jewel ZSH and I have an Jinmao watch from Qingdao with a 19 jewel movement as well. Were the others? Which factories made them? Did those factories also produce 17 jewel versions, and if so did the non-17 versions have a distinct factory code? Which watch brands were they used in?
These are the jewel counts of manual tongji movements of which I'm aware. There probably are more.

Beijing Watch Factory 17, 20
Bengbu WF 17
Changsha WF 17
Changshu WF 17
Chongqing Clock & Watch Company 17 -- I have a Shancheng with 18 zuan on the dial but the movement is marked 17
Dalian WF 17
Fenglei 17
Guangzhou WF 17
Hangzhou WF 17, 19
Hanzhong WF 19 (I don't know if there was a 17)
Harbin WF 17
Hefei WF 17
Hongqi WF 17, 19, 20
Jiaxing WF 17
Jilin WF 17
Jinan WF 17, 19
Liaocheng WF 17
Liaoning WF 17
Luoyang WF 17
Nanchang WF 17
Nanjing No. 2 WF 17
Nanning WF 17
Qingdao WF 17, 19
Shanghai WF 19
Shanghai No. 2 17
Shanghai No. 3 17
Shenyang WF 19 (I think there are 17-jewel versions too)
Shijiazhuang WF 17
Suzhou WF 17
Tianjin C&WF 17
Wuhan WF 17
Wuxi WF 17 (not sure whether movements were manufactured in Wuxi or just assembled there)
Yangzhou WF 19 (only one has surfaced AFAIK)
Yantai C&WF 17, 19

SZH (found in Wuxi-made Hongmei watches, but I'm not sure of the origin. Also see note for Wuxi WF) 17

There are simplified tongji movements too.

Yangzhou WF 17
Dandong No. 5 WF 17
Jinan ?
Shanghai Seventh WF 17
possibly Jiaxing too.

Also there's a slow beat (18,000 bph) movement, similar to the tongji, found in some old Weixing watches. I have one (most probably a replacement movement) inside a Sea-Gull.



Edited to add: Although some factory codes changed over the years, I can't think of any example of a change due to upgrades of the tongji movement.

Edit #2: My Wuhan double calendar has 18 zuan on the dial, but the movement says 17

Edit #3: In the later 1980s and 1990s Beijing Watch Factory manufactured another 17-jewel movement that looks similar to the tongji, but it's thinner. I don't know the official designation.
 

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2) Let's document all of the calendar Tongji movements! Which factories made these, do we know the model numbers, which brands watches were they used in?
Many (most?) of these factories made calendar movements. Usually they weren't given separate model numbers, although sometimes a letter B was added to the end of a dateless model number. Shanghai's different model numbers were an exception, rather than the rule.

More remarkable were the examples with double calendar and quick-set date (produced in addition to slow-set single calendar movements)

Beijing WF qs date?, qs double calendar
Hangzhou WF qs date
Hongqi WF ss dc
Liaoning WF ss dc
Shanghai WF qs date, qs dc
Wuhan WF qs dc

If anyone knows more, please add.

Shanghai WF SS7 series model numbers

7110 no date, chrome plated case
7120 no date, stainless steel case
7120a (I don't know the difference between it and 7120)
7122 midsize
7220 ss date
7221 qs date
7222 date, midsize
7524 no date Budlet, Chunlei, and Sea Gull (not Haiou) brands
7621 qs double calendar
7720 ss date Baoshihua brand
7820 no date Baoshihua brand
7920 ss date simplified JHB tongji Yinling brand

I've seen mentions of 7020 and 7624, but I've never seen the watches.

Edited to add: Yangzhou WF made some simplified tongji movements with slow-set double calendars.
 

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3) The old wiki article on the Tongji mentions that some factories made middle-sized movements instead of the usual man's size movement. I've never seen one of these, does anybody know anything about these? Factories, model numbers, codes, brands?
Most midsize watches produced by these factories used the same tongji movements as their full size counterparts. Many of the factories produced women's watches too, but there was no standard movement. Soviet posted a good number of their smaller movements here.
 

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4) Let's document all the automatic Tongji movements! So far I know about Beijing's infamous 40 zuan SZB-1C used in Shuangling watches. The old wiki mentions a 33 jewel automatic from Liaoning, but I don't know a model name or what brands it was used in. I've found a full listing of where all the SZB-1C's 40 jewels are at the end of this article, and I intend to put this on the wiki at some point. Does anyone know where I can find this information for Liaoning's 33 jewel auto? Does anybody know of any automatic Tongjis? The usual questions: factories, codes, brands...
Beijing WF SZB-1C 40 jewels
Hefei WF 21 jewels
Liaoning WF 33, 37 jewels -- It has been said that often there are fewer than the dial claims: 25?
Qingdao WF 25 jewels
Shanghai WF -- I've seen it mentioned. Does anyone know more?

Are there others I'm forgetting?

Liaoning used the 33 jewel auto in many, many brands -- Kongque and Dong Lang were used more often than others.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
This is all awesome stuff, Saskwatch, thanks very much! I'll be able to start putting some of this stuff up on the wiki later today (about 8 hours or so from now), though you (or anyone else!) can feel free to put it up sooner if you'd like.
 

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5) Let's document all the Tongji movement markings! The three-character factory codes are already documented at this page and the two-character date codes seen on ZSH movements are also documented, but there's a lot more still to be documented:

5.1) I know that at least some of the Tongjis used in Budlet brand watches have that brand's little flower logo stamped on the wheel-train bridge. Are there any other brands which have their name or logo stamped on the bridge instead of a factory code? I know I've seen this on SS1s (e.g. HaiShi sometimes have a little seal on the bridge), I figure there must be more Tongji brands who did ths.
Some WUS members have documented the markings on their VCMs here, and I'm grateful for that. In over 150 instalments of My VCMs I've done the same. Still, we need much more information to understand all of the markings.

5.1) Some examples (not complete)

Guangzhou Mingzhu and Luoyang Shaolin (Mudan)


Suzhou and Yantai Beijixing


Liaocheng Taishan and Shanghai Sea Gull


I don't have one, but Changsha watches have the CS logo on the train bridge. I have a Hanzhong, a Taishan, and an STZ1 Zhufeng, each with with their logo stamped under the balance.

Edit: Earlier Liaoning tongji movements had the brand name Hongqi on the train bridge. This was replaced with Peacock for a time before ZLN was used. (end edit)

Something else of interest is decorated movements. For example:

 

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5.2) I need to take another look to know exactly what it is, but I have a Jinmao which has a 5 or 6 digit number (or maybe an alphanumeric string? There are some characters which might be an 8 or a B) underneath the balance wheel. Does anybody know what this number is and how to interpet it? If nobody knows what this number means, let's try our best to figure it out! I would invite anybody else with a Jinmao Tongji watch (or quite possibly any other Tongji watch with a Qingdao movement in it) who is comfortable removing the caseback to check their watch's number and post it here. If we get a large enough sample, we may be able to figure something out, e.g. there may be two consecutive digits which are always within the range 01, 02,..., 12, in which case we can assume this represent a month, etc. Even if it just appears to be a sequentially increasing number with no structure, this is then a so-called "German tank problem" and we can use the sampled numbers to estimate how many movements were produced.
I have 6 watches from Qingdao

early Jinmao no code
early Jinmao Q511 or QS11
Jinmao Q8012
Meigui B8201
2 Jinmao automatics no code

The number could be the date. If yes, 8012 = December 1980, 8201 = January 1982. 511 or S11 = ?
Q probably stands for Qingdao. I have no clue what B is.
 

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5.3) I have a Yanan watch with a ZHQ Tongji in it, and underneath the balance wheel is stamped (above ZHQ again) the two-digit code WI. Is this a Shanghai-style date code? If so, does anybody know the year production started so that we can make a table like the SS1 and ZSH ones here?
Two digit letter codes are usually Shanghai-type date codes. The problem is we don't know in which year they start in most cases.

We know a little more about Hongqi Watch Factory, however. Unlike other factories, the first letter of its date codes runs in reverse alphabetical order, and the starting year is 1972. Note that HWF didn't produce watches with tongji movements until 1974. WI = September 1975.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I have 6 watches from Qingdao

early Jinmao no code
early Jinmao Q511 or QS11
Jinmao Q8012
Meigui B8201
2 Jinmao automatics no code

The number could be the date. If yes, 8012 = December 1980, 8201 = January 1982. 511 or S11 = ?
Q probably stands for Qingdao. I have no clue what B is.
This is just a stab in the dark, but it's possible that your early Jinmao is Q511 and that this represents November 1975. Maybe when production started in the 1970s, it was not apparent that it would continue into the 80s, and as such they only bothered to indicate the unit part of the year and not the 70 part. Kind of like the Y2K dillema on a smaller scale, ignoring decade to represent years with one digit instead of ignoring century to represent years with two digits. Seiko's serial number system does this, you have to be familiar enough with their model history to "just know" what the decade was. This hypothesis should be easy enough to confirm or reject if we can just get enough examples (which sadly might be hard). There should be a change point when they realised this was going to cause a problem and switched systems (January 1980 being an obvious candidate, although they may have switched early), and all dates before that point should be consistently represented using a 3 digit number, and all dates after consistently using a 4 digit number. If anybody else has a Qingdao Tongji, please post your code(s) here!

I will check later tonight, but from memory my Jinmao's code may very well start with a B like your Meigui. I have no idea what that could be. A separate production line?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The plot thickens! I just checked my Jinmao. The code was really hard to read, so I ended up pulling the balance wheel and cock so I could get an unobstructed view. I'm pretty sure that the code is, in fact, Q8009B - a longer code than any Saskwatch posted! The first five characters, Q8009, follow the same format as Saskwatch's Q8012, and seem to give credence to the YYMM interpretation, as Q8009 decodes sensibly to September 1980. But the B on the end is unexpected. My best guess now is that, whatever "B" signifies, they started out denoting it by QYYMMB and then later (sometime between 1980 and 1982) switched to just BYYMM. But this is starting to get pretty convoluted, and I'm extrapolating from a very small sample size. Crossing my fingers for more folks to share their codes! It would be super awesome if we could "crack the code" on this.
 

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Many thanks for your effort to renew the WIKI documentaton.:-!

Here is a quote from your previous post:

4) Let's document all the automatic Tongji movements! So far I know about Beijing's infamous 40 zuan SZB-1C used in Shuangling watches. The old wiki mentions a 33 jewel automatic from Liaoning, but I don't know a model name or what brands it was used in. I've found a full listing of where all the SZB-1C's 40 jewels are at the end of this article, and I intend to put this on the wiki at some point. Does anyone know where I can find this information for Liaoning's 33 jewel auto? Does anybody know of any automatic Tongjis? The usual questions: factories, codes, brands...
===========================================================================

Liaoning WF made some automatic tongji movement watches as gift watches and also with a Kongque brand name. I think I post images of them long time ago. Here are some:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Liaoning WF made some automatic tongji movement watches as gift watches and also with a Kongque brand name. I think I post images of them long time ago. Here are some:
Thanks for these extra details Soviet! What is the non-Kongque brand in your photos? Is it "Jingtie"?
 

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Thanks for these extra details Soviet! What is the non-Kongque brand in your photos? Is it "Jingtie"?
Yes, it is 'Jingtie'(京铁-北京铁路局),meaning Beijing Railway Bureau. These gift watches were issued to employees of that bureau for its 40th anniversary(1953-1993).
 

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More date codes...

Shanghai No.2's ZSE movements had a similar two-letter date code system to Shanghai Watch Factory. I read somewhere on this forum that the start year (A) is 1974, but I don't remember who said it or where the information came from. Earlier Shanghai No. 2 tongji movements (SZ1 and SZ1A) have codes which do not follow this pattern.

Liaoning had the easiest codes to decipher: mmyy followed by the letter L. For example, 0978L = September 1978. This system was used for many years on Liaoning tongji movements (SZL1A, Peacock, ZLN). SL1 and SL2 movement date codes were slightly different, as documented in this thread.

Beijing usually didn't use date codes, but there are examples of tongji movements where B73 and B74 appear under the balance. I heard there was a B72 too, but I've never seen one.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Saskwatch, thanks very much for these further details. I will add them to the wiki when I get home tonight.

I especially enjoyed the linked to thread where Chascomm and his fellow VCM detectives figured out the Liaoning system. This is a great example of the kinds of breakthroughs which can be made when several collectors share their data and hunt for patterns, and I hope we can pull off something similar here with Qingdao's system. I have asked a Chinese seller/collector I am friends with if he can contribute any codes and if anyone in his network of contacts might know more about the coding system, if he provides any codes I will list them here.

There's a Jinmao with a code under the balance wheel in the AMCHPR! Ron, will you aid us on our quest?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yes, it is 'Jingtie'(京铁-北京铁路局),meaning Beijing Railway Bureau. These gift watches were issued to employees of that bureau for its 40th anniversary(1953-1993).
Thank you, Soviet, I will add this information tonight, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Wonderful! Thanks for reporting that, Sask. So, with the longer codes, we now have:


  • Q8009B
  • Q8012
  • B8201
  • Q8308

I think we can now safely assume that the numerical parts of these codes are definitely YYMM dates, since these all sensibly decode to months in the early 80s. If they weren't dates, we'd probably have seen something non-sensical by now. The meaning of the B (and its varying location) remains unclear. I'm going to check my code again tonight. I don't see how I could have hallucinated an extra character, but the fact that nobody else seems to have a six-character code makes me want to double check.

With the shorter codes, we have:


  • Q511 or QS11
  • M07B

The picture here is much less clear. Regardless of how we interpret the first code, the second code is not of the same general form (ANNN or AANN vs ANNA, where A=alphabetical, N=numerical). I previously proposed that the first code could be Q511 for November 1975 (since this was described as being from an "early Jinmao"), but I'm not so sure about this anymore. Our other 4 Jinmaos are all from the early 1980s. If these had been in production since 1975, it seems a little odd that no examples have surfaced yet from '76, '77, '78 or '79 - not so unlikely that we can definitely rule this out, but it's starting to feel a bit dubious. Another option is that the first code is QS11, and the S11 and M07 are date codes, with the year given by a letter (S and M) and then the month by two digits (11 and 07). The Q and M could be Qingdao and Meigui, respectively, and the B remains a mystery. But then we have to wonder why Ozputera's Meigui starts with an M but Saskwatch's begins with a B...
 
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