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The American mechanism inside this watch is not a replica or an "inspired" piece. It was genuinely carried by an individual, 100 years ago, that depended on it. Each time you wear this watch, you will be transported through time, imagining who this individual was and the work they did to help build our country. Simply put, American Artisan Series watches make you feel something when you put them on. At Vortic, we tell customers that owning a watch isn't nearly as important as owning a story. And, this is an opportunity to be a part of a story that is bigger than yourself. You won't be the first to own this watch, and you certainly won’t be the last, so make your chapter count.
The American Artisan Series is a line of fully American Made wristwatches powered by restored, U.S. made pocket watch movements. Individuals commonly scrap pocket watch cases for their precious metal, leaving the original mechanism orphaned. This watch contains the original movement (timepiece), dial (face), and hands from a vintage (1880’s – 1950’s) pocket watch made by Rockford Watch Company. We call this model "The Rockford" because the company was located in Rockford Illinois.
Railroad grade pocket watches, also known as Standard watches, were explicitly made for railroad employees. As such, they were the highest quality and most sought after watches of the time. American railroads decided upon a rigorous set of regulations to qualify timepieces as “railroad grade” due to their role in maintaining schedules for the American rail system. Click HERE to learn more about railroad watches.
A defining feature of all railroad grade watches is their setting mechanism. Instead of simply pulling out the crown to put the watch in "setting mode," the original railroad pocket watches required you to remove the front of the watch and actuate a lever to accomplish the same thing. This way, the time on these essential watches was never accidentally changed. Vortic's Railroad Edition of the American Artisan Series features a removable bezel that dramatically improves upon the original design. The Railroad Edition case protects the dial from access while the bezel is removed and is fully water resistant when the bezel is appropriately tightened. Click HERE to learn more about how Vortic's Railroad Edition works.
NOTE - this watch is not water resistant when the bezel is not installed or is installed incorrectly.
Case Style: Machined Titanium cases have been CNC milled from a solid block of aerospace grade titanium. Titanium is the ultimate material for strength to weight ratio. A DLC or "Diamond Like Carbon" coating is then applied to the case to create a uniquely black finish. While in the family of PVD coatings, DLC provides a small amount of transparency that allows us to see machine marks and surface detail while still appearing black. This coating is extremely durable and represents the best we have to offer.
Movement: The manually wound, antique, pocket watch movement inside this watch has been meticulously restored to as close to original condition as possible. Vortic has an exclusive group of highly experienced watchmakers that specialize in vintage watches. Before its use in a wristwatch, each movement is completely disassembled, cleaned, oiled, and calibrated. Each finished Vortic watch is tested for at least a week before completion.
This watch's movement is serial number from the Rockford Watch Company. The Rockford Watch Company began operation in 1873 with equipment purchased from the Cornell Watch Company. Four hundred local businesses and individuals pledged $150,000 (over $3mil with inflation) of support to stimulate the growth of their town. The company struggled to keep up with demand early on, and eventually went bankrupt. Rockford was rejuvenated in 1901, but a major fire and lightning strike slowed the company further in 1903. By 1915 the company closed its doors, though the building still stands vacant.
The Rockford Railroad 002 is the 2nd one-of-a-kind piece in Vortic's "Rockford Railroad" line of the American Artisan Series. This watch contains the original movement (timepiece), dial (face), and hands from a vintage (1880’s – 1950’s) pocket watch. The American Artisan Series is a line of fully American Made wristwatches powered by restored, U.S. made pocket watch movements.
Legal Disclaimer: All product and company names, logos, brands, and other trademarks featured or referred to within Vortic's products and services are the property of their respective intellectual property rights holders, if any. Those intellectual property rights holders, other than Vortic, LLC, are not affiliated with Vortic, LLC, our products, or our website. They do not sponsor or endorse our materials.
- Manufacturer: Vortic Watch Company
- Model Year: 2019
- Warranty: Full 2-Year Warranty
- Case Dimensions:
- Diameter: 51mm
- Height: 14.5mm
- Lug-to-Lug: 60mm
- Lugs: 22mm
- Case Finish: DLC Titanium
- Crown/Hardware: Nickel Plated
- Water Resistance: 1 ATM
- Crystals: Gorilla Glass
- Case Back: Stainless Steel
- Hands: Original
- Strap: Horween Shell Cordovan Leather
- Original Manufacturer: Rockford Watch Company
- Original Serial Number:
- Manufacture Year:
- Function: Manual Wind, Lever-Set
- Jewels: 21j
- Size: Railroad
- Power Reserve: ~36 Hours
We partnered with Worn & Wound to produce a custom set of straps for our American Artisan Series watches. We now have 15 different colors to choose from including our two Horween Shell Cordovan options. These straps are made in the USA and are based on the Windup Model 2 Premium strap that Worn and Wound offers.
Our mission is to preserve and enhance the legacy of manufacturing excellence in America. We believe that this legacy is highly relevant in the world of watch manufacturing because our goal is to marry form and function in a way that makes something beautiful that will last forever. American made pocket watches were of such a high quality and decoration that they evolved into more than just a way to tell time. They became traditional heirlooms to be inherited by future generations as a wedding gift or a coming of age treasure. Each piece tells a lively tale of what U.S. manufacturing meant in the past using an intricate language of decorated bridges, plates, gears, and springs. Today, we are restoring these pieces to their former glory and making them relevant again using the best of modern technology.
We feel proud and blessed to live in the country, state, and city that we do. However, our motivation to build everything in the United States, and to deal locally whenever possible, is derived from a different source of inspiration. We believe that the close relationships, face-to-face interaction, and tight quality control we achieve while dealing domestically produces a truly superior product. Because of this, we are very transparent about where our components are made as we continue to build our in-house capabilities.