B.W. Raymond railroad grade Elgin Pocketwatch, a gift from a watch friend 2006
used to time the departure of trains using these very accurate pocket watches. That is why the minute chapter contains all the numbers. Also note how clean the dial is despite all the numbering. And how clear and easy legible the hour numerals are! A sample of a great dial design that should be studied by some contemporary watch dial designers ;)
The Elgin caliber 571 has no setting mechanism. The time is set by removing the crystal and then move the minute hand (I would not move the hour hand, but rather start to wind the fully unwound watch near the correct time) carefully to the correct position. And since the time cannot be set via the crown, the movement does not hack of course.
As the watch is adjusted in 9 positions, one does not expect to remove the front crystal every day to set the time! Also if you are a Stationmaster, you probably have a quartz watch and an electronic gadget on your wrist or nearby on the track that gives you radio controlled time.
A bit more about the case construction of
The nice pattern on both the front bezel and the back of the serve as gripping aides for opening and closing. The threads of both the screwed front and back are beautifully flat meaning that you have to turn the crystal/case back many times until it comes off. This prevents the crystal from falling off if it had not been tightened firmly. Also note, I said beautifully flat: it takes a bit of time to take the crystal off. Simply remember that at the time the watches were built, people HAD more time or they would simply be used to a SLOWER pace of life and opening the front of a watch to set the time would be looked at as a joy rather then a time consuming annoyance. Sometimes I think we need a bit more of that "unbelievable lightness of ignoring the time" from these past times.
Opening: You best do this by resting the watch in your left palm (if you are a right hander) and then use thumb, index and middle finger to loosen.
For Closing:, place the watch in your left palm and then use index and middle finger of your right hand like a spread fork to slowly turn the crystal or case back. This way you have a much better feel (because your finger tips are touching the crystal or the case back) when the thread is catching.