Destinations in life always have an intresting path behind them...
The Path's Beginning
Jarett Harkness is the founder of Unwind In Time. Since his youth, Jarett has been fascinated by machines and how they work. As a young adult, he fixed bicycles, cars, and motorcycles. During college, while acquiring a pharmacy degree, this interest was furthered by physics classes. Jarett was enjoying a successful career in pharmacy when his interest in mechanics turned toward watches.
In 2006, Jarett came across his grandfather’s pocket watch, a Muckle-cased Rockford. It stood out from other pocket watches because of its unique case design — it flipped from an open face to a hunting case. It was this ingenious flexibility that lead Jarett to choose it from other family heirlooms. The movement was not running, so Jarett became determined to fix it. He consulted a local jeweler who kindly made recommendations on books to read and tools to acquire. Success! The repair of his grandfather's watch sparked the purchase and repair of other watches. As the quantity of watches started to grow, Jarett began selling on eBay, and Unwind In Time was born.
“I discovered the tiny machines inside watches and was intrigued. I began spending my spare time reading repair manuals, buying tools, consulting with mentors, and practicing repair on pocket watches and wrist watches." -Jarett Harkness
In 2007, Jarett acquired a bag of watches that had been advertised on a local radio program in his small hometown. Included in the lot of watches was a non-running Hamilton Electric Pacer. Once again, the initial attraction was to a unique case design that stood out from the "everyday" watch. The asymmetric case, along with the physics involved in the mechanics of Hamilton Electrics, made the watch different from anything he had ever worked on.
“I contacted the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors' message board for information on the Pacer and was cautioned that the movements on these Electric models were unique and complex. It was suggested that instead of attempting the repair myself, I should send the watch to the Hamilton Electrics specialist René Rondeau for restoration. René had literally written the book on Hamilton Electrics. But my wife, who appreciated my curiosity and recognized my skill with mechanics, encouraged me to first try it on my own. I had no repair manual for the Hamilton Electric, but I gamely dove in. I carefully disassembled the watch and found corrosion from battery leakage on the index wheel. I cleaned the corrosion, reassembled the watch and was able to make it run! I still have that watch and always will.” -Jarett Harkness
Although Jarett had managed to fix his Pacer himself, he would ultimately train under René Rondeau, who himself had been trained by Jim Reese. (Reese was one of the original watchmakers who was involved in the research and development of the Hamilton Electric.) Jarett acquired Rene's business when Rondeau retired in 2015. Soon after, Jarett retired from his pharmacy career to devote himself to full time restoration and sales of Hamilton Electric watches.