1939 World War II Alpina Tresor Military Watch

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Alpina introduced its “TreSor” in 1938.  This design was made during the WWII era, conceived and used as a military watch – and yes, used by the German military.

This particular model is a rare and wonderful survivor that time.

The “TreSor” was designed to withstand the harshest of conditions.  We do not known enough of the history of this watch to know where and when it was worn, but we must assume that it saw active duty.

“TreSor” by the way means ‘safe’, as in as secure and solid as a safe.  Alpina designated only their most rugged watches “TreSor”.

The case is a DRGM, Edelstahl, Antimagnetisch, Stossicher – Siegerin 1 – steel case with a plastic crystal (possibly original), in very good condition. The case has a push back. The case measures approximately 27.5 mm x 35mm.

The matte black dial is dial is signed: TreSor and Alpina. There is a sub seconds register at the 6 position. The watch has a nicely knurled crown. The steel case shows some signs of use down the decades but all in all is in remarkably good condition.  The movement is a Alpina 15 jewels caliber 762.

To read more about this special and unusual watch see: ALPINA TRESOR

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Bulova “Commodore” From 1953

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Bulova made its “Commodore” model for many years, from the early 1930’s through the 1950’s and perhaps even later.  As with many others of their named models, the design of the “Commodore” changed down through the years.

By the early 1950s, Bulova introduced this particular “Commodore” model, which proved to be popular enough to continue for the better part of the decade, in this same form.

Why did this 1950’s “Commodore” model appeal so successfully to the watch buying public?

Perhaps it was the price, which was under $40.00, a very good deal for a 10k rolled gold plate cased Swiss watch at that time.

Possibly, it was due to the center sweep second hand, which was not unheard of but still coming into vogue in the early ’50’s.  Certainly it was no where near the standard expectation for men’s wrist watches, which still mostly had a sub second hand dial at the six position.

Maybe it was the fancy lug design; like fins on cars, fancy lugs on men’s watches were all the rage in the 1950’s.  The “Commodore” has fancy scroll shaped lugs that proved to be fancy enough to satisfy the desire for this stylistic feature over the course of most of the decade.

And all of these came with a dependable 17 jewels Swiss movement.  It was a good convergence of style, value and accuracy.

Considering the fact that the “Commodore” in this 1950’s incarnation was a stalwart of the Bulova stable, it is surprising how few of them appear on the vintage watch market today.  This L3 (1953) “Commodore” is from an old Western Pennsylvania estate, in very fine untouched original condition from its winding crown to the Hadley expansion band.

Read more about it here: 1953 BULOVA COMMODORE

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Hyde Park Men’s Swiss Watch

unnamed[2] (4)HYDE PARK was an American import name and part of the Emil Leichter Watch Company, Inc. in NY, NY. The Emil Leichter Co. was founded in 1943 by Emil Leichter (1901-1978), and was in business in the 1950s and 1960s and beyond at 551 Fifth Ave. NY. Leichter came to the USA from Bukovina, Ukraine. They had at least 19 different brands that they either owned or represented including: Aquatite, Hyde Park, Longeau, Glycine, Paul Garnier, Jean Piquet, Charles Bonnet, Bob Steele, Cardinal, Davida, Laurel and Packard. When you look at the movement of most of these brands made in the 1940s-1960s, it should have a Hyde Park signed movement. The import mark LOE was used by or with Delbana, Hydepark, Emil Leichter, Packard and Enicar; this list mixes brands, Emil Leichter was the importer. When new, Hyde Park watches ranged in price from $24.99 to $1,000.00, according to their 1950s magazine advertising. Some of their movements (notably in their “Davida” line) were made made by Alb(ert) Grossenbacher, Manufacture d’Horlogerie, Grenchen, Swiss; a small respectable Swiss firm; they made movements or wristwatches for the US Army, also. For many years, Hyde Park watches served as the house brand of Fliegauf Jewelers in Washington, NJ., so if you find a Fliegauf watch, it normally will have a Swiss Made Hyde Park movement inside.

“The Watch That Times America’s Test Pilots” was the Hyde Park Watch slogan.

This is a handsome SIGNED HYDE PARK WATCH CO. Swiss Watch, a men’s mechanical watch dating to the 1940s or very early 1950s. The watch has a silvered dial with Arabic numerals. The watch features a fine 17 Jewels AS 1430 movement. The silver dial is offset by the hands and raised hour markers which are gold; all looks clean and bright. We especially like the elongated Art Deco style number markers for all the numbers except the 12, 3, 6 and 9. The dial is signed HYDE PARK, INCABLOC, SWISS, and has the Hyde Park PSS symbol or logo of a P and S and an S shaped mainspring in-between.

The round case is a great design with straight sides and curved integral lugs, in nickel chrome plate. The nicely knurled crown is semi-protected by the straight side of the watch. There is slight brassing. The back is signed: Stainless steel back, Incabloc, Anti-magnetic, Water resistant.

The watch is furnished with a vintage and great looking stainless steel TWISTON flex type band.

Read more here: HYDE PARK

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Kembro Men’s Swiss Watch

unnamed[1]Rare and Unusual KEMBRO Men’s Vintage Watch – SWISS 17 Jewel Stainless Steel Military Style Watch by Panto Watch Co.

Panto was a well-established maker of quality Swiss watches dating to 1915 and earlier, they made some extremely stylish and luxurious women’s watches down through the 1960s, as well as more affordable watches for both men and women. In addition to Kembro Watches they also made Thornehill Watches. Their USA import code was UZC.

T.K. Co. signed case. Theodore Kagen conducted business under the name T. K. Co. – manufacturers, designers and imports of watch cases (TK, Theodore Kagen group, of 48 W 48th Street, New York); selling watch cases to watch makers and importers.

This watch has a 17 jewel automatic movement, all stainless steel case, integral lugs, a stainless back, red sweep second hand, Arabic numeral markers for 3, 6, 9 and 12, and a nicely knurled crown.

For More Details: Kembro Watch

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LANCO SUPER DE LUXE Men’s Vintage Watch

Langendorf Watch Company was a Swiss watchmaker known for its fine craftsmanship and great attention to detail. The most famous brand of the company was Lanco (an abbreviation of Langendorf Watch Company) that was launched as a brand name in the late 1950s. Known for fine craftsmanship and attention to detail, Lanco watches are still considered to be of very high quality, and they are eagerly collected today as vintage watches. The brand was discontinued in the late 1960s, and revived again from 1971 to around 1980.

Here is a handsome, Mid-Century Modern high quality Lanco man’s Swiss watch. This is Lanco’s “Super De Luxe” model, which features a 17 jewel mechanical movement. Circa late 1950s or early 1960s. It has a beautiful silver dial with warm yellow-tending-toward-rose gold markers and hands, raised gold baton markers and Arabic Numerals, gold hour and minute hands, a large gold center sweep second hand, and a calendar window at the 3 position. The dial is signed: “Lanco, Super De Luxe, 17 Rubis, Incabloc, Swiss Made.” The movement is signed: LANCO SWISS MADE 1004N

This is the celebrated Langendorf 1004N, a very fine 17 jewel manual wind movement with Incabloc protection and a 44 hour power reserve, mean-unnamed[1] (2)ing once you wind it up, it can run for up to 44 hours before you have to wind it up again. The date can be set by changing 21-24h.

To read more please visit: LANCO SUPER DE LUXE

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Armand Duval Men’s Art Deco Watch

il_fullxfull.594892117_bw9q[1]There are watches and then there are watches. If your tastes run to rectangular watches, if you are fond of the Art Deco era, if you like having something that no one else you know has, then this is the watch for you.

It is an Art Deco men’s vintage watch by the Swiss maker Armand Duval, in a 10k gold filled case, powered by a 17 jewels movment. This watch probably dates to the early 1950s but may be older.

This Armand Duval is an amazingly elegant Art Deco men’s Swiss watch with its gorgeous two-tone dial, sub second dial, fancy case Art Deco raised or bracketed corners, double teardrop fancy lugs and curved crystal. It has all the bells and whistles, as they say.

This watch has a particularly handsome fancy square case. You have a sense, when you are wearing it, that you are transported back to those boom years after World War II, when everything seemed possible. Cars were growing fins, and watches were growing fin-like lugs, such as these. The bracketed corners of the watch case are particulary nice.

The 17 Jewels movement is signed: SEVENTEEN JEWELS / SWISS / ARMAND DUVAL / DYG. This same movement was used by a number of high end Swiss watch companies, including…Rolex. Pause and consider: This is a Rolex-level-of-quality vintage timepiece.

The watch is furnished with a new luxurious J B Champion crocodile calf watch strap in brown, with a gold tone buckle, which is in keeping with the style of band that would have been popular when this watch was new. It completes the look perfectly.

This would qualify as a rare and unusual vintage Swiss watch.

Armand Duval was the maker / importer of quality Swiss watches for men and women; the company was incorporated in Boston in 1952, although it was in business for some years beforehand. Its romantic name is from the hero in “Camille” (“La Dame aux Camellias”) by Alexander Dumas fils, who is based upon the author himself. The story inspired Verdi’s opera, “La Traviata”. In Hollywood classic films, the role of Armand Duval was portrayed by Rudolph Valentino, Gilbert Roland and Robert Taylor. No matter how you look at it, a watch from Armand Duval exudes drama and romance.

The fabulous case is by Lapwell. Lapwell cases were also used by these other high end Swiss makers; their very names are magical: Glycine, Normandie, Banner, Wittnauer and Gotham. Lapwell Watch Case Corp. was located in Greenvale, Long Island, NY.

To read more about this watch, visit: ARMAND DUVAL WATCH

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Bulova Watch in a TK Case

il_fullxfull.597912947_c1rk[1]It is a well-documented fact that in the mid 20th century, men’s watches were often re-cased. At some times, this was due to a problem with the original case. At other times, it had to do with changing styles and fashions. In the case of this case, it may have had to do with the growing popularity of “waterproof” or “water-protected” cases. We will never know exactly what prompted the owner of this watch to have it re-cased, but that is what he did.

The result is a curiosity for collectors. A Bulova watch in a TK case, all of which is more than fifty years old, and has probably been together since Eisenhower was in the White House.

This Bulova Watch boasts an Art Deco inspired design, 17 Jewels Swiss made movement, and a beaded link and scissor expansion vintage Topps watch band.

Read more about it, here: BULOVA WATCH IN TK CASE

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Classy Caravelle by Bulova – Blue Dial Watch

il_570xN.597922433_qhm7[1]We have talked about blue dial and Caravelle before in this blog. Caravelle is the line introduced by Bulova to compete with Timex and other pin lever watches, with a fully jeweled movement watch at the same or similar price ($10-$12). Bulova introduced their Caravelle line in 1961, and by 1968 it was the best-selling brand of men’s watches in jewelry stores world-wide.

Blue is a great color for a watch dial, providing a great contrast for reading the dial quickly in many different light settings, from bright sunshine to dusk. We believe that Enicar was the first company to offer navy blue dial watches, and that other brands quickly followed suit. There is something universally appealing about navy blue, a true neutral that always looks crisp and sharp.

This Caravelle is stellar, to be sure.

It is a Caravelle by Bulova Men’s Calendar Watch in a big, beefy, chunky case of brushed stainless steel. This watch was made in 1977.


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Vantage Watch by Hamilton Watch Company – A Swiss 17 Jewel Watch

Vantage watchVantage watches are among the “sleepers” in the watch collecting field today. This means that you can probably find a very fine example of these great watches for a very reasonable price.

Vantage watches were made by the illustrious Hamilton Watch Company of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Vintage Hamilton watches command high prices in the collecting market, and rightly so, as they were always well made, both mechanically and stylistically, and they are so well documented that collectors can easily determine the name and particulars of each. This allows collectors to buy Hamilton’s with confidence.

Hamilton introduced their fully-jeweled Vantage line in the 1960s so that they could compete with “pin lever” type watches, price-wise. The main competition was Timex. Hamilton sought to gain a market share in the $12 dollar range of watches, a market share that Bulova was also seeking to gain in their own jeweled and popularly priced “Caravelle” watches. It was an exciting time in watch making, and you the collector have the advantage of Hamilton quality in these Vantage watches.

This watch appears in a 1965 Vantage nationwide magazine advertising campaign. This Vantage by Hamilton Watch Company has a 17 Jewel Swiss made movement, stainless steel case, silver dial, mad men era 1960s styling with silver colored Arabic raised numerals, silver colored hour, minute and sweep second hands, and a striking sculptural Baldwin stainless steel scissors type expansion band.

In outstanding condition, such as this, you would not go wrong in collecting a 1965 Vantage watch, and wearing it daily. Read more here: VANTAGE BY HAMILTON

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Westclox Men’s 17 Jewel Emerald Green Dial Watch

Westclox Green DialJust before the first years of the quartz revolution in watch making, some of the best known makers of mechanical watches offered some of their finest-ever timepieces. This wonderful vintage Westclox watch with its gorgeous emerald green dial is a striking example of innovative offerings from that era.

Westclox introduced their “Crown Line” series of watches in 1964, as can be seen in contemporary national magazine advertizing (you will find other sources who say the Crown Line began a year or two later, but the ads and their dates make 1964 the definite start year). These watches were advertised as having been “styled by a top designer in the watch making industry”. Watch collectors today would love to know more; if only we knew the name of that designer. Certainly, the resulting designs are worth celebrating.

This brushed stainless steel chunky case watch has an early 1960’s “Futuristic” inspiration. We could call it sleek and minimalist, and add space age as well. The real excitement comes in the emerald green dial which has the same intensity and brilliance as a cabochon cut gem.

Some watch collectors will tell you with a note of disdain that while Westclox was a high volume manufacturer, they made only “dollar watches” with pin-lever mechanisms. ‘Taint so. This watch and others in the Westclox “Crown Line” boast a quality 17 jewels movement designed to become an heirloom. There were more than a dozen different models in the Crown Line series. This is one of the best. Other models had sapphire blue and ruby red dials. Wonderful!

The watch offers great vintage design from a memorable moment in history. The entire look is bold, exciting, and forward-looking. Westclox made these “Crown Line” watches as their top-of-the-line, prestige timepieces. They used bold brushed stainless steel, in a futuristic, space-age inspired case, and gave the dial the luminosity of rare gems. This is the kind of watch worn by a man who is sure of himself and his abilities, and knows how to enjoy life.

This mod-retro watch with its highly prized emerald green dial is a quite collectible watch and very hard to find.

Westclox was one of the grand old USA makers; it began as the United Clock Co. of Peru, IN, the home town of Cole Porter, in 1885. The name was changed to Western Clock Company in 1912. The name Westclox was first used in advertising in 1918. The company merged with Seth Thomas Company (founded in 1813) in 1930 to become General Time Instrument Corporation.

Read more about this watch, here: WESTCLOX GREEN DIAL 17 JEWEL WATCH

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