A HISTORY NON US ISSUE WWII WATCHES

Written by  on July 25, 2014 

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HISTORY PDF
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HISTORY OF THE NON ISSUE
WWII MILITARY WATCH

WORLD WAR TWO EXPENSIVE MILITARY WRIST WATCHES AVERAGED 27 TO 29 MM IN SIZE. TO OWN A TRULY FIRST CLASS TWO MONTH RESTORE EXPECT THAT THE SIZE WILL BE AN AVERAGE OF 28 TO 29 MM-WITH A FEW LARGER AT 30 MM AND A RARE FEW AT 31 MM

Why were most watches produced during WWII, including the A-11, smaller than most eras? It was the fact that materials were limited. Iron, Steel, Aluminum, Copper, Rubber, Brass, Oils and other strategic metals, compounds and supplies were scarce. This included Europe, Asia and South America.. The Swiss followed suit. Only cases made prior to WWII and still in inventory were produced. But even that was limited by the needs of Germany, Italy and Russia. The Swiss as neutrals did business with all of the countries at war or not.

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CALDWELL-28MM

The Caldwell is an English watch utilizing Swiss brands as its base, including the Concord. Most new collectors have no idea that England at one time had an exclusive Watch Makers Row. From Rolex to the first production automatic, the Harwood Bumper to the Caldwell.. they were famous. What ended it was not competition, well, it was competition, but that of the expansion of the Empire. Companies relocated to India and China and used cheaper labor! WoW and you thought that was 21 century stuff???

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CROYDON-30MM

The Croydon at 30mm is the few WWII watches of this size. Now, I am not stating that all watches were 26 to 30 mm, I am saying almost all were 26-30 mm in the US. A rare watch could be found above 30 mm, and , of cource, some of those produced before the war and its limited materials. Iron, Steel, Alluminum, Copper, Rubber, Brass and other strategic metals, compounds and supplies were scarce. Like the Revolutionary War in America, supplies were at a premium–sometimes at the expense of those on the battle feild. Ask Washington!.

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CONCORD 28MM

The Concord today has prices that hover around 2000.00. White and yellow gold, platinum models and other luxury cased Concords cost in the thousands. Yet the best Concord ever made were those that competed with the Movado, Racine, Gallet and others of similar size and killer dial look of the WWII era- and of the best materials and parts, google goldsmithworks concord add WWII if you like

USS Corvina SS-226

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GALLET-30MM

The oldest watch company and the only one that had a family member at its head until 2009 was, and is, GALLET. Three of Rock’s watches are in their museum. This perhaps is the most beautiful dialed military designed watch.Though Gallet watches, timers and chronos were issued by the US Military, wrist watches were not. Yet all of the above made this watch available during WWII. google goldsmithworks GALLET WWII
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MOVADO MILITARY 29.5 MM

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Movado had it both ways. The first watches issued were as this one; a 29.5 mm case put it at the top. Note dial with raised radium numerals, a gold metallic sweeps ring well placed . Towards the end of the war, when the Swiss , who did not have to retool like American watch companies, began flooding the States with watches, they introduced several above 31mm automatic bumpers, but they hardly saw action like this one and others like it served. This was a fantastic watch for fliers. those without the A-11 hacker. google goldsmithworks MOVADO then A II

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GALLET-RACINE-30MM

The oldest watch company and the only one that had a family member at its head until 2009 was and is GALLET. Three of rocks watches are in their museum. This perhaps is the most beautiful dialed military design watch. Though Gallet watches, timers, chronos were issued by the US., wrist watches were not. All of the above would make this watch and those above the top watches during WWII. THIS “RACINE” IS GALLET’S NEPHEW WHO IMPORTED TO US google goldsmithworks GALLET RACINE


OMEGA-30MM

WWII caught most watch manufacturers flat footed. The rush to provide watches to officers and soldiers meant adapting stock piles. Omega took a square movement placed it in a round case. The sales pitch –and the fact the idea worked– meant a longer stem was used.so moisture entering the stem dropped to case back and not into movement where it evaporated when setting. google goldsmithworks omega square movement WWII

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PARA-KM + PANZER-28-26MM

The PARA was an absolute favorite of German Officers and Non-Com. Expensive and well known, both the K.M. and PANZER where semi-authorized versions. The Kriegsmarine [German Navy WWII Military] was authorized –though the German Nave Preferred Phosphorus/Zinc mixtures like the LUMINOVA that required charging — In fact on subs there were Fluorescent light stations just for that purpose [read IRON COFFINS 1965] .These beauties had military spec movements and awesome cases. The SIGNED PANZER on right is a stopper.The Panzer version above also had raised radium numerals and radium insert hands. It was issued directly in limited numbers to celebrate the fact that the German’s had built the first Panzers between 1935 and 1937, when both the Olympics was in full swing as well as the WWII Allied Treaty Ban on German production of this type of war MATERIAL . google goldsmithworks PARA km

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MIDO-29MM

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While there was never an AUTOMATIC watch issued by the US Armed Forces, there were plenty that served in WWII, KOREA and VIETNAM. Because only a small percentage of Military Watches were actually issued.to soldiers, millions were provided by the individual solders and officers. In WWII the MIDO MULTIFORT was extremely popular. This one served at the Sea Battle of Leyte Gulf or second Battle of the Philippines. At the time, it was the largest Naval Battle In History. Lots of water and time damage before it was restored, it belonged to a Petty Officer aboard the Princeton. before the light aircraft carrier sank — an internal explosion took out the light cruiser Birmingham that was attempting to assist in fire control.– note: those of the crews that were not killed were saved from both ships before they sank.


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IMPERIAL-28MM

We cannot forget the Free French Forces that were organized after the fall of France proper. This Imperial, a favorite brand of the Japanese, who opened the door to imports in the 1920’s –before building their own Imperial Brand– was popular with the French. Often wrongly called a “medic” or “nurses” watch because of the Cross of Lorraine. If you see one buy it because more than likely it is a WWII FRENCH MILITARY WATCH. Just be sure movement, case design and size are correct because the Free French Cross was utilized after WWII. google goldsmithworks imperial and google goldsmithworks free French

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WYLER-101SR-29MM

Another WWII Wyler, this one a Raised Radium Numeral and Hands with center sweep on a matte black dial is awesome. It served in France and Germany in WWII before finding itself in the Vietnam War Tet Offensive in 1968. In fact, this Wyler was with the 101st and was part of the rescue team in a Dustoff crash. Great history to say the least. google goldsmithworks wyler 101st Vietnam

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ORIS-29MM

In 1939 this Oris was traded to an American by a Frenchman for passage aboard the Normandie. Once in NY, the Normandie was seized by the US Gov. The ship would be intentionally put out of order by gangster Lucky Luciano – forcing the Gov to negotiate for the protection of the Dock Workers Union, and, in turn, Lucky was guaranteed his freedom as soon as the War ended. This time piece would make it’s way back to the beaches of Normandy on a soldiers wrist and work its way through 3 years of service before winding up in a tiny auction in Tampa Florida in 2011.

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MINERVA-30MM

This Minerva was sold in Poland, then stolen by a German officer, then captured booty by a private guarding prisoners in a Rheinwiesenlager in Germany.

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SEIKOSHA 28MM
The Japanese did supply watches with a cherry blossom, star or anchor logo, and, in the anchor style, some had the case stamped. The movements signed SEIKOSHA were Seikosha, also copies of Swiss movements and some had Swiss movements. While only an Army and Navy were official “Branches”, with air corps part of either branch, just like the US , with Army Air Corps, the star was ARMY, the anchor NAVY and the Cherry Blossom Air Corps of Army or Navy. The above model was captured booty from a Japanese naval officer during the Burma Campaigns.
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SEIKO NATION 26-28MM

While Japan provided SEIKOSHA made & Hybrid [Japan Case/Dial Swiss Movement] watches, timers, ships watches and chronographs in limited numbers compared with total amount of forces, many watches we discover that survived the fire bombing and atom bombs and bonzai charges and ship sinking were those supplied by the individual soldier and officer. Many of these were sold during the 1920’s through 1930’s to the public: like the above chronometer with a Japanese Seikosha copied Swiss movement. This model was captured booty of a paratrooper of MacArthur’s 11th Air Borne Division during the 2nd 11 day battle for Corregidor, Phillpines. google goldsmithworks Japan WWII

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WYLER PILOT 27MM

Only two WWII Italian Air force Macchi-202 ‘s exist in museums today. This Italian Pilot may have invested in a “Wyler Pilot ” due to the fact is was only offered in Italy and the model shown was taken as booty by a Britt from an Italian Pilot in North Africa in 1943.

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WYLER GERMAN MKT 27MM
German Born, Paul Wyler, famous founder of the Wyler Watch Company and engineer who developed the Incaflex Balance and the Single Case Water Proof System, obtained seven Swiss patents for watch inventions between 1927 and 1940. The above Wyler was created and presented to the public during the 1936 Olympics in Germany. This rare Wyler model was only offered in Germany: making it a candidate for wear during WWII.

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GRUEN BUMPER 31MM

Gruen radium dialed bumper automatic 1944/45. another winner. this one at 31mm. if it were not a bumper it would be 29mm.be sure you take a look below at the Gruen WWII 8 watches for 8 American Defense Services advertisement below.

BELOW ARE PROOF THAT MILITARY WATCHES WERE MADE
AND SOLD DIRECTLY TO THE SOLDIER AND OFFICER
AS LONG AS THE SOLDIER OR OFFICER HAD THE CASH
AND AS LONG AS WATCHES WERE AVAILABLE

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NOTE THE NAVAL OR MILITARY SERVICE

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WWI & THIS STORE IS SELLING THOUSANDS
OF 4 DOLLAR MILITARY WATCHES
AND KITCHENER WIDE LEATHER WIDE CUFF
STYLE STRAPS 10 CENTS EACH

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WWII GRUEN MAKES UP 8 GRUEN WATCHES
EACH FOR A SEPARATE BRANCH AND/OR MO
LOOK CAREFULLY SOME WITH SWEEPS
OTHERS SUB-REGISTERS AND NOTE THE
DIAL STYLES SECOND FROM LEFT AT BOTTOM
NOTE THE CHAPTER RINGS LIKE THE
MOVADO GALLET CONCORDS

ONE OF THE MOST SUCCESSFUL MANIACS IN ATLANTA

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UNISSUED AMERICAN WWII MILITARY WATCHES
INTRODUCTION TO ISSUED GERMAN MILITARY WATCHES
INTRODUCTION TO JAPANESE MILITARY WATCHES
INTRODUCTION TO BRITISH WWI WWII MILITARY WATCHES
INTRO DUCTION TO KOREAN WAR GLYCINE AIRMAN
A HISTORY OF AVIATORS WATCHES

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