At auction once again (my wife was looking for some little silver antique she’d spotted) and whilst trawling around I came across this little box with a nice and completely original Record 9ct gold gents watch.
Lovely and original watch with a London hallmarked 9ct gold case, possibly of around 1945- mid fifties period.
Certainly the initial looks would suggest a well looked after Sunday watch with what appears to be the original strap still attached.
I say this as the watch has fixed lugs and the high quality leather strap is fully stitched right up to where it attaches. Which means it basically was attached to the case open ended and then it was stitched closed.
It’s also nice to have the original box in such good condition which is rare to find in watches of this age.
The Record Watch Company has been around a while, starting back in 1903 then re-registered in 1949. They were the first Swiss watch (pocket variety) to manage wide acceptance on the US railways – so technically the Record movements were of a decent quality.
The movement in this model is the Swiss made 022-18 manual wind 15 jewel sub seconds 12½ Ligne which has a very decent 42 hour reserve. Interestingly this one is the earlier made 1945-55 version which does not feature Incabloc shock protection, only appearing in later versions after 1955.
A bonus indeed in this purchase is the fact that the movement is in superb condition and has already proved to be as accurate as it was the day it was built. It is signed Record and has the distinctive Swan logo and stamped model number.
The case is signed with the company name and London hallmarked 9ct gold and if I read my marks correctly is actually dated 1959. This means that the movement is somewhat earlier than the case, which often happened depending on stock levels and so on at the time.
The Record movements were considered of a good enough quality that in 1961 the Longines Company bought a controlling interest in the Record Company and they traded both as Record and then Longines-Record for a good number of years, until the Record name disappeared in 1991. I understand some of the movement calibres were renamed as Longines calibres such was the confidence expressed by Longines.
Anyway this particular watch has survived in very good overall condition. The case is well preserved and with few scratches, except for the single scratch on the case back, which I’m pretty sure was done probably as recently as the auction, where some nerd tried to remove the back with a penknife .
The dial is totally original and very clean indeed with gold hands, numerals and a recessed sub-seconds dial plus the Swan and Record logo signature. The crown is also original and untouched.
The glass does have a scratch at centre left which I suppose whilst noticeable doesn’t detract much when viewed normally in use. This could easily be changed and at little cost.
So all in all a really good purchase at a very good price – so I’m pretty happy. Happy too that the previous owner and I think just the one judging by the condition of the watch, kept it when not wearing it – in it’s box!
It does show that kept carefully and worn sensibly there is just no excuse for the all too often poor dial condition that you see in so many watches that appear in auction sales.
And to get a high quality original leather strap is icing on the cake and just about unique in my experience –
So much so that I’m not about to change it (I invariably have to re-new most straps on the antique watches I buy) – it’s just perfect, despite the interesting and Sherlock Holmes bit of info – that the previous owner was a pipe smoker as the leather has a definite tang of rich quality pipe tobacco – so a person of taste perhaps…….
So a successful auction and I came away well pleased…..and the wife? Well she didn’t find anything that she liked after all….that’s life!