Heuerville

Vintage Heuer / TAG Heuer watches, and a few others. Plus Handmade straps..

Archive for the ‘Heuer Chronographs’ Category

Heuer Autavia 2446C Tachy

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Heuer Autavia 2446C Tachy

Heuer Autavia 2446C Tachy, V72, c1971-2 (2446C 2nd dial/hands)

Some of the most sought after Heuers are the early screwback Autavias, and they are indeed very special. This iteration is what replaced the screwback cased models.. it is a compression snapback case, hence the ‘C’ in the model code. These are bigger and chunkier than it’s processors.

Some prefer the more elegant case of the screwback, but I’m certainly a fan of this bold angular C case. They are awkward to capture in a photograph, but in the flesh, they are lovely.. and big for a vintage watch of the early 70’s. Lugs went up by 1mm to 20mm, the bezel dominates the top down view and is a touch under 41mm across, with the bigger fatter crown it comes in at 44.8mm.

This is the last iteration of the C case, and features fluted pushers, ‘tramline’ applied hour batons, inlaid with a thin black stripe – as are the hands. The outer track also has red highlights on every hour and features the red straight sided arrow chrono sweep hand that found it’s way onto the majority of all Heuers that came after. It also has fatter sub-dial hands, and of course, powered by the legendary Valjoux 72 movement. You can clearly see the black/red/fluted pushers DNA in this watch providing the ‘link’ between the early models and the later cushion case Viceroy colour scheme that we are all familiar with.

The exact ‘Mk’ of this model is a little confusing, as it was originally  graded from the very first Autavias, which makes this (at time of writing) a 2446C – Mk5 dial, Mk5 hands.. but there are tiny iterations of other models that have been discovered, which pushes up the ‘Mk’ number. The latest thinking has made things more simple.. instead of working out which elements are which compared to the entire range, we just look at it from the point of view of the 2446 C case range.. and there were x2 dials, this being the 2nd. It is also far simpler to say that this is the last C case Autavia made. It also has a plain polished caseback, with the small concentric circles on the edge to mark where you open the case.

It’s bold design gives it a tool-like appearance, and as such is one of the few vintage Heuers that looks great on a NATO type strap. I know many don’t like them, but if you’re a fan, it does look great.. I tried some different colours, and they suit it well too. I was lucky enough to source a NOS bezel for this model, and it really sets it off. In fact, the Argentinian Airforce opted for this model for issued equipment. Here is an excerpt from an issued model that sold at Bonhams a while back..

The Argentinean Airforce was supplied with batches of Heuer watches during the late 1960’s and 1970’s. The case differs in size and construction from the earlier Autavia and a new so-called compressor case with snap on back was introduced, sealing the case from differences of internal and external pressure. The crown is larger and Heuer signed and it has larger chronograph pushers with a fluted design. As these were tool watches, very few have survived in pristine condition.”
http://www.bonhams.com/auctions/17865/lot/73/
(Please note, the date given to this watch is incorrect)

Written by Heuerville

March 3, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Heuer Carrera 3648S

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Heuer Carrera 3648S

Heuer Carrera 3648S, 1964-5, Valjoux 92

Having took the plunge and bought my first 60’s Carrera last year, I got the bug and decided to add this one to the collection too. I’m not really into gold (or plated) watches, but this one was for sale at a very reasonable price over on TZUK, so I thought I’d give it a go.

It is a first execution hands and dial model, dating from 1964-65 (serial 803xx) with 20 micron gold plate and a stainless steel screw back. Powered by a V92 movement, features a 45 min register and continuous seconds hand on the left register. This model features in catalogues: 1964, 65, 68 & 69, and in 1965 cost $74.50USD, which was surprisingly more expensive than the standard stainless steel model, albeit by $5.

It’s in very clean condition. There is some wear to the gold plate, but not really noticeable when on the wrist. I contemplated having it re-plated, but decided against it as I had a bad experience with this in the distant past.

The first thing that struck me was that it wears bigger than you would think of a 36mm watch, and comparing it to my black dialled version, this is mainly due to it being the non-tachy model, so the dial is cleaner and more spread out to the edges – that, and the silver/white dial which always seems to ‘enlarge’ a watches appearance. The matching outer track also makes a big difference. Talking of which, the dial is stunning, with a subtle starburst finish to it, it catches the light beautifully.

I admit that I didn’t wear it much, always choosing to go for my black dial version, so it has since left my collection to be enjoyed by someone who will wear it instead of sitting in a watch box. It was sad to see it go, but maybe it’s just confirms that I’m a stainless case fan after all.. but an exception could be made for the legendary 1153 gold Carrera!

Written by Heuerville

February 10, 2013 at 1:29 pm

Heuer 510.501 Kenyan 82 Air Force ’82AF’ Military Issued

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Heuer 510.501 Kenyan AF 82 Military Issue

Heuer 510.501, 86.1000 Series, Lemania 5100. Military Issued 82 Air Force, Kenyan Air Force.

I’ll be honest.. when I bought this watch I originally thought it IDF issued, specifically from the Israel Air Force Helicopter Unit from the late ‘80’s. It came from a German trader who deals with a contact based in Haifa who buys direct from military personnel. It turns out it was not IDF at all…

Mil Hands
On a standard model, the main chrono hands are red-orange, and the tail end of the main sweep hands are black. Its common that the hand fade, but the black tail never fades. I’ve handled many Heuers with faded red hands and they fade to various colours – from pink to orange to yellowy, but never pure white.

It has been noted in the past, that some military issued Heuer were supplied with a different handset to the standard production models, often the handsets are white (as seen on IDF issued models). Heuer collector Arno Haslinger, who in a post on OTD, noted that often …“hands are white on IDF watches and orange on Argentina Airforce watches”.

82 AF 180 Markings
Like anyone buying a mil-watch, I wanted to find out the story behind the markings. I was optimistically confident that the military markings were genuine, but on the other hand, I couldn’t find any comparable evidence online to ‘back-up’ the markings. I mused that it’s highly unlikely that anyone would go the trouble of faking mil-markings that no one had ever seen before. If you’re going fake an IDF watch, just stamp M and 3 numbers, right?
Interestingly, I’ve seen many Lemania driven SAAF watches with the ‘AF’ marking accompanied by numbers, I guessed this proves the fact that AF is used for ‘Air Force’ in military watch marking, but I wasn’t sure..

http://forum.atgvintagewatches.com/showthread.php?t=3310

So, I asked the Mil watch experts…
I posted up on a few forums, MWR and OTD to see if anyone could help with identification. Many suggestions and theories were put forward, including Israeli Air Force Flight Academy graduation gifts, plus other suggestions that didn’t hold water. Eventually, a break-through.. I had a theory put forward that made sense..
Thanks to ‘NetMatrix’ (aka Paul) on OTD who put me in touch with an African Mil watch expert, Neil Herbert, based in South Africa. After exchanging several emails, Neil believed that these markings could well be Kenyan Air Force (KAF).. or part of KDF (Kenyan Defence Force).. Specifically ‘Air Force 82’.. as he has seen similar ’82 AF xxx’ markings on other mil issue equipment.

What is the 82 Air Force?
On 1st August 1982, there was a failed coup d’etat attempt to overthrow the Kenyan president. Lead by a group of Air Force officers (no aircrews), the failed attempt lead to the disbandment of the Air Force on 22nd Aug ’82. It was reconstituted shortly after under tight Army control under the name ’82 Air Force’ (or 82 AF). It regained independent status beginning of 1994.
Kenyan Air Force: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenya_Air_Force

http://home.eblcom.ch/f5enthusiast/AirForces/KenyaAF.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northrop_F-5_Tiger_II

Kenyan AF 82 F-5 Fighter jet
KAF Northrop F-5 Tiger II Fighter Jets. Since 1978, it is the KAF’s main air defence fighter.

Kenyan AF 82 BAe Hawk Mk52
Kenyan AF 82 BAe Hawk Mk52, supplied around 1980, probably as a fast jet trainer.

Another Breakthrough..
Then, to my surprise, in January 2012, a fellow UK watch enthusiast, Dennis Davis, who had the very same model also with AF 82 markings, contacted me. Dennis’ example had a different issue no. 82 AF 163. He bought the watch several years ago, and at the time of purchase, the watchmaker thought the military markings were South African. The markings and their execution are identical to my example, with a unique number of course. This proves that the ‘82’ part is a constant, so reinforces the 82 Air Force theory. Both my example and Dennis’ have very heavily stuck markings, which was a worry with just one example, but with two, proves that they were simply struck with a rather heavy hand, as opposed to a bad ‘faking’.
Furthermore, as I type this out, there is another example on eBay, being sold by a Canadian dealer, which has the issue number 82 AF 112.

More 82 AF Heuers…
Apart from these three 510.501 Heuers, I knew of no other Heuers with 82 AF markings, then another break-through. A mil watch collector posted up 3-4 of his very rare military issued Autavias on OTD’s Heuer forum. One model, a 11063 from c82-85, also had 82 AF stamps on the caseback, very similar to those on the 510.501’s. Wonderful news, and confirmation that the Kenyan 82 Air Force were supplied with Heuers for issue.

Discussion on OTD when someone else owned it before me:
http://www.chronocentric.com/forums/heuer/index.cgi?md=read;id=31865

My Discussion on OTD:
http://chronocentric.com/forums/heuer/index.cgi?md=read;id=49963

My Discussion on MFW:
http://www.mwrforum.net/forums/showthread.php?t=47624

The Restoration..
So, many of you will be looking at the watch shouting.. it can’t be a 510.501 because that was the black PVD model. Yes, you are quite right.. it was.
The watch was in a bad way when I got it. Chipped & scratched glass that had been crudely glued in place, poorly fitted crown, that looked like it had been fitted with a monkey wrench – as there was a huge amount of PVD missing from around the crown area of the case with some gouging. The PVD was badly chipped everywhere. Now, I’m all for keeping a watch original, especially when it’s seen military service, but this one was bloody awful, so I set about doing a sympathetic restoration.

I decided to not touch the dial and hands, apart from remove the excess glue from the tachy ring (from where the crystal being glued in place). With the case, I opted to have it lightly bead-blasted, but keep it’s little dings, scrapes and ‘life history’. The crown had already been replaced with a like-for-like but in stainless steel, so I left that as it. The pushers I dismantled and painstakingly removed the PVD using very fine wet n dry paper and then polished to a high gloss with a cape code cloth.

I decided to fit a mil-style bracelet (with wider link gaps), similar to a genuine Heuer type seen on a mil Autavia I’d seen. I hunted around and found a great 22mm bracelet from Watch-band-centre. I could have fitted a straight 20mm bracelet, but these 510 series, along with many Heuers, were originally fitted with cut-in bracelets, so I custom filed the 22mm endlinks down to fit the 20mm lugged case. The bracelet was brush finished, so I sent that off with the case to get blasted. Although the case had already been blasted, it was done again to ensure a perfect match between bracelet and case. They both were treated to an ultra-sonic bath spa to get rid of all the grime.

Finally it went away to be re-assembled & have new glass and gaskets fitted (Thanks James), then sent away to Steve at Rytetime for a full overhaul and service. It’s taken 22 months to get to this stage, and I have to say it’s looking rather good – I’ve also opted to retains its slight wonky crown (stem), which I kinda like.. it connects it to it’s story. Part of me thinks it actually looks too clean, I’ve resisted dropping the case into a jar of nuts & bolts & giving it a good shake.. but I think it’s ready for another 30 years of abuse & wabi to collect on it.

Written by Heuerville

February 9, 2013 at 6:49 pm

Heuer Autavia 2446 H Jochen Rindt

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Heuer Autavia 2446 H Rindt

Heuer Autavia 2446 H, 3rd Execution Screwback ‘Rindt’, Valjoux 72, 1968

I really do have a soft spot for the early Autavias, especially the v72 driven 2446’s, and this model is one of my favourites. Sure, the very early versions, especially the 1st Gen are beautiful, but they really are like hens teeth, and have a price tag to match.

Figuring out which exact generation is which isn’t that easy these days, as subtle differences have been found and this expands the generation line. A lot of work has been done recently by Rich Crosthwaite and Paul Gavin whilst researching their new book on the Autavia. (Buy it here).

The upshot is that some of the generations have minor differences in them, but still remain under the banner of one Mark. So, as an example there are 2 types of ‘Mk1’ (different hands) and so on.

As there is no ‘governing body’ on these matters, it’s actually all down to individual collectors own thoughts, but the majority would call this model the 3rd Gen. (3rd execution dial, 3rd execution hands, screw back case from 1968/9). This one has an Hour bezel, the most aesthetically pleasing in my mind, but it was also available in Minute and Tachy bezel formats. It’s more commonly known as the Rindt, as Jochen Rindt, the famous race driver wore this model (with minute bezel). Even this throws up some confusion, as some collectors loosely refer to any screw back model as a Rindt, which is technically incorrect.

The screwback generations are overall smaller in case size than the later compression cases, with an unusual 19mm lug too. They are rather beautiful, but oddly, they are quite difficult to capture properly in photos, it’s difficult to show their true essence. It sounds strange, but it’s a fine watch to actually handle – the sweeping elegant case lines, the superdome acrylic crystal, it has a warm feeling, if that makes sense, a true vintage piece with all the Autavia heritage connected to it. It really is special.

The Leather Racing Strap…
I get asked this a lot – it’s one I have hand made, I will be selling them soon, but haven’t yet set up a shop or anything. I’m advising people to follow me on Twitter, and I will publish updates direct to your phone when they are available.
My Twitter is @Heuerville

Further reading…
Valjoux 72 Technical manual
Dec 2005 Posting by Chuck Maddox on the V72

More info & Photos of Jochen Rindt & his watch here on fellow a Heuer enthusiasts excellent site..
http://gianvittorioheuer.blogspot.co.uk/2011/11/heuer-autavia-2446-m-jochen-rindt.html

Jochen’s wife, Nina, has a fascinating FB page, where she posts great old photos – well worth a visit..
Nina Rindt’s Facebook Page

Written by Heuerville

January 11, 2013 at 11:16 am

Heuer 3000 Chronograph 232.206

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Heuer 3000 Chronograph 232.206

Heuer 3000 Chronograph 232.206 200m. Quartz + Dubois Depraz 2000 Calibre 185 c1984

This is the second 3000 chrono I’ve had, the first was a stunning two-tone model, which has since moved on to pastures new. This all grey model is the least common colourway of the range, and is in tip top condition. It has actually been a long hard slog to get this watch as it is. The case, hands, and dial was bought NOS, it was a ‘salesmans’ model – we see these occasionally, they were sets of movement-less watches (with plastic dummy movements inside to hold the hands in place) that Heuer sales staff carried around to show ADs and clients.

All I needed was a good condition Heuer movement. This turned out to be a wild goose chase, as I must have bought 3 or 4 Heuer donor watches, all with movements that turned out to be in need of servicing or were buggered. Eventually I found a good recently serviced movement, transplanted from a Heuer Titanium. As mentioned earlier, the dummy movement that holds the subdial hands in place seems to have stretched the tubes on the hands, so when it came to fitting them, they were loose, so a set of sub-dial hands needed to be sorted. Something to bear in mind if you buy one of these NOS salesman watches.

Anyway, a big thanks goes to James, who sorted this out for me, it was a long haul project, and I love the results, but I don’t think I’ll be going down that route again. You live and learn, and the smallest of jobs seem to turn out to be the most expensive and time consuming.

I do like this 3000 series, they were pricey in their day, I was told by someone a while back that they bought one new, and it was a similar price to the Rolex Daytona! I can’t verify that, but it wouldn’t surprise me. It seems I’m not alone as a Heuer collector in overlooking the 3000 series. David’s Cal. 11 website published an article on the ‘forgotten 3000’ series, which can be read here: http://www.calibre11.com/tag-heuer-3000-series/

There aren’t that many Heuer 3000 series around, especially chronographs. I can only presume that not many were sold back in the mid-late 80’s. However, the design survived the TAG partnership. It hasn’t really dated either, it was probably quite fresh and funky when launched, but it wouldn’t look out of place if it were released now. In fact there are certainly flashes of the design in some current high end watches coming out of Switzerland. (Hublot springs to mind)

The chronograph movements are interesting too, both the quartz and automatic models use the Dubois Depraz 2000 chronograph module.
The automatic movement (LWO 283) mates the DD2000 module to an ETA 2892 base, and the quartz movement (Calibre 185) uses the DD2000 mated to a quartz base. You can read more about these movements at the review of the Heuer 2000 Series on Calibre 11.com (2000 series used the same movements)

Further reading…
See it here in the 1984 catalog
The same model is featured on Jarl’s ‘Classic Heuers’ site here.

Written by Heuerville

December 16, 2012 at 5:46 pm

Heuer Carrera 3647NT

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Carrera 3647NT

Heuer Carrera 3647NT, Valjoux 92, 45Min register, 1964

1st execution dial and polished hands, 50-200 tachy scale. Unsigned crown and non-fluted pushers, round screw-back case.

Just to clear up any confusion, this model is listed as being c1968/69 in the MOAT (Mother of all tables) master table on On The Dash. Being a novice to these early Carreras, I checked and this model is listed in the 1964 catalogue, so I contacted one of the Heuer communities Carrera experts, Mark Moss. Mark too was vexed why ‘68/69 was listed in the MOAT, and agreed it’s just a typo, and that this model is indeed from the same period as the other 3647’s an 8’s, and the serial number of this model lands it smack amongst others from 1964. Everything else checked out OK, unsigned crown correct for the period, some of the very early examples had the poly caseback but this round caseback fits in with the date. It’s a fairly rare model too, Mark reckons maybe a ratio of 1/10 compared to red tachy/silver dials.

So, this is a big moment for me.. my first ever 60’s Carrera. In fact, it’s the first time I’ve actually ever seen or handled one in the metal. I bought it from a well regarded fellow US collector, so I knew it would be in good shape.

My only concern was the size, and after opening the packaging, my concerns didn’t go away… blimey it is small, too small.. it’s beautiful, but it’s too small.. I’ll have to sell it. I took a few breaths, grabbed a coffee and calmed down.. from experience I’ve had a knee-jerk reaction to ‘unknown’ models, and have ended up loving them. Before I collected Heuers I used to wear a modestly sized watch, so I decided to wear it and give it time. It worked.

I think I’ve just become accustomed to 40mm+ watches, and because of this, only ever bought large watches, so this Carrera does look tiny (36mm), but it’s just acclimatisation. I’m writing this after wearing this stunning Carrera for just two days, and I have actually got used to the size now, it’s no longer an issue, and I couldn’t be more happy. In fact I put on an Autavia last night and it felt massive!

For a long time I’ve read many words from the usual suspects of the joy of these Carreras (you know who you are – Mark & Paul!!), and now I get it. It’s hard to explain, but the pure design and quality is remarkable. It is simply a joy to look at, I just can’t stop looking at it. It’s not that the quality is better than other Heuers, but it oozes elegance, but also has that rare quality of being cool. Yes, I know that’s subjective.. but this is a stainless steel black dial Carrera we’re talking about. It is subtle, achingly pretty but .. well, just cool. It’s a cool watch, and I love it.

Heuer Carrera 3647NT

Written by Heuerville

December 8, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Heuer Monaco 1133G

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Heuer Monaco 1133G, Cal. 11i, 1970

Technically the metallic grey dialed 1133G comes in four flavours; with grey or black sub registers, and they can be either sunken or painted, but it is common to state that there are two dial variants (black or grey subs). The painted type being rarer, but in my opinion, not as aesthetically pleasing. Personally I think the sunken black subs variant is the nicest looking, and I’m extremely happy to finally get my mucky paws on this one.

The 1133G was made from 1970 to 74, and featured either a Cal. 11 or 12 movement. My Serial, 160xxx suggests that it is from 1970, as a fellow collector has a later serial of 162xxx and his watch is engraved on the back with a date of Oct 1970.

This is my first Monaco, in fact it’s the first time I’ve ever seen of handled one in the flesh. I suppose that might be surprising given that I’m a fully paid up Heuer nut. I’ll be perfectly honest, I’ve never really had a thing for the Monaco, I’ve spent years reading about how amazing they are, and seen some stunning photos along the way, but I’ve never really ‘got it’. OK, it’s a nice looking watch, but would I spend that kind of coin on one.. no. Well, in a moment of madness I agreed to buy this one, it was a good deal, so I knew that if I didn’t like it, I could move it on easily. Well, it has surprised me, it’s quite an astonishing thing. I’m not saying it’s the be-all-and-end-all of watch design, but it’s the way it feels, the way it wears, it’s hard to describe really, maybe it’s because it’s an icon of the watch world. I also like the under-the-radar feel of this grey version, it’s a more stealthy than the well known ‘McQueen’ blue & white subdial version.

First Grey seen in the 1970 catalogue (OTD)

Grey & Black in the 1972 catalogue (OTD)

Written by Heuerville

November 3, 2012 at 9:09 pm

Heuer Titanium 220.206

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Heuer Titanium 220.206, Calibre 185 mechanical quartz chronograph, c1985

Another Titanium comes my way, this time a full sized men’s version. This particular model was the largest version Heuer produced with a uni-directional rotating bezel. It also has a tachy track on the outer edge of the dial. It’s fair to say these aren’t that sought after these days, but are still pretty rare in pre-TAG dial format. The recessed markings on the bezel would have originally been filled with black paint or PVD, but it’s very common for this to wear, and the crown should be gold plated. Still it’s a nice rare model to handle, and it’s surprisingly light.

The ‘moon dust’ dial is the original finish, it can sometimes be mistaken for patina that has developed on a plain dial. The fine gilt lettering on the dial is quite faded, and I’m wondering if this is something that is due to the unique dial finish. The lume and gold areas have developed a nice patina, the subdials looking like old brass.

It’s powered by the Calibre 185 mechanical quartz modular chronograph, consisting of a ESA 555.232 quartz base mated with a Dubois Depraz mechanical chronograph module. Because of this it beats/ticks twice a second.

See it here in the 1984 Catalogue on Calibre 11

and check out this great article on Calibre 11

Written by Heuerville

September 23, 2012 at 10:30 pm

Heuer Skipper 15640 2nd Gen

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Heuer Skipper 15640 2nd Generation, Cal. 15, Black Gloss Dial, c1978-82

I’ve written about the Skippers before, but that was in relation to the 11063 cased version. This is the 11630 cased version, all cases borrowed from the Autavia line of watches. This model has the gloss black dial, there was a blue dial version available prior to this model, known as the 1st Gen of the 15640’s.

It is a little confusing, as you would expect a 1st Gen to have an earlier case, as there are earlier Skippers, but the ‘generational’ naming is specific to the models called 15640. The reason is that there were 3 models called 15640, but were quite different. The 1st Gen is a 11630 case with blue dial and bezel, 2nd Gen is what we see here (same 11630 case), 3rd Gen is the 11063 cased models. Maybe they should be called Mk1/2/3 as generation suggests a change of case for all. Anyway, no one said that the naming conventions of Heuers had to be simple!

I particularly like this model, the deep gloss black dial is so crisp and wonderful, it makes a nice change from the matt dials of most of the Autavias. The hour batons are painted white too, giving a really fresh feel to the design. I’ve no idea on numbers produced or sold, but it’s fair to say that you don’t see too many of these. They do pop up from time to time, but compared to the regular Autavias of the same case, these are fairly scarce.

The Skippers Calibre 15 movements were modified so that the sub dial hand tick over every 30 seconds, so the normal (Cal. 15) 30 minute register becomes a 15 minute recorder, with color-coded zones to enable a yachtsman to keep track of the countdown to the start of a race. The colours correspond to the flags used to mark the countdown sequence.

If you want to learn all about the models, manual & auto.. Click here to see the detailed table Jeff recently put on OTD… and check out the photo library.

David over at Cal. 11 also did a nice article on the Heuer/TAG Heuer watersports watches.

 

Written by Heuerville

September 14, 2012 at 1:43 pm

Heuer Autavia 11630T Bianco

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Heuer Autavia 11630T (Tachy) White dial, Cal. 12, c1975

Well.. what can I say.. this really is something special. This is a rarity, the consensus amongst Heuer collectors is that there are known to be three 1163 white dials and five 11630 white dials known to collectors, so this would be the 6th.
Known by various names, ‘Bianco’, ‘Great White’, whichever takes your fancy, it’s certainly a stunner. The dial isn’t flat white, it’s similar to the finish on the Siffert dial, in that it’s slightly metallic, well more of a pearl finish. But, side by side with a Siffert, is is a warm white, whereas the Siffert is a cool white – same way as you can set your monitor to warm or cool. I’m certain this is intentional, and demonstrates the fine attention to detail that Heuer gave to it’s dial designs. I noted this a while back with my 1163 Orange Boy, and Orange dial Diver – the lume is warm-white, or a pale peach, same on this dial too. It’s actually very clever. The Sifferts cool-white dial finish matches perfectly with it’s blue accents. This ‘Bianco’ with it’s warm-white dial matches the orange accents.
Another area to note is the subdials, you can see them losing their black colour and going tropical. It’s noted that the other white dials all have a degree of tropical discolouration or fading on them. One collector even has a panda white dial Rolex Daytona Cosmograph from the same period, and made by the same dial company – Singer – and this too has completely faded tropical sub dials.

This isn’t actually a  totally original watch, it was once a black & orange dial, but I was very lucky to acquire the white dial separately. I could have put it in a 1163 case, but this would require an Orange Boy handset, which is just as rare as the dial itself. I decided to go for the 11630 case, as it’s my favourite and was a simple dial swap. A NOS tachy insert was sourced, a correct black glass gasket was hunted down, and here it is, in all its wonderful Bianco glory. The hour and minute hands are slightly broader than a regular 11630, I believe them to be early service hands. They actually look better on the white white, giving better eligibility.
(Thanks to George C & APE for the parts, and Jimbo for banging it all together)

For more insight, the ‘white dialers’ were recently discussed over on OTD here.

Written by Heuerville

August 25, 2012 at 4:20 pm