Wednesday, April 29, 2009
These are vintage porcelain dial and metal dial watches made during the early 1900s, a generation after the pocket watches. Those with the protective grill were made as "military watches" during the first world war circa 1914..
One advantage of these porcelain watches is the the dial will stay bright and beautiful even with the passage of time. The main disadvantage is the possibility of having hairline crack when used in very harsh manner.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Monday, April 27, 2009
In the 1950s, the design of Rolex watches arrived at its peak, notably with the production of cloisonné enamel dial wristwatches in conjunction with the renowned Charles Poluzzi.
Rolex reserved the enamel dials for only very few models. The best known reference numbers with either monochrome enamel or cloisonné enamel scenes are 6084, 6085, 6284 and 6285. The most popular motifs were the dragon, the viking boat, maps and the peacock.
Carlo or Charles Poluzzi (1899-1978) was one of Geneva's most renowned enamellers. Poluzzi specialized in the production of dials decorated with cloisonné enamel scenes, which he supplied to important watch manufacturers such as Rolex, Omega, Vacheron Constantin and Patek Philippe.
The production of these dials was extremely costly as they had to be individually made by a skilled craftsman and not on a production line. The artist created the outline of the desired motif by arranging thin gold wires on a dial. These partitions, called "cloisonné" in French, were filled with small quantities of enamel powder in the desired colour. The dial was then fired in an oven at around 1000 degrees Celsius causing the powder to melt. Finally it was hand-polished until obtaining of a perfectly flat surface.
Consequently, Rolex cloisonné enamel dial watches were and still are considered the most unusual and attractive watches the company ever made and are thus highly looked after by collectors....at very very high costs too
Some information with regards to the Peacock:
In many cultures, the symbol of the peacock is considered auspicious and protective. The peacock is associated with the Middle Eastern deity Tammuz; in Greece it was sacred to Hera, queen of heaven and lawful wife of Zeus - a pair of them drew her chariot.
In the old Chinese bureaucratic system, members of the third highest level displayed a peacock as the insignia of rank. These badges were in the form of large embroidered squares applied to the front of an official's formal gown. A similar system for indicating status was used in the Byzantine Empire.
Peacocks are considered sacred in India, especially in the north where its feathers may be burnt to ward off disease, and even to cure snakebite.
In the iconography of European alchemy and hermeneutics, the peacock represents the soul. In Christianity, it stands for immortality and the incorruptibility of the soul. It is also an obvious solar symbol because of the resemblance between the rays of the sun and the circular fan of the tail in full display.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
I have read in many forum that there are many fake Tudor Prince around. As such, one has to be be extra alert when collecting by ensuring the model number correspond to the Tudor Prince series..
I have checked across the web and found that Tudor Ref 9050 and 90520 are normal Prince Oysterdate models.
According to the web: http://masasima.hp.infoseek.co.jp/mywatch/rolexspec.htm
Tudor Ranger models are: 7992, 7984, 7934, 7964, 7990, 7963, 7966/0, 90330, 90020 and 90220.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Later, the many new POS started to appear: examples Old Old days, Eddie Antique watch, Antique Watch corners, Passion, Monster Time, Ray Antique etc. The 1980s and early 90s were the golden years of vintage watch collection, a trend set up by Chow Yuen Fatt and others. Rolex Prince, bubblebacks, moon phase watches were the core collections at that time.
After the 97s financial crisis, and the SARs, many of these nice vintage watch shops have closed with only a handful remaining..
With the internet and ebay, plus the current financial crisis, what will happen to vintage watch collection?
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
In 1952, two French military officers, Captain "Bob" Maloubier and his lieutenant Claude Riffaud were tasked by the French Military of Defence to create the elite combat diving unit "Les Nageurs de Combat".
The new unit required rugged, water-resistance and reliable material capable of withstanding the testing conditions of underwater missions. The two officers’ attempts to find an existing watch that could meet these requirements were fruitless, and their search led them to Blancpain.
Working closely together, the company's leading engineers and watchmakers successfully developed the Fifty Fathoms in 1953. The operational needs of the Les Nageurs de Combat were met, and the archetypal diver's watch was born
Utilizing an automatic winding movement for robustness, and a unidirectional bezel to keep track of elapsed diving time (a world's first), the Fifty Fathoms was cased in robust stainless steel. Its guaranteed water resistance was a then-unheard-of fifty fathoms or 91.45 meters, which was the maximum dive depth for a diver equipped with cylinders containing a mix of oxygen and nitrogen.