close

Watchismo Times | category: history | (page 5 of 6)

home

Watchismo Times

THE WATCHISMO TIMES WATCH BLOG A reliquary of obscure timepieces from bygone eras as well as the cutting-edge watch designs of today.

watchismo.blogspot.com

1941 Officine Panerai Commando Watch Set

1941 Officine Panerai Commando Watch SetModern Panerai collectors are rabid angry beasts and they'll likely kill a small child for the upcoming vintage 1941 'Radiomir Panerai Commando Set' auction by Antiquorum. A group of very rare watches built for Italian Navy Frogmen in WWII. Included are a compass, depth gauge and wristwatch with documentation of ownership and details of their use in sabotage missions attacking British warships. This set is expected to sell between $57,000 and $75,000.

Auction-->Link

1941 Officine Panerai Commando Watch SetA previous set featuring watch/compass/depth gauge but also included a morse code device and diving knife. Link

Panerai Website-->Link

| Watchismo Blog | Watchismo Shop | Email Author | Subscribe |


Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

16th Century Gun Powder Flask-Sundial Compass Watch

16th Century Gun Powder Flask-Sundial Compass Watch


Portable watches had only been around a few decades when this multi-function timepiece was built in southern Germany circa 1590.

Consisting of a round powder flask made of rosewood with inlaid and engraved rosette-shaped ornaments of brass and bone. A small clock with 1-12 hours twice situated on the outer ring. The small funnel of bone is closed with a springy lid made of brass. Below the center under the engraved lid with a transversally placed hinge, there is a horizontal sundial with indication of the hours from six o'clock in the morning to six o'clock in the evening. A small compass with north-south indication but without correction for the magnetic pole. The string gnomon is stretched by opening the lid and is only valid for one latitude. On the side of the flask, there is an opening to a funnel-shaped small pipe which is placed in the socket and allows for filling up the powder flask. Diameter 10.8cm


From the Beyer Watch and Clock Museum in Zurich-->Link
Museum Collection Photomontage-->Link

Related posts;

Wood & Bone Pocket Watches

Wristwatches of War


| Watchismo Blog | Watchismo Shop | Email Author | Subscribe |



Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIOnce I think I've seen everything, somebody alerts me a mind-blowing gadget like this Steineck Subminiature Wrist-camera. Thanks to Max Busser, founder of MB&F Horological Machines who shared his find (above) from a vintage watch store in Lugano, Switzerland. Needless to say, I've been obsessed these antique spy/detective/novelty gadgets for the last few days and have uncovered a secret force of "Submini" wrist-cameras. A wide array of styles existed over many different eras, originating in 1907 with a pocket watch camera. Others were fit into rings, some were undisguised miniature cameras fit onto a wristband but my favorite remains the Steineck, with its robotic cyclops face and potential for Captain Kirk-ian prop-weaponry!

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIIt all began with these patent designs from 1907 for the first concealed camera in a pocket watch. Later marketed as the "Ticka" (below) with dummy watch face permanently set at 7 minutes past 10 o'clock indicating the viewing angle making it possible to use without the detachable viewfinder. Exposing unsuspecting subjects on a cassette of 17.5mm film (wound by turning the key) and the lens is hidden by the watch crown.

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIAn original Ticka with packaging
via UK Camera

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IITicka's fixed 7-past-10 dummy dial

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIThe worlds first wrist-camera was created by Japanese inventor, Jujiro Ichiki in 1939. Via Modern Mechanix


Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIThe above mentioned Steineck produced from the late forties into the fifties. Invented by Dr. Rudolph Steineck of Switzerland and highly regarded as one of the better quality subminiature cameras made. Uses a 24mm circular film disk and automatic film advance. The viewfinder is a reflex concave mirror with a sharp centre line pointer, which permits sighting from above when the camera, worn on the wrist, is held in picture-taking position. Through the centre of the camera is a hole, an alternative direct-vision viewfinder.

A complex mechanism best described from Submin.com's Steineck pages-->Link

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II
Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIThe Steineck in more detail from the original drawings and patent summary here-->Link

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II1950s Pixie Wrist Camera
No tricks here, just a camera on your wrist.
via Link

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II1960 Tessina Cameras featured the only subminiature watch that uses standard 35mm film but is the size of 16mm cameras. A rare version exisits for the wrist (above) and one with a Swiss watch attachment (below). Made up of 400 parts and built by Concava of Switzerland, the Tessina was also designed and patented by Dr. Rudolph Steineck.
Via Submin.com

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IITessina with watch attachment

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II1981 Magnacam Wristamatic invented by Bernard Seckendorf of New York. Not a spy camera but rather intended to be "on hand" for active sports. travel, sightseeing. Patent-->Link
Via Link and SubClub

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II
Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II
Also from 1981, the Italian Ferro Ring camera. Very high quality and even had accessories. The lens was a fixed-focus 10mm with a variable shutter of B, 1/30 - 1/500. It takes special 25mm diameter discs of film and produces six 4.5x6mm images.
Via SubClub

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIGold plated Ferro Ring Watch with case for $5000
via Lionel Hughes Photographica

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIHere's one I wish existed. An impressive and ambitious 1940 Patent shows this K.M. French design for a wrist-attached camera complete with expanding bellows! Patent-->Link


More information on all varieties of subminiature & spy photography;
The Sub Club
Submin.com
PI Vintage

Subminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part IIBe sure to read my previous post on the 1950s Minifon Spy Watch/Audio Recorder (pictured above)-->Link And the history of James Bond gadget watches-->Link



| Watchismo Shop | Watchismo Blog | Email Author | Subscribe |



Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

1970s Girard Perregaux Quartzwerk

1970s Girard Perregaux Quartzwerk1969, Swiss brand Girard Perregaux designed and produced a quartz movement with a frequency of 32,768 hertz, which became the universally accepted standard for all watches with quartz movements, including those made in Asia. This standard frequency was a veritable technical breakthrough.

The early 70s model shown here has a design mimicking the components of the quartz module with bright Tron-style colors for the circuits. Japanese brands like Seiko weren't the only ones nailing the coffins of the mechanical market, the Swiss helped pull the nails from inside the box and with great precision.


1970s Girard Perregaux Quartzwerk
1970s Girard Perregaux Quartzwerk

From the Beyer Collection
Girard Perregaux History



| Watchismo Shop | Watchismo Blog | Email Author | Subscribe |

TO BOLDLY GO WHERE NO WATCH HAS GONE BEFORE!

TO BOLDLY GO WHERE NO WATCH HAS GONE BEFORE!
Great article by Nick Foulkes from FT about the current 'Garage Watchmakers' of todays exclusive independent boutique brands like MB&F, Urwerk, Richard Mille, Vianney Halter, Hautlence, FP Journe, HD3, and Greubel Forsey.

Article PDF-->Here


via Ian Skellern @ OurWorld

Swiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump Hour

Swiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump Hour
Swiss mechanical watches were faced with a huge challenge by the growing popularity of digital LED & LCD displays of the seventies. Taking an older concept called the Jumping Hour or Direct Read (rotating discs with numbers printed on them instead of hands) and adapting it for watches like the Amida Digitrend with its reverse-reflected sideviewing LED imitation or the Sicura Instalite featured here. The Sicura was the first mechanical jump hour watch with a separate electric lighting function - batteries powered the lamp and manual winding for the watch. Pushing the top button lit up the display as well as three oddly placed portholes on the space-age case.

Available-->Link

Swiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump HourSwiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump HourSwiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump Hour

Related posts;
Jump Hours


| Watchismo Shop | Watchismo Blog |


Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

Watch built from Bone! Wood you believe?

Watch built from Bone! Wood you believe?Ok, 40,000 unique visitors to The Watchismo Times in two days caught my attention - Due in part to the all-wood pocket watch story picked up by Digg and BoingBoing. Well, if you really want to know more, I got the lowdown on who made these amazing handbuilt & handcarved mechanical watches made entirely of wood, ivory or bone (except for mainspring, balance spring and pivots). A horological dynasty is responsible, the Bronnikov family from Vjatka, Russia. The earliest model appearing in 1837 and rumored to have been purchased by the future Czar, Alexander II. A tradition carried out through the 1800s into the early 20th century by Semyon's sons Mikhail and Nicolai - Producing only one watch per month with approximately 500 ever made, and of those only about 250 have survived today. More about the history below the photos...

Pictured above, the 1865 'Bone Watch'.
Double-body, hinged back cover, polished, bezels with turned ribs at the edges, a small circle in the center. Chain: single and double links, carved from bone, 8 mm ring-links. D. Bone with Arabic numerals on circular cartouches, subsidiary seconds. Bone hands. Made entirely made of bone with pinned bone bridges, excluding the main-spring, balance-spring and pivots, with going barrel, cylinder escapement with bone staff, plain bone three-arm balance, bone index regulator. Back cover signed in Cyrillic. Diam. 50 mm. Selling at auction in 2005 for over $25,000 USD. Close-up photo-->Link

Watch built from Bone! Wood you believe?1865 'Birch Watch' Wood case, movement, bone hands, numbers and handcarved wood chain.
Close-up photo-->Link


Bronnikov's inventive design features a movement which is an integral part of the case, the dial which serves as the pillar plate and the bridges and cock supported by brackets milled in the back part of the band. The same idea was later employed by the celebrated Albert Potter. Bronnikov, A family living in Vjatka, Russia, which specialized in the making of all-wood, and all-ivory watches. The first recorded member of the family was Ivan Bronnikov (c. 1770 - 1860), a skillful joiner and turner. Upon the occasion of an exhibition in 1837, the Vjatka Industrial Town Council asked Ivan to exhibit some objects of his making. He refused, saying he was too old, but that his son, Semyon Ivanovitch (1800 - 1875) would contribute "some small thing". This turned out to be a pocket watch entirely carved out of wood which greatly impressed everyone. It is said that the future Czar Alexander II, then visiting Vjatka, purchased the watch. Encouraged by this success, Semyon continued the manufacture of wood and ivory watches. Semyon had seven sons. Of them, Mikhail Semyonovitch and Nicolai Semyonovitch continued his work, as did Mikhail's son Nicolai Mikhailovitch, who was the last watchmaker in the family.

Vjatka is an important metallurgical center, which suggests that it was not for the lack of metal in the area that the Bronnikovs made wooden watches. Indeed, it would appear that their predilection for wood and ivory and bone was the result of a specific and deliberate choice. As opposed to metal, wood is not subject to the thermal variations created by very warm and extremely cold temperatures. All-wood watches were more expensive than god ones, selling for approximately 120 rubles whereas a gold watch cost from 90 to 100 rubles. The clockwork parts were made of various woods, including walnut, honeysuckle, boxwood, and hardened bamboo ; the cases from birchwood, or boxwood, and the dials were often decorated with ivory or mother-of-pearl. Bronnikov watches feature an unusual type of construction: rather than having the wheels installed between two plates as is usually the case, the dial also serves as the pillar plate, as well as being an integral part of the case. These watches were not intended for everyday use but rather as expensive and rare souvenirs. This was not the first use of wood as applied to watch mechanisms, however: the Russian mechanician Kulibin used wood for some parts of his clocks and "pendulum watches". Skorodumov, a peasant of the Burga village in the Novgorod region, also used wood as the main material for his watches.

As to the number of Bronnikov watches produced, it seems likely that the three watchmaking generations of the Bronnikov family may have made some 500 watches; the production of a greater number would have required an existing watchmaking industry in the town, which seems not to have been the case. The number of surviving Bronnikov watches has been estimated at approximately 250. Although many - but not all - Bronnikov watches are signed, they do not always carry the initials of the maker, making it sometimes difficult to determine which Bronnikov made the watch. The signature is carved on the inside of the back cover.

History and photos by Antiquorum


(Digg This | Del.icio.us | Watchismo Shop | Watchismo Blog | Subscribe)


Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-1959

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-1959
A journey of classic vintage wristwatch advertisements
of the forties through the fifties...

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591947 Belvil
One of many Dali-inspired '
Persistence of Memory' ads

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591958 Technos
Atomic powered 'Atomium'
Ha, I wish, apparently just a design theme...

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591951 Prexa 'Self Going?' Watch
Those limp watchband legs are creeepy,
especially with that stiff gear-print suit.

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591950 Mondia
Is something being lost in translation here
or am I missing something?
The ad says, "The Cave Lion: How do you escape from roaring lost time?
Quietly rely on Mondia."
I get that it's a quiet watch and all, but...

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591951 Exactus
A great name for a fifties watch!
And in case you didn't see their name,
they want to be sure...

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591952 Ebel 'Videomatic'
Shown below - likely called Video because you can watch the movement from the skeletonized back (back when the word only meant 'to see')


Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-1959
Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591947 Pontifa
Before all the digital Nike sports watches,
people actually used their Chrongraph registers.

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591953 Atlantic
??? What's with the veiny corpse hand?

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591950 Election
Company logo vomitting the product, interesting approach

Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-19591956 Doxa
Why doesn't the watch look as futuristic as the concept car
they are comparing themselves to??


Want to see more? And maybe some more?


(Digg This | Del.icio.us | Watchismo Shop | Watchismo Blog | Subscribe)


Subscribe to The Watchismo Times
Enter your email

Delivered by FeedBurner

Beware of Armed Thin-o-matic Owners

Guys who are on time with thin little watches can be tough too! That is, according to Hamilton's 1960s advertisement for the not so tough sounding 'Thin-o-matic' collection.

It's actually an understated but cool series of vintage watches from the fifties & sixties featuring the worlds first automatic micro-rotor movement by Buren. A breakthrough innovation during the evolution of thinner self-winding mechanical movements.

The highly sought after asymmetric T-403 Thin-o-matic
with finned case and two-tone dial

With bulleted markers

1941 Officine Panerai Commando Watch Set16th Century Gun Powder Flask-Sundial Compass WatchSubminiature Camera Watches - Spy Watches Part II1970s Girard Perregaux QuartzwerkTO BOLDLY GO WHERE NO WATCH HAS GONE BEFORE!Swiss Digital Envy - 1974 Sicura Instalite Electro-mechanical Jump HourWatch built from Bone! Wood you believe?Mid-Century Watch Ads 1946-1959Beware of Armed Thin-o-matic Owners

Report "Watchismo Times"

Are you sure you want to report this post for ?

Cancel
×