For sale we have a very good solid 9ct gold cased Smiths Imperial English Made manual wind 19 jewel watch, within a Dennison Aquatite case. The case measures 33.5mm wide without the crown.
The case is a two-piece Dennison Aquatite ref 12280, with the serial number 12880. It is a screw back which was hallmarked by Birmingham assay office in 1960/61. The screwback is signed “Bristol Siddeley” to the rear, awarded to S.H. Hobbs in 1962. This engraving is of special interest to aeronautical collectors, dating to before Rolls Royce takeover of the company.
As a large employer in the Bristol area, a couple examples of this same model with Bristol Siddely signing exist. This will have been purchased in batches and engraved, then given to staff when retiring.
The movement is the highlight of the watch. It’s in excellent original condition and has been recently serviced. Its timekeeping is impeccable as expected with such a quality calibre, keeping time to within +6 seconds a day. The calibre 100 base movement was used as the basis for the 25 jewel Smiths Automatic watch with the addition of the automatic winding rotor.
Smiths have become increasing collectable as collectors place value on the English made aspect of the watches, combined with the elegant designs. This is a good example of a high quality Smiths watch at an affordable price.
The dial is in very good original condition. It is a cream base tone with a matte finish. It is a lovely simplistic dial which has aged lightly aged with some spotted patina. The applied arrowhead arrow markers are beautifully designed with applied Arabic 9,12,3,6. This creates a beautiful, balanced dial layout. The dial is signed Smiths Imperial with crown logo, with 19 jewels shock proof below the handset. The bottom of the dial has the all-important “Made in England” singing.
The hands are original. They are of faceted Dauphine style. They are in good condition and the gold tone shines nicely in the light. The central second hand is also original and has the classic red pointer to the tip.
The acrylic crystal is a replacement and is in perfect condition with no marking.
The crown appears to be original and has a neat coin edge finish. It is in very good condition with no visible wear.
The 9ct gold Dennison Aquatite case is a two-piece case, with a screw back. It is in good condition with a polished finish all over. It has some surface scratches to the top of the lugs. The bezel is notched and has a neat, polished finish. The lugs are well proportioned.
The case back is formed of 9ct gold. It is in average condition, with surface scratching consistent with ageing. It also has a couple of slightly deeper scratches from poor opening attempts. It has a polished finish. It has the personal engraving: “Bristol Siddeley S.H. Hobbs 1962”.
It is a Dennison Aquatite case with the reference 12880. It has the serial number 100900. Inside it has English hallmarking for 9ct gold from Birmingham assay office, with the date letter “L”.
The watch comes on a new Hirsch Rainbow strap for 18mm lug width. It has quick release springbars.
The movement is a Smiths cal 10104E which was one of the finest English made calibres from Smiths manufactured in Cheltenham. It has 19 jewels, as well as shock proofing. The watch has been recently serviced by us. It has a daily gain of +6 seconds, with an amplitude of 270 degrees and a beat error of 0.3m/s.
Case width: 33.5mm
Case width with crown: 36.5mm
Case length: 33.5mm
Case length lug to lug: 40.5mm
Case Depth: 9mm
Lug width: 18mm
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