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For sale we have a 1915 WW1 period Hardy Bros LTD, of Australia, Longines silver trench watch. It has a perfect, white enamel dial with Arabic numerals and Hardy Bros LTD, Sydney & Brisbane signing. It has a 35mm case, with coin edge bezel and coin edge screw back. To the rear is a period initial engraving. It also has Longines patented flexible lugs which add to its already large presence. It has a Swiss hallmarked case for 0.935 silver, with the serial number dating it to 1915. Inside it has a Longines calibre 13.34, with 18 jewels, making it the highest-grade variation.

 

The dial is white enamel and is in outstanding condition. It is a crisp white tone, with a railroad minute track around the exterior. The hour markers are large, stylised, arabic numerals, whilst there is an in-set sub-second dial at 6 O’clock. It has single second, 5 second and arabic 10 second graduations, clearly marked. The dial is signed below 12 “Hardy Bros LTD, Sydney & Brisbane, Made in Switzerland”. The cathedral style hour hand is original and is a bright thermally blued tone. The minute hand appears to be a well-matched replacement, being a darker tone. The sub-second hand is original with Lollipop counterbalance.

 

The Swiss made case measures 35mm x 35mm, with a lug-to-lug measurement of a whopping 46mm. Early Longines trench watches like this are known for their distinctive swinging lugs, at 12mm in width. The design was registered to Longines in 1907. A tube soldered to the watch case carries a bar, that the lugs (a loop of wire with widened ends), are attached to. This makes the watch a comfortable fit to the wrist, with the lugs angling down with the strap.

The bezel screws on, with a coin edge finish to the outside. To the right is the original silver tone onion style crown, which has aged handsomely. To the rear, there is a screw on back with coin edge finish, matching the bezel and providing a symmetrical case design. It has a personal engraving of the initials TSE, which is well executed. Inside it is signed with the Swiss bear mark for 0.935 silver. The serial number 3,296,707 is engraved to the inside. The case has an even tarnishing across all elements of the silver and has not been polished.

 

Inside is the Longines calibre 13.34, which was introduced in 1910. It was used in many WW1 period wrist watches. It carries the marking for Baume & Co who were the importer for Longines. This is the highest-grade variation, with a jewel count of 18, with jewelled centre wheel. It is keeping good time to within +30 seconds a day, with a strong amplitude.

 

Overall, this is a very good original example, with a high-quality design, case and movement. It also has an interesting appeal to the Australian market, with very few watches making the journey to be retailed down under, in the early years of wrist watches.

 

*Credit to David Boettcher and his Vintage Watch Straps website for the above information on the Longines lug patent*

 

Hardy Bros LTD

Established in 1853, Hardy Brothers is a speciality retailer and private company of fine jewellery, timepieces and decorative arts, in Australia. Historic products from the company are highly collectable and are preserved in state and national collections. It is the only Australian jewellery business to hold a royal warrant. Since 1980 they have also had the privilege of producing the Melbourne Cup for Horse racing.

 

The company was founded by Jeweller, John Hardy, an Englishman newly arrived in Sydney. The business was located at Hunter Street Sydney. In 1894 the business expanded to Queensland with the opening of a store in Queen Street, Brisbane. A store was also opened in Collins Street, Melbourne, in 1918. In 1929 the company were appointed jewellers by Royal Warrant to His Majesty King George V. The business remained under family control until 1974.

 

Full condition report below. Please see the images as these compliment and aid the description provided below.

 

Dial:

The dial is enamel and is original. It is in very good condition with no fractures or chips. It has one very small hairline at 10 O’clock. This is about as good as dials from this era can be. The signing is very good and clear.

 

Hands:

The hands are original and are of cathedral style. They are thermally blued and have darkened with age.

 

Glass:

The glass is an antique mineral replacement. It also comes with its original, scratched mineral glass spare.

 

Crown:

The crown is original with coin edge finish and is in good antique condition. It functions as it should.

 

Case:

The case is formed of silver and has a screw on front. The screw on front has a coin edge finish and is in good antique condition, having polished with age, with some light scratching and small deeper marks. It screws on tightly and the thread is good. The hinged lugs are good and original.

 

Caseback:

The screw back is in good antique condition. It has light surface scratching and has polished with wear against the wrist. It has a personal engraving of the initials “TSE”. It has a coin edge finish which has polished with age. It has some small, deeper scratches. It screws on tightly and the thread is good.

 

Strap:

The watch comes on a 1940s open ended leather strap. It is in good original condition.

 

Movement:

The movement is a Longines cal 13.34. It has a jewel count of 18 and has a frequency of 18,000 BPH.

 

The movement is running well, but the service history in unknown. It’s keeping time to +40 seconds a day, with an amplitude of 330 degrees and a beat error of 3.2m/s.

 

Case dimensions:

Case width: 35mm

Case width with crown: 37.75mm

Case length: 38mm

Case length lug to lug: 46mm

Case Depth: 11mm

Lug width: 12mm

 

Rare 1915 WW1 period Hardy Bros LTD Australia Longines Silver Trench watch

£1,150.00Price
Out of Stock
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