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For sale we have a rare 1950s Movado Ermetophon Stainless Steel Travelling Alarm watch. It sits within a beautiful sliding crocodile leather covered casing. It has a stand to the rear, which allows it to be used on a desk or bedside table. It comes with a silver snake link chain with button fastening attachment.


Movado’s ‘automatic’ case winding system was patented in 1928. When the ‘Ermetophon’ alarm model was launched in 1955, the upper edge of the watch was changed into an arc shape, which incorporated the two crowns for the time and the alarm. This also required the modification of the case winding system which was achieved by two side levers which were operated by the action of opening and closing the case. This also wound the alarm barrel too, ensuring it would function when needed.

Each opening and closing of the case was designed to provide 3.5 hours of running time. This meant that it only required the user to open the watch 7 times a day, to power it for 24 hours.


The Ermeto and Ermetophon were designed to be used with or without a chain, also possessing a stand which would allow it to be placed on a desk or bedside table.

The alarm is remarkably loud and can be used as a reminder or, indeed, your wake-up call.


This example has a dark brown Crocodile leather covering, which is original and handsomely aged. The inner case is formed of Stainless Steel and has a sleek curved top, to accommodate the two crowns. It measures 51mm wide when closed and 78.5mm wide when open. It has a height of 39.5mm, with a slim depth of 15mm. This makes it a snug fit in any pocket, which was one of its major benefits when travelling. To the rear is it signed ‘US Pat Appl For’, with the Movado name engraved. It has the serial number 902 038 under the stand. The strand sets the watch at a 60-degree angle, which is perfect for viewing on a desk or bedside table, which is yet another feature making it a very user-friendly piece.


The left-hand crown sets the alarm hand and turns it on or off. For the alarm to sound, pull the crown out, to turn it off, push the crown in. The right-hand crown sets the hands in the usual manner once pulled out. Neither crown winds the watch or the alarm. This is all carried out by the opening and closing.


The dial is a beautiful piece of design with the silver satin brushed finish to the centre. It has the applied Movado logo, with stylised Ermetophon signing. The outer section is a silver tone which has darkened. It has applied baton hour markers, with dot markers for the minutes. It has the original lume plots to the base of the hour markers.


The lance alpha style hands are a silver tone and have some slight marking. They have the aged original luminous paint to the centre which is a lovely pumpkin tone. The alarm hand has a red painted lollipop end which catches the eye. The central second hand has a neat taper to the tip.


The movement is a Movado calibre 1475, which is case wound. It has a jewel count of 17 and has shock protection. It is in good condition and is keeping good time. The alarm functions as it should and is loud.


The watch has a period Sterling Silver chain attached. It has British hallmarking from Birmingham assay office which dates it to 1955/56. It was produced by B H Britton & Sons and is of exceptional quality, which fully flexible snake links. It has a rarely seen button fastening attachment to the end.


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



The dial is original and is in decent condition, with some marking. The finish is good to the centre with a satin brushed finish. The applied Movado logo is good, with clear Ermetophon signing. The minute/second track is good. The outer section of the dial is a light silver tone which has dirtied with age. It has applied baton hour markers, which are good with original lume plots. There are some circular markings around the outer section.



The hands are original. They have the original radium lume in-fill. The red painted alarm hand is original.



The acrylic crystal is original and is in good condition with some light marks.



The crowns are good and original, functioning as they should.



The end capping to the shutters is good, with light surface scratching to the polished finish. The shutter close tightly as they should and wind the case. The original crocodile leather remains and is in good condition for the age. It has some small marks. Overall, the tone is good. There is some green reaction between the leather and the case around the end capping.


Case front:

The case is Stainless Steel and is in good original condition. It has polished finishing, which is original. It has some light surface scratching and minor marks from opening and closing.



The case back is formed of steel and is in good condition for the age. The engraving is good and clear. The stand functions as it should. It has light surface scratching associated with age.



The watch comes on a period (1956) Silver snake link chain with end for button attachment. It is in good condition and perfect for the watch.



The movement is a Movado calibre 1475, which is case wound. It has a jewel count of 17 and has shock protection. It has an alarm function. The service history is unknown, but it is in good condition and functions properly, keeping accurate time.

It’s keeping time to +20 seconds a day, with an amplitude of 290 degrees and a beat error of 1.2m/s.


Case dimensions:

Width when closed: 51mm
Width when opened: 78.5mm
Height: 39.5mm
Depth to centre of crystal: 10mm
Depth to centre of covers: 15mm

Chain length: 40cm

Rare 1950s Movado Ermetophon Steel travelling Alarm watch Croc leather on chain

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