Bulova 24h 1960 ? perfect face, steady heartbeat (AWW 14)
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Thread: Bulova 24h 1960 ? perfect face, steady heartbeat (AWW 14)

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  1. #1
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    Bulova 24h 1960 – perfect face, steady heartbeat (AWW 14)

    Specifications

    Name: Bulova 24h 1960
    Model Reference: 10CNCH (actually a movement number, but identifies very accurately this model)
    Movement: Bulova 10CNCH, 21 jewel, hand wind, central seconds hand, hack set, shock protection, 18000 bph
    Time display: 24 hour, minute, seconds,
    Date: no date
    Case: all stainless steel with screw on back
    Size: 34 mm diameter without crown, 37 mm with crown
    Height: 11 mm
    Face: silver, grey band for night time, even hours numbers and lumed dots, odd hours markers, 24 on top
    Text on dial: Bulova, waterproof
    Text on back: BULOVA - * stainless steel case – antimagnetic – M0 102454 – waterproof – shock resistant
    Hands and markers: silver lumed hour and minute hands, narrow silver central seconds hand
    Water-resistance: waterproof
    Crown: main crown at 3
    Crystal: domed acrylic crystal
    Lug: 19 mm
    Bracelet: leather strap with buckle

    Purchase

    I paid for this watch last year $278 (plus shipping $35). The selling procedure was not straightforward. Somebody bid more, but seller sent me a second chance offer, because “The buyer of the item just emailed me to say they are in vacation and asked if they can pay 02 AUG which is rather too late for me as I need to pay the owner of the watch“. I accepted this offer. I had some thoughts that maybe something is not right here, but I had no proofs. This watch is rare, in a very good condition and the price was actually right I think.

    Comments

    Bulova has had several 24h models, especially in 50s and 60s, but also later. See the Bulova 24h gallery at 24h main reference site 24hourwatches.info. My watch is one of them, 2nd from the left.

    This watch has many good points. First, it is Bulova. That means it is an American watch and therefore very collectable as other American brands like Elgin, Gruen etc.

    The watch is in a very good condition, especially dial and case. Caseback has marks, which is common with Bulova. You have to have a special wrench to open this caseback and not everybody has it.

    Inside is Bulova signed movement 10CNCH. Googling shows me that this version is rare. Actually no Bulova movements table includes this type of movement. Of course I would like to know how to decipher this movement code.

    First I can say that if you need any information about vintage Bulova watches then go to http://www.watchophilia.com. (Almost) everything you need is there.

    Bulova caliber number.
    I was amazed that I could find only one explanation how to decipher Bulova movement codes. This text is repeated several times. Here is (I think the original) from » Vintage Watches: » Information about Bulova Watches

    “It’s been probably close to 30 years since this numbering system for watch movements has been used by Bulova.
    This is what I know:
    a. The number digit signifies the Ligne size of the movement.
    b. The next two alpha digits (as below “AE”, “AA”, “CS”) have no real meaning other than a reference ( like a name).
    c. The third and fourth, and sometimes fifth alpha digit would signify the functional characteristics of the movement.
    I do not have any printed references for this anymore, but I seem to remember the following:
    Letter “C” means “center second hand”
    Letter “A” means “automatic”
    Letter “B” means “day and date display”
    Letter “D” means “date only”
    After some research in movement databases and Bulova sites I can propose some letters more:
    Letter “F” means „small seconds hand“
    Letter “L” means „no seconds hand“
    Letter “R” means „alarm watch“
    And finally my thought:
    Letter “H” means „hack set“

    Therefore my 10CNCH is a 10 ligne caliber from family CN with central second hand (C) and hack set (H). The closest movement I could find googling was 10BNCH – with this movement both 12h and 24h military issues exists. I think that the difference between BNCH and CNCH is that BNCH was used for military issues with double caseback as additional dust cover, CNCH is the same movement for non-military models with single caseback.

    Dating a Bulova
    This is easy task, the tables are available. Usually both, the case and movement have the year of production stamped.

    My case has serial number M0 102454. M0=1960. The movement has yearly code L6 (inside the red circle on the picture), that means 1956. When the movement and case date don’t match – nice formula is here:

    Ideally, the date of the movement will match the date of the case. Occasionally, however, that is not the case. In those circumstances, I subscribe to the "latest date wins" theory only when the case and movement are dated within one year of each other. If more than one year separates the movement and the case, for me, the case date rules.
    That means my watch is from 1960!

    This case is made by Star Watch Case Company which is signed on caseback inside:

    The Star Watch Case Company was known to make some mid-century military issue cases for Bulova and other watch manufacturers, and those watches bear the Star signature and trademark symbol inside the case, while the Bulova name is printed on the outside of the case back.
    In general - to handle this watch is a pure joy. I like the big (unsigned) crown. For hack set just right.

    Back to the face. As I said, the dial is still flawless. Even the lumed hands and hour markers are visible. The only design shortcoming is the lack of contrast on the dial. Dial, hands, markers, everything is silver. The other questionable design feature is 19mm lugs. My watch was equipped by seller with very nice high quality anti-allergic 20mm leather strap and I’m very satisfied with it.

    Summary

    Very nice watch. This is the only Bulova I have. When writing this review here I was amazed how much information exists to help vintage Bulova collectors and I learned a lot. And now I know that this is also a rare watch you can’t find in databases.

    The price was also OK. For about the same price you can find fake 24h Elgins. And one military 24h 10BNCH is offered on the bay right now for for $1800 !?!?

    Last edited by Afka; May 5th, 2013 at 09:56.
    l3wy likes this.

  2. #2
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    Re: Bulova 24h 1960 – perfect face, steady heartbeat (AWW 14)

    Very Nice! It's a handsome watch in its right, even ignoring the 24hr dial! Also great condition fot

    I didn't know Bulova produced a 24hr watch for civilian use, but having found a civilian 24hr Elgin, it's not that surprising. It dates to the same era as mine, too. Sadly Elgin didn't use a date code, and stopped using serial numbers in 1956 or so, so I can't date my watch as precisely, but I know it's post-1958/pre-1964.

    I wonder if the companies were doing a market experiment. Elgin, Hamilton*, and probably Bulova, were producing 24hr watches for gun cameras, and may have thought to give the civilian market a try. Given their rarity (I've seen 2 24hr Civilian Elgins in 3 years of looking), I think you got a pretty good price, especially as you say, considering what folks pay for the fakes.

    *Rene Rondeau has a Hamilton 505 Electric movement in a camera watch case, which was altered to take current through a wire, rather than from a battery.
    Don't take life so serious, son. It ain't nohow permanent - Pogo

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  3. #3
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    Re: Bulova 24h 1960 – perfect face, steady heartbeat (AWW 14)

    i am a big fan of Bulova watches. one of my friend gifted me this watch on my birthday and since then i am a very loyal user of this watch
    This is just FYI, if you are looking for a Bulova watch, visit this site as they offer all the Bulova watches on wholesale rates,

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