elgin vintage automatic - is this real?
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  1. #1
    Member LesserBlackDog's Avatar
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    elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Hi everyone. I bid on, and won, this supposed 50s-era Elgin watch:

    eBay - New & used electronics, cars, apparel, collectibles, sporting goods & more at low prices

    I don't know much about vintage watches but less than $100 for a recently-serviced Elgin seemed like a pretty good deal to me.

    I was just wondering if anyone around here is knowledgeable enough to know off the top of their head whether this looks authentic or not. Thanks in advance!

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    Cheers,
    Ben "LBD"

  2. #2
    Member trim's Avatar
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    First half of the 1960s. Marked RA = Radium on the dial.

    Looks consistent for a Swiss Elgin, I can't see any reason to suspect it isn't.
    Last edited by trim; April 22nd, 2012 at 23:34.
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  3. #3
    Member LesserBlackDog's Avatar
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Quote Originally Posted by trim View Post
    First half of the 1960s. Marked RA = Radium on the dial.

    Looks consistent for a Swiss Elgin, I can't see any reason to suspect it isn't.
    Ok, thanks. I didn't notice anything particularly fishy about it, but it's good to have a second opinion.
    Cheers,
    Ben "LBD"

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  5. #4
    Member Sparcster's Avatar
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Like trim, I see no issues or reasons to suspect this is anything but legit!

    Looking at the listing, the seller seems honest with 100% feedback.

    Looks like a good buy to me,

    Congrats!
    A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away...

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  6. #5
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    It's from the 1960s, more exactly post 1964. Elgin adopted the 'E' logo around the time they closed the factory in Illinois and stopped making watch movements in the US. For the next 5 years or so, they cased Swiss movements in their South Carolina factory. This appears to be from that era.

  7. #6
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Good news: it's genuine. Bad news: it's not an American Elgin (which would be far more collectible). But this has been pointed out before.....

    The movement is an Adolf Schild calibre, something from the AS 1717 family (first AS movement with ball bearing rotor):

    bidfun-db Archiv: Uhrwerke: AS 1717

    Hartmut Richter
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  8. #7
    Member trim's Avatar
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Quote Originally Posted by GeneJockey View Post
    It's from the 1960s, more exactly post 1964. Elgin adopted the 'E' logo around the time they closed the factory in Illinois and stopped making watch movements in the US. For the next 5 years or so, they cased Swiss movements in their South Carolina factory. This appears to be from that era.
    I defer to more exact knowledge on the use of the logo

    Could we perhaps compromise on the mid 1960s. The design is quite archaic for late 1960s.

  9. #8
    Member LesserBlackDog's Avatar
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Received the watch in the mail today, and I couldn't be more pleased. It's running great... hasn't lost more than a second in the couple hours I've been wearing it. I put it on a brown croc strap and think it looks quite nice.

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    I'm not too worried about its collectibility or lack thereof - I'm just dipping my toes in the vintage waters, looking for something a bit smaller and more classic in design than most of the watches made today.
    Raffa, john87300 and howards4th like this.
    Cheers,
    Ben "LBD"

  10. #9
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    Quote Originally Posted by LesserBlackDog View Post
    Received the watch in the mail today, and I couldn't be more pleased. It's running great... hasn't lost more than a second in the couple hours I've been wearing it. I put it on a brown croc strap and think it looks quite nice.

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Size:  137.6 KB

    I'm not too worried about its collectibility or lack thereof - I'm just dipping my toes in the vintage waters, looking for something a bit smaller and more classic in design than most of the watches made today.
    Wow, the strap was a great choice. Looks fantastic!

  11. #10
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    Re: elgin vintage automatic - is this real?

    That's a great looking watch, especially with that strap. Very simple, classic look. Excellent choice for toe-dipping in the wonderful world of vintage watches!

    While Hartmut Richter is correct about a US-built Elgin automatics being more collectible, the ones with Swiss movements are a better choice for the beginning collector. The US-built ones have a few weaknesses, and there are 3 or so parts that often need replacing, but are no longer available except by scavenging. Trust me, I know. I have 5 of them, and that many more movements I bought for parts! I love them dearly, but I wouldn't wish them on the inexperienced!

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