Identification of ww1ish era watch?
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Thread: Identification of ww1ish era watch?

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  1. #1
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    Identification of ww1ish era watch?

    Hello there, this is my first post on your lovely forum- I recently ran across this Royal Flying Corps marked Swiss half-hunter pocket watch. Runs well, and is Sterling Silver with original chain. Problem is after some online research, I have come up empty in terms of what make/model it is, specific year, and even who would have owned something like this. It seems odd.

    I understand the RFC did commission some manufacturers to make watches for them, but they were a lot less ornate, utilitarian, and marked with military identification marks. Any ideas from the fine folks here? I picked it up for 150.00USD, which is a tad high for a pocketwatch, but as I'm a WW1 buff of sorts, it can have lots of intrinsic value if it is actually authentic.

    Cheers, thanks for looking, and happy New Year!
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  2. #2
    Member mkws's Avatar
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    Re: Identification of ww1ish era watch?

    The watch has completely no ties to WW1, let alone to the RFC. The movement is a dirt-common Unitas 6498, introduced in 1950, so that's the earliest year this watch could have been made in. My bet would be that it hasn't been made long ago, probably 1970s (guesstimate) or later.
    Also, it doesn't have British hallmarks on the case.
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  3. #3
    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Identification of ww1ish era watch?

    This looks very much like a 1970s or later watch. "Royal Flying Corps" is the brand name but I doubt that it has any connection to the RFC of the Great War.
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  5. #4
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    Re: Identification of ww1ish era watch?

    lespaullegend...Hello. As you're discovering, this good-looking watch is what one might describe as a 'Commemorative'...it uses a name from another Era, yet is entirely distinct from it.

    If I may say so, all this is Ok with me! This watch uses a well-known and well-made Swiss movement, has a very distinctive and impressive case that's known as a " Half-Hunter", and looks just fine...plus, the fact that it's Sterling, only accentuates the presentation.

    With proper Servicing and use, this watch will last many decades, and always be good-looking. Enjoy! Michael.

  6. #5
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    Re: Identification of ww1ish era watch?

    Hi there,
    Quote Originally Posted by Chascomm View Post
    This looks very much like a 1970s or later watch.
    For sure later. It has the redesigned ETA/Units 6498-1 with lever bridge and Etachron regulator. I don't know precisely when the Swatch group grabbed Unitas, but surely not before the rebirth of the mechanical watch in the 80s. And old looking pocket watches became fairly popular in the 90s, where I'd date it.

    The maker took good ingredients like a quality movement and a silver case, and this makes it outstanding among contemporary crap with cheap pnlevers in baroque brass tins. But unfortunately the designer didn't care about historical styles. Breguet hands and Roman numerals well appear old-fashioned, but are a mismatch.

    Anyway, the watch looks nice and will serve for decades or even centuries, depending on the quality of care and service.

    Good luck for 2018
    Roland Ranfft
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