So, only yesterday I have been doing some gardening, when I have heard a rather loud barking of Angus, my Bernese Mountain Dog. Turned out, that what he was barking at, was a truck outside the gate. Ran there immediately, and heard "Got a parcel for ya!" Signed, and ran home to open it up. Inside was this:
So, what's in the nice, little pouch?
Well, here's how the contents of it look on my wrist:
It's a genuinely lovely Eterna - at 28mm it is small alright, but a) the case proportions make it look anything but undersized, and b) my wrist is 6.5", up to 6.75/6.8" on a hot day.
According to the serial chart, this beauty dates to 1942. It is powered by either a cal. 845H or 905H (suffix "H" stands for the Eterna-H shock device). "Either", because the Ranfft archive entries for both movements have my "favourite" annotation - "Differences not known between..."
Got to love the semi-gloss black dial with the gilt printing - the gilt track and Eterna inscription really stand out, especially at certain angles. Could stare at that all day long, and I wouldn't have enough of it. The radium lume has aged to a very dark, green-ish grey colour, in some places almost black. Some manufacturers in the early 1940s must have used the same lume - think of the dials and hands on German D/DH/DU milwatches. The lume on these usually aged the same way, so I guess it could have something to do with the maker/supplier of the lume.
It's one of these Eternas, which have my absolutely favourite feature of 1940s-1950s watches made by that company - the waterproof case with a screw-down back. I have already had an opportunity to experience the quality of these, on my 1952 Eterna with a cal. 520U. The case back has a fairly tall, threaded collar, which does a great job at keeping water and humidity out. I can well be sweating like a pig, and that case back won't let a droplet through. Not a single issue with the crystal fogging up.
On the inside, the case is marked only "Brevet" and the Swiss cross, indicating a patented design (no patent number, though). Well, inscriptions on the inside would be redundant, as it's all here:
Yep, it's one of these small watches, with as many features packed into the smallest possible package, to show off the manufacturer's capabilities. Which Eterna did show off, and in a really-good looking little watch.
Next to its younger, but bigger sibling:
To the fellow member of this fantastic community of watch-obsessed people, who sent me this gorgeous, wee Eterna: can't thank you enough!