Vintage Alpha help.
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  1. #1
    Member Fantasyvoyager's Avatar
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    Vintage Alpha help.

    Hi all just wanted to get some info on this Alpha Swiss watch, it looked very unique and I got it at a decent price. I will post pics when it gets to me.
    Any info would be nice, thanks .


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    Last edited by Fantasyvoyager; November 3rd, 2010 at 22:26.

  2. #2
    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Very nice! I look forward to your photos.

    As far as I can tell, Alpha was one of a myriad of lower-mid grade Swiss brands assembling generic parts into attractive watches back in the 1970s. I don't know when they were founded or when they disappeared. But I am confident that the reason for their undoing was the same as so many of their contemporaries i.e. they failed to successfully make the shift to quartz watch production during the height of the digital craze in the late 1970s/early 1980s.

    This watch is without a doubt the most unique Swiss Alpha design that I have seen. Possibly the case was designed specifically for them (unless somebody here has seen another brand using the same shape).

    In 1993, a Hong Kong company bought the rights to the Alpha name and logo and started building low cost watches. This has expanded into a large range of mostly mechanical models that tend to be homages to popular Swiss styles. To their credit this Hong Kong company has never in their advertising alluded to any historical ties to the original Swiss company (unlike many other HK, Chinese, German and especially Swiss companies that shamelessly harvest the heritage of dead brands).
    Chascomm
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    (no, I am not going to list all my watches here)

  3. #3
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Name:  alpha watch advertisement.jpg
Views: 833
Size:  440.4 KBName:  alpha automatic.jpg
Views: 840
Size:  129.7 KBName:  alpha white face watch.jpg
Views: 838
Size:  184.1 KBHere is some belated info on the Swiss brand of Alpha. From the advertisement (undated) shown here it would appear this company was operating from the 1940's or early 1950's into the 1970's until the quartz takeover. The watch above is an automatic and is an excellent piece, keeps great time. The other is a recent piece I've acquired, very nice dial and still operational. I don't know if these Alphas were considered low grade in their day, but they appear to be well made and reliable. Though apparently not a true collectible watch, they are nonetheless a decent addition for anyone who wears their vintage watches.
    Last edited by historyguy; June 15th, 2015 at 01:56.
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  5. #4
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Update: Alpha brand was one of many made by the Paul Schwarz-Etienne Co (they never used their own name on the watch dial), operating out of the Swiss city of La Chaux-de-Fonds, famed for its watchmaking. A search online shows that this company was founded in 1902 and is still in operation today, having never ceased operating, even since the advent of quartz. The following article calls their movement "legendary calibers"....so much for being low end. The watches they make today look pretty neat...might have to see if I can afford one!
    Schwarz-Etienne: a watchmaking legend rises from the ashes - Watchonista

  6. #5
    Member anzac1957's Avatar
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Not so sure about that. . Alpha watches are now a brand that sells out of Hong Kong...


    Tony Lewis
    New Zealand

  7. #6
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    I should clarify that Paul Scwarz-Etienne of Switzerland, which once sold watches under the Alpha name, no longer uses this name, although the variant Alpha-A seems to be one of their registered names for watch parts. The Alpha watches of the 1940s-1970s have no relation to the current Alpha watch brand sold in the Far East. This is certainly not an unusual occurence in the watch business...such classic names like Waltham and Benrus are still being sold today even though they have absolutely no relation to these original companies.

  8. #7
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fantasyvoyager View Post
    Hi all just wanted to get some info on this Alpha Swiss watch, it looked very unique and I got it at a decent price. I will post pics when it gets to me.
    Any info would be nice, thanks .


    it is a nice watch,,,i love their watches

  9. #8
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Have no doubts about the quality of the vintage Swiss made Alpha watches. Here is a perfect example of an early 50's Alpha watch - pay attention to the sapphire stone on the second hand and overall quality of the watch face. Name:  DSC00114.JPG
Views: 698
Size:  1.46 MBName:  DSC00118.JPG
Views: 693
Size:  1.39 MBName:  DSC00121.JPG
Views: 684
Size:  1.33 MB
    busmatt likes this.

  10. #9
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    Name:  20180802_121410.jpg
Views: 254
Size:  1.36 MB This is my ebay find Alpha, I am guessing from arounf the mid 50's. It is a gorgeous watchand runs great.

    Ken

  11. #10
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    Re: Vintage Alpha help.

    thanks, very nice... cement block and grass :D
    Chaos is my focus

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