Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations
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  1. #1
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    Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    Hi,

    i am am finding myself gravitating toward the elegance and functionality of mechanical alarm watches. I have searched prior threads for information and insights, but am wondering if folks could recommend some brands from the 1960s and 1970s with an alarm function that are also automatics. I'm looking for reliable, well-built watches of decent quality that are affordable ($300-600 range)

    Thanking you all in adanvce.

  2. #2
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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    The budget pretty much rules out any JLC Memovox, so you're looking at something with an AS or Lemania movement, and more precisely, the AS 5008 or Lemania 2980.
    The Ranfft archive shows up a specimen of the AS being used by Certina, and the Lemania was used by Omega as the Omega 980. The Omegas with that movement were the Memomatic models, but somehow I don't exactly see them being sold for under $600. Usually, they're priced in the Memovox range.
    That leaves anything with an AS 5008.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    Have a look at Seiko Bellmatics.

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    Mod. Russian, China Mech. Chascomm's Avatar
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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    Seiko Bellmatic is probably the best value vintage automatic alarm watch on the market.

    If you would be prepared to also consider hand-winding watches, then your choices open up enormously. And bear in mind that a hand-winding alarm watch striking an anvil (stud) attached to the case back is likely to be louder than an automatic alarm striking a gong (long metal bar) attached to the main plate.
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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    All excellent input. As far as vintage hand winding alarm watches, how about a Bulova cal. 11AURCD? It might comes down to this one if I go hand winding or the Seiko Bellmatic.

    Any my obvious pros or cons with each choice?

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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    I agree with the others on the Bellmatics. If you wanted though, you could pick up a Memovox project for that price and then restore it bit by bit over time. Think of it being like buying a watch on credit or layaway without fees or the risk of loosing your original watch. The only catch is finding one that is worth restoring and a good watchmaker.

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    Re: Vintage automatic wrist watch w/ alarm - recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by Oceankid View Post
    All excellent input. As far as vintage hand winding alarm watches, how about a Bulova cal. 11AURCD? It might comes down to this one if I go hand winding or the Seiko Bellmatic.

    Any my obvious pros or cons with each choice?
    I had both of these on my desk, side-by-side a few weeks ago. I like the size of the bellmatics a bit more and I think, like most vintage Seikos, they provide tremendous value- automatic winding, the quickset date, full stainless case and a variety of case/dial configurations to choose from. The one I had was a nice 38mm cushion case with a linen dial and it was really a killer piece. The alarm is a little on the weak side though. The bulova on the other hand was a bit more classically sized at 34-35mm and has the classic dual crown configuration. I was pleasantly surprised by how loud the alarm was- not Cricket loud, but noticeably louder than the Bellmatic. I also love the way Bulova does their alarm hands.

    YMMV- feel free to ask any more detailed questions. I only had the Bulova for a weekend (on loan) but I still have the Bellmatic.

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