A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040.418
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Thread: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040.418

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  1. #1
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040.418

    Hello
    Another very rare el primero and a many years old grail will be part of my collection soon, the Espada El Primero 01.0040.418, which is the same model as the Espada El Primero A7817 (manufactured from 1971 to early 1973) , with a triple date complication in moon phase. The only differences are as follows: the new logo was used on the dial and its back is plain (without star) with the model code 01.0040.418 and the mention "sub sea". Together with the 300 under ref. A7817, this means that a total of 800 Espada were manufactured. Watch very rare and for the advised connoisseur. This one is ultra full set
    Here are the photos of the seller, I will post mine as soon as it arrives
    Have a nice week end
    Sincerely
    Georges.










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  2. #2
    Member sempervivens's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Congratulations! Finally you found the one you were looking for, complete with original bracelet, box and papers.

    I have some doubts though: one is the crown with the older logo which should be the later logo on this model; second is the red chronograph hand which looks shorter and its white paddle smaller than usual. Finally the date on the papers: 21 April 1972; those could have been correct papers for the first Espada A7817, but the second Espada ref 01.0040.418 was not yet extant in 1972. The bracelet date seems more suitable: 1975. Did you ask for a picture of the movement?
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  3. #3
    Member carlhaluss's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Huge congratulations, Georges! Quite a surprise, I remember you mentioned that something "big" was coming. I will be interested to hear the outcome from the questions that sempervivens asks. And look forward to your photos when you get the watch. Difficult for me to keep up with all this, as I am so new to Zenith. But I am loving the brand, and these posts are really intriguing!

    Cheers,
    Carl
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  5. #4
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Quote Originally Posted by sempervivens View Post
    Congratulations! Finally you found the one you were looking for, complete with original bracelet, box and papers.

    I have some doubts though: one is the crown with the older logo which should be the later logo on this model; second is the red chronograph hand which looks shorter and its white paddle smaller than usual. Finally the date on the papers: 21 April 1972; those could have been correct papers for the first Espada A7817, but the second Espada ref 01.0040.418 was not yet extant in 1972. The bracelet date seems more suitable: 1975. Did you ask for a picture of the movement?
    Yes I have, it has the rotor of the export model for the USA which were 17 jewels instead of 31 jewels for the non export models el primero.

    I have already ordered a set of spare new old stock items such as a chronograph hand, a new tachymetric scale, new dial and new hands before I bought the watch.
    Pics of the spare sparts







    It will go nevertheless for a full overhaul, and I will ask my watchmaker to count the jewels, if it is a 31 jewels model, I will buy a rotor in spare through cousinsuk. The main thing is that the has the original right 3019phf movement, original dial, original right hands, original right caseback and right bracelet. We can always nitpick on details such as papers, crown and chrono second hand. But a lot of Defy A781,782 and 783 had their original crown changed by Zenith during service. Perhaps the seller mixed up the papers, maybe but I don't really care.
    Last edited by georges zaslavsky; September 1st, 2019 at 06:22.
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  6. #5
    Member sempervivens's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Well the rotor certainly doesn't make things better. It would not be the first Espada built from NOS parts, even if it has a 3019 PHF. It is IMHO rather unlikely that the later type of crown was changed for the earlier type as a result of service. The older crown is certainly a lot rarer, so you could keep it as it is, even if it is an anachronism. The booklet is also probably a later addition, considering the anachronistic date, stamped instead of written.

    As it is, the original dial looks quite good to me, I would recommend to keep that as it is. Most collectors will prefer it over the service dial, which doesn't have the T for tritium.

    The new red second hand should be a better fit.

    The aged tachymeter also looks quite good, but it never hurts to have spare parts, especially considering these are very rare parts.
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  7. #6
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Quote Originally Posted by sempervivens View Post
    Well the rotor certainly doesn't make things better. It would not be the first Espada built from NOS parts, even if it has a 3019 PHF. It is IMHO rather unlikely that the later type of crown was changed for the earlier type as a result of service. The older crown is certainly a lot rarer, so you could keep it as it is, even if it is an anachronism. The booklet is also probably a later addition, considering the anachronistic date, stamped instead of written.

    As it is, the original dial looks quite good to me, I would recommend to keep that as it is. Most collectors will prefer it over the service dial, which doesn't have the T for tritium.

    The new red second hand should be a better fit.

    The aged tachymeter also looks quite good, but it never hurts to have spare parts, especially considering these are very rare parts.
    Agreed, I will have it serviced first. But first thing is to know for me whether the movement is a 17j or 31j version of the el primero, then if needed a correct rotor will be put in place of it. For the rest, I will keep it as it is.
    Omega the sign of Excellence since 1848. Jaeger Le Coultre Horlogerie de Luxe depuis 1833
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  8. #7
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    I have taken some quick pictures last saturday morning with an average day light, so I will apologize if they are of average quality




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  9. #8
    Member sempervivens's Avatar
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    Could be my favorite of all the vintage El Primero's.
    Last edited by sempervivens; September 23rd, 2019 at 09:30.
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  10. #9
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    Re: A longly aftersought El Primero holy grail comes to my stable, the the Espada El Primero 01.0040

    The Espada, as well as a titanium moon phase, are my "still to tick" boxes.

    Congratulations on finding your grail.

    Ez
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