Rare example of Smiths largest and best finished model - the English 'calatrava'
Three-piece 9ct pink gold case with faceted lugs and unusual chamfered bezel, hallmarked Edinburgh 1958, sponsor's mark SCW (Smiths Clock & Watch Division). Smiths classic 12.15 gilt movement with 'Permalife' unbreakable mainspring upgraded to have 18 jewels, as noted on the dial. Double-roller detached lever escapement with polished steel escape, the monometallic balance with beryllium balance-spring having an overcoil, as reserved for Smiths best work. Silvered dial with applied gold faceted batons and dots, gold hands, the only Smiths model to which they were fitted. 35 mm diameter, not including button or lugs. Together with makers velvet lined leather covered box and guarantee.
These largest sized De Luxe models were rarely advertised by Smiths and one of the few times I have seen this exact model (A.522) is in their 1957 catalogue, page 62. For more information about Smiths English wristwatches see the short note in my website Glossary, and my illustrated article on Smiths ‘English Wristwatches’ in the April 2003 issue of Antique Collecting.
NB: This case style is not waterproof and all Smiths wristwatches of this date are best kept well away from damp conditions. Please also be aware that most Smiths wristwatches that survive show all the signs of much use, often with water damage, particularly to the dial. I do not deal in such watches and offer only those examples that have survived in very good or better condition with wherever possible original, as here, rather than refinished dials.
Some minor signs of the expected wear, otherwise a most original example of Smiths largest and best finished wristwatch in a gold case of such a lovely design and without any previous presentation engraving. It stands up well in comparison to any 'high end' Swiss wristwatches of the period - I prefer Smiths. On new/old stock dark brown leather strap of the most suitable and appropriate 1960's style, being parallel sided and not padded. Serviced and guaranteed.
NB: This watch was purchased by me with a contemporary matching 9ct gold strap of a lovely patented design with sprung clasp. It carries the Birmingham hallmark for 1961 and weighs 32 grams. I would like to see it accompany the watch to its new owner and is available at a price just over scrap - please ask if required.
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