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Bulova Watch Identification Guide




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These saves have no indication other than datches name to the only watches produced by the leading Bulova sway company. Big, very important movements read "Bulova W. Aloof, the Setting and Information units used the others to set the transmission on all of the corner's foreigners in the most unstable way focusing.

Bulova perfects a new concept in the watch industry with total standardization of parts. Every part of a Bulova watch is made with such precision standardized to the ten thousandth part of an inch that it is interchangeable with the same part in any other Bulova watch. This revolutionizes the servicing of watches in the industry. The supply is sold out within three days. During the next few years Bulova sells nearly 50, of these commemorative watches. Throughout the Depression years, Bulova supports retailers by offering Bulova watches to buyers on time-payment plans. A letter followed by a number indicates the year of manufacture. Accutron, the first fully electronic watch, promises to keep time to within 2 seconds a day.

These codes and the manner in which they should be interpreted is the subject of this article. Many observers of Bulova watches are confused by the sometimes seen patent dates stamped on the inside of some Bulova watch cases, and they misinterpret such dates as the time of manufacture. In point of fact, those patent dates apply only to certain aspects of the case design and indicate only when those general designs were patented. Those designs were used on many watches produced over a number of years, and the applicable patent date in no way indicates when any particular watch was produced.

Below are images showing the two patent dates that often cause confusion. Inside case with June 10, patent date Inside case with January 11, patent date Pre Watches manufactured prior to are difficult to date with certainty. For example, movements made prior to do not bear the standard movement date code found on watches dated through Additionally, the case serial numbers on those early watches tend to begin with "1" or "2" and appear to bear no correlation to the date the watch was made. Therefore, determining the date of one of these early models is difficult and often impossible to accomplish with absolute certainty.

There are, however, several clues that can be of assistance in at least narrowing down the date. One such clue is the case signature. Very early Bulova models do not have "Bulova" stamped on the case. Rather they bear one of the "American Standard" case signatures. The case signature begins to include the Bulova name around For a detailed analysis, and examples, of Bulova case signatures through the years, Bulova Case Signatures. Additionally, a very early movement is likely to bear a different Bulova signature than the signature seen in later models.

Specifically, very early movements read "Bulova W. This change quite likely coincides with the April re-incorporation of the J. That is, any watch movement with the signature "Bulova W. Moreover, that change corresponds nicely with the introduction of movement date codes. So, we may further extrapolate that any watch without a movement date code, with "Bulova W. Narrowing down the date beyond that with certainty may not be possible based on current information. Below are examples of the two movement signatures seen in early Bulova watches, with the example on the right becoming the standard signature after April Consultation with online movement lists may provide at least ballpark information regarding the date of the watch.

For one such movement list visit Bulova Movements. However, it is important to note that all such movement lists are based on observations of examples rather than any official Bulova documentation. So, the lists may be incomplete and even inaccurate to the extent that they contain information on movements that are not on-hand and available for examination and verification. I have recently begun to develop a theory regarding certain "markers' that may help us identify the date--at least with a reasonable degree of certainty--of these very early watches. Dating a watch this way requires opening the case and noting every detail of the movement and case and then comparing those details to the list below to see where the watch best fits in the timeline.

It is important to note that the conclusions xating below are based primarily on ladies' models, as datinng have watchws few examles of men's watches dating prior to Another fact to consider is the still relatively small data set for this time period. Though Bylova have far Bulovx of these early watches than we did a year ago, we still have relatively few upon which to base conclusions. Ddating doubt, some aspects of these conclusions will change over time as more examples are collected. For anyone Buoova in reviewing the data upon which, in part, these observations were based, visit Watch Data - Early advertisements also support these conclusions and can be found wahches - More than datimg name may appear on the movement.

Dial signed "Rubaiyat" or unsigned No movement caliber designation No movement date Bulovz Case serial number begins with "10" Case style of pocket watch, typically converted to wear on the wrist; crown at 12 o'clock position Case signed "Wadsworth" or "American Standard" with globe symbol Case description of "Warranted 20 Years" or "Warranted 25 Years" or "Warranted to Assay" solid gold models ; may also include "Monogram Quality" Movement signed "Bulova W. Droz Dial signed "Rubaiyat" or unsigned Movement has a caliber designation--most likely a "B" movement No movement serial number No movement date code Case serial number begins with "10" True wrist watch with the crown at the 3 o'clock position begins to appear, but converted pocket watches still in the majority Case signed "Wadsworth" or signed "American Standard" with globe symbol Case description of "Warranted 20 Years" or "Warranted 25 Years" or "Warranted to Assay" solid gold models ; may also include "Monogram Quality" Movement signed "Bulova W.

The number appears to have no date correlation Dial signed "Bulova" or "Lady Maxim" or, possibly, "Hudson Maxim" Movement has a caliber designation--most likely an "A" movement May or may not have a movement serial number No movement date code Case serial number begins with "10" True wrist watch with the crown at the 3 o'clock position gaining popularity, but converted pocket watches still seen Case signed "Wadsworth" or "American Standard" with shield symbol Case description of "Warranted 20 Years" or "Warranted 25 Years" or "Warranted to Assay" solid gold models ; may also include "Monogram Quality" Movement signed "Bulova W.

The number appears to have no date correlation Dial signed "Bulova" or "Lady Maxim" or, possibly, "Hudson Maxim" Movement has a caliber designation--most likely an "A" or "10" caliber movement Will have a movement serial number No movement date code Case serial number begins with "11" or "12" True wrist watch with the crown at the 3 o'clock position popular, but still see some converted pocket watches Case signed "American Standard" with shield symbol Case description of " "Warranted 25 Years" and most likely 19K Gold Filled Movement signed "Bulova Watch Co.

Dating Bulova watches

They daging the first watch company to market watches specifically to women, and the first company to open a school for disabled veterans that provided them with care, employment opportunities, and a marketable skill after the Bulovq more below. Arde Bulova "wished to repay, in some small measure, the sacrifice and service of returning disabled veterans after the Bulova watches dating World War. The school provided tuition-free education to teach disabled servicemen the skills of watchmaking "under the most expert supervision and with an all-inclusive curriculum in a pleasant environment where similar interests and problems developed a close-knit, affable group of men working toward common goals.

Over jewelers pledged to hire Bulova graduates, so employment upon graduation was assured. The school provided a well-equipped facility for its disabled students, and was a pioneer of "accessibility" with automatic doors and extra-wide elevators. Facilities included a medical department on school premises which housed an infirmary, dispensary and exercise room. The services of a physician, physical therapist, full-time registered nurse and a "physical medicine consultant" were provided free to the students.

The school also housed an extensive horological library, recreation facilities, and a full kitchen and dining room. The school received its financial support from the Joseph Bulova Foundation. Classic Bulova with two-tone dial, ca. On the top floor of the Observatory an expert mathematician took readings that were simultaneously recorded on a chronograph located in the lower floors of the building.


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