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Carlos Fandango

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  1. Early 1940s Helbros. Helvetia 3190 waterproof case and rare Helvetia Cal 820 movement.
  2. Unfortunately the watch is not mine and that is the only example of it I have seen. Fortunately there is a picture of the movement. It is the Helvetia 822 which is based on their Cal 81/ Cal 82. The naming would suggest it is an adapted Cal 82 but those I've seen seem to be adapted from the Cal 81, these two movements are very similar. On the version in the 'Sport' the adaptations are on the dial side so you can't see much from the photo. However most Cal 822 movements were used in the Helvetia 'Stop' which is a more standard stop second chronograph they had out at the same time. In these the adaptions are visible and I even have the patent drawing for them. Have a look at my page here for more info: https://www.helvetiahistory.co.uk/the-helvetia-stop-chronostop-watch
  3. Thought you might be interested in seeing the below as well. This is a patent by Helvetia in 1940 for chronographs that have the hour and minute hands on the same subdial and moving about the same axis. The only watch I have seen using this design is the Helvetia 'Sport'. They have changed it to a two button chrono and the subdial hands have been made very different looking to each other in order to be able to differentiate them but it is the same idea. Has anyone seen this anywhere else?
  4. If anyone is interested there is one of these on Ebay at the moment. It's only the 5th watch of this variant I've seen. Same hands and dial, same case marked '3190 2' with too big movement holder and DH number engraved instead of stamped in the correct range. (The shock protection has had a bodged repair by the way, it's not supposed to look like that!) https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Helvetia-Militaruhr-Military-Heer-Wehrmacht-Pilot-Einsatzuhr-II-Weltkrieg/264544612320
  5. I know what you mean. I saw a diagram of the Helvetia shock protection on David Boettcher's page that said it was from the Wilderness Catalogue 1931 so I have kept my eyes open and managed to find this one from 1934 for £20. The catalogue was produced by Robert Pringle and Sons who's employee was Arthur George Rendell who used his initials for the import mark when importing watches. So watches marked AGR were imported by Robert Pringle and Sons. I think Ena is separate as there are Eterna marked ones as well but I can't find anything on it either, I was thinking it might be a sort of house brand for them for anonymous cases and movements. I hadn't heard of Aster either but they are on Mikrolisk.
  6. For those of you interested this is a picture of the spring mounting for the movement as illustrated at the top of the first page above. This is the watch section of the index. Ladies are 7 to 16 and men's wrist are 24 to 31 so more or less anything else is pocket watches. I am posting the other wristwatch pages below but if you want to see anything else let me know. Wristwatch pages:
  7. Thanks. I've been on the lookout for one of these catalogues since seeing a page from the 1931 version that highlighted the Helvetia shock protection and I wanted some more info for my Helvetia site. The diagram and description of the Helvetias is great for me. A bit confused though as all the Helvetias I have seen from this period have 15 jewel movements whether in chromed or stainless cases. Either the cal 81 or a modified FHF. Not sure if this 6 jewel budget version is just marketing to get you to buy the more expensive one. I will admit I always thought the two register chronograph as shown was a 1940s invention and I have never seen a cushion case one. I thought they were all 'Stop second' style in the 1930s like the Helvetia 'Stop' and 'Sport'. The other pages are of more ordinary watches but they do have the price lists which have more technical info, size, type of metal etc. I'll post them when I have a minute, may be tomorrow. Thanks. Carl.
  8. Thanks. Yes, the D H is thought to mean either Deutsche Heer for German Army or Dienstuhr Heer for Service Watch Army. Thanks, I try to look at the whole picture and see what that tells me rather than looking at one watch at a time. We will never know for sure but a faker would have to get hold of a load of DH style dials and 3190 cases and put them together in the same way and engrave the right numbers in the same style as the pocket watches. I think the most likely answer is the Helvetia factory did it.
  9. Hello all, I know some members have an interest in early waterproof and shockproof watches so I thought I would post these pages on ‘Special Watches’ from the 1934 ‘Wilderness Catalogue’ I have just acquired. This catalogue was produced periodically by Robert Pringle & Sons who were a wholesale supplier of silver, electroplate and other ‘fancy goods’. There are other pages with more standard watches including Cyma, Tavannes, Waltham, Eterna, Ena and Aster as well as Helvetia of course if anyone is interested. There are also over 200 pages of things such as propelling pencils, cigarette cases, lighters, dressing sets, candlesticks, tankards, clocks, you name it if anyone has wider interests let me know. Thanks. Carl.
  10. During my research on Helvetia German Army DH marked watches I was surprised that I didn’t find that many watches that appeared to have wrong parts or that had had DH numbers added to a civilian watch. There were some of course but not as many as I would have expected, most of the watches fitted nicely into the 3 or 4 slightly different variants I had already discovered. Then I found a DH marked watch that definitely looked wrong. The first thing that jumped out was that the DH number was engraved rather than stamped in the usual style on the case back. The hands and dial were correct for a Helvetia DH, the hands were the later slightly thicker version and the dial was also the later type with ‘Swiss Made’ and a slightly larger subdial however the case seemed to be a different case manufacturer than earlier DH versions and while being correctly marked ‘3190’ also had a ‘2’ added below the ‘3190’. Having studied Helvetia watches generally I knew that the additional 2 signified that the case was fitted with a movement holder for 11.5 Ligne centre second movements and not the 10.5 Ligne 82A that was fitted to Helvetia DH watches. On seeing a picture of the inside of the watch it was evident that this was the case, the movement holder was obviously too big for the movement. The final nail in the coffin was that the inner case back was marked with a standard Helvetia serial number, something that the DH watches never usually had. It seemed clear to me that a civilian Helvetia centre seconds watch had had the movement and dial swapped for a DH style one, resulting in a movement/holder mismatch, and had then had a DH number engraved to the back in order to turn a civilian Helvetia watch into a more desirable and valuable DH watch. Over the next few weeks however as I continued my research I came across another watch like this and then another. I eventually found four examples. This was starting to look like something other than a simple ‘Frankenwatch’. During this period I had also recorded several watches that were very similar to the Frankenwatches, the dials and hands were the same later type and the cases seemed to be from the same case manufacturer and had a standard Helvetia serial number inside the case back but they were not marked with the additional ‘2’ below the ‘3190’ and therefore had the correct 10.5 Ligne movement holder. The DH number was also stamped on these watches rather than engraved. What was interesting was that the DH number sequence of the Frankenwatches were in a group and seemed to lead directly on to these correctly marked watches. The Helvetia serial numbers that I had managed to record for them were also earlier than the stamped higher DH numbered watches. The final bit of information came when I was looking at Helvetia DH pocket watches and noticed that the style of engraving used on these was exactly the same as on the Frankenwatches. So now I have done a 180 degree turn on my thoughts about these watches originality. I believe that Helvetia needed to deliver a batch of DH watches and being short of the correct ‘3190’ cases used some ‘3190 2’ cases with the incorrect size movement holders and added the DH number in the same style that they used to add them to their DH pocket watches. The rest of the contract was made up with correctly marked cases straight from the manufactures. It shows I think that what we may consider as ‘wrong’ in a watch might well be how it actually left the factory even if non-standard, especially in times of shortages of parts and raw materials like the last years of the war. Thanks for reading. Carl.
  11. Hi Turpinr, This is the Helvetia 32A movement which was their standard movement for GSTP Pocket watches from the wartime period. Helvetia supplied pocket watches to the allies during the war and wrist watches to the Germans. They specialised in waterproof and shockproof watches before the war. Have a look at my site here for some general info, though I don't have a page on pocket watches yet. www.helvetiahistory.co.uk Thanks. Carl.
  12. For those of you too young to remember: Carlos Fandango Super Wide Wheels - Panama Cigars (My real name is Carl)
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