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 Post subject: Help with mystery please
PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 12:29 am 
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Hi
I have a watch I was left that states Breitling on the face and I was told is a 1940's gold breitling owned by a former RAF navigator during the war.
It keeps perfect time but after a year the winder came out. I took it to be repaired by local watch specialist and they replaced the winder but did say that was I aware that this is not, they think, a true Breitling.
As I was left the watch and am happy to wear it I will be keeping it but would love to know what it really is if it is not a Breitling
The pictures I have will not upload because of file size, if you are happy I will mail direct while I try and work out how to get pictures that will load - sorry not a computer person!


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:04 am 
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impossible to say without pics, of course; here is how you upload larger pics: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=453


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:01 am 
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Image

Image

Hope this has uploaded the pictures and thanks for the advice


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:10 am 
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may we see inside & outside caseback, please ?
at 1st glance it might well be correct


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 5:54 am 
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Not sure if this helps as I am probably wrong. It kind of resembles a Ref # 172 with telemeter scale and square pushers, although a little wide of the mark on the hour font I have pictures of and the case lugs are a little more square than your one. So, could it be a fake! Or, is it a variant?

Looks like a Venus 170 movement. It should measure 12 1/2 ligne (or about 28.2mm) diameter. I can't be certain as I struggle with older models, but a pic of the caseback on both sides might help.

WatchFred or Vintage will probably know this one very well and can tell you if it’s the real deal or not.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 10:19 am 
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Hi
Thank you all for helping, I will get a picture of the outside of the case back but not sure about inside of it as it has been put back on and not sure if I can remove and replace. The case back appears to be plain stainless and only thing I can see says something like;
rOND ACIER
INOXYDABLE


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 10:34 am 
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Fond I think rather than ROND - FOND ACIER INOXYDABLE is simply French for Stainless Steel.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:23 am 
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hope to find a serial number inside the caseback .......


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:18 am 
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Image

Sorry for delay here is back of watch. I had to wait for someone to take the picture so sorry for delay.
If I want to take an image inside the back I will need to open it. Is that something I can do and if so how?
Will I be able to get the cover back in place and how?
My interest is in wearing what I think is a nice lokking watch (whatever it may be!) so I am not used to opening these things up - they look complicated and fragile and I don't want to mess it up.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:25 am 
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Opening the watch is easy:

1) Find a friendly watchmaker
2) Ask them to open it up
3) Take photo
4) Ask friendly watchmaker to replace the caseback

:-)

Seriously - don't try and do it yourself, it's a simple job for a local watchmaker with the right tools.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:30 am 
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any watchmaker can pop it open for you in a second, please do not try it by yourself.

we already knew the watch wasn't "gold" but plated, case seems to indicate it has either been very rarely worn or the case has been refinished along the way or it is a recased dial/hands movement combo from another watch.. I do not like the shape of the caseback, as it does not fit the ref. 176s or 178s I have seen (ref. 172 is much smaller, Jim); looks quite a bit later than the early/mid 1940s the dial and hands would indicate and should have the ref. no. stamped on the outside; lugs also look incorrect for the two possible models, a pic of the inner caseback will tell us for sure ?


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 11:39 am 
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Ok Will find someone to open it.
Please wait for reply as I am working flat out the next 5 days and it will have to be after that that I get it seen to.
Thank you all for your interest and I feel that we are getting closer to an answer - your knowledge is appreciated.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:20 pm 
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WatchFred wrote:
I do not like the shape of the caseback, as it does not fit the ref. 176s or 178s I have seen (ref. 172 is much smaller, Jim);


I was going to suggest the Ref 176, but the dial layout does not appear to be the same as this example. I agree the lugs are closer to a 176 or 178 though and not the 172. Size would suggest that 172 is not the watch in question. A 176 or 178 with a different dial layout perhaps? These two models are noted as ‘extra flat’. Maybe the answers reside in the back story of the previous ownership. If it was from the period, could supply into the UK at the time be affected by hostilities? Dial and case back changes to meet supply arrangements. Does anyone know if logistics issues play a part in wartime models?

My father was an RAF Navigator from 1939 onwards, and I don’t think Breitling was a service issue watch (although I can’t be certain) to Flight Sgt level, so could we would assume a private purchase?

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