This Made in England Smiths de luxe has a nice, 9k gold case housing the Smiths 12.15 manual wind movement. Model A501.
HOW DO WE DATE THIS WATCH?
This model was first made between 1953 and 1955, then reintroduced in 1958 until 1963. It was the De Luxe range of watches that Sir Edmund Hilary used on his accent of Everest in 1953, and ever afterwards Smiths were quick to make the most of the association. (Although they didn’t add Everest on the dial until 1963.) From the London hallmark on the inside of the case back we can accurately date this watch to being assayed in 1962. We also have an advert from Smiths in 1962 featuring this model.
The reason that we have pointed out that this Smiths de Luxe was made in England is important. Smiths had different factories and they produced different quality watches. In 1947 Smiths opened the Ystradgynlais in Wales factory and this factory produced the cheaper, pin pallet Empire range of watches that were huge sellers. These are marked Made in Great Britain on the dial. In Cheltenham, the factory was converted from war use (it had been especially built to supply clocks for the Royal Air Force) and post war they made the better quality, English lever movement watches. These were marked Made in England, just like the watch we have here.
This watch does have marks on the dial, which we are not going to try and clean up as some people will love the unique patina. If the dial was perfect then the watch would be a lot more expensive too. The worst marks are around the subseconds countersunk dial at six. The case is good and stamped SCW (Smiths clocks and watches), and feels well made. The 12.15 movement (so named as it was 12 ligne, 15 jewel) is an in house item as you would expect.
This watch will be supplied with our branded presentation box and our Certificate of Authenticity.
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Width with crown 34.0 mm
Width without crown 32.1 mm
Between lugs 16 mm
Lug to lug length 39.5 mm
Case Thickness 10.1 mm
All sizes are approximate.
Included with this watch is a 3 month guarantee and free delivery to UK addresses. If you live outside the UK we can still deliver to most countries. Please see our Worldwide Shipping information, or Contact Us. Payment can be made by most credit or debit cards, bank transfer or PayPal.
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