1939 Zenith with unusual dial and regulator - Cal 106

Roy Horrorlogic

NAWCC Member
Mar 7, 2017
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This one's a bit of a mystery - to me anyway. According to the site I looked at the movement (sn 3227335) dates to approx 1939. However the Ranfft site dates this movement much later, 1948-55.The case number is 8232261. Also the precision regulator in this is one I haven't been able to find examples of on this movement.
Various people have expressed doubt about the dial, saying that the absence of "Zenith" and the roman numerals are uncharacteristic - however a friend of mine who has been buying and selling watches for >30 years says he's seen a number of examples of this model. It seems to me that it may be an example as supplied to a retailer for subsequent customisation with the retailer's details.
Informed opinions would be welcomed.

Roy 303769.jpg

303770.jpg

303771.jpg
 

Roy Horrorlogic

NAWCC Member
Mar 7, 2017
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Afterthought.
The Ranfft site mentions, among the variants on this movement, '106-P: "Mouvement pincé"
extension B: cam disc regulator'
which I assume is the version I have.
 
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gatorcpa

Registered User
May 7, 2007
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No question about the case. Here is a 1930's era ad showing the same case in gold:

favreleuba_zpsc8397daa.jpg

That "snail cam" regulator was the standard for Zenith watch at that time. So that makes sense.

zenith-serial-NUMBERS.jpg

The serial number looks correct for late 1930's based on the above.

The dial may or may not be original, but the location of "Swiss Made" is consistent with other marked Zenith dials I've seen. However, many other brands used similar placement. Really no way to prove or disprove.

Still looks like a very nice old Zenith watch.
gatorcpa
 

Roy Horrorlogic

NAWCC Member
Mar 7, 2017
384
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Thanks for all your observations.
I had this professionally cleaned and lubricated. The downside was that removing the dirt caused the winding/crown wheel teeth to slip occasionally. If I don't back-wind it helps however the chances of finding replacements seem vanishingly slim to me. I'd be extremely happy if someone better informed than myself contradicted this! The watch keeps excellent time.
Roy
 

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