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MOVADO ASTRONIC "The Final Peak of the Mechanical Wristwatch"

PostPosted: September 25th 2010, 8:58am
by koimaster
http://forums.timezone.com/index.php?t=tree&goto=5288043&rid=0


The "El Primero" automatic chronograph movement was developed jointly by Zenith and Movado in the late 1960's, around the same time that the two companies briefly merged. The "El Primero" was so named because it was the first series-produced automatic chronograph movement ever made.

The El Primero was also regarded as the pinnacle of achievement for the mechanical wristwatch, just before the onslaught of quartz technology decimated the Swiss watch industry.

The rarest of El Primero movements was the calibre 3019 PHF, which incorporated a full calendar moonphase complication. This movement is pictured in Fritz von Osterhausen's fine reference book, "The Movado History" (p. 155), with the following description of the movement: "Automatically wound 'Astronic' wrist chronograph with calendar, made in 1970. The steel case is with its original steel link bracelet. The dial has a small running seconds dial, 30-minute and 12-hour registers, the latter with the phases of the moon display, date, day of the week, and month displayed in apertures, tachometer scale surrounding the dial, signed 'Movado, Astronic, HS360.' Lever escapement 13"', calibre 3019PHF movement, signed 'Movado Factories,' with fast vibrating balance (36,000 vibs./hour), precision regulator index adjustment via an eccentric, ball-bearing mounted central rotor for the automatic winding, 17 jewels."


This superb complicated movement is termed by the author to be "the final peak of the mechanical wristwatch before the onset of the quartz revolution." (p. 156). There were very few Movado "Astronic" models produced (est. 100), and prices have skyrocketed over the past several years. Here are the details on this superb example of this rare and highly complicated timepiece:


  • MOVADO (SS/SS "Astronic" Triple-Date Moonphase "El Primero" Automatic Chronograph) -

    Excellent massive 37x43x13mm signed Movado/Zenith heavy stainless steel tonneau-shaped screwback case (reference N.A.50038-11) with round chronograph push buttons at 2:00 and 4:00, day and moonphase advance push buttons between 8:00 and 9:00,

    Movado-signed 17 jewel calibre 3019PHF triple-date moonphase automatic chronograph movement,

    excellent original signed silver satin dial with three registers (constant seconds, minutes to 30, hours to 12), day aperture at 10:00, month aperture at 2:00, date aperture at 4:30, moonphase aperture at 6:00,

    raised silver markers,

    raised silver Movado "top hat" logo at 12:00,

    silver hands and red chronograph sweep seconds,

    signed original screwdown crown,

    large and thick linked stainless steel flip-lock bracelet with signed Movado clasp.


The massive stainless steel screwback case on this vintage "Astronic" is in excellent condition, and is signed Movado/Zenith on the inner caseback, with the Zenith logo on the outer caseback...indicative of the joint status of Movado/Zenith in producing and manufacturing this extraordinary complicated timepiece.

The silver satin dial is original in excellent condition, and is signed, "Movado, Astronic, HS360, Swiss Made T." The dial is very colorful with blue registers, bevelled blue tachymetre chapter ring, red chronograph sweep seconds, and moonphase indication at 6:00. The large-linked heavy stainless steel flip-lock bracelet is signed and original, and in excellent condition with minimal stretch or wear.

The bracelet will fit up to about a 7.25 inch wrist. The Movado-signed 17 jewel calibre 3019PHF automatic triple-date moonphase chronograph movement has just been serviced by my watchmaker (June 2010) and is running fine, keeping accurate time, and all calendar and chronograph functions work correctly as designed.

The watch is in excellent overall condition, and obviously this model is highly prized and difficult to find. All in all, this is a highly collectible timepiece, a bit of horological history which was dubbed, "the final peak of the mechanical wristwatch."


SUPERB SS/SS MOVADO/ZENITH "ASTRONIC" TRIPLE DATE MOONPHASE EL PRIMERO AUTOMATIC CHRONOGRAPH! Sell for $4895 plus shipping ($25 US Delivery or $35 International via Global Express).




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Re: MOVADO ASTRONIC "The Final Peak of the Mechanical Wristw

PostPosted: January 12th 2018, 4:19pm
by koimaster
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Re: MOVADO ASTRONIC "The Final Peak of the Mechanical Wristw

PostPosted: January 12th 2018, 4:32pm
by OTMF
That "Bump" is highsterical...

I wonder why they changed the color of the date window from matching the color of the day of the week and month?
It looks awkward to me.

Re: MOVADO ASTRONIC "The Final Peak of the Mechanical Wristw

PostPosted: January 12th 2018, 5:23pm
by MKTheVintageBloke
Well, the whole thing is essentially a Movado-branded Zenith Espada. Surprisingly, the rarity part is to some extent true - both the Espada and the Astronic actually are rare, and the production run of these was very low, far lower than that of any of the original three El Primero-equipped Zeniths (ref. A384, A385 and A386). Not sure if there were only 100 Astronics made, and how much can von Osterhausen's book be trusted - but I guess if there's any trustworthy resource on the movement alone (and the amount of these movements made by Zenith), that would be Manfred Rossler's book on Zenith (which I sadly don't have - no, I won't pay a few hundred bucks for a fucking book; while I love Zenith, I'm not that crazy).