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Dating a watch is an inexact science. The movement is the spring-loaded mechanism the runs and regulates the timepiece. Watches like Elgin, Waltham and Omega kept excellent records, allowing for good dating of their watches. Watchmakers like Gruen, however, destroyed their records, making exact dating impossible. Use a case blade to pry open the snap-on case back of a pocket or wristwatch. Rotate a screw-down case back counterclockwise with the palm of your hand. Remove the case back of either type from the watch.

Dating swatch watch

So, How do you determine the age of all of the others? Quite often it comes right down to what the watch looks like.

BULOVA: In the 's Bulova incorporated a symbol system to date the watches they manufactured.  These numbers are stamped on the back (outside) of the case.  If there is no two symbols, it could be that your watch was made before  The code is very simple. Swatch watches are laser sealed and therefore cannot be repaired, only replaced. All Swatch watches come with a two (2) year warranty on the internal movements of the watch. If such movements prove to be defective in material or workmanship under normal use, Swatch will replace your watch with the same model or a similar model free of charge.

Here are samples of the styles that each decade offered. The 's. Note the thick hands, engraved patterns and bold design of all of these watches.


These watches are typical of the "Deco" style of the teens and 20's. The Elgin and Hamilton were dated by serial number, while the Gruen was dated by an inscription on the back.

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The "New Haven" was dated by looking at the style of the watch. It looks very similar to the styly of the others.


Therefore I think it is from the 's. In the 's there was a style change from highly engraved cases to smoother cleaner lines.

Notice that the watches from the early 's still have engraved cases. By the late 's mens watches were more masculine. Thin tank watches became fashionable.

This was made possible by the advent of square movements. Until then all movements were round, limiting the designs. The Bulova and Hamilton stepped cases shown here on the left are a perfect example of this. Men were preferring tank watches, however only round movements were available, therefore the case was stepped to accomodate the movement and make the watch APPEAR to be square. First battery operated watch!

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The 's watch styles were very similar to the styles of the 30's. With a mechanical movement.

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That is produced and assembled by machines. In the middle of that crisis, a small and affordable plastic watch put the Swiss watchmaking industry back on the map.

How to Date Watches?

The Swatch was devised as a Swiss-made plastic watch with a fully integrated and in-house movement. The first collection came at an initial price ranging from 40 to 50 Swiss francs, which was competitive with offerings from Seiko or Citizen's collections.

However, the fact that you could get a watch developed and manufactured in Switzerland for that price was unheard of. Thanks to an aggressive marketing campaign, sales were huge and overcame the targets of one million pieces for and 2.

identifying your swatch the first letter tells what type of swatch it is: b=pop watch g=gents l=lady pan= pager numeric pat= pager tone pm= pop midi pu= pop up pw= pop watch (>) pwb= pop watch sa= swatch automatic sb= aquachrono sc= swatch chrono sd= swatch diver (scuba) se= aquachrono mid size sf= skin. Dating a watch is an inexact science. It's virtually impossible to identify a watch down to the exact production date. The best way to identify the date of manufacture of a watch is to locate the serial number on the watch's movement. The movement is the spring-loaded mechanism the runs and regulates the timepiece. Jul 14,   The very first Swatch was introduced in and it changed the face of the watch industry, in more ways than most people are aware of. Thirty years later, in , Swatch introduced another watch that could possibly become a total game-changer for the watch industry as we know Frank Geelen.

Nicolas G. Hayekwith a group of Swiss investors, bought Swatch in and founded the base of what is known now as the Swatch Group who own Omega, Longines, Breguet, Blancpain and many more watch brands. The concept is simple again: a plastic watch, Swiss-Made, developed in-house, with a part movement fully industrialized and for a very low price - in short, everything that identifies a Swatch, except for its automatic movement.

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It's not the first automatic Swatch, as some of them used to come with ETA movements. Use a case blade to pry open the snap-on case back of a pocket or wristwatch.

Rotate a screw-down case back counterclockwise with the palm of your hand. Remove the case back of either type from the watch. Use a jeweler's loupe to inspect the movement for a serial number.

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Serial numbers can range from six to nine digits and may include a combination of letters and numbers. Elgins, for example, may have a letter in front of a series of numbers.

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Omegas have seven or eight digits. The serial numbers on an Omega pocket watch, for example, start at 1, A Omega wristwatch starts at 15, Record the number. Watch enthusiast clubs post the serial numbers of major watchmakers online. Watchmakers specializing in vintage and contemporary mechanical watch repair also can obtain most lists. Some watchmakers, such as Bulova, used symbols instead of specific serial numbers to date their watches.

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A crescent moon, for example, identifies a Bulova.

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