Vintage Rado Automatic Watches (Part 1 & 2)

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Vintage Rado Automatic Watches (Part 1 & 2)

Postby koimaster » July 10th 2017, 8:59am

Originally published in International Wristwatch


Number 69, July 2003


In 2002 the Rado Watch Company, Ltd. of Switzerland celebrated the 40th anniversary of the introduction of their groundbreaking oval DiaStar ('The Original') scratch-resistant watch. Rado, who is best known today for their elegant dress watches and use of high-tech materials, is one of a select group of companies who have continuously produced automatic watches during the past four decades. The DiaStar is certainly Rado’s most recognizable automatic watch, however, the company produced literally dozens of different automatic models during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s many of which are stunning, some of which are remarkable and most of which can be found even today in good condition and at excellent prices.



Among the myriad watches created by Rado between the 1960 and the late ‘80s quite a few stand out. The Green Horse line of watches are noteworthy for their popularity and longevity; the Captain Cook for its rarity; and the Manhattan for its style and complex construction. Several other Rado automatic lines are noteworthy for their fascinating and modern designs; photos of a number of these watches are shown on the following pages. But before we explore variations of the aforementioned watches, let’s take a look at a feature that is shared by all Rado automatics and is found nowhere else.



The rotating logo on the dial of Rado automatic watches is an oft-overlooked feature (one of many) that helps set these watches apart from other automatics of the same era. A variation of Rado’s anchor emblem, the rotating logo is attached to the dial by means of a post, jutting from the rear of the anchor, that fits through a red bearing mounted on the dial. This construction mimics two elements of the watch’s automatic movement: a pinion seated in a ruby jewel and the swinging of the winding rotor. The logo swings freely and is not tied at all to the winding of the watch or its running. It is, however, a subtle and most interesting feature. The rotating version described here was first used in 1962; on some older products, the anchor symbol was simply printed. The anchor, representing the success of the automatic watches, is now an integral part of the Rado logo. (Author's note: Additional information from the original patent application is found here.)


http://www.watchcarefully.com/articles/rado1.html

Vintage Rado Watches Part II

http://www.watchcarefully.com/articles/rado2.html


Vintage Rado Automatic Watches.pdf




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