Grand Prize Siblings

Grand Prize Siblings

Postby four of diamonds » March 4th 2015, 10:35pm

These two 1960's Grand Prize models made their back home last week from the watchmaker. Both were in remarkably good cosmetic shape when I picked them about two weeks apart last year at local estate and yard sales.

The silver dialed model took a long negotiation, as it did not run and I did want to pay anything close to what the seller asked for it. It looked great, but the winding crown was very stiff and from the sound and feel of it, the rotor was not rotating properly. My guess is that the owner had probably stored it in a drawer or jewelry box for many years after it broke. Worst case I figured it would make a parts watch if I could not find a replacement movement. My watchmaker tells me that after a cleaning the movement looked brand new. Apparently, the lubricants in the movement had broken down and had gummed it up. Back in the day organic oils were often used (e.g. whale oil). They worked fine with regular maintenance, but broke down over time and would eventually stop the movement from functioning. It now keeps excellent time and runs like new. Only thing I have to do is pick up a 19mm band of some sort and it will be in the regular rotation.

The black dialed model ran when I bought it, but would not wind past a few turns of the crown. Another hard negotiation for what I told the seller was a watch needing a lot of work and it went home with me. This one needed a COA, ratchet wheel and crystal. Put it on a black calfskin band with black stitching for now. I think it needs something with a bit more contrast to bring out the dial.

Both watches are top loaders and have the Longines 3XX 17 jewel auto movement. Likely they were manufactured in the early to mid- sixties and marketed as lower priced Grand Prize models. Retail price was probably under $100. I am always amazed that a mechanical movement at least 50 years old can still run like new with just a bit of maintenance.
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Re: Grand Prize Siblings

Postby TemerityB » March 5th 2015, 6:47am

Local estate and yard sales? That's some good scouting right there.

Really nice. I can't believe what good shape they're in, considering their age. Cool stuff. Oh, and my two cents: Black with black never goes out of style.
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Re: Grand Prize Siblings

Postby Wasp » March 5th 2015, 8:20am

Nice watches
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Re: Grand Prize Siblings

Postby conjurer » March 5th 2015, 9:34am

Nice posting! I like 'em both.
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Re: Grand Prize Siblings

Postby NorthCountry » March 5th 2015, 9:48am

Those two give me a stiffy! Nice finds for sure. Enjoy them both.
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