Sold - Unique Restored Military Pilot's Flyback Monopusher Vintage Chronograph Landeron 47 Circa 1937 - Fully Serviced by ClockSavant
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From our ClockSavant Survivor line, Fully Serviced by ClockSavant, this is a watch restored for its importance or significance and not profitability. We feel as though we could write a book on the Landeron 47 and this particular watch. We will work to contain ourselves and get down to why this might be one of the most interesting and unique Landeron 47-based vintage chronographs you will come across. First on the Landeron 47, it’s one of the earliest wristwatch chronographs from Landeron who would later go-on to produce massive numbers of movements. We have worked-on earlier chronographs called Hahn’s, the original name of the company. The Landeron 47 represented a major step towards larger-scale Landeron wristwatch chronograph production and evolution of their cam-based chronograph design. Their next one in line, the Landeron 48, had massive popularity. The Landeron 47 is highly unique, and extremely useful, because it includes what’s known as a Flyback complication. The flyback is activated by the center (monopusher) button on the crown. While the chronograph is running, it can be immediately reset to zero by pressing the center button. Typically you must stop the chronograph and then press a button again to reset it. While a flyback can also be stopped in-place to read the time elapsed, it can also be immediately flown-back to zero. You can picture this being very useful to a pilot who glances down at his watch while its running, seems what he needs, then wishes, in one-step, to return the chrongraph timer to zero and stop it.
Now let’s move onto this watch. We obtained it from India. Without any manufacturer brand on the dial and given that many of these Landeron 47’s were deployed to the military and its unique to-the-minute dial, we are going to guess it was used by the Indian military or police in the late 1930’s or early 1940’s. Could have also been some other part of the government, but often these watches found themselves into mission critical uses at the time. This watch had been left for the buzzards— it had been picked-over for parts, wrong parts were later installed by someone, had crucial components such as eccentric screws removed and/or destroyed, and more. At-best this was a parts watch and nobody in their right mind would restore it. Being die-hard horologists, there was something about this watch that called-out to us. We aren’t sure why, we sometimes reluctantly have to pass-up restoring some watches if they are too far gone. This watch seemed to have a story to tell. We noted that the case and dial of this watch screamed character and uniqueness like few others. We dove-in to see if we could restore this watch. As you will learn in our Servicing and Restoration pages, we have invested in old and modern tools, techniques, and processes like few others and our horological emergency rooms are prepared for a variety of life saving operations, this watch being a prime example. Of the many difficult aspects of working on a watch like this, the differences in Landeron 47 versions and lack of parts interchangeability played just one role in our challenges. Fortunately we have a stock of parts for these Landerons and were lucky to decipher and match them. Next, the watch had been clobbered at some point by someone who was not experienced— among many things, the hairspring had been bent and contorted. We spent hours manipulating the hairspring back— it takes years to master this technique and endless practice. A hairspring is nearly as thin as a human hair and about as fragile as anything you can imagine of that size. Manipulating these challenges everything— your eyesight, dexterity, tools, patience, and knowledge of the science and math behind the original design of these hairsprings. From our stock of vintage watch hands we were able to match beautiful blued hands to the watch. The list of work goes on-and-on. Eventually, we were ready to test this watch after weeks of work. After some further adjustment, we sat back and began our testing regimen. As-if possessed by something we couldn’t fathom, this watch took-off and began performing in a way we never envisioned. What we thought might be a passably running watch, instead it lept off our horological operating tables and sprung to life with full strength and power, like it was new again.
So what you have after all of this is a watch loaded with character and history and one you will likely never see again. If you like aged things like reclaimed wood, antiques, and old leather and appreciate the character those offer, you will really enjoy this watch. And if you believe that, against all odds, you can persevere against any human obstacle, survive and win, then you will enjoy this watch because, in this case, the watch won.
Manual Wind, Chronograph, Flyback, Monopusher
Base metal, chrome, and steel
Case is fixed lug, common for the military, and so will only accept military style straps such as the new Dassarri leather seude strap we put on the watch, a beautiful match to the dial.
We estimate the watch was manufactured in the late 1930's.
Fully Serviced by ClockSavant Fully disassembled, old and worn parts replaced or repaired, adjusted, optimized, cleaned, and lubricated. Comprehensive testing and performance measurement.
Case has the typical scratches and dings that are common to watches of this age and add to its character. Similarly the dial shows some discoloration, again common for watches of this age.
Comprehensive ClockSavant Testing. Performance measurement results for this watch are provided below.
14-day return period provided that watch is returned in condition received.
All mechanical watches, and especially vintage watches, require special consideration in handling, care, and use. In order to obtain warranty support or to return an item, it is necessary that the customer did not cause damage to the watch. See the Support page to learn more about how to protect and care for your investment.
Virginia residents will pay sales tax
ClockSavant Watchmaker Testing, Certification, and Performance Measurement
All the watches we sell go through a comprehensive series of ClockSavant-developed functional, stability, and performance tests and are only approved for sale if they meet or exceed the criteria we have established. Performance measurements for this watch are provided below. See the Support page of our website for an explanation of watch performance measurements and guidance on interpretation. The watch performance values provided do not necessarily reflect the accuracy you will experience based on your unique watch wearing habits. You may experience a gain or loss by as much as approximately 1 minute per day with vintage watches.
Legend: Rate, Amplitude (Amp), and Beat Error (BE) are provided for Dial-Up (CH) and Dial-Down (FH) positions. Averages (Avg) are also provided. These represent the average performance of the watch across all 6 traditionally measured watch positions which, in addition to dial-up and dial-down, are the vertical positions of Crown-Up, Crown-Down, Crown-Left, and Crown-Right. Rate is expressed in seconds gained or lost during a 24 hour period. Amplitude is in degrees. Beat Error is in milliseconds. Lift Angle used in measurement is unique to the particular watch calibre.