Girard Perregaux Gyromatic Cal.47AE 638 10ct Gold Filled 1962
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Restored, Serviced & Guaranteed
A Beautifully Well Cared for & Lightly Used Example
31mm, 10ct Yellow Gold Filled Case, Excluding the Correct Crown
Beautifully Restored Silver-White Dial with Original Unrestored ‘Dauphine’ Hands
Superb Original Calibre 47AE 638, 17 Jewel Automatic Girard Perregaux
All in Absolutely Top Grade & Simply Stunning Condition Throughout
High Quality Brown Soft Lizard Strap with Plain Gold-Plated Buckle
High Quality Hardwood Presentation Box Included
VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty Included*
VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee
Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery
Free UK Special Delivery
Girard-Perregaux is one of the true greats of the Swiss watch industry and one which has long held one of the most glamorous images in high-end watchmaking. The company developed and produced in-house, some of the most technically advanced watches ever made – notably Tourbillons, Minute Repeaters and other refined Grande Complication models. It was one of the many great Swiss watch companies to struggle through the ‘Quartz Crisis’, but is now back in its stride once again and commanding the respect it rightfully deserves.
In the novel “From Russia With Love”, on no less than the first page, the author Ian Fleming wrote, “a gold Girard-Perregaux on a Brown Crocodile strap is one of the typical membership badges of the rich man’s club”. More recently, the company has worked very closely with Ferrari, releasing chronographs under both brand names.
The company recently celebrated its 225th anniversary, making it one of the oldest remaining watch companies continuously engaged in production. Girard-Perregaux is credited with many firsts and claims to fame, having registered over 100 patents and winning numerous exhibition medals and observatory prizes. Notably, a gold medal presented to Constant Girard for a Tourbillon at the Universal Exhibition in Paris in 1867, then again in 1889, the famous Tourbillon with Three Gold Bridges – Constant Girard’s masterpiece and the fruit of many years labour – received the gold medal at another Universal Exhibition in Paris.
As early as 1840, one of the founders, Constant Girard, began to develop the innovative concept of wearing watches on the wrist and later in 1879, his wristwatches were ordered personally by Emperor Wilhelm I for officers in the German Imperial Navy. Two thousand were made, making this the first large-scale commercial production of wristwatches in history.
In recognition of its ongoing quest for precision, in 1905 Girard-Perregaux was elected a permanent member of the jury at the largest international watch fairs.
The golden age for Girard-Perregaux really began in the 1920s, continuing through to the 1970s, seeing the company grow rapidly in both its expertise and strength across Europe, Asia and the Americas. In the 1940s, the company produced a popular range of sports and military watches using the strapline “For Active Service”. These waterproof, shockproof, antimagnetic, and luminous watches carried names such as the Mermaid, Sea Hawk, Amphibian and the ‘M.D. Waterproof’. The Sea Hawk remained popular up to the end of the 1960s when it was withdrawn. However, this model has recently been revived as a highly competent, professional divers watch.
In 1956, Girard-Perregaux introduced its first automatic watch, the Calibre 21, 39 Jewel ‘Gyromatic’ which used a highly advanced Gyrotrone automatic reverse gear winding system and caused a sensation across the watch industry. The Gyromatic was continually developed until in 1966, the Girard-Perregaux Gyromatic Chronometer HF was launched. This was the first ever high-frequency movement with a balance vibrating at 36,000 times an hour, or 10 beats per second. In 1966, this unrivalled movement was awarded the Centenary Prize by the Neuchatel Observatory and brought what is now recognised as true precision to watchmaking for the first time. A year later in 1967, 70% of all the Chronometer certificates issued by the Swiss Neuchatel Observatory went to Girard-Perregaux Chronometer HF models. These were some of the most accurate mechanical wristwatches of all time.
Here we have a classic and highly attractive 31mm Girard-Perregaux gentleman’s dress watch which is filled with 10ct yellow gold from 1962. The Girard Perregaux Cal.47AE 638 automatic movement within is stunning and very ‘state of the art’ for the period. As can be seen, this has been very well cared for and in sparkling condition. This watch has just completed a full restoration by ourselves and is in immaculate condition throughout.
The beautifully restored silver-white dial carries applied gilt ‘arrowhead’ hour indices and arabic numerals at 3 – 6 – 9 – 12, matched with the original, unrestored ‘dauphine’ hands and a red center seconds hands. The classic, timeless design is again, a perfect example of how vintage beats modern, hands down, every time.
The dial is simply signed Girard-Perregaux and Gyromatic at the top of the dial just below 12.
This is the original dial which has been beautifully and sympathetically restored to the very highest standards by our dial restorers, who are considered the best in the UK, making this is as fine an example as you are ever likely to see.
Girard-Perregaux is famous within the Swiss watch industry for the technical innovations and craftsmanship expressed in all its movements and the Gyromatic Calibre 47AE 638, 17 Jewel movement is certainly no exception. In fact, it is regarded by many as one of the finest series of automatic movements ever produced.
The “Gyromatic” system replaced ratchet wheels with roller-equipped unidirectional clutches. The resulting construction was simple, reliable and efficient. What’s more, its compactness paved the way for slim, sleek and stylish designs. The “Gyromatic” has since demonstrated its excellence in thousands of Girard-Perregaux timepieces including the top-of-the-line “Gyromatic HF” (for high frequency) the self-winding watch equivalent of a “Formula 1” race car. This development marked GP’s major contribution to mechanical watch design.
This 17 Jewel, Calibre 47AE 638 movement has just been inspected by our vintage specialist watchmaker, after a very close inspection it was seen this movement needed nothing more than a simple polish. The chrome and zinc plated movement is in remarkably clean condition and working perfectly. This involves dismantling the watch to all its component parts, careful inspection under high magnification, replacement where necessary with only genuine Girard-Perregaux parts, then careful reassembly and adjustment before final testing and calibration in 5 positions. The watch winds, sets and runs accurately and reliably and is now running strongly and accurately within +8 seconds/day. This is outstanding for a watch movement of this age and has been confirmed on our electronic Timegrapher. We are therefore more than confident in offering 12 months’ warranty with this watch movement*.
The movement is correctly signed ‘Girard-Perregaux & Co’ ‘Swiss’, ‘Seventen 17 Jewels’ and carries the calibre number 47AE 638.
*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the list price is paid.
The 10ct yellow gold filled case measures 31mm in diameter, excluding the correct unsigned crown. The case is of a two-piece design with a screw-down case-back and carries attractive swept-back lugs. It is in excellent condition, having received a very gentle and sympathetic clean and polish, although the watch has obviously been very well cared for as there are no dings, scratches or marks visible to the naked eye.
The inside of the case-back is correctly signed ’10K Gold Filled’ and with the reference number B1750 which are very clear and distinct, indicating the watch case has not been overpolished. The case-back is also, importantly, of full thickness and has never been engraved.
As always, our standard advice applies: vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap and Buckle
The watch is fitted with a high quality brown soft lizard strap and plain gold-plated buckle which we feel suits the watch perfectly. However, if a different colour or different style of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to provide your choice, free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown and black in stock in plain padded leather, crocodile skin or lizard skin and can also obtain most types and colours from our partners at ‘Watch Obsession’ within 48hrs. Please take a look at their huge range of straps if you wish here.
Box and Papers
Although there are no original papers with this watch, the reference numbers, markings, signatures and hallmarks are all correct, dating this watch to 1962.
Detailed particulars will be included with our purchase receipt for your interest and security. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value of this watch will be provided at the time of sale along with our unique ‘Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee’ which states: “If this watch proves to be anything less than totally authentic, or not as described, Vintage Gold Watches of London will offer you a full refund at any time”.
The high quality hardwood presentation box shown in the photographs is included.
If you would like to pay by bank transfer we will be pleased to assist you with this and pass on a 3% saving to you. Paying by bank transfer for a 3% saving will not affect your 12 months warranty. Similarly, if you wish to pay by International SWIFT or Bank Wire Transfer we will provide you with our BIC / Swift number and our IBAN number.
Please check the import duties and any taxes your government may apply, these are different for each country and unfortunately out of our control.
We understand there may be some ‘loopholes’ that may help you avoid these charges, however attempting to use these could impact our ongoing ability to serve our growing international customer base.
For those that happen to visit the UK on occasion we are of course more than happy to store your watch until we can meet you in our offices in Kensington, London, and your watch directly to you there.
As with all our watches, this watch will be sold under our 14 days no quibble sale or return policy.
A unique example of a fascinating timepiece which will undoubtedly make an excellent financial investment, as well as be something wonderful to wear, treasure and enjoy! It could make a practical watch for regular or occasional use, as you wish and if it continues to be well cared for and regularly serviced, it will provide dependable service for many decades to come.
This watch carries a great deal more style, individuality and panache than a new watch and to buy the same quality today would be difficult, at 4 or 5 times the price.
However you may wish to view this watch, as each year goes by and the world market grows ever larger, the limited supply and high demand for the finest vintage gold watches means prices will inevitably climb ever higher!
A word on our prices – We always try our hardest to acquire the very highest quality watches we can find, before restoring them to the highest possible standards. We then offer these at the fairest prices we can, taking into account our pre and post-sales care and service. This approach means we will never be the cheapest, but nor will we be the most expensive. Indeed there are some well-known stores in West London which are highly successful charging between two to three times the price you see here. We, therefore, consider our prices to be fair, given the quality of watches we have to offer.
Please note, we also welcome part exchanges. If you have a watch or a small collection for sale, please contact us as we will be happy to discuss this.
We will also be happy to Service your watch, Repair your watch or Restore your watch, all at ‘sensible’ prices. Please see here.
If you have any questions please call us on 020 7727 7095 or if calling from overseas on +44 207 727 7095.
Please take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.