Vacheron & Constantin Cal.203 18ct 1936

£3,500

100% Genuine & All Original

Fully Inspected, Serviced & Guaranteed

A Beautifully Well Cared For and Completely Original Example

Original, Unrestored and Untouched Yellow Gold Dial in Tip-Top Condition

18ct Yellow Gold Watch Case, 25mm x 25mm, Excluding the Correct Crown

High Grade, Rare V&C Calibre Cal.203, 18 Jewel, Hand-Wound Movement

Original Vacheron & Constantin Leather Strap with Gold-Plated Buckle

All in Absolutely Tip-Top & Beautiful Unrestored, Stunning Condition

Hardwood Presentation Box Included, as Shown

VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty Included*

VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee

Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery

Free UK Special Delivery

VGW Reference: VC1363
Price £3,500

£3,500

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Vacheron & Constantin

One of the recognised ‘Holy Trinity’ of Swiss watchmaking along with Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet, Vacheron & Constantin is also the world’s oldest ‘Watch Manufacture’, and as such, has remained in continuous operation since 1755. More than this, Vacheron & Constantin is the founding father of a spirit of technical excellence taken so far, it is considered an art. This is known as ‘Haute Horlogerie’ in which Vacheron & Constantin has been in the vanguard for over 260 years. This tradition defines the Manufacture, evident in the finest quality execution, reflected in a finish which goes far beyond the demands of the ‘Poinçon de Genève’.

Created in 1886, the ‘Seal of the State of Geneva’ is the highest accolade, reserved for only the very finest quality watchmaking and Vacheron & Constantin was the first watchmaker to be allowed to use this hallmark of excellence on its movements. This, along with its extraordinarily high standards of quality and manufacture, lead many watchmakers, horologists and watch industry experts to believe Vacheron & Constantin reigns supreme among the finest quality watch manufacturers of the world.

To the collector, Vacheron & Constantin offers a level of exclusivity which even the more famous Patek Philippe can not. During the 1940s and through to the 1960s, Vacheron & Constantin only ever produced a maximum of 24 examples of each reference in any one configuration. This means that while it produced a variety of dial and case combinations, colours and designs, each one was strictly limited in number. For the collector, the fact that these watches are seriously undervalued doesn’t go unnoticed either.

Description

Classic time only hand-wound watches have a purity and charm all of their own and there has been a resurgence of interest in these of late, particularly in the higher end, with watches containing the finest movements.

Here we have a simply beautiful example. In fact, the original, unrestored and untouched dial and gold furnishings and hands, along with the yellow gold case, make this a particularly stylish vintage dress watch.

In addition, this watch contains one of the very highest quality hand-wound movements ever produced.

This is a perfect vintage dress watch for evening wear, or with some care, everyday use as you so wish.

The Dial

The simplicity of the dial design here is totally ageless, totally understated, and executed to perfection. This exceptional dial is furnished with applied mixed stud hour indices and Roman numerals at ‘3 – 9 – 12′, this watch also has a perfectly proportioned subsidiary seconds dial at 6’, which we believe, completes this dial. The yellow dial provides the perfect contrast between the case, original solid gold ‘index’ hands, and dial furnishings.

The symmetry and balance are pure class and for someone with an eye for minimalist design, totally irresistible. The dial is simply signed ‘Vacheron Constantin’ and ‘Geneve’.

This dial is original, unrestored and untouched. It is also in really excellent condition considering the age of the watch, with even fading, little spotting or crazing and with an even overall patina. Due to its relatively good condition and for reasons of retaining the character and the originality of the watch, we have left it completely alone. If however, you would prefer the dial sympathetically restoring, we will be happy to arrange this for you without any extra charge.

Please note, studio lights, professional-grade digital cameras, and macro lenses can be very unkind to an unrestored vintage watch dial. Also the dial here measures less than 1.25 inches across, so the image you’re seeing may be between 5 – 25 times larger than the watch itself. Therefore please keep in mind you are seeing many tiny flaws which cannot be seen, or will be very hard to see with the naked eye, even under close examination. Suffice to say, on the wrist, in natural light, this dial looks much better and carries a great deal more charm than the photographs portray.

Movement 

The ultra-high-quality and rare Vacheron & Constantin Calibre 203, hand wound movement is utterly beautiful and stamped with the ‘Genève’ embellishment.

The movement is in superb condition having just completed a full overhaul and service by our vintage Vacheron & Constantin specialist watchmaker. It is running perfectly and has been calibrated in 5 positions to run within +11 seconds per day! This is truly outstanding for any mechanical watch and is no exaggeration – we have checked and confirmed the test results on our electronic watch timegrapher. This movement also has an excellent power reserve of 46 hours when fully wound.

The movement is signed ‘Vacheron & Constantin’, ‘Genève’ with the Calibre number ‘203’ and the movement serial number 427,449. The movement serial number dates this watch to 1936.

With care and regular servicing, say every 3 to 4 years, we would fully expect this watch to continue to run very happily for another 50+ years! We are therefore totally confident in offering this watch with our 12 months’ written warranty*.

*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the list price is paid.

Watch Case

The very high-quality, perfectly square, 18ct yellow gold watch case measures 35mm diagonally, excluding the teardrop lugs, and 38mm, including the teardrop lugs. This watch sits perfectly upon the wrist.

From its very early beginnings, Vacheron & Constantin has been the torchbearer of Haute Horlogerie. This is reflected not only in the quality of its movements, but also in its watch cases. Here, the case is of an attractive two-piece design with outstanding teardrop lugs and a press-fit case-back.

The case and case-back are all in superb condition with few marks or scratches visible to the naked eye. The watch has beautifully well cared for so after a close inspection, has simply required a careful clean and a gentle polish to bring it back to its current, almost as new condition.

The case-back is of full thickness and has never been inscribed, and also has a brushed finish. Inside the case-back all is correct and as expected, signed ‘Vacheron & Constantin’, ‘Swiss’ with Swiss 18ct gold hallmarks and the Vacheron & Constantin model number 268285.

As ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.

The Strap & Buckle

This watch is complete with the original Vacheron & Constantin black leather strap, along with a gold-plated buckle. However, if a different colour or style of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to oblige free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown and black in stock, in plain padded leather, crocodile skin or lizard skin, but can also obtain most types and colours of strap 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 1936.

A detailed particulars document will be included with this watch, along with our fully detailed purchase receipt and 12 months’ warranty*. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value of this watch will also be provided 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”.

As with all our watches, this watch will be sold under our 14 days no quibble sale or return policy.

The watch comes complete with a high-quality hardwood presentation box, as shown in the photographs.

In Conclusion

An impressive gentleman’s dress watch from one of horology’s holy trinity of revered names. This will not only make an excellent dress watch but also a practical, accurate and reliable timepiece to use on a daily basis should you so wish. This watch will also provide an excellent investment as well as be something to use, wear, treasure and enjoy!

A word on our prices – We always try our hardest to acquire the very highest quality watches we can find, before then restoring these 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.

We are happy to accept PayPal as this is the quickest method of payment. However, if you would like to pay by UK cheque or by UK 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.

If you have any questions, please call 020 7727 7095 or +44 207 727 7095.

Please note, we welcome part exchanges. If you have a watch or small collection for sale, please contact us as we will be happy to discuss.

We will also be happy to Service your watch, Repair your watch or Restore your watch, all at ‘sensible’ prices. Please see here.

Please take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.