Vacheron & Constantin Cal.466/3B 18ct 1944
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Inspected, Serviced & Guaranteed
All in Absolutely Tip-Top & Stunning Condition
A Beautifully Well Cared For and Lightly Used Example
18ct Vacheron & Constantin Signed Case, 32mm, Excl. the Crown
Ultra-High Grade V&C Calibre 466/3B, 17 Jewels Hand-Wound Movement
Beautiful ‘6 – 12’ Roman Numeral Hour Indices with Original ‘Index’ Hands
Original, Unrestored and Untouched Two-Tone Silver Dial
High Quality Brown Leather Strap with 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
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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, it 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 the leader 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. 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.
Classic time only hand-wound watches have a purity and charm all of their own and there’s been a resurgence of interest in these of late, particularly at the higher end, where the finest movements are found. Here we have a simply wonderful example, with a completely original, unrestored and untouched two-tone silver dial. At 32mm, excluding the correct unsigned crown, this is an average-sized watch for this period.
This wonderful dial is original, unrestored and untouched and considering the age of the watch, it is also in really incredible condition. The two-tone silver dial has very few signs of aging considering its age. Therefore, due to its remarkably good condition and for reasons of retaining the character and the originality of the watch, we have left it completely alone.
This dial has a mix of ‘diamond’ hour indices with Roman numerals at ‘6 – 12’ which are all swept by unrestored index hands, this dial also has a dash minute indicator around the inner circle, which we feel completes this dial perfectly.
As this dial is in original, unrestored condition, this has been left untouched by our restoration team due to its superb condition. Usually, we restore the dials of the watches we sell, however we decided in this case to leave it alone, due to its unusually good condition and to retain its originality and charm for those who prefer this. It also helps to contrast with almost all of the other watch dials you see on our website, which have been restored. The hands, likewise, have also been left in their original untouched condition.
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.
Vacheron & Constantin movements were the first to carry the most highly regarded ‘Geneva Seal’. This is a distinctive hallmark depicting the Geneva coat of arms, granted by an official body at the Ecole d’Horlogerie de Genève and was only ever placed on movements which were able to achieve the most exacting standards and whose quality and finish conform to most precise and demanding specifications.
The movement is rhodium plated with the Côtes de Genève embellishment, constructed with 17-jewels. This highly-finished movement with straight-line lever escapement further features a monometallic Glucydor balance with timing screws adjusted for temperature, a self-compensating Breguet balance spring and swan-neck micrometer regulator.
This example is in amazing 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 idle exaggeration – we have checked and confirmed the test results on our electronic watch timegrapher. This movement also has an excellent power reserve of 42 hours when fully wound.
The movement is signed ‘Vacheron & Constantin’, ‘Geneve Swiss’ and ’17 Jewels’ with the Calibre number 466/3B and the movement serial number 477495 which dates this watch to 1944.
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*.
The Watch Case
The good sized, very high quality and substantial 18ct yellow gold watch case measures 32mm in diameter, excluding the correct unsigned Vacheron & Constantin crown.
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 elegant sweeping lugs and a screw-down case-back for improved dust and moisture protection.
The case, the case-back and bezel are all in superb condition with no marks or scratches visible to the naked eye. The watch has been beautifully well cared for and 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. Inside the case-back all is correct and as expected, signed ‘Vacheron Constantin’, ‘Swiss’ with Geneva Swiss 18ct gold hallmarks and the case serial number 327155.
As ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap & Buckle
A high quality brown Leather strap has been fitted, along with a plain 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 19mm straps if you wish.
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 1944.
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 100% genuine, authentic and original, a full refund will be given at any time”.
The watch comes complete with a high quality hardwood presentation box, as shown in the photographs.
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.
An exceptional and collectable gentleman’s dress watch from one of horology’s most 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. It will 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.
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.