Vacheron & Constantin Cal.P453/2 18ct 1941
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Inspected, Serviced & Guaranteed
Beautifully Aged Original Dial with Subsidiary Seconds
A Beautifully Well Cared For and Lightly Used Example
Exquisite, Highly Rated Hand-Wound Cal.P453/2C Movement
Oversize 36mm Case, Excluding the Correct VC Unsigned Crown
Original Unrestored Dial, Original ‘Index’ Hands and ‘Stud’ Indices
Hirsch Regent Burgundy Alligator Strap with Original Solid 18ct Gold Vacheron Buckle
All Presented In Absolutely Top Grade & Simply 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
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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, characterised by the ‘tropical’ unrestored dial. At 36mm, excluding the crown, this is an oversized watch by the standards of the period.
This wonderful dial is original, unrestored and untouched and considering the age of the watch, it is also in really incredible condition. The dial appears ‘tropicalised’ which is due to considerable exposure to sunlight, turning the centre section of the dial a beautiful coffee colour. Therefore, 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.
The dial shows very few other signs of ageing other than some very light spotting around the outside of the dial. Alternate applied numerals at 2 – 4 – 6 – 8 – 10 – 12 and stud hour indices, matched with the solid gold hands, contrast perfectly with the aged dial and gold case. This beautiful watch is also framed by a minute rail track register and a subsidiary seconds dial at 6.
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 +7 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 P453/2 and the movement serial number 4453743 which dates this watch to 1941.
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.
The Watch Case
From its earliest days, 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. The brand’s motto is “Do better if possible, which is always possible”, and is evident in the exceptional finishing of each Vacheron & Constantin watch.
The 18ct yellow gold case is of a two-piece construction which improves, integrity, dust and moisture protection. It carries a thin integral bezel and gorgeous teardrop lugs. It is solid, elegant and of obviously very high quality.
The size of this watch is 36mm in diameter, excluding the correct unsigned crown. As mentioned above it is highly unusual to find a watch from 1941 with such a large watch case, particularly so a Vacheron & Constantin.
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 lies flat on the wrist and the effect is very elegant and pleasing on the eye. Inside the case-back all is correct and as expected, signed ‘Vacheron Constantin’, ‘Swiss’, with Swiss Geneva 18ct hallmarks and the Vacheron model number 4126, along with the case serial number 339597. The large press-fit case-back clicks into place with a solid reassuring ‘pop’, just as it should. It is of full thickness and has never been inscribed.
As ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap & Buckle
A Hirsch Regent burgundy strap has been fitted, along with a genuine matching Vacheron & Constantin solid 18ct yellow gold 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. We can also obtain most types and colours from our partners at ‘Watch Obsession’ within 48hrs. Please take a look at their huge range of 18mm 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 1941.
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.
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.
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. 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.