It easy to see why military issued watches are quite so popular, there is such a brutal simplicity and therein an unequaled elegance, and the W10 series is no exception. Initially produced by British manufacturer Smiths in the late 60s, they unfortunately would struggle in Britain's ailing 70s economy and the contract would end up with American manufacturer Hamilton.
Being an actual Englishman in New York, I'm always interested in items that have transatlantic origins. I was walking through a NYC antiques store recently and the owner was telling me about his display of Hamilton watches, by all accounts 'the greatest American watch ever made'. This beautiful piece has this pedigree of movement along with the functional design of cold war Britain. A manual winding Hamilton cal. 649, 17 jewelled movement with hacking function for time accuracy.
There were issued to the British Army and RAF in 1973, and Hamilton would produce them for three years between 1973-76 at which point the contract moved back to a British based watch company, CWC.
This piece arrived with me in a terrible state, but the movement was strong and there was great potential. The dial has been completely refurbished, though there is still the slightest of slithers of glue beneath the lume marker at 9 (so slight the photos don't even show it). The movement has been lightly serviced and cleaned - I've tested it over 24 hours and it was -10 seconds, and anyone who knows their vintage 50 year old watches will tell you that pretty amazing! The crystal is a period correct replacement, and is flawless. It's supplied with a nato strap and box.
Please be mindful, this is a 50 year old watch and should be treated accordingly! It's unlikely to be waterproof, and I wouldn't wear it to do any strenuous activity or sports etc!
- Width 35mm
- Lug width 19mm
- Height (lug to lug) 41mm