When one thinks about vintage watches, rarely does Vulcain ever gets a mention from the more popular brands such as Wakmann, Breitling, Hamilton, and Heuer.The company has been around since 1858 and they still make watches in La Chaux-de-Fonds in Switzerland. What they're mostly known for is their development of the alarm technology on wristwatches. These watches have been worn by American presidents such as Lyndon B. Johnson, Dwight Eisenhower and Harry S. Truman.
This Vulcain with it's lovely dial wasn't working two years ago when I had found it. It was in pieces, it was missing it's caseback and there were parts that were also missing in it's movement (Valjoux 236). I waited for about a year until a donor watch of the same year, same case with the same dial (plated in gold this time). I immediately took interest but it wasn't until 8 or 9 months later that I decided it's time to restore the movement and piece together the watch. The result of that is what you see today. It's a labor of love. I thought about replacing the chromed pushers and crown but I decided against it and keep the original parts intact. It had a little bit of rechroming on the pushers and crown but not too much. You can barely see the stripped chrome when you're looking at it face to face (the white studio light brings all the imperfections).
Vulcain chronographs from the 60's leading up to the 70's have a very familiar look to them. That's cause most of these pieces were probably made by Gigandet/Wakmann as they were probably one of the major American distributors at the time. Most of them have similar dials, hands and cases even down to the movement it uses. Often times these chronographs are housed in a chrome case.
This one in particular has a Valjoux 236 running at 18000 bph. The movement was restored and overhauled by a watchmaker and ready for future generations. The dial and the hands are completely original and unrestored.
Ref. No.: 1309
Movement: Valjoux 236
Size: 36mm without crown
Case Thickness incl. Plexie: 14.2mm
Lug Width: 19mm
Lug to Lug: 45.8mm