Bring a Loupe: A Fortis Marinemaster, A ’60s Tudor Sub, And A Rolex Ref. 3525

By Isaac Wingold

It’s always a treat when you get to handle soon-to-be-featured pieces in person, which is exactly what went down over the last seven days. There’s little bit of everything this week. We’ve got a Valjoux 72-powered Fortis and the best Ref. 7928 Tudor you’ll see in a good long while. From a Cartier desk clock with Hollywood in its past, to a Rolex owned by an important POW, we’ve got significant provenance covered, too. Instead of getting wrapped up in hype, let’s get down to it.

1955 Cartier Desk Clock


As of late, a few dealers have been suggesting that vintage Cartier is about to experience, or is already experiencing, a boom. Personally, I don’t think this is the right way to go about selling watches, as you’re risking the loss of a client should the market not explode soon, or even take a dive. To me, a boom doesn’t seem likely as the watches are small and not exactly suited for modern casual attire, inherently limiting their appeal. Nevertheless, the brand’s offerings are a terrific area to focus your attention should they work for you. Since many seemed to enjoy the inclusion of a quirky desk accessory of the horological variety last week, I thought we’d kick things off with another from Cartier. Forthcoming boom or not, this thing is plain old cool.


If having the time on your phone, watch, computer, and letter opener simply isn’t enough, the next order of business is getting a clock for your desk. If a unique specimen of noteworthy provenance is up your alley, consider this one — ordered custom at Cartier in 1955 as a gift for Betty Grable. For those not familiar, Grable was a model and Hollywood actress who made over 40 films throughout the 1930s and 40s. She was also recognized as the highest-salaried American woman in 1947 and the number-one pin-up girl of the Second World War. With her name spelled out on the dial with applied indices, there’s no question that this piece was produced for her.


Flip the clock over and you’ll notice that apart from telling the time, it can also be used to determine what day a given date is (or vice versa) using the rotating calendar found on its backside. The seller offering the clock has stated …read more      

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