WITTNAUER ELECTRO-CHRON ELECTRIC 1962

 

The Swiss were usually late with new technologies so they launched their first electric watch around 1961. Well... better late than never but in result they made the best electric ever (IMO). It was invented by the  famous Landeron branch of the ETA group and basicly two versions were available - the early L4750 and late L4760 with hacking and circuit disconnection. These robust movements were fitted into various watches but the most collectable is the Wittnauer Electro-Chron with striking thunderbolt hands. This small feature increases the price sometimes by 200% in comparison to other brands or late Electro-Chron versions without such fancy hands.

 

The fixed coil is secured in plastic making the watch almost bullet-proof. There is almost nothing that can be accidentally damaged unless someone deliberately breaks the long negative pole contact plate. There are no magnetic parts (unlike the permanent magnets in the Hamilton) and all electromagnetic activity is performed between the two steel terminals on the coil, the contact wires and the balance assembly with steel plate that is magnetized and attracted and pushed back with every electric impulse.  To ensure proper functionality the contact wires might require readjustment although it's not that difficult as in the Hamilton 500 or LIP R148. The wires are pretty robust and insulated in their middle section from the movement plate (check picture) and they must be completely straight and centered against the balance jewel.

 

The original huge WD-5 battery is not available but you can use any other 1,5V battery cell (386 suggested) as long as the battery has a proper connection with the contact plate screwed onto the movement (-) and the caseback (+). When fitting a battery make sure that the negative pole contact plate is insulated from the movement with some foil (check picture) and that the smaller modern battery cell is properly centered in the caseback with a spacer (cardboard will do).

 

 

 

 

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Keywords: wittnauer electric, electro-chron, landeron 4750/60

Market value: 50-500$ (version, condition, box)

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