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Vintage Heuer Discussion Forum
The place for discussing 1930-1985 Heuer wristwatches, chronographs and dash-mounted timepieces. Online since May 2003.
: Check out this Autavia on eBay. An Autavia dail
: in a Carrera case? Another strange thing on
: the dail, the word Autavia under the Heuer
: logo instead of above...
the seller is describing the watch honestly and is not trying to pass off a watch made up from spares as anything more than that. but the question is wheather the case and dial are genuine Heuer?
there have been previous postings concerning these nos cases though i don't think anyone has covered the Autavia as seen in this auction.
previous postings have concentrated on the Montreals (particularly the blue dial version) and Calculator.
the story i have heard is that these cases and dials were seconds.
The Montreals and Calculators seem to be complete nos cases with correct bezels and pushers. however the dials are suspect. the dials are of a type never sold by Heuer as complete watches, with luminous markers that are the wrong shape and no frame arround the date. the first blue dials seen with Montreal cases were not even the right colour blue, to match the internal bezel, they were more purple. recently this failing seems to have been addressed and the colour now seems to match.
i have bought an nos Montreal case that was part of this batch. the case seems to be original, though it has no case reference or serial number. this may seem to be a problem but the case is parkerised so the black coating could have covered any numbers. a friend has a genuine original all black case Montreal that he bought in back 1988 for £85, from the first owner (i was there at the time of the sale so know it is genuine). i did ask, when helping compile the MOAT if he could dig it out so i can check if it has any numbers on the case or caseback (there's no entry in the MOAT for black cased Montreals) but he has yet to find it. the black coating on the finish on the case is less than perfect so the story holds water for this part at least.
the case i bought had a genuine original dial with the correct markers and frame and is identical to the dial on my ss case Montreal (and shows a little age in the luminous) but it was the only one i thought was correct from the many i have seen for sale
the defense for the other dials was that although they may never have been seen for sale as whole watches they were genuine, none the less, and were intended for a version that was never sold. (strange that the cases they were matched up to were seconds and correct for the model name applied to the dial) which brings us back to the 'Autavia' in question.
the same argument is applied to this case and dial combo, a never released version of the Autavia, what a rare find?
on the plus side: the case back is signed, but many of the casebacks for Heuer's cal 12 watches are interchangeable, so if these cases were made by the same casemaker there's a fair chance a signed back would fit this case even if it were not Heuer.
on the minus side: the case seems to have no case reference; an important part of the Autavia model was the external bezel (according to Heuer) so why the internal bezel? all the cal 12 Heuers have fluted pushers, this has not; the details of the dial do not fit with any other cal 12 model (model name dirrectly below the Heuer shield, short squat luminous markers, sub dial markers that do not run to the edge of the sunken sub dial and no frame arround the date).
here are 2 possible stories behind all this: a large stock of nos Heuer cases and dials were discovered including the first production run of an unreleased version of the Autavia; or it may be that a number of assorted cases were uncovered in the stock of a now defunct casemakers, after all who in their right mind, would bother making Calculator and Montreal cases complete with fluted pushers bezels etc, along with these 'Autavia' cases and a number of Heuer signed casebacks. what was realy missing however were dials, so these were remanufactured.
comments please and any details of cases bought by forum members would be helpful?