It’s been a long time since I have written something about a watch and frankly speaking I do not have a lot of time to smoke lately. So this is a good opportunity to write a little something about a that was handed down to me from my grand father: The Swiss made Chronograph from Universal Geneva, the Compax “twelve hour register”.
Certainly not a watch you see a lot in the street as one does not hear or see much from this house. As the name suggests the company is based in the same city used in the name Universal Geneva and was founded about 120 years back. Due to introduction of quartz watches in the 1970ies it survived even up until today. While the Compax line does not seem to be the iconic watch of the house it is very well regarded amongst collectors these days. Most probably the Tri-Compax with its calendar was the most popular of the Compax line.
I personally like this watch because it has this classic look that watches from the late 1940ies and early 50ies have. But yet it looks a little bit like an instrument with its blue, almost black hands on the white dial and its red gold casing. The button on top of the crown starts the stop watch. The button below the crown stops the micro chronometer and after a second push, returns the hands onto the starting positions. The micro chronometer indicates seconds with the long small hand on the main dial, the minutes on the small register to the right and the hours on the register below. The register to the left, very discreetly, shows the “regular” seconds which is great as this is much “less nervous” in my opinion. On the one hand it is a shame that watches like this are not made anymore. On the other those old classics are still everything a watch has to be and are literally a true gem in every mans wardrobe.
One note for the purists and collectors: At one stage this watch must have been overhauled and re-dialed as the watch itself and especially the dial obviously look very new. The dial shows some small imperfections and seems to be a “near-replica” design of the Compax-dials used at that time. I especially would like to thank the members of watchuseek for their investigative help in that matter!