Vintage aviator Citizen 51-1811


A true “tool” watch for pilots, this is the automatic Citizen 51-1811. 

The inner rotating bezel (slide rule) is very useful for all types of calculations. The interesting thing about this watch is that it was used for its original purpose, as an aviator watch.

Citizen aviator 51-1811

The case is really large at about 42 mm without the crowns. It is made entirely in stainless steel. The front surface of the case is brushed with a circular grain, and the rest is polished. There is an interesting blue light reflecting all the time from the brushed finish, giving it a satinated feel. The winding crown is located at 3 and the one at 2 is for adjusting the inner bezel. The crowns are not signed. The ring bezel holding the large, flat (35mm) mineral crystal is polished too. As pictured, the case integrates the lugs and the twin crowns, protecting them.

The dial is the main attraction of the watch. It is grey, with a sunburst effect. On the outside there is a golden ring with black digits. The golden ring is circled by a thin red zone delimitating the dial from the golden rotating bezel. The entire face of the watch is shiny and powerful. On the grey zone there is the applied Citizen logo, the white painted lettering “automatic 21 jewels”, the day and the date (sharing a single golden frame) and the applied luminous hour markers.  The hands are painted, partially, in black with a luminous line. The sweeping second hand is not painted.

The slide rule is the name of this type of internal bezel. How does it work?  In a few words it is used for multiplication, division, distance and volume conversions, time calculations and percentages.

Pilot aviator Citizen

The movement is the well known 8200A Citizen calibre. It is an automatic movement (it can be also hand winded) beating at 21600 bph with a quickset day and date. It has a unidirectional winding rotor and 21 jewels. Nothing fancy, just an usual Citizen “workhorse”. It has a power reserve of about 44 hours.

The bracelet is a stainless steel one, with a polished center and brushed sides. It compliments the overall shinny design of the watch nicely. It has folded “H” shaped links and a signed “Citizen” clasp. As usual, very comfortable.

RAF aviation watch RAF Citizen

The PAF engraving (and the up pointing arrow) suggest it was in use by the air force and it seams that this was the Pakistan Air Force. So that makes it a tool watch, used for what it was meant to be used.  Just a nice, interesting touch.

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VIDEO – Citizen Leopard pocket watch 67-2192


An interesting, hard to believe it exists, Citizen automatic pocket watch.

Why should a pocket watch be an automatic? How come it has a display back? I will try to gather more information about this and I hope I will get some answers. For now, this is the watch, an automatic Citizen pocket watch, a 36000 bph, Leopard, with a 7230 calibre.

For now, after more than 12 hours, it is spot on and didn’t lose or gain a second.

Enjoy!

A little bit more info added. Read here what I found out so far:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2014/02/10/citizen-leopard-36000-pocket-watch-67-2192/

VIDEO – Citizen automatic chronograph 67-9631 cal. 8100A


This is one of the two vintage automatic chronograph movements made by Citizen, the other is the Citizen 8110A calibre that features an extra 12 hours counter.

A video of 8110A is here:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2014/01/13/video-citizen-bullhead-chronograph-model-67-9356-2/

And here is the video for 67-9631, calibre 8100A. You can see the start-stop-reset mechanism in function, as well as the fly back. Also you can see the way you can change the date and the day. Enjoy!

More informations about this watch here:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2014/01/05/citizen-automatic-chronograph-67-9631/

Vintage Citizen compressor style diver 4-520343 Y


Vintage Citizen divers  – this time a compressor style. And what is better than one diver? Two divers, or even three! 

A compressor case means  that the bezel is not outside the case, but actually inside the case, under the crystal. It is not operated directly but with the turn of one of the two crowns. As Gray showed in the comment of this post these are not actually compressor cases, but actually compressor style inspired.

“These are beautful watches and I enjoyed reading about them but I must correct your assumption that they are compressor watches. Its a common misconception that if a watch has two crowns and an internal bezel, it must be a supercompressor but infact Compressor and Super Compressor watches are defines by the company which made the cases and held a patent for their design. These cases were made by the specialist manufacturer Ervin Piquerez S.A. of Switzerland. No Japanese manufacturer used EPSA Compressor cases. Information about Compressor cases is not hard to find. The link below shows the three types of Compressor case, including the Super Compressor from which your Citizen watches are inspired. True Super Compressors are typically identified by a crossed hatched design on the crowns, a diver helmet logo on the case back or inside the case back, but always, they have the brevet (patent) number on or inside the case back. http://wornandwound.com/2014/03/24/guide-super-compressors/” – Is the comment from Gary. Thank you for the clarification!

Citizen Diver compressor 4-520343 Y

This particular model is one of the early Citizen divers, with compressor style case.  I have seen it in black dial, red, blue and silver dial. The red dial is one of the most beautiful dials ever. Actually is more a burgundy red. The blue is awesome in different lightning conditions, the black is subtle and classy and the silver is  really special.

The case is larger than the usual divers of that era, but similar with other vintage Citizen. It is about 44mm, with a brushed frontal surface, with a radial pattern. The sides are polished. The lugs are well integrated in the overall design, with the same finish as the case. The two crowns are protected because the 9 o clock side (flat) and the 3 o clock side (angled) are not symmetrical, so the crowns are not sticking out a too much. They are signed “C”.  The outer bezel that keeps the domed acrylic crystal in place is polished. The crown at 2 operates the inner bidirectional bezel, and sometimes is very easy to move it by accident so i prefer the models with an outer bezel. The crown at 4 winds the watch and sets the time and sometimes is hard to operate.

The dial is  the best part of this watch. The red one is gorgeous, the blue is beautiful, the black is classic but the silver is not really at home for this model (IMHO) but it is rare and special.. In fact all the colors have a matching rotating bezel except for the silver one that has a black bezel. The black dial is flat, matte. The red and the blue one have thin black longitudinal stripes so the color gets a little  darker. All of them have the cross hair lines. At 12 they have the polished applied Citizen logo and on 6 it is written “water 100M proof” “automatic” “21 jewels”. It is very interesting the fact that the dial is marked waterproof (sometimes parawater) and the caseback parawater. This is due to the fact that it was manufactured in an era when Citizen transitioned from parawater to water resistant. Also some of them were designated for export so a different marking was needed than the ones for domestic market. Read about this here:  https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2013/12/26/citizen-parawater-citizen-parashock/ The ones that have “waterproof” on the dial are for export. At 3 we have the day and date window, in a divided frame. The Sundays are in red lettering, the rest are black. The hour markers are trapezoidal, applied with a polished frame, jus as the date frame. The hands are the usual “Mercedes” type and the second hand has the luminous tot at the very end of it. One rare model has straight hour hand, matching the minute one. For a long time I thought it might not be original but thanks to Pawel I now saw the model in real life and it is for sure 100% original. I also saw one picture from a German catalogue on Stephen‘s blog who says: “There was also a version of this model, maybe only an export version, that had a straight hour hand, rather than the ‘Mercedes’ type. At the moment this image, from a German brochure (with credit to ‘Axel’ on the old SCWF site) is the only one I have seen.” Thanks Pawel for the pictures of the straight matching hands one! Great watch!  After 40 years, the luminous material still glows beautifully at night. The rotating bezel is rather shiny, with a luminous dot inside a triangle at 12, and painted numbers every 10 minutes. The rest of the minutes are dots and every 5 minutes we have a rectangle. Great quality for this bezels. You have to see them in real life to fully appreciate them!

citizen 4-530343Y compressor

Here it is another straight hour hand piece, a black dialed one. Thank you Christian for the pictures!

compressor diver vintage citizen

And a pic that I like:

citizen compressor diver vintage

The movement is the automatic Citizen calibre 5270, with 21 jewels, (and a black rotor that I like a lot). It is a common movement used in a variety of models, not only divers. This means that replacing parts are easy to source.  It is reliable and offers hand winding possibility. The date changes in the second position of the winding crown (first position for winding, third for time setting) but the day changes only by passing midnight with the hands. The operating crown for the movement is the one at 4.

The strap I’ve seen is most of the times a replacement one. Sometimes I have seen them on Citizen or replacement stainless steel bracelet, sometimes on rubber, nato or even leather. They can take any type you want to throw on them. I keep them on matching nato straps, red for red, black for black. This way they are really comfortable and I thing a Nato suits them well. The width at the lugs is 20mm.

automatic Citizen 5270Conclusion: Just as most Citizen divers – wonderful, easy to wear, a pleasure to look at, modern and vintage at the same time… timeless beauty!

Read abut my favorite Citizen diver here: https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2013/12/24/citizen-automatic-diver-150m-52-0110/

Video – Citizen “Bullhead” chronograph model 67-9356


Here is a video with the Citizen octagonal “Bullhead” chronograph model 67-9356, that shows the chronograph function, start – stop – reset, and the fly-back function.  Also you can see the day date settings.

The video shows the fly-back in slow motion.

Enjoy! 🙂

Here is a more detailed article about this wonderful vintage Citizen flyback chronograph.

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2013/12/24/citizen-bullhead-chronograph-67-935

Vintage ladies Citizen watch 64-4838


It is time for a ladies Citizen watch! 

Another NOS watch, ready for wearing, 40 years after it’s birth date. (it was made in July 1972). I wonder why did it take so long for such a beautiful watch to enhance the beauty of a woman’s wrist? Maybe it waited for the right owner?

vintage Citizen ladies watch 64-4838

The case is rather a small cushion shaped one, made in stainless steel, with a snap on, flat, brushed caseback. It has integrated lugs, with a brushed frontal surface.  The sides are polished. The acrylic crystal is flat, but sitting higher than the case. I love the way it gives warmth to the entire watch. The silver metallic overall appearance needed something soft, as the case design and the worm acrylic crystal for counterbalance. The crown is signed “CTZ” as expected. Another feature I like about this watch is the fact that it is Parawater (read about it here: https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2013/12/26/citizen-parawater-citizen-parashock/ )

The dial is silver, simple yet elegant, with applied polished hour markers, Citizen logo and date frame. Each hour is also marked with a luminous dot (except for the one at 3 o’clock where the date is). The hour markers are “T” shaped in sectional view. The 3 hands, with a sweeping second hand, are polished and the hour and minute hands have luminous material that is very bright after 40 years. The writing is black, thin, reading “automatic” and “28800 21 jewels”. The entire dial has a brushed pattern in the same direction as the case, caseback and bracelet.  

vintage Citizen ladies watch 64-4838The movement is an automatic with hand winding capability, Citizen calibre 6900. It has a power reserve at about 38 hours, beating at 28800 bph. The date can be changed in an interesting way, by pulling the crown. It is a quickset mechanism. With the crown in time setting position pulling and releasing the crown will advance the date by one day. Each pull is one day.

The bracelet is stainless steel, with full links and connectors made from folded steel. It is tapering from the case towards the clasp. The clasp is also signed, longitudinally “citizen”. The entire bracelet is brushed except the clasp that is satined with polished sides. The sides and underside ot the bracelet is also polished.

Citizen vintage ladies automatic watch

Conclusion: Such a beautiful watch! So elegant, so delicate, so understated! One of the last years (maybe the last) of “Parawater”.  Maybe it looks nice and it is a beautiful jewelry but also a well made timepiece.

Citizen automatic chronograph 67-9631


Citizen had two automatic calibres.

One automatic chronograph is the 8110A and you can read about the “octagon bullhead” that had this movement here:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2013/12/24/citizen-bullhead-chronograph-67-9356/

And the other one is the one I will write about now, the 8100A.

Both of them came with different case design, shapes and sizes with a lot of dials. This is why sometimes is difficult to identify if a certain watch is correct or “reconditioned” with aftermarket parts.

vintage citizen automatic chronograph 8100

This is a one sub-dial design chronograph featuring a lot of interesting details. It was made in November 1973.

The case is made of brushed and polished stainless steel. The chronograph pushers are on the side, where the winding crown is. It is a cushion shape with a circular grain brushed front surface (I have seen a sunburst grain also, and polished – the polished is for sure not correct) and polished everywhere else. The caseback is screw in with a circular brushed flat surface. The crown is signed “CTZ”. The mineral crystal sits a little bit taller than the case, with chamfer edge. Nothing out of the ordinary, jut a simple, normal ’70’s design by Citizen, 38mm wide without the crown.

The dial is blue with orange and silver accents. It is nothing less but gorgeous! The blue changes from dark blue (almost black sometimes) to bright blue and then to a type of green really difficult to picture. Sometimes it seems unreal. You have to see one in real life in order to fully appreciate the beauty of this one. On 6 it is the sub-dial, counting the elapsed (30) minutes. This is the only sub-dial (normal for cal 8100A). The central, orange central sweeping hand counts the seconds. This sub-dial is silver with highlighted 5 minutes periods. The 5-10 minutes is blue. Not only the chronograph hands are orange but also the current time hands are painted (not entirely) orange and they have a luminous line. On 3 o’clock there are the day and the date windows, with a silver painted frame. The days and the dates are printed on black disks. The polished Citizen logo is applied and so are the hour markers. The hour markers have an orange central line ending with a luminous dot. On the outer side of the dial there is a white Tachymeter scale, for racing, you know!

Screen Shot 2014-03-16 at 11.28.56

The movement is the Citizen automatic, 23 jewls,  calibre 8100A with hand winding capability. It was produced by Citizen starting from 1972, just as 8110A. It is a vertical clutch chronograph (beating at 28.800 bph) with column wheel and fly back function. It also features a day and date indicator. The fly back function means that you can reset the chronograph while in motion and it will start again without needing to go the entire process of pressing stop-reset-start. So, one push can do all of this. Of course  that if you want to stop it you can go the classic stop-reset way. A particularity for this movement is that when you want to change the day you should pull the crown to second position (for changing the date) and push and release the reset (5 o’clock) button. It is 27 mm wide and 5,8mm high, (1mm less than 8110A). The column wheel/vertical clutch design of the movement advices to leave the chronograph running for most of the time (this way you can also see the beautiful sweeping central second hand in movement), but from time to time it should be stopped. This is a chronograph that needs to be used. It is not made for design purpose but for timing.

The bracelet is an usual one piece link design, made by Citizen, with a brushed surface that suits the watch perfectly. It is made in stainless steel with a signed “Citizen” clasp. As usual, Citizen bracelets are very comfortable with a lot of adjustments so finding the perfect fit is easy. 

vintage citizen chronograph 8100a

Conclusion: Wonderful Citizen chronograph, vintage yet so modern, with a nice wrist presence and amazing dial!

Enjoy the video of this watch here:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2014/01/25/video-citizen-automatic-chronograph-67-9631-cal-8100a/

Vintage Citizen Alarm Date – ALDS51301a-y


Starting 2014 with a 1968 Citizen Alarm Date – model ALDS51301a-y.

This is, again, an alarm Citizen, but in in an entirely different presentation.

citizen alarm date alds51301a-yBeautiful watch, elegant design, and excellent, close to mint, condition. The sound of this watch is loud and powerful. The bracelet is comfortable and… let’s take it one step at a time.

The case has a classic shape, round, with nicely shaped lugs, not too thin, not too thick, following the shape of the wrist. The caseback has a flat surface but it is raised to integrate the movement. Due to the curvature of the lugs the watch sits comfortable on the wrist. The caseback snaps into a certain position because it needs to be in a unique place so the alarm will interact as it should, with the pin attached to the inside of it. The place where the pin is, is also visible on the outside. There are no crown guards to interfere with the overall case design. The twin crowns are of a consistent size, easy to operate, signed “CTZ”. One of the main visual attractions is the fluted bezel that compliments the design of the watch. The crystal is made of domed acrylic with a magnifier at 3’o clock for a better view of the date.

The dial is a stunning sunburst pattern grey that, depending on the lighting conditions, displays many shades ranging from dark grey (almost flat black) to light, shinny, bright grey. The hands are polished, the hour and minute hands are with green luminous material. The alarm hand is shorter with a triangle tip. The dots for the alarm hours are painted on the dial with luminous material as well. There are small lines every 15 minutes but only the hourly ones are luminous. The baton markers for the main hours are raised, applied and polished. They are faceted for a better legibility. The writting on the dial is thin, white, painted. It reads: “4H” (this is for 4 hands) “Citizen Alarm Date” and on the lower part ” Para 40 meter” and “21 jewels”.  The date wheel is white with black digits.

citizen 3102 alarm dateThe movement is the USSR calibre AS 1475 based Citizen alarm.  This is the calibre hand winding 3102 (date), 21 Jewels, 18000 bph. The crowns are one for the time and the one for the alarm. The crown at 2 o’clock in first position is winding  the alarm and the alarm is deactivated. If you pull it in the second position you can set the alarm (counterclockwise) and the alarm is activated. Pressing it while the alarm is ringing will stop it. The crown at 4 will wind the watch and pulling it out will set the time. The alarm will ring for 13-16 seconds. The date is set by changing 22-24h. The movement has a power reserve of about 50 hours and it runs great if winding it once a day. It is Parashock.

The bracelet is (as the entire watch) made of stainless steel. It has the most comfortable design ever – beads of rice. The central part is polished and the side links are brushed. As for the clasp – it is the other way around, the central part is satined and the lateral in polished. The clasp is signed – “Citizen”.

citizen alarm date alds51301a-yConclusion: Beautiful watch, comfortable, elegant design. It has a loud sound and a pleasant design. Such a beautiful vintage time piece!

For a VIDEO of this watch (with alarm sound) go to:

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2014/02/17/vintage-citizen-alarm-date-4h-alds51301a-y/