A-11

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iowafilm
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Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2016 7:46 pm

A-11

#1 Post by iowafilm » Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:39 pm

I am new to watch collecting but have always wanted a World War II era watch. I found this A-11 but can't find any info on them ever having a white face. Is this worth it and does it look original?
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C. Hurt
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Joined: Thu Jun 02, 2011 8:54 pm

Re: A-11

#2 Post by C. Hurt » Sat Apr 09, 2016 4:34 am

The A-11 specification called for black dial with luminous figures, or white dial with non-luminous figures, but I will say that I have never seen a white dialed example, including this one, that I was sure was original. I do not believe the gold hands would have been correct in any case.

As these watches were military issue, there were vast quantities of standardized spare parts (including dials and hands) produced, and these were sold off as surplus when the A-17 specification superseded the A-11. These are readily available for the restoration or re-creation of these watches, and there are plenty of newly minted A-11 watches on the market, made up from surplus and/or counterfeit parts, or various combinations of these. There are also outright fakes openly sold. You are wise to be careful.

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GeneJockey
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Re: A-11

#3 Post by GeneJockey » Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:38 am

C. Hurt wrote:The A-11 specification called for black dial with luminous figures, or white dial with non-luminous figures, but I will say that I have never seen a white dialed example, including this one, that I was sure was original. I do not believe the gold hands would have been correct in any case.

As these watches were military issue, there were vast quantities of standardized spare parts (including dials and hands) produced, and these were sold off as surplus when the A-17 specification superseded the A-11. These are readily available for the restoration or re-creation of these watches, and there are plenty of newly minted A-11 watches on the market, made up from surplus and/or counterfeit parts, or various combinations of these. There are also outright fakes openly sold. You are wise to be careful.
There's one particular seller on Ebay who lists several '24hr' Elgin watches in NOS A-11 cases every week. Then every 6 months or so, he sells off a bunch of 8/0 Elgin cases and dials, from which he had clearly been stripping the movements for his "original" "military" "WWII" watches.
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441victor
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Re: A-11

#4 Post by 441victor » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:04 pm

I have several Elgin A-11's and I agree with Cary about the dial. This is one of mine and is the only white dial I have any faith in as original but there is a even problem with this watch.

Image

It has a 1944 serial number grade 532 movement, the case has the proper inner cover but the back is not marked so I can't assume it's a military A-11. The hands on the watch for sale I believe are white painted and aged to an ivory color. These are original to black dialed A-11's that are not luminous. It's movement is from 1943 and has the desirable black winding wheels, click and set lever. The crown is a more modern replacement. In all I think this watch is over priced for it's condition and a better bet would be ebay. There have been several nice original A-11's sold for less than half the cost of this one. Do your research and be patient. Have a limit and don't get into a war with another bidder over a particular example. Another will come along. Joel

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