Friday, August 23, 2013

Fortis Sports Tuxedo watch

This is the latest addition to my growing watch collection. It's a vintage Swiss made Fortis Sports Tuxedo hand winding watch, which I got at a bargain on eBay. Like any stuff you buy over eBay, it is a bit of a gamble but this time it paid off. The watch has kept good time since I last set it this morning (as soon as I opened up the package).

Fortis watch 02

Fortis watch

I am still new to horology or the art or science of measuring time but I am learning a lot. I learnt that the company is based in Grenchen, Switzerland that was founded by Walter Vogt in 1912. Working with John Harwood, the British inventor of the automatic wristwatch, Fortis came out with the first self-winding (automatic) wristwatch, the Harwood Automatic in 1926. They are also the official supplier of watches to the Russian space agency.

About the watch - surprisingly for a company which has been around for more than a century, there was very little information about the Watch. As mentioned earlier, it has a hand winding movement and 17 Jewels. It is encased in a stainless steel case with an after market black leather strap. The watch measures 36mm (without the crown)

The description on eBay said that the watch crystal is Sapphire crystal but I found out that it is actually clear acrylic glass. Another mistake in the listing was the age of the watch. It was mentioned as modern (2000s) but I found out that it is a vintage watch (1971-1983). It might actually be older than I am.

Some more pics from the eBay listing.

If you examine the last picture carefully, you will see that the movement is made by Camy, an old Swiss brand. I cannot seem to find any information about the brand and seems to have just disappeared though there are a number of their vintage watches floating around on eBay. Does this mean that Camy used to supply movements to Fortis? Or is my Fortis a "frakenwatch"?

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