FB-Case, Black Gilt Dial Movado M95
Ask anyone truly in the vintage-watch-know for a category of watch that currently presents outsized value. I would bet at least half of them would flag Movado. In recent scholarship, watch enthusiasts have begun to highlight manufactures of individual component makers alongside brand stories. Singer dials, Valjoux moments, Frères bracelets, etc. Amongst the most notable expressions of watch-based handmade artistry, case makers must be mentioned. Perhaps right alongside the artistry in movement architecture and finishing, case craft is entirely responsible for how we interface with watches—how they wear, their degree of subtlety and many other feelings. Movado, along with Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, and Mido, used one of the all time greats: François Borgel. Happily, the rest of this example’s details live up to its legendary steel exterior.
Curriculum vitae does not come stronger than the Tasti Tondi 1463, so named for its delightfully oversized chronograph pushers. Yes, FB did the 1463, along with this. Movado’s M95 shares similar proportions at 35.5mm, the early waterproof back, and stepped bezel. The watch is not just a case, however. The M95 is one of the most charming vintage chronograph movements. Its pushers are inverted, that is to say that the bottom stop/starts and the top resets. That differentiation means all the cogs that you are used to seeing in a case back are in different places. The calibre was entirely their own, a modular affair designed by Frédéric Piguet.
Interestingly, this exact M95 is one of less than handful known in a black gilt dial. Thought to be a transitional dial between the first and second series in production (with a very low serial number on this example) only four other watches are known to have surfaced in this configuration. Radium lume, still-visible gilt tracks, mildly tropical dial. It is a damn handsome thing, isn’t it?
This example has a full case, rather importantly. Its dial has begun to move slightly tropical in its half century of life. The dial’s numerals are mostly still radium-lumed though some areas of degradation are visible, to be expected. The handset still retains full plots. The crown appears correct as do the pusher. It comes from a well-regarded private collector.
Find this M95 available here from @matt.watches by DM on Instagram for 6900 EUR.