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Thread: Dennison..... Smiths.... COSD?

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    Default Dennison..... Smiths.... COSD?

    I started thinking about this letter which is from Dennison to the MoD regarding production of cases for their future GS Deluxe watch.

    Could this previous "Aquatite" design they are talking about from 1942-1945 actually be the COSD?

    Roddy


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    Owen! Paging Owen! Would tudor please reply to this thread!
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

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    Oliver,

    The letter appears to be dated 1950 - would this then be for the wider bezzeled/cased Navigator proposed by Smiths, but rejected by Herstmonceaux?

    And would the 1942-45 reference be for a standard 6B.159 such as for Omega or the proposed Mk.X bearing in mind it refers to a new 12 ligne British movement (ie Smiths 1215/De Luxe).

    Who else used a flanged bottom plate and front loaded, recessed case?


    Barry

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    Yes, 1950 -- but I can't think of a Dennison screw-back case that had key slots before the first cases to bear the name "Aquatite" (circa 1951).

    So the only case that fits the description would be the COSD -- although here they are calling it an Aquatite, even though it doesn't carry that (or any other) name.

    The "new" (smaller, simpler, cheaper) Aquatite mentioned in the letter could be the be the 12 linge one used on the Smiths "Everest" watches and the pre-De Luxe "Hillary" from 1951 till about 1954, 55 or '56 (I'd have to check when they are superseded). These have the engravings / markings, including s/n, on the outside of the back. That would fit perfectly with this letter dated 1950 as they first appear in 1951.

    However . . . . there is also the so-called "56" case (used for re-housing WW2 Omegas and Longines in 1956, hence the name) and also as used for the Smiths GS De Luxe, which, iirc, first appeared in 1954. That would seem to be the watch referred to in this letter.

    It looks from this letter like Dennison perhaps wanted to put the new GS De Luxe in their new, civilian Aquatite cases, as used by Smiths on their retailed range of waterproof "expeditionary" and "Everest" watches (the standard A404, A409 etc of the early and mid 50s).

    We know, though, that the GS De Luxe eventually (some four years after this letter) got housed in the "56" case. This case, as it happens, is like the COSD in a number of respects: firstly, it's almost certainly a Dennison but is completely sterile bar mil issue markings so we can't say for sure who it's made by; second, it never seems to have been used for any commercially retailed watches; third, its construction suggests an expensive case to manufacture (it would be less economical to produce than the plated-base metal and springbars of the contemporaneous civilian Aquatite as described above.)
    Last edited by Revo; 01-10-2018 at 06:05.
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

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    Thanks

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    This is indeed discussing the request for a new case to house the future GS Deluxe.

    The contemporary civilian “Aquatite” case is rejected as it cannot incorporate antimagnetic screening.

    Dennison produce the final GS Deluxe case which is an adaptation of the original WWW design. It later re-appears with a slight difference in profile as the ‘56 6B/159 case.

    But back to the interesting bit: is this ‘42 - ‘45 case the COSD? What other waterproof cases did Dennison make for the MoD? The Dennison-housed 6B/159 snap-backs certainly weren’t waterproof in the slightest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rodabod View Post
    This is indeed discussing the request for a new case to house the future GS Deluxe.

    The contemporary civilian “Aquatite” case is rejected as it cannot incorporate antimagnetic screening.

    Dennison produce the final GS Deluxe case which is an adaptation of the original WWW design. It later re-appears with a slight difference in profile as the ‘56 6B/159 case.

    But back to the interesting bit: is this ‘42 - ‘45 case the COSD? What other waterproof cases did Dennison make for the MoD? The Dennison-housed 6B/159 snap-backs certainly weren’t waterproof in the slightest.
    Very interesting - maybe Dennison made this case??
    http://www.mwrforum.net/forums/showt...-(crappy)-dial

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    Quote Originally Posted by rodabod View Post
    I started thinking about this letter which is from Dennison to the MoD regarding production of cases for their future GS Deluxe watch.

    Could this previous "Aquatite" design they are talking about from 1942-1945 actually be the COSD?

    Roddy

    Just wondering Is this letter from the box full of similar items in the Cotswold auction?

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    Hi John, no, it’s from the MoD’s archives. It would be interesting to see if any of the Cotswold auction material was relevant.

    I’ll need to check the date of the photos which I found of the COSD watches being worn (by divers). Edit: the photos were from 1945. However, with these watch design projects, they do go through a long trial phase. I think the GS Deluxe design meetings started around 1948...

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    Quote Originally Posted by rodabod View Post
    Dennison produce the final GS Deluxe case which is an adaptation of the original WWW design. It later re-appears with a slight difference in profile as the ‘56 6B/159 case.
    No, the two cases (GSDL and "56") are the same, or at least the ones I managed to get together were.
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Revo View Post
    No, the two cases (GSDL and "56") are the same, or at least the ones I managed to get together were.
    sorry, but I'm with Roddy on this one..

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    The GS Deluxe and later ‘56 6B/159 are measurably different, and the bezel thickness around the crystal is thicker on the former. In the same way that the later Smiths GS watch (ie. commonly referred to as the W10) also has different dimensions through the years. The giveaway on them is the shape of the backs of the lugs.

    I’m not sure why Dennison would do this, but perhaps they changed their tooling in some way. I had four GS Deluxe case backs and I think around three later ‘56 6B/159 watches to try them on, and most combinations did not thread on satisfactorily. I’m aware that sometimes you can be lucky.

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    Happy to stand corrected.

    I think I got two 56s and GSDL together at a f2f with another member and they certainly looked the same. Iirc the casebacks were partially interchangeable (some backs fitted some cases; others not) but I didn't see any difference in design or construction. Is it the sort of very small (e.g. <1mm) difference that isn't really visible to the naked eye or am I just very unobservant?

    I'm also embarrassed to say I've never noticed the difference between the W10s. Back of the lugs you say? OK. I guess tooling was replaced or re-set, as you said.

    Every day's a school day.
    "Early this year I saw ex-army watches exhibited in a showcase at a little under 4 each. A week or two later I succeeded in buying one of them for 5. Recently their price seems to have risen to 8." (George Orwell, "As I Please", Tribune, 29th November 1946)

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