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Electronic Watches

 
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Electric/electronic watches are a rare breed that were produced during a relatively short period of time between the late 1950's and mid 1970's during the decline in popularity of traditional, mechanical watches and the eventual domination of quartz. Many are mechanical/electronic hybrids with a mechanical, oscillating balance wheel that, rather being driven by a mainspring and regulated by a mechanical escapement, are controlled with the use of electronic components. Others, like the Bulova Accutron and ESA 9162 use a high frequency tuning fork. All require a battery for their power source. I have only a few examples in my collection and for more details I recommend visiting www.electric-watches.co.uk which is the most comprehensive resource for information on these rare timepieces and can even provide a repair service.
 
Bulova Accutron AstronautBulova Accutron Astronaut:
Introduced in the early 60's, the Bulova Accutron was the world's first electronic wristwatch. Utilising the high frequency vibrations of a tiny "tuning fork" rather than the oscillations of a mechanical balance wheel to regulate timing, the Accutron achieved extraordinary levels of accuracy. Accutrons were worn on several of the early NASA space missions and were used in some of the onboard timing mechanisms. This watch is an Accutron Astronaut from 1966. The Astronaut was modelled by NASA Astronaut Scott Carpenter in Paris Match magazine and was featured in the film Seven Days in May worn by Kirk Douglas in the role of Colonel Martin "Jiggs" Casey.  Accutron 214 Tuning Fork movement.
Hamilton ElectronicHamilton Electronic:
"Electronic" watches pre-date quartz technology.  They're similar to mechanical watches but, instead of being powered by a spring, the balance wheel is driven by an electro magnet powered by a battery.  You can see a picture of the 13 jewel electronic movement
here.
Longines UltronicLongines Ultronic:
This beautiful, solid 18K gold Longines Ultronic utilises the cal. 6312 tuning fork movement based on the ESA 9162 and made under license from Bulova. 
Luch ElectronicLuch Electronic:
Luch (which I think means "beam") produced its first watches in 1956 at the Minsk Watch Plant in what is now Belarus.  I would guess that this watch was made sometime in the 1970's.  It employs one of the very few Soviet produced electronic balance wheel movements; in this case the 18 jewel
Cal. 3055.
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