Found: Three Vintage Watches with an Underrated Complication

A useful complication, a handsome dial configuration and a reasonable price make for a no-brainer for collectors.


As far as complications go, the triple date (also called the triple calendar) doesn’t quite get its due. It’s not as complex as the annual or perpetual calendar (as in, you’ll have to readjust the date after the shorter months), but it’s nonetheless and handy complication to have. Better still, it usually makes for a handsome dial layout — most triple date configurations include two rectangular day and month apertures at the top, a date pointer hand and a moon phase at 6 o’clock. And like most other complications, they can be found relatively cheaply on the vintage market.

1950s Silvana Triple Date

What we like: At 37mm in diameter, this Silvana calendar watch was oversized for its time but seems to hit a sweet spot in 2017. And while the date windows read in Portuguese, making it the complication a bit useless to those unfamiliar with the language, the dual apertures at the top of the white dial look great nonetheless, and a well-executed moon phase is always a win. Besides, who couldn’t stand to learn a new language?
From the seller: Chromium-plated case is in very good condition with no major signs of damage. Dial is in good condition with signs of age and use, particularly in the outer chapter ring. Case back has some light scratches but is in otherwise good condition.

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1950s Zodiac Triple Date

What we like: Zodiac is generally known for its vintage tool watches, so a dressier option is a refreshing sight. As with the Silvana, we love the Zodiac’s moon phase indicator at 6 o’clock, though having its navy blue background is set against a black dial gives it an overall more austere look.
From the seller: The black dial was expertly restored while retaining the original steel markers and matching steel leaf style hands. The manual-winding movement was just meticulously cleaned and all functions are operating smoothly.

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1960s Wakmann Triple Calendar Chronograph

What we like: For a fairly steep increase in price, you can get a triple calendar with a chronograph in place of the moonphase. The Wakmann here uses Valjoux’s Caliber 72C, a hand-winding movement used by other esteemed brands like Heuer and LeCoultre. The fantastic black-and-white “reverse panda” color scheme is icing on the cake.
From the seller: Recently serviced and offered with a one year warranty of accurate time keeping and operation.

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