Stand Out With These Bold ’70s Chronographs

Three vintage pieces from Telstar, Wakmann and Heuer.

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While you’ll find each decade had its own unique design traits, there’s something particularly distinct about the watches — specifically the sports chronographs — of the 1970s. Watchmakers were particularly experimental, making more liberal use of color, and trying out new case designs. They make for interesting timepieces that, since they’re a bit out there, can be had at lower prices than more sought-after models from the ’50s and ’60s.

Telstar Valjoux 7734

What we like: This chronograph watch is from one of the many, many forgotten watch brands of the mid 20th century. It features a pristine cushion case and a dial with a panda color scheme. The additional red and orange accents give the black-and-white dial some wonderfully bright pops. It wouldn’t look out of place under the cuff of a racing suit.
From the seller: Case in near mint condition; factory original brushed finish is still intact on top. Mint condition rallye dial. All functions working properly and watch has been keeping excellent time. Service history is unknown, but the watch has been behaving amazingly for weeks of on/off wrist observation.

Buy Now: $695

Wakmann Chronograph

What we like: As collectors are more widely discoviering the excellent timpieces Wakmann made back in the day, values have been going up, but this reverse-panda chrono from the ’70s is can still be had at a relatively reasonable price. Both the case and dial have aged wonderfully, and the latter has gained handsome beige accents as the old tritium lume has patina’d.
From the seller: Case is in very good condition overall with moderate signs of use and wear. Dial is in very good condition with some signs of age, including patina. Unsigned crown.

Buy Now: $2,100

Heuer Monza

What we like: Not only is it one of the first automatic chronographs, but it’s one of the earliest to use PVD coating on its case. The black case seems to be in great shape and pairs nicely with a black dial with red accents. Originally designed to celebrate Ferrari’s F1 championship win in 1975, its a chronograph with direct motoring pedigree but its still one of Heuer’s more forgotten timepieces.
From the seller: Case is in very good condition overall with minimal signs of use and wear throughout. PVD coating shows slight degradation to the lugs. The dial is in very good condition with crisp printing and some signs of age, including patina to the luminescent elements. Minute hand shows slight lume dropping.

Buy Now: $4,450

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