DCVW presents for sale a classic Zenith Calibre 12-4-P manual wind wristwatch.  The Calibre 12-4-P, which was manufactured between 1945 and 1947, was limited to 9200 pieces; the number 12 representing the size of the movement measured in lignes. 

Zenith was founded in 1865 in Switzerland by Georges Favre-Jacot, who revolutionised watch production at the time by uniting all the watchmaking professions under one roof. Over time, Zenith established a reputation for quality and precision – uniquely, it still produces its movements in house. In 1899, it manufactured its first pocket chronograph, following in 1910 by creating onboard instruments.

In 1969, Zenith created El Primero, one of the first ever integrated automatic chronograph movements (after a three way competition, of which Seiko with its 6139 movement – sold frequently on our website – was part), which is still the world’s most precise series-made caliber.

Intriguingly, in 1975, the watchmaker Charles Vermot hid the plans, parts and tools required to make mechanical calibres in order to save them from destruction following the decision of the company that owned Zenith at the time to limit production to quartz watches only. Fast forward to 1984, mechanical watches were again in demand, and Charles Vermot gave Zenith back the production tools that he had kept safely hidden. Production of the El Primero caliber could begin once more. Major watch brands were eager to get a fresh start in this field by equipping their timepieces with this legendary movement.

This Zenith comes with the two straps pictured, as well as a Pelican travel case and a spring bar tool.

Mid-1940s Zenith Calbre 12-4-P Mechanical Watch

  • DIAL: Nicely patina'ed original white dial with blueish original seconds hand, and non-original minute and hour hands.


    CASE: Super slim 38mm x 45mm (w/o crown) stainless steel case with original matching stainless steel caseback.


    CRYSTAL: Original crystal, scratch and blemish-free.


    STRAP: Handmade leather strap, with dark brown accent stiching. Second orange, white, and gray Clockwork Synergy NATO strap with stainless steel hardware.


    MOVEMENT: Original Zenith-signed 17-jewel manual wind movement, which beats at 18,000bph, manufactured in in the mid/late 1940s.


    CROWN: Non-signed crown.

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