Like many an American “Baby-Boomer,” I grew up around Hamilton watches without giving too much thought to them. My father had an Eames era, 1950’s-styled automatic three-hand in stainless steel; his father, my granddad, whose middle name was – of all things – Hamilton, loved his old, mechanical Hammy pocket watch so much that he asked that it – plus fob and chain – be placed in his hands, along with his rosary, before his interment. Despite this generational loyalty, it would be many years before the Hamilton name would once again be a part of my family history. It would be a fairly slow process, starting with the acquisition of a few very nice vintage pieces, and progressing to the point where a couple of brand new Hammy’s were added to my collection late last year.
This latest acquisition is a beautiful automatic chronograph, model number 383017, featuring a very comfortable 36mm case and an incredibly hued dial in a shade dubbed “Biloxi Blue” by the watchmakers at Hamilton. Its auto-mechanical movement is the iconic Valjoux 7750, long considered to be one of the very finest movements of its type in the world. Top it all off with a thick, chocolate brown leather rally strap by Hirsch, and you have a formidable piece of timekeeping wrist-wear…right down to the signed buckle.
The combination of the thick-but-broken-in strap and the smaller case size make this an incredibly comfortable watch.
This particular VJ 7750 movement is a bit more on the “wobbly” side than other watches with the same movement in my collection. I’ve always enjoyed this tendency, and having such an active watch on my wrist is a genuine pleasure.
As happens to all of us at some point, we buy what should be an ideal watch for us, right down to the movement, only to have it turn out to be too heavy or too inaccurate, or too something else. This particular Hammy doesn’t have any of those problems, and is a true joy to wear.
As always, thank you very much for stopping by…