"Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

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asqwerth
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"Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by asqwerth »

A few weeks ago, I purchased leebman's 2008 C5A Mk I, from the pre-"Swiss Made" era of CW.

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I'd become a little envious of owners of the older CW watches with nicely-decorated ETA 2824-2/Sellita SW200 movements, and was tempted when a black-dial Mk I was offered on this board. I fought my temptation, and the watch was sold very quickly. However, when almost immediately thereafter leebman offered his for sale, and one with the black date wheel to boot, I decided I couldn't look a gift horse in the mouth twice, and grabbed it.

So I now have a piece of CW's early history, with the dial displaying the "Swiss Movt" words, and a pretty movement that has perlage in addition to the blue screws, and a rotor that has interesting cut-outs besides the Geneva stripes.

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Some other observations:

1. the CW box it came in was more compact than the one that came with my Mk II. I actually prefer the smaller box, because I find the newer ones take up too much space.
2. the deployant clasp was a single-foldover one, unlike the Mk II which has a double-foldover, butterfly clasp. It took me some time to figure out how to wear it as I didn't realise the curved inside of the clasp opened up! I prefer the older clasp because it's a slimmer design and less unwieldy.

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When I wore the watch, my subconscious kept telling me the case was somehow different from the Mk II case. I believe the Mk I case is a hair (literally) slimmer than the Mk II case, although without vernier callipers I can't prove it.

I think that the dial is not as deeply-set into the case as the Mk II's (ie. the dial is closer to the crystal), and also that there is a subtle difference in the "bezels" of the 2 cases: the MK I bezel seems a bit flatter.

Assuming I'm not imagining all this, I have no idea if there were any differences between the cases of the earlier Swiss-Movt Mk I and the later Swiss-made pieces. I would be interested to hear from more knowledgeable members.
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by scooter »

asqwerth

Looks good with you but my tired eyes would struggle with the narrower hands.

That movement looks fabulous

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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

That's really nice.
Is that an ETA or Sellita? The reason I ask is that it looks very similar to my C5, which is a Sellita. Beautiful looking movement, whichever! :thumbup:
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Loddonite »

Amor Vincit Omnia wrote:That's really nice.
Is that an ETA or Sellita? The reason I ask is that it looks very similar to my C5, which is a Sellita. Beautiful looking movement, whichever! :thumbup:
I'd guess at ETA, I don't think CW (or many others) were using Sellita back then.
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"Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Clarky »

Great catch asqwerth, I really like the early C5's

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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by downer »

Looks great asqwerth. I considered selling my early C5A, took the pictures...........and put it back in the box. They are pretty special IMO, and there will never be any more of them.
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by MorrisOx »

Without a doubt, CW's first real 'classic' - a beautiful evocation of a heritage design, incredible quality for the price and an elabore eta movement to boot. Like Downer, mine will be admired often, worn occasionally...and sold never!
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Leo David »

Asquerth, thanks for taking the time to submit a really interesting post with great photos. I agree with others, that design and movement combines to produce what I think is probably the nicest watch CW has produced to date. Others will disagree of course but in my view it hits all the spots where others in the range don't. Terrific little watch. I'm wearing my black dial C5 MkII as I type this message but the MkI is a much nicer looking piece and the detail in the movement is superb. Lovely piece and good catch. Enjoy it.
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Tor Billon »

I was almost.. (almost) wondering about selling mine, but reading this post has held me back considerably, I guess my one is a little later, movement is ETA, but not as decorated, as your early one.


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I

[url=http://www.flickr.com/photos/andyf/5908708453/]Image

[url=http://www.flickr.com/photos/andyf/5908708453/]
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Leo David »

Tor Billon wrote:I was almost.. (almost) wondering about selling mine, but reading this post has held me back considerably, I guess my one is a little later, movement is ETA, but not as decorated, as your early one.
Comparing the earlier and later models one wonders why CW moved from a black date wheel to white; from a circular plain aperture for the date, which suits the watch perfectly, to a white date wheel and silver edging. And then taking it a step further to the mkII, mine has a white date wheel visible through a square cut out with a silver edge. It seems that the brief for the design team was to ensure that each incarnation was worse not better than the original :?
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Kip »

Excellent post asqwerth...a great catch!

To my knowledge all the "Swiss Movement" watches, meaning those built prior to Aug. 1, 2008 were ETA movements.
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by asqwerth »

Leo David wrote:
Comparing the earlier and later models one wonders why CW moved from a black date wheel to white; from a circular plain aperture for the date, which suits the watch perfectly, to a white date wheel and silver edging. And then taking it a step further to the mkII, mine has a white date wheel visible through a square cut out with a silver edge. It seems that the brief for the design team was to ensure that each incarnation was worse not better than the original :?
I assume you are referring to the black dial Mk II, because in the context of the cream Mk II, the white date wheel is fine. In fact, IMO the squarish date window isn't incongruous with the Mk II design in general, because the hands are more angular and the dial is cleaner without the inner guilloched circle.

I have to say that while I love the clean design of my Mk II, the detail that make up the Mk I dial -- fine sub-second/minute index markings on the outer and inner circles, tiny printed numbers and guilloche in the inset inner circle -- are very well-executed. In fact, I think that the Mk I is less an aviator watch than the Mk II, and more a classic C5 Malvern dressed up in aviator clothes. :)


Kip wrote: To my knowledge all the "Swiss Movement" watches, meaning those built prior to Aug. 1, 2008 were ETA movements.
Kip, thanks for the information. Would you happen to know if the MK I 'Swiss Movt' C5A cases were slimmer than the current MK II cases? It's just been bugging me. :D
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by androo »

Think this has to be the best looking C5 there, maybe the BoB second
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Kip »

asqwerth wrote:

Kip, thanks for the information. Would you happen to know if the MK I 'Swiss Movt' C5A cases were slimmer than the current MK II cases? It's just been bugging me. :D
The specs I have say the same for both. I will measure mine to verify. :)
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Re: "Swiss Movt" C5A Mk I (black dial)

Post by Kip »

Kip wrote:
asqwerth wrote:

Kip, thanks for the information. Would you happen to know if the MK I 'Swiss Movt' C5A cases were slimmer than the current MK II cases? It's just been bugging me. :D
The specs I have say the same for both. I will measure mine to verify. :)
I have measured both and there is only the slightest variation which can be attributed to variations in the way the crystals are seated or just my steady hands.
Advertised specs say 10.8mm

MK1 - 10.77mm
MK2 - 10.62mm
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