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Thanks for visiting my vintage Hamilton watch blog. I like to restore US-made Hamilton wrist watches back to their original glory and share my experiences with other enthusiasts. Use the "Search" space below if you know what model you're looking for. Feel free to leave polite comments or questions in the spaces provided. Also check out my "watches for sale" on my Etsy site - the link is on the right, just below.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

1957 Viking

In 1957 Hamilton introduced the Viking and produced it though 1960.  The Viking is one of the "Fine Hamilton Watches" that  Hamilton sold with Swiss movements that were purchased to lower the price points for some of their line up.

Photobucket

The Viking features a yellow RGP case with stainless steel back and distinctive-scalloped lugs.  It also has an embossed (stamped) dial with luminous hands and luminous markers on the dial.  The movement is a Swiss 11.5 ligne movement but I don't recall the exact grade.

I had a Viking a while back that has since gone on to a new home.  Here's a wrist shot of it.  You'll note the mark on the dial by the 8 is a "radium burn" - and is caused by the radioactive luminous material on the hour hand staying in one place for many years.   I didn't notice until this post that my dial is a little different than the catalog image... this one has a 3 and a 9 instead of markers.  This might have been a "franken Viking"... a Viking case with another watches dial.

Viking, Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

UPDATE - I purchased another Viking recently and it has the correct dial.  You can see by comparison that it's very similar.  Based on the radium burns on the dial above, I'd wager it had been on there a long time and is likely original.  However, the one below is a spot-on example.

 photo Viking01_zps8ca1afac.jpg

UPDATE (again):

I purchased yet another Viking (a deal I couldn't refuse) and it came with it's original bracelet made by Kreisler.

Check out what the radium lume did to the dial.  I guess the watch was used and sat for a while, then got used and sat for a while, over and over resulting in the radium burning a mark into the dial.  The watch is well-worn though - so it had a lot of use between sitting for long spells.


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