Universal Genève Compax 1950 18K

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REF 484.440
Manual-winding
36 MM
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SKU AS09392
Article Number 40991809
ref 484.440
case size 36 MM
movement Manual-winding
approximate age 1990s
dial color Black
material Rose Gold
style Chronograph
category Neo-Vintage
bracelet Leather
lug width 20 MM
Includes Black alligator leather strap with gold tone pin buckle. Also includes unmounted signed rose gold pin buckle.
overall condition Outstanding condition overall. Case retains factory finishing, showing light signs of wear from gentle use and faint oxidation. Caseback engravings remain visible. Dial and handset are excellent showing light, even patina.
REF 484.440
Manual-winding
36 MM
– Show less
SKU AS09392
Article Number 40991809
ref 484.440
case size 36 MM
movement Manual-winding
approximate age 1990s
dial color Black
material Rose Gold
style Chronograph
category Neo-Vintage
bracelet Leather
lug width 20 MM
Includes Black alligator leather strap with gold tone pin buckle. Also includes unmounted signed rose gold pin buckle.
overall condition Outstanding condition overall. Case retains factory finishing, showing light signs of wear from gentle use and faint oxidation. Caseback engravings remain visible. Dial and handset are excellent showing light, even patina.

Why We Love it

Universal Genève is a very special brand, and one that all of us here at Analog:Shift and vintage watch enthusiasts around the world feel a strong pull towards.

While probably best known for their Polerouter collection, their expansive line of chronographs rank amongst the most desirable vintage timepieces of all time, full stop.

Ever since its debut in the 1940s, their Compax collection has seen numerous iterations ranging from simpler, elegant executions suitable for use as dress pieces, to highly complicated models with task-specific functionality, to sportier motorsports, diving and aviation-themed timepieces with added durability. Whatever style you fancy, there is a vintage Universal Genève chronograph that is sure to get your blood pumping a little faster, such is the allure of these special watches.

This example is a model not often seen on the market - and certainly not commonly found in North America. A refined interpretation of the ‘Compax 1950’ line hailing from the brand's 1990s revival, this Reference 484.440 features a beautiful 36mm rose gold case with a domed acrylic crystal, barrel chronograph pushers and a signed screwd-own crown. Note that last part, we're coming back to that! Its non-luminous matte black dial has developed a smoky gray patination complemented by applied rose gold baton indices, dauphine hands and triple register display with running subsidiary seconds at 9 o'clock, a thirty minute totalizer at 3 o'clock, and a 12 hour counter at 6.

This 1990s revival collection relied on contract movements instead of their earlier in-house options, but as far as supplied movements go, this one is no slouch and comes powered by a Lemania Calibre 1873 hand-wound chronograph mechanism. This calibre has been used as the base in dozens of high-grade chronographs and calendar chronograph models from numerous maisons, and of course comes from the lineage of exceptional chronograph mechanisms that brought us the Calibre .321 that powered early Speedmasters.

Coming back to that screw-down crown thing. This is a very unusual option box to find checked on a Compax 1950 - particularly when finished in 18k gold, which has led some specialists and collectors to believe that they may have been commissioned for military officers. We can not verify this independently, but the this is a prime example of the mystique and lore that make vintage Universal Genève so compelling!

Sure to garner the attention of experienced UG collectors and newer enthusiasts alike, this rare bird won’t last long - particularly with the future of the brand taking shape after years of dormancy under new ownership from Breitling!

Brand Story

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Universal Genève was founded in 1894 by Numa-Emile Descombes and Ulysse George Perret.
In the brand's earliest days, it established itself as a manufacturer of in-house movements of exceptional quality.

Universal Genève was also among the first watch manufactures to specialize in wristwatches. In 1897, Louis Eduoard Berthoud — noted designer of complicated watch movements — joined the company. His involvement ensured Universal Genève's supremacy in the development of complicated watches in the 20th Century.

It was under Berthoud's leadership that the brand's reputation as a producer of chronographs was solidified. Chronographs, in particular — namely the Compur and the Compax lines — attracted the attention of watch aficionados, aviators, and militaries around the world. Even the Royal Family of the Netherlands issued a royal charter for Universal Genève to outfit the Dutch military with its chronographs.

Universal Genève was also once responsible for some of the most beautiful dress and time-only watches of the mid-20th century. From the purpose-driven Polerouter to the ornate Cabriolet, UG had a touch all its own and breathed incredible beauty and craftsmanship into every piece they produced. Although the brand is currently dormant, there is tremendous interest in collector circles for vintage models, and is regarded very highly by horological historians and design enthusiasts alike.

A:S Guarantee

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Our Pledge

Analog:Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.

Condition

Since our pieces are vintage or pre-owned, please expect wear & patina from usage and age. Please read each item description and examine all product images.

Warranty

We back each Analog:Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.

International Buyers

Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.

Shipping & Returns

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All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states.

Most of our products are on hand and will ship directly from our headquarters in New York City. In some cases, watches will be shipped directly from one of our authorized partners.

We generally ship our products via FedEx, fully insured, within 5 business days of purchase. An adult signature is required for receipt of all packages for insurance purposes. Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost. We are also happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.

Returns must be sent overnight or by priority international delivery, fully insured and paid for by the customer. A restocking fee may apply. Watches must be returned in the same condition as initially shipped.

We welcome international buyers, please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.

Make it yours will fit standard 20mm watches

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Black Widow Alligator-Pattern Strap

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Universal Genève Compax 1950 18K

Universal Genève Compax 1950 18K

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Universal Genève Compax 1950 18K

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