AUTOMATIC Wristwatches from Germany, England, France, Japan, Russia, & the USA
Like for the Swiss Automatic volume, the reason to buy this book is probably the
"Automatic Catalog (by manufacturers)". Although the catalogue covers only
movements until the late 70ies, it is a great reference. The watches are
depicted from the front, the open back with and without rotor. Each
manufacturer's movement history is summarized in a table.
What I loved most about this book, is the interesting brief history about the history of watchmaking in non-Swiss countries. Growing up in Switzerland might have "distorted" my view a little bit. I was not aware this book existed and I am more then happy to have found it finally and to be able to add long due knowledge about Non-Swiss watch developments.
I have only quickly flipped through the pages, but it is looks like I bought the right book. Just some facts I found that I did not know:
That women's desire for wristwatches was the actual driving force between wristwatchmaking and that the jewelry industry in Germany was able to quickly adapt to that new demand while the traditional pocketwatch industry was left behind in their struggle to accept the new customer orientation
That the Russian watchmaking is based on purchases of whole US watch manufacturing companies (Ansonia Clock Company, Dueber-Hampdon) and that it was very difficult to convert the US measurements to the Russian metrics.
That Russia did not have a measurement system for measurements below 1 millimeter, the watchmaking dimensions, and that a catalog called "GOST" was developed by the Baumann-University in Moscow in co-operation with the Research Institute for the Soviet Watch Industry leaning on the German Industry norm (DIN)
That the Russian movement manufacture was only fully automated in the 50ies and that this was also made possible due to the deportation of skilled craftsmen from Germany after WW II.
In addition, I finally got movement pictures of Seikos, Citizens, Poljots, watches that were manufactured before the internet was dominating our lives. I had sometimes spent hours looking for information on older movements. I guess the time saved plus the connection fees will easily pay for this book.
216 pages, ISBN 0-7643-0379-1, Schiffer, ca. USD 95 (MSRP in Thailand)