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Discussion Starter #1
Bulova accutrons were the first, but this Hamilton Vantage Electronic has a conventional movement except instead of being powered by a mainspring,
its powered by a battery and electronics including a transistor. This one has a Standard Time Corp 510 movt. in it ( I'll add a photo of the movt later).
Since I just bought this new old stock ($80) it still had the original dead mercury 509 battery in it but no corrosion. I replaced that with a quality 344 and
she started right up with no assistance. After a few hours I noticed it was running a little bit slow so I tweaked the regulator spring and got it nearly
perfect on the second try. It came with a really cheap, thin, leather strap which I quickly changed out to a black rubber sport strap. Only thing I don't like
is its got the date function. I don't like fooling around with that and I really cant read it without glasses.

vantageelectronic800.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
pic of movt

As promised, heres the pic of the movt from the back side. Its marked ST Co 510 ( Standard Time Corp 510 ). 7 jewels. SWISS.
The balance runs as long as a good battery is installed, even when the watch is hacked. photoflash froze its motion.

vantageelectronicmovt1000.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Can anyone estimate the mfgr date of this watch?

Based on the movement, exterior, and original battery (Mercury Varta-Chron 509) can any expert out there date my watch?
I'm guessing early 70's but don't really know for sure...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
It had a price tag of $62.95 on it when I got it. If that was the original price in the late sixties, this was a pretty expensive watch considering its not even a "real" Hamilton, its a Vantage.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
what year is that catalog of the five electronic vantages from? Maybe this watch is later, it had a real basic band, different style case altogether, and slightly higher price.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
regarding the original cheesy leather band that came with it, it was shockingly shoddy for a $63 watch regardless of what year it was sold....
 

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Um, I thought of that already. You saw the 1973 one, not that that makes a difference. I HAD to look at all 5 catalogs to ascertain the range of years. 1970 only offered 3 models. And in the other 4 years, the styles didn't change. To add insult to injury; in '74 the choices dropped to only 2 models!
You don't specify what "a real basic band" is, but Vantage offered their watches on metallic expansion bands, much like a Kreisler or a Spiedel.

Capture.JPG

The cheesy leather strap was added by the (orginal?) owner sometime at a later date!

ON A CLOSING NOTE: One should never try to date a watch by the band/strap/bracelet that it's wearing. Watch bands are much too easy to swap out...you can usually do it at your kitchen table in just two minutes with a paring knife. If the watch came with leather and you live in tropical weather, thanks to sweat and high humidity, that watch strap could have deteriorated and could have gone through three or four changes by the time the owner sells it.
And then there are people like me. I regularly swap out straps because I think it changes the personality of the watch. On average, any given watch in my collection will have 5-6 strap changes EACH YEAR!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
this watch was NOS, it didn't have a mark on it, the back still had factory stickers on it, there was zero sign of usage. It had a plain black leather strap with a steel buckle, which I guess could have been changed out, but why?
 

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I will repeat...the catalogs prove that Vantage watches left the factory with metal expansion bands. Maybe the original owner did it. Maybe the original vendor did it.
I don't know. Why the swapout? Because most expansion bands have a tendency to pull at the arm hairs.

I've tried to help. If you don't like my answers, I'm really very sorry, and you're certainly more than welcome to wait for someone with better ideas to come along.
I'm done here!
 
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Discussion Starter #15
ok, sorry for not being as agreeable as possible, it just that this vendor on ebay sold over a dozen watches, all nos, in the box, and it seems odd they would be altered, but youre correct, just because they are in boxes and unused doesn't guarantee anything.
please do not be offended by my reaction. There is also another possibility. Factory sales of uncataloged items. I don't know of any examples in watches, but in some of my other hobbies, items can and do get sold that were never cataloged or in any brochures.
 

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There are not enough Vantage catalogs to even hazard a guess as to the age or factory variations on any but a few models. When it comes to these, wear them and enjoy them.
 

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this watch was NOS, it didn't have a mark on it, the back still had factory stickers on it, there was zero sign of usage. It had a plain black leather strap with a steel buckle, which I guess could have been changed out, but why?

Beware, NOS (New Old Stock) means different things to different dealers. I bought a Lip R184 Electric on ebay from a french dealer that was advertised as NOS, but when i arrived it was anything but actually new. The dealer claimed he had meant it was new stock to him, and that it was an old watch.
 

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As promised, heres the pic of the movt from the back side. Its marked ST Co 510 ( Standard Time Corp 510 ). 7 jewels. SWISS.
The balance runs as long as a good battery is installed, even when the watch is hacked. photoflash froze its motion.

View attachment 168330
The movement is an ESA cal. 9157 Dynotron balance wheel electronic, marked as a Standard Time grade. Standard Time Corp. was a Hamilton subsidiary. As far as I know the ESA 9157 movements were introduced in 1975. Good movements.
 

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Offhand I can think of three practical benefits - 1) the battery effectively provided a very long power reserve, a year or more, and this at a time when people were used to mechanical watches with 40-odd hour power reserves and, 2) the electric power soiurce supplies constant power - it does away with the mainspring and the inherent issues of varying states of wind and, 3) the train is lightly loaded, unlike the force applied by a mainspring, with concurrent light friction and torsion issues.

The matter of the Seiko Spring Drive is largely irrelevant. They are different approaches to timekeeping separated by many decades and using different technologies. The balance wheel electronic movements, and the electrics that preceded them, were a technological development of the late-1950s to 1970s. Had quartz movement technology not overtaken them the various electronics (including the Accutron tuning forks) may well have lead to what we might be using today in developed and refined and possibly quite different forms.
 
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