Dating Hanhart Production

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Thread: Dating Hanhart Production

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    Default Dating Hanhart Production

    Hello,

    I have recently acquired this nickel plated version and though the previous owner believed its production date to be '43 or '44, Im wondering if anyone knows where I might find a serial number chart for Hanhart in order to confirm. The serial number begins with 119.

    Thanks for any help in dating this guy.

    Jim Van Orsdol
    Wisconsin, USA
    Attached Images Attached Images Dating Hanhart Production-hanhartcollection2-jpg 

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    Hi Jimmy,,

    I am gonna move this over to the ATG NSN 6645 Forum Military watch forum where Jonathan should be able to help you...

    Great watch... I had the single button version.. great presence... welcome aboard...

    #womw
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    Fabulous Hanhart Jim. Both Al' and I have the '50s Flyback versions, Al's is a 417 (NSN 6645-12-121-5208) chromed brass cased version, mine the stainless steel cased 417 ES (NSN 6645-12-120-4858). There does seem to be some confusion about Hanharts, with one American dealer currently describing a 417 like Al's (which has hands like yours - incorrect for the 417) as being made between '42-'46.

    As Al' mentioned he used to have a single pusher Hanhart as well (see version 1 below)...



    These Hanhart chronographs were ordered in limited numbers by the Kreigsmarine and were purchased personally by members of the Heer and the Luftwaffe (who must also have bought them for issue to pilots). They often are visible in period photos.

    Jim, I'm guessing you know quite a lot about these Hanharts but for those who don't, Hanhart of Schwenningen produced four different versions:

    1. Single pusher with cal 40 movement and plain non-moving bezel (like Al's as shown above);

    2. As 1 above but with coin-edged moving bezel;

    3. Double pusher with cal 41 movement and plain non-moving bezel (like Jim's); and

    4. As 3 above but with coin-edged moving bezel.

    Below is an example of version 4...



    As far as I am aware, the exact production dates are unknown but current opinion is that version 1 appeared in 1940, with version 2 in '41. At that time Tutima was already producing the coin-edged bezel so perhaps Hanhart copied that design. Version 1 was subsequently discontinued between '40 and '41, then replaced with version 2.

    The single pusher cal 40 movement was then made redundant by the double pusher cal 41 movement like Jim's. The version 1 cases were modified to take the new cal 41 movement. It is not known whether these watches were specifically ordered with non moving bezels and the cal 41 movement like Jim's or if his version was produced before the coin-edged version - the production numbers of versions 3 and 4 are not consecutive (see below) so it would seem that both versions were made at the same time - perhaps purchasers were offered a choice of cases, with or without moving coin-edged bezel.

    Jim's 119 number seems to be mid-production according to known examples - serial numbers starting as late as 121 for version 3s like his are known, whereas serial numbers starting 117 have been found for version 4.

    Zaf at Classicwatch.com has a version 3 like Jim's for sale at the moment with serial number 119410, which matches the movement number. Zaf dates his example to "circa 1942"...



    Interestingly, a version 4 with the coin-edged bezel has also been found with serial number 119412, supporting the theory that both cal 41 versions were produced concurrently.

    As far as I am aware there is no numbering chart but if Zaf reckons his dates to c.'42, that would suggest that Jim's is slightly earlier than his seller thought.

    Regards

    Jon'.
    Last edited by StampeSV4; 11-11-2009 at 20:57.

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    Jon,

    Thank you for the informative reply. I have picked up random bits of information about Hanhart over the past year or so, but your information is more specific. I feel a bit lucky that this one has arrived, as I saw it merely by chance and unexpectedly. I've attached two additional images which are quite less than artistic, so I'll just call them informative. As the images show, the movement is reasonably clean for its 67 years, and the only real hint of brassing is under the lugs. It appears to be in its original form, but for the upper pusher which does not have a nipple in its center. I'm pleased with its overall patina; it looks its (well cared for) age, and has a nice character about it.

    Your single pusher version is a beautiful example; lovely hands and the burgundy strap compliments it well. A stunning watch. Too bad these guys can't talk and tell us their life's story.

    Thanks Again,
    Jim
    Attached Images Attached Images Dating Hanhart Production-p1050674-jpg Dating Hanhart Production-p1050678-jpg 

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    Jim,

    I reckon that your double pusher is the best one I've seen. The "nipple pushers" do seem to turn up occasionally - I have seen parts and restoration projects on German ebay. That said, who knows when and by whom yours was replaced? There could well be a story in that alone, like you said, if only they could talk - that's one of the attractions of mil-watches for me, their stories would be the most fascinating of all.

    Hopefully you will stick around and post some photos of your other watches? (I can't imagine that's the only one you own?).

    (Al' is actually very modest and has an encyclopaedic knowledge - he must have owned thousands of watches over the years, including many military items, so someone here should always be able to help with any queries or at least point you in the right direction).

    Looking forward to your next post on NSN...

    Regards

    Jon'.

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