Early Bulovas Interchangeable with Font (FHF)

Hey,

I have seen several posts, such as from Rev Rob, where early Bulova movements were noted to be interchangeable with Swiss-made Font movements. As an example, I have been told the 10AX is interchangeable with Font 324. Is there a list, or can anyone provide a list, of interchangeable Swiss movements and Bulova movements such as the 10A, 10P, 10AE, 10AN, 10AX, etc? Thanks! Maybe a list could be added to the Information Tab of the site?

 

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Posted January 31, 2012 - 4:51pm

Club 5000Panel Member

There is much on the internet, but it's kinda disjoint and takes a while to "find".  A list of references wouldl be a handy tool....even if it's links to other places where I have to find the info myself.... It's a big internet out there.  NAWCC boards and related links from there are handy. 

I'll put together a list of my sites/references etc...and PM them to you.  When I get them more organized, I may post to this forum thread....  I'll be mindful not to post them to the discussion of a particular record/watch being discussed or ID'ed as it would not be the place to paste :)

DarHin's picture
DarHin
Posted January 31, 2012 - 4:57pm

Try searching here:

http://www.ranfft.de/cgi-bin/bidfun-db.cgi?10&ranfft&a&2uswk

The movement info will usually reference related movements.

Also, Bestfit parts catalogs will do the same.

 

FifthAvenueRestorations's picture
FifthAvenueRest...
Posted January 31, 2012 - 5:17pm

Jules Borel also has an online Movement parts interchangeability list.

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Posted May 3, 2012 - 1:53am

Panel Member

 At school we had a book, published by Bulova, that listed all interchangability in lists, and also cross referenced to individual parts. This book came when a shop purchased a ready stocked Bulova parts system, a fairly large cabinet, about 5 feet tall, that contained thousands of Bulova parts arranged in strict order. Bulova's book also decoded the Bulova parts numbers, which are different than other standard Swiss parts systems. I wish I had said book, but they are scarce, as was most of the library at the school. 

It isn't just the early Bulovas that used ebauches from Swiss companies, it appears that a large percentage of the movts Bulova used throughout its history were from various other companies. If they had an in house calibre, I haven't heard of it, but that's not to say they didn't. (The Accutron is certainly an example, but I'm talking mechanicals)  There are certain Bulova movts that have no ebauche interchangability, so it's possible that they were developed solely by Bulova. Perhaps in the very beginning, Joseph Bulova was manufacturing his own movts, I'm not sure, perhaps a Bulova history buff can chime in here. This is not to say there is anything wrong with this. After all, even Patek used other movts (JLC) as did Rolex (Aegler, FHF, FEF, etc) .  And Panerai used Rolex movts supplied to Rolex by Cortebert. How's that for convoluted? 

My sources are mainly Doc's movt site, as mentioned, Bestfit and Matsys, and old parts and technical docs I have lying around, as well as boxes full of movts from the 20's and 30's and 40's. 

edit: As an update, Bulova did indeed make in house movts, I posted a brief summary in a thread called "Some Bulova History". Some were Swiss, and a few were manufactured in the US. The majority of movts were sourced Swiss ebauches, however.

bobbee's picture
bobbee
Posted May 3, 2012 - 2:42am

Very interesting, Rob. I wish you would write a book, because I'd definitely buy it!

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Posted May 3, 2012 - 10:10am

Panel Member

Ha, thanks bobbee. I had to dig a bit, but the Bulova info is all online, just scattered around a bit. Despite appearances, horological information is far from being all online, many is the time at school we would be googling things only to find absolutely nothing on various esoteric subjects. Fortunately, the school had an amazing library of out of print horological material.