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Bulova 1928 Stanford

6/10 votes
Model ID rating explained.

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Additional Information

Perhaps a 1928 Senator, Executive, or ??? I recently acquired this watch in a "lot" of misc. Bulova+ watches. The patent stamp dates it to at least 1927, so I'm guessing it's a '27 or '28... since I'm not planning on disassembling it, to find out... and it's likely too plain, for a 1929 15J model ?! :-) 

I'm only posting it now, as I just reviewed Stephen's post on the '28 Senator... and this one adds to the confusion... at least for me, at this late hour!? The case proportions are more in line with the Senator, as is the three "X" pattern ecos th three "flowers," vs. the single floral motif, on the Executive... as per Wayne's research.

And the case is larger than the Exec. (L: 27.2 x 26.8mm :W) BUT... Wayne also commented that the top and bottom on the Senator (bezel/s?) weren't engraved... so perhaps this case design is an exception? Or maybe an entirely different model, altogether??

PLEASE SEE:  for reference.

The crystal proportions are approx. L: 21.8 x 19.8mm :W. However I don't see the glass in the 1929/30 K-K catalog, nor in the 1939 G-S acrylic catalog? My crystal data abyss is currently 1931- 1938. If anyone has any crystal catalogs from this timeframe... I'm DEFINITELY willing to BARTER some info?!

Below are two quick images of this ugly MUTT in it's present "as is" condition... Any help before it is replated several times, redialed (luminously) and  rebuilt... would be appreciated!



W. Scott T.



Not For Sale
Bulova watch
1928 Bulova watch
bobbee's picture
Posted June 19, 2012 - 4:48am

Radium decays over time and in all probability yours are original. I had a 1944 Air Warden (look in database), this had a dirty looking deposit on the radium numbers, and I cleaned it off, thinking it was dirt, but it was radium paint, just decayed. I think it is moisture affected, as some dials are better than others.

Posted June 19, 2012 - 11:16am

Posted June 19, 2012 - 11:25am

I doesn't show well in the photos...but the black numbers are as I described: The numbers have a thick, shiny, I would even say "tar-like," black "paint." Unless the radium disintegrates into a smooth, black, paint-like compound I doubt they were ever radium - but they both look original. The first dial is from the Revere flipcase, and the second one is from the Unknown flipcase model from the same previous ad. This Revere case (well, both cases actually) is exceptional except on the back side of the lugs there's a little wear-through which I may or may not have repaired. I'm just not sure what to do with the dials...leave them as they are? Whatever the coating stood the test of time!

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted February 2, 2014 - 11:29pm

so is 1928 Revere w/ x's and fishes like subject watch, or like Plains w/ flowers.

bobbee's picture
Posted August 14, 2014 - 9:00am

Subject watch is the Stanford.

Date is a "guess" because of 1927 patent date, as told by OP. More likely to be nearer the date of this 1931 advert.


Stretched and pummelled like it's been in a Turkish Bath, still not much better definition.



Clearer ad here:

Panel Member
Posted August 15, 2014 - 5:11am

Agree with STANFORD

William Smith's picture
William Smith
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted August 15, 2014 - 1:04pm

"Stanford" from me.  Lisa's clearer ad did it for me!y

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Panel Member
Posted August 15, 2014 - 1:26pm

I  agree with Stanford, and just my usual warning about Radium:

It has a half life of 1601 years, so even if it no longer glows, that just means the Sulfide has decayed, not the Radium. Cleaning it is hazardous. I recommend never touching the paint. Ingestion poses the biggest risk, and the little flakes are easily inhaled, as is the dust. It will contaminate everything that comes into contact with it, including the work area and any and all tools. 

Alpha particles exit through the crystal but are blocked to the rear by the movt and case, so radiation is not going into your wrist. Readings from Geiger counters on these dials usually range from 3 mS to burying the needle, which would be anything over 10mS. 

I bring this up also because I was discussing an old Bulova watch in my display case that I had cleaned and re-lumed, (2 years ago) and I no longer do this. Removing the old paint is just too much trouble and hazard. 

Geoff Baker
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted August 16, 2014 - 5:28am


William Smith's picture
William Smith
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted August 19, 2014 - 6:37pm

yep....three ticks from me!!