Bulova 1928 La Fayette

Submitted by neetstuf-4-u on May 11, 2020 - 6:29pm
Manufacture Year
Movement Model
Movement Date Code
Movement Jewels
Movement Serial No.
Case Serial No.
Case shape
Case Manufacturer
American Standard Bulova
Additional Information

This one fascinates me. It appears to be a 1928 La Fayette with a black lumed dial. Movement is dated 1927, case is 1928. Two piece case shows no plating wear, the only marking on case back exterior is "GF" between the lugs on one end.

Stem has to be removed to free the movement from the bezel, I haven't gotten that far yet.

I am assuming the face was refinished in perhaps the late 1930's or early 1940's? Hands appear original. Band is a white gold plated Kreisler Quality, installed by me. Watch was serviced 6 months ago and is keeping perfect time.


black dial1
black dial2
black dial3
black dial4
black dial5
Posted May 11, 2020 - 8:21pm

Great looking watch.   Looks to be a Lafayette case but the dial does not seem to be a match.   The dial is black and the 2-3-4 & 8-9-10 is lined up straight but on the ad the hours are staggered out to the 3.  I wonder if this is a dial replacement.

1929 Bulova Lafayette

Posted May 11, 2020 - 8:33pm

In reply to by JimDon5822

I'm thinking the original dial was repainted/relumed  (from white to black) and the 3 and 9 were lined up rather than slightly staggered like the original dial configuration. Pure speculation on my part. I don't think I've ever encountered a Bully this age (1928) with a factory black dial. The dial is a perfect shape match to the case with light wear around the perimeter that matches as well. 

Posted May 12, 2020 - 1:52am

Yeah that dial isn't correct for sure... no black dials in that timeframe.  Cool looking though but who knows what it originally looked like.  For some reason I have it in my head the Lafayette isn't as fat as this guy?

Posted May 14, 2020 - 7:23am

In reply to by plainsmen

Not necessarily. I recently come across an advert which suggests that black dials were in fact an option for some models. I'll have to try and find the advert and post here.

Posted May 14, 2020 - 7:44am

In reply to by mybulova_admin

Interesting insight, Stephen. I was unaware of the potential black dial option this early. I did another database search and found this one (unknown) that shows a very similarly done dial that also cites another example of that model with black dial in comments section. This observation (mine) doesn't help in ID of subject watch but certainly shows the dial could potentially be correct as seen.

Geoff Baker
Posted May 12, 2020 - 9:48pm

I'm not sure this is La Fayette either. The case is slightly different. We have a similar watch noted as Unknown. I'm inclined to go that way. 1928 Bulova Unknown

Posted May 14, 2020 - 7:42pm

Here is another ad dated 1929. Brewster at bottom is obviously a black dial and I have never seen reference in an ad to a face color choice. Right above it is the Dorsey, which looks really close to subject watch.

 The more I look at subject watch, the more I think it might be original. It does look old, and the radium color, hand color is identical to the 2 watches I referenced above that are unknown.

This ad also makes me wonder if the noted unknown might be a Brewster, as suggested when that watch was initially uploaded.



1929 ad black dial

Stephen, I made this comment on the black face ad upload and comment you made, and when I uploaded, your comment and ad disappeared?

Kathy L.
Posted May 15, 2020 - 9:29am

Oh I love the ad with the black dial on the Brewster.  I think Dorsey looks like a good match.