Bulova 1936 Commander

Submitted by Daca102090 on April 15, 2012 - 9:17pm
Manufacture Year
Movement Model
Movement Date Code
Movement Jewels
Movement Serial No.
Case Serial No.
Case shape
Case Manufacturer
Crystal Details
Approximately 19.77mm x 24.04mm
Additional Information

10K rolled gold plate case

Bulova watch
Bulova watch
Bulova watch
Posted April 16, 2012 - 5:45am


Is there an ad showing this Case as the 'COMMANDER' ?

a 1936 Database ad Names it the 'GOLDCRAFT'.

Posted April 16, 2012 - 8:16am

There is an ad for the Commander dated 1936.  This issue has been discussed previously here:  http://www.mybulova.com/watches/1937-commander-747?page=1

The essentials of that discussion were as follows:

  • Hancock - unengraved bezel;  white or yellow gold, markers rather than numbers, 15 jewels, white dial (1933,1935)
  • Commander - engraved bezel, yellow gold, numbers rather than markers, 15 jewels, white dial (1936)
  • Goldcraft - unengraved bezel; yellow gold, numbers rather than markers, 15 jewels, white dial (1937)

I believe that all three of these cases are the same size and shape, but I don't yet have a Hancock with which to do a detailed comparison.  I have been able to compare an engraved case with numbered dial and an unengraved case with numbered dial, and they are the same size and shape and take the same crystal.

Based on the ads we have, I believe the subject watch was correctly named the Commander.

Posted April 16, 2012 - 9:05am


I'm not seeing the Case detail in the 1936 'COMMANDER' ad so I believe that assumption is inconclusive

unless there's clearer ad?

Posted April 16, 2012 - 9:05am

I think the 1936 ad for the Commander does conclusively show engraving on the bezel, particularly when you enlarge the ad and compare the Commander to the unengraved Ranger and the engraved Phantom on either side of it in the same ad.

The ads for the Hancock and Goldcraft definitely do not show an engraved bezel.

Posted April 16, 2012 - 10:19am

The ad shows an engraved Case I agree, but I'm not seeing any Case side enhancements beyond the engraving.

Posted April 16, 2012 - 10:58am

Well, I'm pleased to see that we're finally acknowledging the existence of an ad for a 1930's Commander, rather than repeating, once again, the suggestion/myth that no such ad exists.  It's time to move on from that once and for all.

As for the Commander ad, it is not the clearest representation, and it would be difficult to detect the subtle shift in the case profile from the head-on, hand-drawn, and very small representation that we have.  For that reason, I would agree that there is a tentative element to this ID.  However, I think it's a better tentative ID then the Hancock--which shows no engraving and a different dial--or the Goldcraft--which shows no engraving on the case.

Perhaps a better ad will come along soon and shed additional light on these very similar models.

Posted February 1, 2013 - 6:07pm

1936 ad. You can see the "little wings" on this one.