Bulova 1942 -Unknown

Submitted by ennuibrian on April 11, 2012 - 8:57pm
Manufacture Year
Movement Model
Movement Jewels
Movement Serial No.
Case Serial No.
Case shape
Case Manufacturer
Crystal Details
1 cm lenght, 1 cm width
Additional Information

Hi: Hope someone in this forum can help me identify a model name and manufacture date for a ladies Bulova that my Dad  had given to my Mom early in their marraige.I've attached a pic of its front and back. I had it serviced locally. Is keeping perfect time. I have been checking its time for the last ten days. At that time I rewind the watch and then set it aside for the next days check.  Yesterday I had a jeweler open the back to see if we could locate any of the symbols used by Bulova between 1924 and 1948 to designate movement date.  He located a "T" symbol near the stem set screw. Also 5AB" was found  imprinted on a small rectangle.

The watch face has 3 diamonds on top and three diamonds below .

The back of the watch, at the upper top says BULOVA, below that it says 14 K. One the very bottom is a the serial number : 215152 

It is marked on the movement 17 jewels. He aslo found near the fast/slow adjustment a square symol with a slash through it , an X , and a W.  He said it represented 0XW.

Since the Bulova symbol list for 1924 - 1948 use a "T" to represent both years 1932 and 1942, he was inclined to think the model year was 1932 because of the appearance of the watches face. I'm stll note certain what year this watch was manufactured and what its name is? Any help identifying this watch is greatly appreciated.

When I look at it, it's 1960 again and I'm 5 years old and Mom is dressed to the nines and wearing her Bulova. Funny how a simple watch can make one miss someone so very much.

Thanks again everyone: 

14 K Wite Gold Ladies Bulova ,17 jewels, serial # 215152, (6) diamonds total
Bulova watch
Bulova watch
Posted April 11, 2012 - 9:01pm

1942 would be the correct date on this one, the early 30's looked much different.

Search the ad database from 1939-1946, you might find a match.

Goddess of Time or Lady Bulova comes to mind...

Posted April 12, 2012 - 10:30am

In reply to by OldTicker

Hi OldTicker:

Thank you for taking the time to offer your expertise in determining this Bulova's heritage. I did check the ad database as suggested but didn't find an exact match to my Moms watch. I'm new here in this forum so please excuse any stupid questions I may ask. Is the ad database complete? Or could my Moms watch still be a 1942 model, but just not included because the database is not all inclusive of all the watches for that period of time?  Also was I correct in entering 5AB as the movement model? The jeweler did mention that one of the dates etched into the inside back of the cover was 1945. He said traditionally jewelers added the date of when they had watches in their shops for service. Of the few dates he saw, 1945 was the oldest.

I also Googled Goddess of Time and Lady Bulova and didn’t see any matches to what I’m looking for. Based on the “5AB” and the “T” symbol found in the watch, is it your opinion this Bulova was manufactured in 1942. From my perspective it would make sense because my Mom and Dad were married that year.

Thanks for your time OldTicker!

Posted April 12, 2012 - 10:53pm

In reply to by ennuibrian

The ad database is far from complete, but through the many members here contributing information, it is steadily growing.

By looking through the ads, members watches, and unknown watches, you can get some idea of how complicated ID'ing these are.

5AB is correct for the movement, and from comparing all of the known watches on here, we have concluded that the first serial number on the back of the case seem to match the decade of the  movements...yours starts with a 2 and your movement is a 1942, and if you compare it to the 1932 watches in the ad database, you can see that most were long and narrow, so the shape also comes into play. If Bulova would have kept their records, it would be easy, but with no records, well, this is why this site exists...

Positive ID's take time, and the that is part of the fun of collecting the old timepieces, so if you have any old late 1930's or 40's magazines, store catalogs, or anything with ad's in it, check them out, a positive ID just may be under your nose for your watch or others here in the unknown category!

Welcome aboard, and get ready to be bitten buy the Bulova bug! ; )


Posted April 12, 2012 - 11:24am

hi looks like the Lady Bulova, in the ads, page 4,bottom row 2nd. from left, the watch is at extreme bottom right. This watch came with 2,4 or 6 diamonds, but it doesn't say anything about 14K gold,just 10K rgp. Then again, it could be a Barbara. On ads page 5, thid row down, 2nd. left.

Posted April 12, 2012 - 11:34am

Hi bobbee:

Thanks for taking your time to help me out here. I agree, yes the Lady Bulova your refere to does look similar to the one I'm trying to identify.  There are some differences, like the face on my watch is numbered 1 through 12, where the face of the Lady Bulova in the ad skips every other hour. Also the Lady Bulova appears to have a total of 4 diamonds and is yellow gold. The one I have has 3 diamonds on the top and 3 on the bottom of the case, and is 14 K white gold. Maybe there are some ads that are not in the database yet?

Anyway, it was kind of you to check it out for me.


Posted April 12, 2012 - 11:52am

At the bottom of the Lady Bulova picture the blurb says this model came with 2,4 or 6 stones. Also it is numbered 1 through 12 on the dial, has the same hands and looks very similiar with the cut-outs where the bracelet attaches. It does pre-date yours by 2 years though. Were you looking at the right one? P4, bottom row, 2nd from left. Watch is at the extreme bottom right.

Posted April 12, 2012 - 10:59pm

In reply to by bobbee

Hi: You are correct, I was viewing the incorrect page initially. I think I found the correct page this time. On the far left bottom of the page I viewed it said Image 32 of 36. I did see the Lady Bulova on the far right bottom of that page. That watch does look very similar, but I'm still not sure it's the one I'm looking for. I added a third picture to my 1942-Unknown listing that shows a close-up of the clasp area on the watch I have. I even crudely tried to outline the actual area in yellow. It looks to me like the Lady Bulova in the ad picture is similar but not the same clasp as on mine. What do you think?