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Bulova 1950 -Non-Conforming

Model ID rating explained.

Manufacture Year: 


Movement Model: 


Movement Serial No.: 


Case Serial No.: 


Case shape: 




Additional Information


Year field is just a guess.

This watch was found in a front yard in Oakland, CA during landscaping - buried in dirt. I've cleaned it up a bit but haven't opened it to determine movement for fear that it might have radium dials, and I don't want to disturb them. The crystal is a rather high, bubble-type crystal. The case has no markings on the back. It appears to be a manual hand wind but the watch does not tick. It is rather small - probably 27-30 mm accross. Only writing on dial aside from '30' and '60' at 6 and 12 is "Bulova" with "Movement" in smaller letters below.

Any insights appreciated! I am hoping that this is a later watch w/o Radium that I could learn to repair on.


Not For Sale
1950 Bulova watch
Kathy L.
Panel Member
Posted May 27, 2019 - 3:24pm

Welcome to myBulova!  Can you take a clear photo of the back of the case and attach it in the comments or email it to me ( to attach in the post?  It will help us date the case.  The dial looks like it might have been refinished and might not have radium but hard to say without seeing a photo without the crystal.  Finding an ad for the model might help us figure that out for you.  Just throwing a guess out with the pepsi cap bezel it might be late 40s or early 50s.

Posted May 27, 2019 - 9:18pm

Hi Kathy - thanks for your response. 

Here is an image of the back of the case - no identifying marks w/o opening it up I'm afraid.

(link removed - -photo inserted - admin)

Kathy L.
Panel Member
Posted May 27, 2019 - 9:24pm

Thank you, yes I would have to agree with Reverend Rob that this is most likely a Non-Bulova case.  I missed that the word movement was under the Bulova.  That would indicate that it was a Bulova movement going in a Non-Bulova case.


Posted May 27, 2019 - 9:34pm

Is the fact it was transferred to a kit case of any particular interest/value? Wondering if this is worth selling/passing along to an enthusiast as I'm a bit loath to mess w/ something I'm unsure of its radium content.

Kathy L.
Panel Member
Posted May 30, 2019 - 11:29am

You never know who will be interested.  If you are unsure about keeping it due to the radium no harm in trying to sell it on the bay or other avenue.  

Reverend Rob's picture
Reverend Rob
Panel Member
Posted May 27, 2019 - 8:30pm

'Bulova Movement' means a watch that has been re-cased using a non-Bulova case, and non-Bulova dial. Sometimes non-Bulova hands were also used. These came in 'kits', and menat that you could put the movement of your Bulova into a new case if the old one was worn out or damaged. 

We'd have to ID this as 'Non-Conforming'. 


Posted May 27, 2019 - 9:19pm

Very interesting! Do you know if that would date this to a certain time period then?

If you think the Radium risk is low I could pop the back off and see what the movement is dated to.

Geoff Baker
Club 5000Panel Member
Posted May 28, 2019 - 9:16am

Certainly a fun find! There really is no way to date the case/movement marriage, it could be very recent although that is unlikely. If the movement is Bulova, it will have a date code. I'm not sure the dial has radium but if it does, I don;t think there's very much risk in removing the case back t view the movement.


Posted June 2, 2019 - 5:41pm

FOR SALE FOR FREE - If anyone is interested in this watch please shoot me a message! If you're in the Bay Area you could swing by and pick it up as well.

I'd like to learn how to work on mechanical watches but I don't think this will be the one for me to learn on.