This was my grandfather's watch, and I believe it's from 1958 because of the presence of L8 on the caseback. It's about 34-35mm in width. As you can see by the photos, it says 14k gold on the caseback. The dial has applied gold indices for the hour markers on a raised track, and tiny gold dots for the minutes. The crown is signed Bulova.
The watch does run, but I haven't use it aside from a quick test, as it needs a service and clean-up.
Is anyone familiar with this watch and know more about the model? I don't know what kind of movement it uses.
I'm trying to determine what kind of clean-up/restoration is possible or practical. It has some marks or dirt on the dial that aren't particularly appealing, but I'm guessing that cleaning that up may be difficult.
I'd be happy to hear of a watchmaker who is familiar with these watches and would be willing to service it. I'm located in New Jersey, USA but would be happy to send it out to the right person.
Welcome and thanks for sharing your grandfather's amazing watch! It is indeed a 1958, and the model is Jaguar, like this one. This link will give you a look at original Bulova advertising for the watch. The exterior of the case is a pretty easy clean, the dial can be tricky and expensive to restore. Personally, I would let the dial go, as it's an heirloom (and as worn by your grandfather). I am also of the mindset that original (gently aged character) is better than made to look new. Personal preference.
I'm sure others will comment and perhaps lead you to someone in your area that is qualified to service this beauty.
1958 Bulova Jaguar "A"
Thank you for sharing your grandfather's watch with us, what a wonderful heirloom and 14K! I would recommend getting it serviced but agree with neetstuf-4-u in leaving the dial as is, it is personal preference really. If you could find a strap close to the original that would be cool.
1958 Bulova Jaguar "A"
Thanks for the information. I appreciate it. The example you've linked to looks really great too. Cool to see the ad! I wonder if this was a common model at the time? I really have no idea what kind of variety of models Bulova had at the time. Is it a correct assumption that this would be a US made watch, made in New York? I see that this movement is marked Swiss Made in other examples, but I'm guessing they sourced the movements from Switzerland and cased them in the US?
I'm not necessarily interested in a full dial restoration, but curious about whether superficial dirt can be removed. Perhaps that is a risky proposition though? If it is, I can live with it as-is. Hopefully the acrylic crystal can be polished and cleaned up, but I'm guessing there are suitable replacements out there.
Once it is serviced I'd like to put it on a simple tapered leather strap with a gold buckle, but I haven't started looking for one yet.