Bulova 1970 Deep Sea Chronograph

Submitted by catangen on January 30, 2023 - 3:38pm
Manufacture Year
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Crystal details
domed original pristine
Watch Description

1970 N0 Bulova Chronograph B Deep Sea "Devil Diver" 

Truly a great find. This was found in an estate liquidation. Everything is pristine. New Old Stock Condition. This is by far the best example of this watch i have ever seen. Not a scratch. Every edge sharp ad crisp. Every polished surface shines like a mirror, every mat surface shows perfect brushing. The ValJoux 7733 keeps time at a rate of +6sec/day which i believe is within the COSC standard for certification for new movements today. The Chronograph functions flawlessly. The bi-directional friction fit bezel is tight and turns smooth. Th coin edges are all crisp with no wear and the Black and Red "Coke" colors are sharp and unfaded. The black dial and the white telemeter track are pristine. I believe this piece originally came with the synthetic skin diver strap but swapped out for the more appealing Speidel Beads of Rice bracelet which is of correct vintage and is also pristine. I believe the previous owner to be the original owner and have been told he kept this piece in a display case. The case back you can see shows no signs of wear, all engraved text is clean and sharp, and i may possibly be the first to open the case as it bears no watchmaker markings on the inside. I have been informed that the family member handling the estate has located a few other Bulova items and one of them may be the original skin diver strap. I am keeping my fingers crossed but even if it lost forever this is a grail quality piece that i am so stoked to have in the collection. 

There is already a nice example of this model in the database and there were comments made as to the crown not being original. I add this example to argue the possibility that it is original. My example has the identical crown, larger than seen in printed materials and not signed. My example is so pristine that i cannot see something the crown being replaced and coincidentally with the same crown as seen on other pieces. I would argue that Bulova, at some point, switched to these crowns to help keep wear off of the dive bezel. You will notice that the bezel on this model does hang over the crown to some extent and the original shorter crowns are difficult to wind without rubbing your thumb excessively on the top of the bezel causing the color to fade, a characteristic you see on almost every one of these. 

front 1
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case back
catalog page
Posted January 30, 2023 - 4:47pm

Also, in regard to the crown possibly being an alternative crown from Bulova, it may be worth noting that the example currently in the database that has the same crown as this example is only 782 apart in serial number and shares the same crown, making it in my opinion very plausible that these are indeed factory original crowns.

Posted January 30, 2023 - 6:44pm

Great find, and great condition. Your thoughts on the crown are plausible. It makes sense to add length to assist with winding, since this is a manual wind.

Deep Sea Chronograph "B"

Posted January 30, 2023 - 10:05pm

In reply to by Andersok

To further the thought, ive noticed the one in the database with this crown is a an N0 and this is an N0. The others with the shorter signed crown are N1 and N2s....A thought might be that the taller unsigned crown were the original crowns and later swithced to the shorter crowns initiating the bezel wear problem, hence the two N0's (earlier versions both have good looking bezels, and the next two years with the short crowns have all very worn bezels. ???? Wouldnt it be great if there was somebody we could just go ask. Like the Senior Vice President  in Charge of Crowns in 1970..what was his name ?

Geoff Baker
Posted January 30, 2023 - 9:16pm

1970 Bulova Deep Sea Chronograph B, nice one Chris. PS - mine is also in NOS condition but has the Bulova marked crown

Posted January 30, 2023 - 11:07pm

In reply to by Geoff Baker

Ive seen yours Geoff. Sweet Sweet. I have the box with mine, but not the strap, but i think i may be getting that soon. I think we located it. I wouldnt have added mine except i thought the crown discussion is interesting. I see yours is an N3 which falls into my latest point that perhaps the earlier N0's had the tall crown and the at some point the production switched to the short signed crown. 

Posted January 30, 2023 - 11:32pm

I have just noticed that this image in the partial adverts shows this model with the taller domed crown. 

shows tall crown