It is with great pleasure that I can present a second guest review here on the GP Chronicles by my good friend Ares501, aka Mr. Green. So please read what he has to say about a vintage Girard-Perregaux Gyromatic Day-Date from his collection.
Last week CC made great series about Gyromatic watches from his momentous collection as well as great article about Gyromatic movement and iconic 39 jewels in it.
So here is my take on one of the Gyromatic watches with calibre 43.x inside.
But first let me introduce myself.
My handle for years in on-line watch community was Ares 501- Mr. Green
My passion for watches started in my youth when at age of five I was mesmerized watching my grandfather wind his pocket Cortébert watch. As long as I can remember time and measuring of time was my passion and obsession. Hence I tried to use all my pocket money on acquiring watches or persuading members of my family that what I REALLY need, for my birthday or Christmas or whatever occasion for present was, is a watch. At age of nine they didn’t take this very seriously. From age of five till age of fifteen I managed to get my hands on few time only or date watches from Darwil, Doxa, Omicron (big three back then in my country) and Casio. Casio was Illuminator model, first watch I bought whit my own earned money in high school and at that time of quartz supremacy very hyped watch. After University and getting my job all went downhill. The collection grew exponentially, and I think I went through process that every watch collector reach in some moment of his collecting life and that is you sooner or later want to focus. At first every and any watch is OK and I needed to have it all. Later as appetites and more importantly horological knowledge grows not every watch is OK but merely 60% of them (laughter). But in one moment there is breaking point, the point when you feel you need to refine and/or narrow your collection to something meaningful. Either it is certain manufacturer or case shape or case material or complication or whatever it is and becomes focal point of your collection.
My focal points through time became Girard-Perregaux as manufacturer, square watches as case shape and day-date watches as complication in that very particular order. So here in G-P ref. 9095 I have perfect trifecta.
Girard-Perregaux is my first love among high horology manufacturers. What I had always respected about Girard-Perregaux is the long tradition, precision, innovation and something what many other old high horology manufactures dearly miss in my opinion, the quirkiness. Also their slogan: “Watches for the few since 1791” resonated with me.
As for square watches I know that there isn’t big market out there for that case shape and many don’t like square watches, but I have been always keen on that case shape.
Regarding Day-Date complication I am completely aware that in modern times of cell phones, tablets, computers and all the other electronic devices around us there is no need for the watch with day-date complication but then again, all other complications in modern technological world are as obsolete as day-date. It will sound funny, but I still find it extra useful. In my line of work there is week after week in year when I must make more than a couple of meetings daily. If, for example, someone call me on Tuesday 10th and asks for meeting that very same week, and then we try to arrange it quickly on the phone, no matter that I have PC screen and mobile phone near me, with the day and date watch present on my wrist I momentarily glance at my wrist and know “where” I am and “when” I can have next free slot for meeting. “Friday 13th at 10 A.M. is ok I hope!” This might make sense for some readers other just may find me mad.
Now the G-P ref. 9095 was made at the end of 1960 and beginning of 1970s. Here is scan from the G-P catalogue of that era provided by The Curator @blommanwatchreport.com
The very watch itself is 30x30mm big and sits nicely even on smaller wrists. My version has dark brown, some may call it chocolate dial. This dial version is very rare. Majority of ref. 9095 are made with white dial and I had never seen another brown dial 9095 before online. Dial changes its shade from deep brown, almost black, to chocolate brown due to a fact that if you look at higher magnification there are minuscule white and red dots on the dial giving it a range of shades.
The case is nothing but simple. On other rectangular watches from that time the case is usually simple and straightforward having straight polished lines. Here the case is also polished but the profile of the case is made like a baguette diamond. Back is plain brushed with stainless steel writing at the bottom.
Watch is very legible having dark dial with only polished button markers. At 6 o’clock there is -Swiss- writing. There is never any doubt what time it is. Day and date complications are placed inside widow at 3 o’clock surrounded by white rectangle. Day is presented by three letters. One thing that drives away many collectors from vintage day-date watches is lack of quick set function for day and/or date.
Here you have to work around a bit in order to set a watch if it was left for longer time in safe. Since there is no quick set for either day or date crown can be pulled out only once i.e. in one position.
Date changes at 00:01 (minute after midnight) and day changes at 23:45 (15 minutes before midnight) so if you are way off with both day and date best solution is to set the correct day via turning crown as many times as needed to reach correct day and the “playing 12 to 8 game.”
“The game” consists of going with crown clockwise past midnight to quick change date and then turning it anti-clockwise till 8 o’clock and back clockwise after midnight to change the date. If date is let’s say 30th and your watch stopped at 1st you will have to do it 29x times. What we are prepared to do for love. LOL!
And yes you will have to change manually between 30 and 31 days months since it is not annual calendar watch.
Another thing I like very much is that watch have plexiglass. Yes, it is more easily scratched but it is easily polished at home. On this watch plexiglass has very delicate shape if you look at it sidewise also something if broken will not be easy to find today.
All in all great watch for me. On a smaller side, with day-date complication in square case from my favourite brand and very interesting and unique dial. A winner in my book. Here is also big thanks to great guy that found it and gifted it to me. You know who you are!
Read another guest review from Baron: