I’m slowly building up a small collection of vintage watches, especially from watch brands that I feel are underpriced. The vintage watch market has been going crazy over the last 2 years, with people increasingly looking at watches as jewelry and as investments. Vintage Rolexes and Patek Philippes have done extraordinarily well at auction, especially unique submariners and complicated gold pieces from PP.
Universal Geneve was one of the watch brands that was highly regarded from the 1930s until the 1980s. It is sometimes referred to as “the poor man’s patek”, referencing to its high level of finishing quality and conservative design. Universal Geneve was distributed in North America by Patek Philippe USA, making it the “sister brand” to the most revered watch brand in the world. UG never made the transition past the “quartz” era, when many Swiss watches faced extinction due to quartz technology in the 70s and 80s.
This one that I found is a UG Compur dating from probably late 1930 - 1940s. It was one of the first watches that used two pushers to manipulate the chronograph mechanism, and therefore is able to start and stop timing without resetting. The dial is excellent condition, with a bit of champagne colored patina. The time hands are in rose gold and the chronograph hands in blued steel.