Autorist Early Automatic Watch by John Harwood

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Style: Art Deco, Early Automatic

Circa: 1931

Case: Rare hallmarked Sterling Silver case with stepped bezel and slightly inset crown built by the Fortis Watch Company for John Harwood and his invention. The lower lugs are hinged, operating a lever inside the case which in turn winds the watch as your wrist moves and pulls on the strap. Unusually the case opens from a hinge on the left side allowing the movement to be removed from the top. The hallmarks inside the back are a London Import mark, the 925 British Sterling Silver mark and the date letter from 1931. The case has a nicely curved back and thick original glass crystal which has only a few light scratches to note. Measures 23mm by 39mm excluding the crown.

Dial: Original Art Deco guilloche dial with textured finish and clear printed black minute track and numbers. Signed Autorist Regd. Nice even patina.

Movement: Here lies the inventive genius of John Harwood. Adapted from an A.S. Schild base caliber 624 this revised Autorist caliber 796 includes a module added which using a series of levers and springs harnesses the motion of the hinged lug on the exterior of the case. The back and forth movement of these levers transfers that power to the mainspring "automatically" winding the watch. It has no system of stem winding, so must be wound using this early "automatic" system. The movement on this particular watch has been recently serviced and is in excellent working condition. Signed Autorist, Pat Appld For, 15 Jewels, 2 Adjts, with the serial number 2306.

This truly stunning example of John Harwoods Autorist automatic watch is in beautiful all original condition with lovely Art Deco guilloche dial and rare solid Sterling Silver case. The movement is immaculate and is keeping good time after a full service by our watchmaker. Only about 4000 of these movements were produced as John Harwood famously declared bankruptcy just 2 years into production. This spectacular 1931 Autorist is in museum grade condition, a rare example of legendary horological ingenuity.

For further information about the Autorist watch and its inventor John Harwood, visit the following page researched and written by Adam R Harris.  This is the source for most of our information.