Automatic Extra-Flat

I've been looking for a simple caliber 1120 for awhile and found a very nice piece in steel recently.  This may become my daily wearer!

Automatic Extra-Flat

The watch dates from 1975 and still features the "&" dial in a vertical brushed finish with applied steel indexes and baton hands.

Automatic Extra-Flat

The water-resistant screw down case-back is slightly recessed to maintain a thin profile.

Automatic Extra-Flat

The leather strap is slim and tapered, which perfectly suits this watch.

Automatic Extra-Flat

Crowned by a Maltese Cross crown!

Automatic Extra-Flat

Understated and sporty, with the superb caliber 1120 which was introduced in 1967 and remains the thinnest full-rotor automatic made!  A great partner for the caliber 1003 Patrimony Extra-flat.
02/22/2009 - 21:24
02/23/2009 - 14:56
02/24/2009 - 09:34
02/24/2009 - 17:57
02/28/2009 - 05:43
that is definately a very rare watch, cal 1120 (time only) + steel is
02/23/2009 - 11:32
seldom seen. Looks like the watch also came with its original box. Great find Dean and may it time only happy moments.
Re: that is definately a very rare watch, cal 1120 (time only) + steel is
02/23/2009 - 17:28

The time-only 1120 was my target as the world's thinnest auto and a classic Vacheron piece.  As they added seconds and date features, it became too fat .

Congratulations, Dean!
02/23/2009 - 14:56
That is one clean watch!   It has the 1120, it has no date (very clean) and not even a seconds hand (can't get cleaner than that). It has the "&" in V&C and, whats more, its in SS which is quite rare nowadays. Judging from the wrist shot, it is of a good (contemporary) size too. I wouldn't mind having that as a daily wearer at all.  Thanks for sharing! Wear it in good health! Kazumi
Re: Congratulations, Dean!
02/23/2009 - 17:32
Kazumi, it measures 33mm across and 40mm lug to lug.  Typical for the times, the lugs provide substance rather than the case body.  I appreciate the design that compliments a record-setting thin movement with an equally slim case.
33mm? That sounds awfully small...
02/24/2009 - 16:50
Hi Dean, I was just surprised at the size you gave me.  It looks much larger in the wrist shot (unless it was on one slim wrist). I think the 1003 equipped ultra-thin models are usually around 33m so I was expecting an 1120 equipped automatic to be somewhat larger.  Are you sure its not 35mm? At any rate, I think it looks great and that's what counts.  I would really like to see one in the metal. Cheers! Kazumi
Comparison Pic
02/24/2009 - 17:49

Here is a side-by-side comparison with my Patrimony Extra-flat which is 31mm wide and 35mm lug-to-lug.  Keep in mind the caliber 1120 is only 26mm wide itself and has been used in cases as small as 30mm. Vacheron were masters at presenting thin and elegant cases with much larger presence on the wrist.  You may recall my comments on the Thunderbird automatic, which is "only" 36mm wide but with a 20mm strap (18mm was usual at the time) appears larger.  With this steel Extra-flat, the case measures 40mm from lug-to-lug and the tapered design is perfectly proportional, so it's 33mm width (35mm incl. crown) doesn't seem diminutive at all.

Thanks for the comparison pic...and the quick lesson
02/25/2009 - 13:08

Thanks for the cal. 1120 dimensions.  I just didn't have time to do my homework. Both watches look really great but, as you said, the lugs on the automatic really do add presence on the wrist.  The color of the dial helps too I guess. Congrats again and do share some owner's experience reports later on. Ciao! Kazumi

Early impressions....
02/25/2009 - 22:38
One characteristic that strikes me immediately is how ernestly this movement works.  While the watch itself is slim and trim, the slightest movement of your wrist sets the little engine whirring away.  Its quite amusing . That's a marked constrast to the caliber 1070 family, who's rotor is felt as a slight vibration through the skin more than heard.
Dean, you're on a roll. Yet again you strike with a vintage classic!
02/23/2009 - 15:37
As you know, I'm into modern watches and I keep admiring your determination for the vintage VC. While I fully appreciate the VC heritage, I am not very knowledgeable about vintage stuff and have been avoiding the vintage market for two main reasons. Lack of knowledge for one, obviously. The other one being, design/size of the vintage VC offer. I tried once to get more familiar with an original 1972 model. It simply turned out too fragile for my taste. I also wanted to get the original Toledo, Cioccolatone from the 50's, at an auction but I simply failed as IMHO the bidding went out of the roof and it was too expensive. So now you see, the vintage stuff might simply not be destined for me...
Re: Dean, you're on a roll. Yet again you strike with a vintage classic!
02/23/2009 - 17:40
Hi Radek.  I understand the size issue but I have the opposite problem...many modern pieces are too big for my wrist .  Once I bought my first "used watch", the idea of pre-owned seemed less intimidating.  Research and more research substitutes for a new item warranty.  For me, that is the fun of vintage collecting...the hunt and finally the capture, then restoration and documentation.  Each piece can consume a lot of time and interest. No worries...keep your new pieces for a few decades and you will have "vintage"!
As Alex says steel cased cal 1120 must be a rare beast and you
02/23/2009 - 17:11
sure are a lucky man. What is the size as it looks quite good on your wrist. This is what I love on HL: you have something for everyone.
Re: As Alex says steel cased cal 1120 must be a rare beast and you
02/23/2009 - 17:50
Space Ace (great name...where does it come from?), please see my response to Kazumi for measurements.  In addition, it takes a 17mm strap which tapes to 14mm at the buckle.  The caliber 1120 movement is 26mm across and only 2.45mm thick.  It was based on the JLC-designed caliber 920 ebauche that was only available to Vacheron, Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe.  In fact, it's the only movement that all three shared! Still some 40 years after the initial offering, the 1120 remains the basis for certain Vacheron skeleton and perpetual timepieces like that beauty GaryG posted earlier.
nothing to do with space travelling but rather from my favorite rock
02/23/2009 - 18:58
band as a kid: Kiss and their guitarist Ace Frehely whose stage name was Space Ace
Halloween Pics?
02/24/2009 - 17:52
OK, I gotta ask...have you ever dressed up as Space Ace?  Got any pictures?
Congrats, one of the seven summits :-) nt
02/23/2009 - 17:42
LOL, Everest is only a dream...
02/23/2009 - 17:53
watch-wise, that is
I've been to the base of Everest...
02/24/2009 - 07:45
Though I didn't have a VC yet, in fact I didn't have a watch - just a Brunton digital all in one instrument on my neck. But next time who knows? (I love visiting Tibet - though not right now)
Re: I've been to the base of Everest...
02/24/2009 - 17:55
That's awesome!  Do you have pictures to share?  Nowadays, base camp itself has become a holiday destination.  I hope the litter problem is finally under control?
Re: Re: I've been to the base of Everest...
02/25/2009 - 12:49
Hi Dean, The 3 of us went to Tibet in June 2006 (my sister, wife, and me).  Unfortunately my sister sprained her knee when we got to base camp (as well as having some altitude sickness issues) - so we went, saw, and left very quickly.  It was still quite littered though. I did get a picture at the highest elevation on the way to Nam Tso (or Heaven's Lake), 5,190m above sea-level, which is the highest fresh water lake in the world.  I mention this because it is roughly the same elevation as the Everest basecamp on the Tibetan side (5,180m). Best Regards, Dan 
Thanks for sharing Dan! (nt)
02/25/2009 - 17:20
Extremely tasty
02/24/2009 - 09:34

Love it!  The whole idea of an 1120 in a stealth watch like this one really gets my attention -- your example looks to be in excellent condition, and it certainly looks great (and well-sized) on your wrist.  I agree with you that having a watch that takes advantage of the thinness of the 1120 by being thin itself is the way to go.  Congrats! Best, GaryG

Re: Extremely tasty
02/24/2009 - 17:57
Gary, I think that Vacheron needs to market a similar type of watch again!
Great watch Dean.............
02/25/2009 - 14:34
love the wrist shot...fits like a glove...Congratulations! Best regards, Tom
Action Shots
02/28/2009 - 05:43
This watch seems to suit action shots.  Maybe golfing as soon as the snow melts .