A toast to my fellow Loungers...

From the summit of Mount Victoria a few weeks ago:

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

This to explain why I haven't been my usual yappy self on the forum lately, but summer is short.  There were some very beautiful timepieces introduced and I've enjoyed catching up heart.

Last week was spent in a canoe on one of our great northern rivers:

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

Now finally home, I'm pleased to share with you another V&C "tool" watch; 1943 Royal Navy HS2 navigation chronometer.  Different from the Chronometre Royal version previously described here, this has the larger 60mm case, 21-ligne calibre 163 movement with 20 jewels, and a brushed silver dial decorated "en reserve".  

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

It's a hefty piece with heavy-weight history.  According to the National Maritime Museum, the watch was purchased in December of 1943 and first put into service in April 1944 with HMS Volage, a new Fleet Destroyer launched in December of that year.  

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

However, the watch was transferred in June, 1944, to the WWI Destroyer HMS Venomous, where she remained until war's end.

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

The Venomous was a hard-working vessel; she had battle honors for the Atlantic, Dunkirk, the Arctic, Malta, North Africa and Sicily.  In fact, she evacuated over 3,000 soldiers off the beaches at Dunkirk.  Such was the wear-and-tear on this old lady that she was actually withdrawn from operational duties during the war and used for training purposes until late 1945 when she was pressed back into service in support of the Allied re-occupation of Europe.  Final disposal followed in 1947.

A toast to my fellow Loungers...

I hope you are all enjoying the summer and please take some time to share your travel photos enlightened.




I'm always amazed to see the mint condition of these "tool" watches!
07/19/2013 - 11:08
you've got yoirseld anothe beauty. Enjoy it and thanks for sharing. I'm missing the mountain tops and snow....
Odd weather patterns
07/19/2013 - 21:49
Its been unnaturally cold out West while the East is baking in record heat wave!  On this last climbing trip we experienced a lightening and hail storm...at the same time surprise.  The day before a group enroute to the summit was pinned by the lightening for about 4 hours and, the next day, we passed by the spot that lightening struck the narrow ridge and fractured the snow cap...
Lovely photos, and interesting history. VC is indeed a
07/19/2013 - 13:58
lucky brand to have such a rich heritage, something most modern brands can only dream off.  And to to forget beautiful VC's beautiful timepieces !
LOL, the others mostly make it up!
07/19/2013 - 21:51
Thank goodness the Overseas line is still available for adventurous pursuits yes.
Really Great History in those Watches!
07/19/2013 - 14:25
Thanks for the story and photos, and as Alex said, it is amazing how well they have been preserved.
Condition really benefits from
07/19/2013 - 21:54
the protective transit cases used by the RN and other Navys.  I find most damage is done by unaware owners using inappropriate tools to open the case back, often slipping and scratching up a watch that has survived very nicely until then!
Great watch Dean
07/19/2013 - 16:56
Congratulations and thanks for the write up. Did you pick this up care of Dr Crott?
Have yet to try Crott's
07/19/2013 - 21:55
after noting a few frankens, I'm a bit leary broken heart
Agree with Alex...
07/19/2013 - 19:41
...those V&C "tools" are in remarkably fine condition.  Loved reading this, Dean, as I always do your posts. But that is a very tiny flsk.  laugh Best regards, Robert
LOL, just big enough for a taste
07/19/2013 - 21:57
don't want to feel too good before returning to level ground, after all wink
Finding time for worthwhile research...
07/20/2013 - 14:01
Dean, how wonderful to be able to mix business with pleasure and come away with a result. Your painstaking commitment to detail adds that all important dimension that places the 'cherry on top of the cake!'. As you've asked; yes, we are enjoying a UK summer at last. Actually, we have had such high temperatures for years! Thank you again for such an interesting feature. Regards Tony
This may interest you Tony
07/20/2013 - 18:29
A 1951 watch ad featuring virtually the same watch! Regarding HMS Venomous, here is an action portrait by wartime artist and serving officer Cmdr. Tufnell: She was also the subject of a book titled; "A Hard Fought Ship"
You're spot-on Dean...
07/20/2013 - 20:37
Some very interesting information - thank you for taking the trouble. The crew of HMS Venomous must have seen and suffered so much. A copy of 'A Hard Fought Ship' is now on the shopping list. It's good that we are able to reflect upon product and time - unfortunately, a great deal of our learning incorporates sadness in so many differing ways. Thank you again for this information - it's part of a treasured journey through life. Good wishes Tony 
A correction...
07/20/2013 - 19:53
I just realized a typo in my original description of the calibre 163 movement; should be "21 jewels" blush.  The family of calibres 162, 163 and 166 constituted the majority of V&C's navigation chronometers and, contrary to numerology, it was the 163 that provided the base movement. Calibre 162, also with sub-seconds indication, added an intermediate wheel to the mainspring winding mechanism.  The 166 embellished upon the base calibre with a change to "sweep" center-seconds. For more on the calibre 166, please refer to Dan's post here.
Thanks Dean
07/21/2013 - 01:12
for the nice pictures from back home... Congrats on the new 'tool VC' - I love the clean look of the dial, and I'm a real sucker for blued hands... Lovely movement as wellheart Cheers,  Francois
Not just another pretty face
07/21/2013 - 18:05
Thanks Francois!  Sounds like you are having a grand time in London this week yes. To round out this spotter's guide to the 16X family of naval chronometers, here are some "face shots" courtesy of Antiquorum: Top: Cal. 163, sub-seconds Right: Cal. 162, sub-seconds, power reserve indication Left: Cal. 166, center seconds
Awesome post...wonderful watch. Thanks for sharing, Dean...cheers!
07/23/2013 - 17:19
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