Hamilton Khaki Chronograph 24 - the best watch you never wear in your life (AWW 7)
: Hamilton Khaki Chronograph 24
: Lemania 1877, hand wind chronograph
: 24 hour, minute, seconds,
: no date
: all stainless steel with screw on back, compass unidirectional bezel
: 40 mm diameter without crown, 43 mm with crown
: 13 mm
: lightlightyellow, yellow lumed even hour numbers and odd hour marks, black minute marks, yellow outer tachymeter circle, 3 gold sub-dials for seconds, chronograph minutes and hours
Text on dial
: Hamilton Chronograph, T Swiss Made T
Text on back
: Khaki Chronograph A0341/24 - Hamilton Watch - Lancaster PA - All Stainless Steel
Hands and markers
: six black hands, hour and minute hands and hour markers are lumed
: not marked
: main crown at 3, chronograph push buttons at 2 and 4
: domed mineral crystal
: 20 mm
: leather strap with buckle
If you look at 24 hour watch entry in Wikipedia, then you see two pictures:
- Probably the most common 24h watch Raketa 24h
- Hamilton Khaki Chronograph 24
These are indeed essential 24h watches, I agree. For sure you have to have them both. eBay and all other auctions (yes folks, you have to lurk at auction sites like taobao, molotok, aukro, and several eBay-related local classified ad sites) are full of Raketas. To find our Hamilton is not so easy, but possible. During the last year I saw 4 Hamilton Chronos on the sale, two in Germany, two in Italy. Actually, today when I'm writing this review, one of them is on sale.
The next question is - how much? Probably the seller will ask about EUR 1000. My feeling is that EUR 800 would be a very reasonable price. But one of these four Hamiltons sold for EUR 480 (!!). Unfortunately it wasn't me; I paid more when I bought it from Germany in January 2013. But I got it with original box and even some papers.
As I said, I got it NOS with box and warranty card. On the warranty card is written:
Case no.: 456
Model no. 609116
Date of sale: December 22, 1999.
On the seller's label you see, that the price was 132,000 Pts. That was about EUR 790 back in 1999. After currency calculations I was amazed, that today you can still get it for a list price.
The Hamilton numbering scheme is not 100% clear for me. Case number (456) is a reference number when ordering parts, I suppose. And then comes the model reference number.
On the caseback is written "A0341/24". Another Hamilton, exactly the same with different (original too) strap had "B0184/24" written. Third Hamilton 24h Chrono, with black dial and different caseback, had there "611". These numbers should be serial numbers, but how many different series were produced, is not known.
Here you see all three, mine is the leftmost.
This watch is unbelievable cute. Most watches are serious mix of black and white, metal and glass. Here you have a joyful sunny yellow piece of superb machinery.
The watch is equipped with famous Lemania 1873, which 24h option is usually called 1877.
- Lemania hand wind 1877
- no. 429756
- 12 lignes (27mm)
- 21600 bph
- 60s, 30m, 12h registers
- 17 jewels
- Incabloc shockproof
- Power reserve 40h
This movement you can find in several much more expensive watches from Omega, Breitling, Sinn, TAG Heuer etc. Hamilton is one of the most affordable watches to get with this famous high quality movement. Both 12h and 24h Hamilton Chronograph models in the 90s had Lemania 1873-77 movements inside.
First I wasn't very happy with the bezel. Technically it is ok, but I thought that 60 minutes or second time zone bezel would be more useful. Later I saw that this compass bezel is easy to use as a 60 minute bezel, even the last 15 minutes are marked.
After 14 years there is almost no more lume left. I got the watch as NOS, but with some storage marks on caseback. The movement is still tip-top, on the timing machine right in this very moment it is showing beat 3 sec/day (crown down).
One of the best watches I have, no doubt. The technical part, look and feel, everything is on the top level. If you see it on sale anywhere, attack immediately.
If I had only one watch, this Hamilton Khaki Chronograph 24h could be my everyday watch. But I have (too) many watches and Hamilton is just one in my hot rotation.