Vulcain Cricket

Vulcain Cricket

Modern life is punctuated by the sound of alarms. But these tinny ringtones are nothing compared to the robust sound that resonates from a vintage alarm watch. These watches were meant to be heard, and one listen transports you back to a time when all you needed to know was right there on your wrist. 

Alarm watches aren't necessarily a new thing. For example, Queen Elizabeth I of England had a primitive alarm watch set into a ring that would prick her finger at a set time. And in the 1900s, Eterna filed a patent for a wrist alarm; however, these examples weren't loud enough for daily use. 

It wasn't until Vulcain introduced the Cricket to the world in 1947 at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York City that an alarm watch had been produced to such a scale. 

And unlike the wrist alarms produced by Eterna, the Cricket wasn’t some delicate novelty. In fact, the watch accompanied the first expedition to reach the peak of K2, 28,250ft up in the Himalayas. Future advertisements would read, “The teams of all these expeditions have expressed their satisfaction and admiration of the record performance of their Vulcain Cricket, testifying that their running was as faultless and the ringing of the alarm as distinct on the summit of K2 as in the damp jungle of Equatorial Africa.”

While most Crickets were found in budget chrome or gold-plated cases, this particular example comes in a full stainless steel case. Its dial is lightly speckled with age, giving it a distinguished appearance. If you're looking to add a fun, practical complication to your collection, the Vulcain Cricket is hard to beat.

Given the relatively complicated nature of this piece, a short primer on function is in order!

Winding: The Cricket movement has two independent barrels for the watch and alarm, which must be wound separately. First, ensure the crown is pushed all the way in. To wind the alarm, wind the crown upwards, towards 12:00 (as you would any manual wind piece). To wind the watch, wind the crown downwards, towards 6:00.

Set the time: To set the time, pull the crown out completely and rotate it downwards, towards 6:00. Note the time only sets going forward.

Setting the alarm: Depress the pusher at 2:00 completely. This will cause the crown to pop out- turn the crown upwards, towards 12:00 to move the alarm hand. Note that the time only sets going backward. Push the crown back down when finished. The alarm will now sound when the hour hand hits the alarm hand.

Disabling the alarm: press the pusher at 2:00 halfway down. The crown is now free to move in any direction and the alarm is disabled.


SKU: TT01093.

Stainless steel case is approximately 34.5mm (excluding crown). Vulcain Calibre 120 Alarm Movement.

Overall Condition: Stainless steel case is in very good condition with sharp lugs. Case does have minimal signs of use and wear in keeping with its age, including some slight dings on the side of the case near 9:00. Dial is in very good condition with some signs of speckling due to age. Unsigned crown has a dent on it. Case back has some tool marks but is in otherwise good condition.

Includes one 18mm light green crocodile strap with gold buckle.

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