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Thread: Cadola with helium escape crown

  1. #1

    Cadola with helium escape crown

    Just purchased a 1960s Cadola 20 atmos divers watch.

    I'm struggling to find out anything about the brand?

    The interesting thing it has a helium escape winding crown.

    Is this case and crown used by other manufacturers? Did Cadola just put there on dial too the case and movement?

    Most other Cadola watches are average in quality, this has a really high end quality. All steel, 25 jewels, automatic with glucydur and Nivaflex proudly emblazoned on the dial.

    Just feels a massive step up for the brand.

    any help would be greatly appreciated.


    Sent from my SM-N950F using Tapatalk
    Last edited by Baden H; 13th June 2019 at 07:53.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Very hard to get some info on this Baden.

    The only thing that I found was that the watch was manufactured in SA Neuchatel, Switzerland and made by Foidevaux in the late 1960's.

    I think Nivaflex is the coating that they apply to the dial to protect it.

    Glucydur is the trade name for a metal alloy used for making balance wheels and other parts for mechanical watches.
    Last edited by MADDOG; 11th June 2019 at 14:27.

  3. #3
    Nothing useful to add other than it's gorgeous

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2017

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    west midlands
    Well done Sir, that's gorgeous

  6. #6
    Master igorRIJEKA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Blog Entries
    Nivalex is spring steel, not dial coating.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by igorRIJEKA View Post
    Nivalex is spring steel, not dial coating.
    Thanks igor

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    The helium escape valve on a 1960's watch is fascinating. The 60's were very early days for saturation diving and the quality of the components in the watch indicates it might have been made specifically for sat divers. Is it a screw down crown?

    Reason for talking about sat diving is that this is the only time a helium escape valve serves any purpose. Sat diving involves replacing the nitrogen in the air we breathe with helium to prevent high pressure nitrogen narcosis. The divers spend a month at a time in sat chambers at high pressure and breathing this mixture. When they go into the water, they're lowered to depth in another pressurised chamber (the diving bell) and then open the hatch on the bell floor to enter the water. After the dive is completed, they're back in the bell and then back in the sat chamber. Once their month is up, the chamber is slowly (typically over a week) brought back to normal pressure. As helium is a very light molecule, it diffuses through most things including the watch seals, so the relief valve allows excess pressure to bleed off and prevents the glass from popping out. The divers also have to ensure all bottles like coke, water, tomato ketchup etc are open, otherwise you get quite a messy result.

    The 20 bar rating is perfect for sat diving as the watches internal and external pressures are balanced, so there isn't really much differential water pressure when diving.

    If it is an early sat diving watch, then I suspect it'll be very rare.

  9. #9
    Master Mouse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Lincs, UK
    I've never heard of that brand before but that's a really nice looking watch. Great find.

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