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Thread: The SMITHS QUASAR "Constellation"

  1. #101
    Grand Master Mr Curta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tokdok View Post
    Ollie Don't worry too much about losing the screw, I have plenty..
    If you loosen either screw slightly & take out the other, slip the cell under the contact clamp (pointy end/positive of the cell down) & then you
    will need to press the loose bridge/contact arm over with a toothpick or similar to align the holes, & then insert the screw (you will need tweezers to place it in position before screwing down) Hopefully it will then start ticking.. any problem let me know..
    john
    What could possibly go wrong?

    Some plastic sheeting might be a good idea Rev. Speaking from experience...

  2. #102
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    ....and a magnet (somewhere not to nearby) for finding the blighter....

  3. #103
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    No thanks needed

    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    First, tokdoc, cheers, pm sent...

    Second. As I'm finally not seeing spots in front of my pain for the first time in days, I celebrated by doing maths. I'm not good at maths, but I think I've found an elegant solution by the simple expedient of dividing back from 1,548,288 - 7 is the highest unique division before ten and so makes a decent sized division without being too physically large or power draining for the tech of the time.

    It makes sense to do the largest division first as it means that all the other circuits are charging and discharging at a much slower rate, clawing back the power spent on this first division.

    This gives 221184. Dividing this by 2,3,5 and 7 gives nothing exciting, so divide by 3 then 2,3,5 and 7 again, nothing particularly divisible and so divide by 3 again and bingo: 8192: it's division by two all the way to .5. I bet there's a prettier way of getting this, but I'm no good at maths. I'm not going to admit how many discrete calculations I've done today, but I reckon that, unless they are using a circuit that divides by more than ten, which I confidently don't expect, then this is how they did it.

    I also worked out that there must be four coils, which tokdoc has confirmed, and that it will therefore move by a quarter turn, as his fine new video confirms, so that's four coils wired in series and something like a square wave pulse so that .5 gives a 1hz movement. That explains the capacitor, which must also be in series. It's amazing how it all falls into place!
    No thanks needed, Im very glad I could help..
    John

  4. #104
    Quote Originally Posted by tokdok View Post
    Ollie Don't worry too much about losing the screw, I have plenty..
    If you loosen either screw slightly & take out the other, slip the cell under the contact clamp (pointy end/positive of the cell down) & then you
    will need to press the loose bridge/contact arm over with a toothpick or similar to align the holes, & then insert the screw (you will need tweezers to place it in position before screwing down) Hopefully it will then start ticking.. any problem let me know..
    john
    Umm, yeah, about that.

    Are they special screws, unique to the Quasar?

    Suppose someone had lost one . . . I mean, hypothetically.

  5. #105
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Curta View Post
    What could possibly go wrong?

    Some plastic sheeting might be a good idea Rev. Speaking from experience...
    Quote Originally Posted by size11s View Post
    ....and a magnet (somewhere not to nearby) for finding the blighter....
    It flew like a bird from the tweezers' mandibles and pinged twice on the hard floor.

    A sweep with a strong magnet failed to produce anything.

    so . . . . I have reached out to the Mighty John for help.

    I'm hoping they're not special screws, unique to the Quasar, and that general ones will fit.

    I have managed to bodge the job by tightening the other screw and then simply putting the back on, although whether the terminal is now touching the inside of the case back I do not know. It is ticking away though!

  6. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    It flew like a bird from the tweezers' mandibles and pinged twice on the hard floor.

    A sweep with a strong magnet failed to produce anything.

    so . . . . I have reached out to the Mighty John for help.

    I'm hoping they're not special screws, unique to the Quasar, and that general ones will fit.

    I have managed to bodge the job by tightening the other screw and then simply putting the back on, although whether the terminal is now touching the inside of the case back I do not know. It is ticking away though!
    This has happened to me so many times that I now don't even bother. I've found that using a little bit of blutac to hold anything small enough to ping is perfect for orienting and setting up before screwing.

  7. #107
    Apprentice OhDark30's Avatar
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    Thanks to all posters (and Matt for linking to this thread)
    Bloody fascinating to a tech minded Smiths fan who grew up down the road
    Thanks for all the patient cataloguing, recording, surmising and piecing together

  8. #108
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    Ok, I think I can tell a consistent tale from start to finish. I'm not promising that it is correct in all the details, but it fits what we know so far.

    I like poetry. One of the reasons I like it so much is that it is so constrained. There are arcane rules of rhythm and meter and so on. A good poem works around and through all the constraints on it to leave you with something that feels like changing anything would be a step away from perfection and the words on the page are all that they could ever have been.

    I've said it many times before, but every watch is a compromise and, to a certain degree, like poetry, it is how well that a watch movement manages the compromises and constraints of being a watch that is the measure of its greatness.

    The Smiths Quasar really has its work cut out. Not only does it have the usual constraints of the size of the case, but it also has another constraint: the size of the integrated circuit in 1974. The reason that early quartz went for low frequencies like 8190 is simple - they literally didn't have room for enough transistors to divide a larger number. By '74 the situation was improving, but not by much.

    As if that isn't enough, the power of the battery also severely restricts how many transistors (and how rapidly they charge and discharge) the watch can have and also the ways that electrical energy can be converted to mechanical energy. So the other reason the very first quartz went for low frequencies was to save power. Smiths made a tactical decision to go the other way.

    In base two, there probably isn't enough power to step down from a high frequency lenticular quartz without draining the battery too fast, even if there was enough space on the available integrated circuit. What is certain is that Smiths chose not to have a quartz that resonated in a multiple of two. However, had they wanted to they could have had 1,048,576 or 2,097,152. Omega in their ship's marine chronometer, rather than their wrist one, opted for the simple but large and comparatively power hungry 4,194,304hz. I'm not doing the maths for their 2,359,356hz wrist chronometer! E

    But I have for the Smiths: I think Smiths solved the problem by starting with as large a division as was practically possible. There are only four prime numbers below eleven - 2,3,5 and 7 and, for a variety of practical reasons, it's almost certain these are the numbers Smiths would have worked with.

    So here's my idea of how the Quasar works.

    When a battery is first inserted and the crown pushed in, an oscillator circuit on the integrated circuit will begin to, well, oscillate. This sends a fairly unstable and harmonic oscillating signal down one of the six 'legs' of the integrated circuit to one one of the two 'legs' attached to the quartz crystal. This will cause the quartz to vibrate. As the quartz is either a tuning fork:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxsM9Jv0OD8

    or a disk not unlike a tingsha:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...ature=emb_logo

    That is tuned to a pure note, then, as long as the signal is applied to the quartz it will chime, at a very high, pure, frequency, just as a tuning fork or tingsha would.

    However, the quartz doesn't just give off sound (which we can't hear) it also releases an electric current as it vibrates. This pure oscillation returns to the integrated circuit (IC) down the other leg attached to the quartz crystal and up another of the six legs on the IC. This signal then goes to the divider circuit.

    The signal oscillating at 1,548,288hz is then divided by 7 by the first dividing circuit giving 221,184.

    This is divided by three by the next circuit giving 73,728

    This is divided by three by the next circuit giving 24,576

    This is divided by three by the next circuit giving 8,192

    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 4,096
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 2,048
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 1,024
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 512
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 256
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 128
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 64
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 32
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 16
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 8
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 4
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 2
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving 1
    This is divided by two by the next circuit giving .5

    This signal goes through a final inverter circuit and a capacitor and powers the motor windings. There's nothing fancy, just four motor windings all connected together in series. With a square shaped sine wave, the motor moves on the 'tick' and stops on the 'tock', moving the motor by a quarter of a turn every second. This will then be geared up by X4 by the gear train to give a 1 hz tick and geared down by /60 and /60 for the minute and hour hands.

    I think that catches it all, but I doubt it's perfect as I'm not an expert and I'm cobbling together bits and bobs from all over, for example, thanks is due to my almost childhood D1 BSA Bantam rectification circuit for helping me fumble my way through the inverter while ensuring that my toolkit still has a pack of blue Rizla in it! However, if my error shakes a real expert out of the woodwork then I'll be delighted


    Any comments?
    Last edited by M4tt; 18th February 2020 at 08:28.

  9. #109
    Apprentice OhDark30's Avatar
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    The SMITHS QUASAR "Constellation"

    Re: earlier thoughts about male researchers taking undue credit, thereís the nearer to home example of Jocelyn Bell Burnell and the discovery of the quasar itself https://medium.com/s/the-matilda-eff...t-5362bef36308
    Last edited by OhDark30; 16th February 2020 at 11:41.

  10. #110
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    And just for the fun of it: the Omega 2.4:

    2,359,296 /3
    786,432 /2
    393,216/2
    196608/2
    98304/2
    49152/2
    24576/2
    12288/2
    6144/2
    3072/2
    1536/2
    768/2
    384/2
    192/2
    96/2
    48/2
    24/2
    12/2
    6/2
    3/3
    1

    It was worth doing the maths, but only because I hit on the 3 into 2 series almost immediately and the 3 at the end was obvious. I was kind of hoping that it was also a 7 division to start with...

  11. #111
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    For what it's worth, a trip to the British Museum confirmed my scheme for the Omega, although their records don't mention a final division from 3 to 1, which is odd and probably a mistake as the frequency (and the maths) is unambiguous.

  12. #112
    Quote Originally Posted by OhDark30 View Post
    Re: earlier thoughts about male researchers taking undue credit, thereís the nearer to home example of Jocelyn Bell Burnell and the discovery of the quasar itself https://medium.com/s/the-matilda-eff...t-5362bef36308
    Ah, yes, the infamous "No Bell" prize for physics

  13. #113
    It seems Smiths used this case/bracelet combo on less exotic offerings (albeit with one crown rather than two)

    A couple on ebay at the moment (don't all rush to buy them ha ha)




  14. #114
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    The £35 quid one I was going to have a shot at. Fortunately, I picked up this hen's tooth while searching for variations earlier:

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MONTRE-SU...72.m2749.l2649

    It's a Felca movement rather than a Smiths, but I've got another completely different Smiths Astral with the same movement and it looks so proper in so many ways that I can't believe it isn't legit even though I've not seen one before. As I'm merely an amateur, I assume that someone here will have a small cache and can confirm it's a legit one...


    More to the point, is the description of how the Quasar works above what you are looking for? The tumble weed was a bit of disappointment.

    Incidentally, I quote from Nye's fine book:

    ...It was to develop a cutting edge quartz watch -The Quasar - launched at the Basle Fair in 1973 but abandoned soon after probably in acknowledgement that Seiko had developed a much superior watch in the the Calibre 38 series while Omega had already successfully launched the Megaquartz.
    I'm a bit unsure about this claim. I've got quite a few 38 series watches. The only one which stood a chance of coming close to the Quasar was the thermocompensated 3883 and they were far from cheap at Y150,000 - well over £200 at the time. The 32khz Omega was only capable of traditional quartz accuracy while the thermoinsensitive 2.4 Omega was over £600 for the cheapest version but was probably slightly more accurate.

    This compares well with the Quasar at £70.

    In short, as far as I can discern, in 73, even in 74, there was no other watch as stable, if not as accurate, as the Quasar available at anything like the price.

    As stability, not accuracy is the grail of Marine Chronometers and I'd be astonished if the Smiths is varying by more than a second or two a month (The quartz crystals for the Smiths and the Omega were grown, sliced and tuned by the same company in the UK, while the IC that was finally used was made by Intersil using a slightly smaller process than anyone had used at that point).

    In short, everything happening around them should have given them heart: the only high frequency competition was almost ten times the price while the low frequency stuff was either far more expensive or far less accurate and mostly both.

    I suspect that John's collection of bits gives a far clearer clue: the first Ronda 1377 - in many ways this really was the first modern quartz because it looks to me to be the first hint that the price of 'good enough' quartz was going to drop like a stone.

    To Smiths, all too familiar with cheap pinwheels, the arrival of a cheap yet spendidly accurate and reliable quartz would have been as clear a warning as they could have liked.

    And they were right - it's watches like the Cal.1500 that bankrupt Omega. I doubt that Rolex made much from the Oysterquartz and Seiko's focus was almost immediately on to 'good enough' quartz, with the high end stuff far to the background...
    Last edited by M4tt; 28th February 2020 at 19:53.

  15. #115
    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    The £35 quid one I was going to have a shot at. Fortunately, I picked up this hen's tooth while searching for variations earlier:

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MONTRE-SU...72.m2749.l2649

    It's a Felca movement rather than a Smiths, but I've got another completely different Smiths Astral with the same movement and it looks so proper in so many ways that I can't believe it isn't legit even though I've not seen one before. As I'm merely an amateur, I assume that someone here will have a small cache and can confirm it's a legit one
    I think that Astral ("Super Astral") is a French marque and not the Smiths' one, but I may be wrong about that.

    See e.g. here

    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/SUPER-AS...8/401721153296

    https://www.chrono24.co.uk/all/super...id12339550.htm

    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    Seiko's focus was almost immediately on to 'good enough' quartz, with the high end stuff far to the background...
    Yes but remember even a bad quartz exceeds COSC specifications; at the same price point as a mechanical it is more accurate and reliable and also the "new" technology, which is often a selling point.
    Last edited by Rev-O; 28th February 2020 at 23:00.

  16. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    I think that Astral ("Super Astral") is a French marque and not the Smiths' one, but I may be wrong about that.

    See e.g. here

    https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/SUPER-AS...8/401721153296

    https://www.chrono24.co.uk/all/super...id12339550.htm



    Yes but remember even a bad quartz exceeds COSC specifications; at the same price point as a mechanical it is more accurate and reliable and also the "new" technology, which is often a selling point.
    That was my point - the Ronda was the first cheap and cheerful quartz and is still perfectly capable. That fact may be obvious today, but it wasn't in '73. The Ronda demonstrated this at a point at which everything else was still dramatically overengineered.

    As for the Astral, if it's French then they've copied the case right down to the same writing, in English, on the back, they are using the same Felca movement I have in a Smiths Astral and they have used precisely the same font at several points on the dial. That seems like a lot of effort to copy the UK model.

    Compare:

    https://mrjoneswatches.com/products/smiths-dive-watch

    Or perhaps more relevantly:

    https://www.mwrforum.net/forums/show...n-images/page2

    Last edited by M4tt; 29th February 2020 at 00:36.

  17. #117
    The case is a generic one used by a lot of small brands in the late '60s

    https://forum.tz-uk.com/showthread.p...ot-Seiko-62MAS

    (Personally I think it is either the same as or a copy of the Seiko 62MAS case after they went asymmetrical; whoever made it, they were clearly bought-in cases for small marques wanting a piece of the dive watch market without the expense of manufacturing a waterproof stainless steel case with a rotating bezel.)

    And the Felsa was used by Smiths after they stopped in-house production of movements in 1970/1.

    So we have three coincidences: that case, that movement and "Astral" on the dial but the first two are common enough. ("Astral" itself seems to have been problematic for Smiths: they did a short run of watches marked as such in the 1950s but then didn't use the name again until the mid '60s. It is a name they inherited from Williamson and seem to have kept on the back burner. I guess the "Super Astral" thing was do to with law and that Smiths didn't have the rights to the name outside of the UK. But I don't know. Certainly I've never seen any official Smiths literature making mention of "Super Astral", only "Astral")

    IMHO the "Super Astral" watches are not, I think, related to the Smiths sub-brand in any way.

  18. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    The case is a generic one used by a lot of small brands in the late '60s

    https://forum.tz-uk.com/showthread.p...ot-Seiko-62MAS

    (Personally I think it is either the same as or a copy of the Seiko 62MAS case after they went asymmetrical; whoever made it, they were clearly bought-in cases for small marques wanting a piece of the dive watch market without the expense of manufacturing a waterproof stainless steel case with a rotating bezel.)

    And the Felsa was used by Smiths after they stopped in-house production of movements in 1970/1.

    So we have three coincidences: that case, that movement and "Astral" on the dial but the first two are common enough. ("Astral" itself seems to have been problematic for Smiths: they did a short run of watches marked as such in the 1950s but then didn't use the name again until the mid '60s. It is a name they inherited from Williamson and seem to have kept on the back burner. I guess the "Super Astral" thing was do to with law and that Smiths didn't have the rights to the name outside of the UK. But I don't know. Certainly I've never seen any official Smiths literature making mention of "Super Astral", only "Astral")

    IMHO the "Super Astral" watches are not, I think, related to the Smiths sub-brand in any way.
    I'm not sure that any of the other cases have an identical caseback to the Smiths diver . The examples you gave certainly didn't. Likewise, I haven't seen any others using the same font on the dial. So I'd say it's a bit more than three coincidences.
    Last edited by M4tt; 29th February 2020 at 12:28.

  19. #119
    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    I'm not sure that any of the other cases have an identical caseback to the Smiths diver . The examples you gave certainly didn't. Likewise, I haven't seen any others using the same font on the dial. So I'd say it's a bit more than three coincidences.
    No, all (or at least many) have the same caseback marking but the Smiths Astral's don't have a number (presumably a serial) on them. Also, I've never seen any Smiths Industry adverts or info that uses "Super Astral", only "Astral" (with or without the crown logo)

    Here's a couple more:

    https://www.chrono24.co.uk/all/super...id12339550.htm

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SUPER-AST...sAAOSwmOJaRqFD

    I'll eat my hat if they're Smiths.

  20. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    No, all (or at least many) have the same caseback marking but the Smiths Astral's don't have a number (presumably a serial) on them. Also, I've never seen any Smiths Industry adverts or info that uses "Super Astral", only "Astral" (with or without the crown logo)

    Here's a couple more:

    https://www.chrono24.co.uk/all/super...id12339550.htm

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SUPER-AST...sAAOSwmOJaRqFD

    I'll eat my hat if they're Smiths.
    I agree that the ones you have posted here are not Smiths but Iím still not absolutely convinced the other way. However, youíve made a strong case and Iíll do a bit more research. Thanks for the effort to correct me whichever way it goes.

  21. #121
    Grand Master Mr Curta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    More to the point, is the description of how the Quasar works above what you are looking for? The tumble weed was a bit of disappointment.
    Well the maths exactly matches the figures that I surmised in Post #52, so that's nice (a binary counter and a frequency divider being exactly the same thing, and 189=7x3x3x3).

    The 2.4MHz Omega 1510 operation is described in 'Omega Folder 0 - 1510', matching your figures (and does mention the final division by 3). Interestingly, pre-production versions appear to have achieved 393,216Hz by analogue means.

    The British Museum collection has much to answer for.

    Don't Panic

  22. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Curta View Post
    Well the maths exactly matches the figures that I surmised in Post #52, so that's nice (a binary counter and a frequency divider being exactly the same thing, and 189=7x3x3x3).

    The 2.4MHz Omega 1510 operation is described in 'Omega Folder 0 - 1510', matching your figures (and does mention the final division by 3). Interestingly, pre-production versions appear to have achieved 393,216Hz by analogue means.

    The British Museum collection has much to answer for.


    I confess I still don’t quite get that, but are you sure a frequency divider and a binary counter are the same thing in anything other than base two? Mind you, if you are correct, and I’m sure you are, then God know how I got my notes wrong when I visited. I was already tempted to visit the ‘Troy’ exhibition again without the family and that only runs for another week or so so I’ll try to revisit. Thanks for the heads up.
    Last edited by M4tt; 1st March 2020 at 07:39.

  23. #123
    Grand Master Mr Curta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    I confess I still donít quite get that, but are you sure a frequency divider and a binary counter are the same thing in anything other than base two?
    I'm sure that I've never said that they are. It would have been fiendishly clever logic circuitry by Smiths to have used anything other than base-2.


    Quote Originally Posted by M4tt View Post
    Mind you, if you are correct, and Iím sure you are, then God know how I got my notes wrong when I visited. I was already tempted to visit the ĎTroyí exhibition again without the family and that only runs for another week or so so Iíll try to revisit. Thanks for the heads up.
    I'll bet that your notes are correct and that the BM have simply mistranscribed the Omega document or some other source.

    We can't resist popping in whenever we're in the vicinity, it was a welcome diversion from GOSH and we always greet the Berserker.


    CC BY 2.0 User: RobRoyAus Rob Roy
    Don't Panic

  24. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Curta View Post
    I'm sure that I've never said that they are. It would have been fiendishly clever logic circuitry by Smiths to have used anything other than base-2.



    I'll bet that your notes are correct and that the BM have simply mistranscribed the Omega document or some other source.

    We can't resist popping in whenever we're in the vicinity, it was a welcome diversion from GOSH and we always greet the Berserker.


    CC BY 2.0 User: RobRoyAus Rob Roy
    In that case, I really do recommend the Troy exhibition. The last time I was so touched by an exhibition in the British Museum, it was Tutankhamen and I was about seven.

    As for base two. Sorry, same mistake as last time. As I've said before, maths is not my natural language.

    Moving back to the Astral, it's arrived and I have to say it's really quite nice whatever the provenance. Having wandered back and forth between the various watches in question in the sort of obsessive way that one can, I'm still confused.

    I think I agree about the hat eating. However, this is a bit of a universal acid: the problem is that once you accept that this one isn't the real thing, it kind of casts doubt on the real thing itself.

    The case and caseback are the same. While the dial isn't the same as the the Smiths, I'll also eat my hat if that dial, and the various dials of equally identical watches were not made in the same place, which almost certainly wasn't England. At which point there's not a lot left. The Smiths version definitely has 'made in England on the dial' and a Smiths movement, but other Smiths Astrals have an otherwise identical version of the Felsa 4007.

    Obviously, the handwind Smiths movement is English, and casing may have been in England, but it isn't clear to me that anything else was. The Automatic could have been cased in the UK and have an Astral connection, but the only evidence that it was is weak - the Astral logo, and as you point out, if that was UK it would be quite unique and not used anywhere else and a movement that Smiths Astral definitely. However, this feels like it casts more doubt on Astral than it does support the authenticity of the Super one.

    Fortunately, having worn it for a while it's a delightful watch - I love the dial and the relatively thin bezel that makes the crystal seem huge, it wears well and gives me that all important smile, so while I really should be disappointed, I don't think I am. What it does remind me of is an O&W Cougar that I'd completely forgot about but know I've got somewhere.

    Incidentally, I agree with you about the chess pieces, excuse the quick and dirty and lack of dusting:


  25. #125
    There main thing is that you like the Super Astral. Heck, there are some all-English Smiths watches that I'm not keen on (mostly the gold-plated 1960's Imperials and Nationals).

    One difference I've noticed is that Smiths didn't put a number (presumably a s/n?) on the outside of the caseback of that diver; other marques and makers who used that same generic (Seiko or same as?) housing often do. So that would be another thing against it being a Smiths but who knows? As I said, if you like it and it keeps good time then it's doing it's job. Beautiful and useful (William Morris? I think it was him.)

    That Quasar is quite the beast to wear: I'm used to smaller, lighter watches and is not exactly subtle. It's very 1974. I need some kipper ties and big lapels and a medallion. And maybe a Ford Cortina.

  26. #126
    Grand Master abraxas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    ...

    That Quasar is quite the beast to wear: I'm used to smaller, lighter watches and is not exactly subtle. It's very 1974. I need some kipper ties and big lapels and a medallion. And maybe a Ford Cortina.
    Do we have a picture of yours? Give us a wrist shot.

  27. #127
    Quote Originally Posted by abraxas View Post
    Do we have a picture of yours? Give us a wrist shot.
    On its way! The weight and sheer heft of the thing is quite impressive but as a wearer of vintage watches and quartz beaters I've become used to smaller, lighter things on my wrist. (I did have one of those new "vintage" Seamasters a year or two back and it's sheer mass and volume was too much for me, as was the otherwise unimpeachable PRS-82.) I also seldom wear bracelets and thing one is particularly heavy. But it's hard not to love it, partly for the '70s aesthetic and partly for the incredible history of an all-English, in-house quartz movement. Add in the rarity (I think there are five -- yes, 5 -- working examples) and it's a definite keeper. Maybe not a daily (or even regular) wearer, but it completes my collection of the most interesting and important Smiths watches (along with a WW2 RAF "Mk X", a c.1951 "Hillary", a 1956 RAF "GS", and a 1967 RAF "6B"). The Quasar is a fascinating epilogue and swan song to the Cheltenham manufacture and one that I am extremely glad to have snagged at a very reasonable price.
    Last edited by Rev-O; 12th March 2020 at 11:30.

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