A 386 ..... I found mine again....

Mar 27, 2011,18:24 PM

Hello everyone...

Been very busy as of late ...   But i was reading somewhere about the first generation A 386 ElPrimero....  LouS  .great photos !!

it got me thinking...  I have one of those somewhere...  I remember when i first saw one about 20 years ago I had to find one for myself...  It was a very hard thing to do for a collector like myself based in the USA.   it had to be a 31 jewel version etc...

Well found one that was being sold by the son of the original owner.... and won it in a sales contest of all things.  He was a sales guy for Zenith / Movado  and his son told me he won two watches.  The other one was a gold watch of some sort and he sold it off and kept the Zenith.

Here is my purchase photo...
with boxes and instructions...  ( also showed the pilots / diver in the booklet as well if my memory serves me correctly ).

This was my only online photo i have posted of this watch until today...

and now some new photos... for everyone to enjoy...

Only thing i had done to this watch was had it serviced when I got it way back when ...had a 19mm long blue sharkskin strap made for it and  wore it a few times .

The back of the case had some scratch marks from using an incorrect spanner in opening the case. other then that its pretty much factory polished and grained....  I tried taking angled shots so you can see the detail of the case on the lug bevels.

caseback , serial number is visible I just blurred  it out for this post. Sorry i just noticed I swirled a little too much on the caseback ! but I think you still get the idea of the caseback condition.  Gota love the Zenith star on the caseback and crown.

I see no evidence  ( under the lug marking that a GF bracelet was ever fitted to this watch... )  .  Does anyone know what end pieces I would need ?   Someone said "ZJ" or "ZM" marked end pieces but would like to get some confirmation.

Wearing it now... and it still stunning....

I just don t know why I kept it at the bank for the last 17 years... ....... 

Good Hunting

Bill Sohne

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 By: Rickr25 : March 27th, 2011-18:36
Great find.


 By: LouS : March 27th, 2011-19:10
Bill, That's great! I recognize the original photo - it was one of my visual references when I was stalking my A 386. Looks like you've changed the crown as well. Every time I see the A 386, I am almost as blown away as the first time I saw it. Zenith obv...  

its the original North Star crown. maybe the angle is tricking the eye...

 By: Bill Sohne : March 27th, 2011-19:18
Hi Lou I have a bracelet ready to go.. just need end pieces...augh. but then again do I want to scratch the underside of the lugs ? really big problems ! Good Hunting Bill

17 years!!!

 By: grigo : March 27th, 2011-22:48
Amazing, you kept in the bank for 17 years. It is a real nice watch it is kind of like a big find, except that you have had it all this time. It could use another strap, the blue shark skin just does not suit it from my perspective. Well congradulations o... 

This Chrono may well be, with the S 58, my first Zenith watch.

 By: amanico : March 27th, 2011-23:24
Superb condition, cool dial... A Vintage as I like them. Congratulations on your latest cach, Bill. Best, Nicolas.

Very nice

 By: Ubik : March 29th, 2011-04:46
Great vintage chronograph. Those subdials just jump out at you. What else have you forgotten in your bank?

Even if you forget . . .

 By: Dr No : March 29th, 2011-08:54
. . . the stellar El Primero movement and the rich tradition of Zenith, the A386 still ranks amongst the most handsome chronos of all time. That it was one of the first vehicles for the legendary EP movement makes it all the better. Thanks for sharing thi... 

Lucky you do not change banks as soon as i do otherwise...

 By: luc00 : April 3rd, 2011-12:06
Fantastic watch. I like as well the shark strap on it. It helps me to consider which strap i should put on my striking 10 th as i find the standard one a bit disapointing ( probably the Panerai virus is still active.. Cheers. Luc


 By: kevindesign : April 3rd, 2011-23:45
Hello, would you be interested to sell it? I have been looking for one of these for a while. I would also consider a trade and have a few goodies in my collection including a Zenith Rainbow, 1950s Universal Tri-Compax NOS, 1969 Heuer Carrera Cal. 12, 1940... 

congrats on your watch, very nice example

 By: georgeszaslavsky : April 10th, 2011-01:02
Glad that you have your a386 nicely restored and in perfect shape, enjoy it in good health.