First-generation watches by Gevril (ca. 1994-1999)

Displayed here are some of the earliest models offered by Gevril, a new brand founded in the 1990s. Using ETA movements, and employing a blend of highly sculpted cases with classic dial elements, these early models caught the attention of many collectors, and are sought-after today. Features such as elegant Breguet hands, dials with engine-turned patterns, and uni-sex sizes make these suitable for men or women seeking a reliable and uncommon watch for occasions formal or casual.

The case components are nicely sculpted: ribbed sides avoid the monotony of simple squared surfaces; the notches on bezel and case back align to provide continuity of form; the bezel slopes from the crystal's edge to meet the case band and lugs, giving an already fairly thin watch the illusion of being even more so (the 3-hand models). The dial, set fairly deep in the case to accommodate 3 layers of hands, employs a tasteful variety of textures and depths. The central pattern steps down to a matte ring which borders the brushed hours chapter with applied numerals. Finally, a matte ring with applied dots forms the outer boundary. The flat sapphire crystal is devoid of anti-reflective coating, so the various surfaces with different reflective qualities are a welcome aid to legibility in different types of lighting. Elegant hands of proper lengths are thin and dressy but slightly curved and provide enough contrast for easy reading of the time. On the 3-hand models, the long counter-balanced seconds hand suggests the accuracy of an observatory chronometer.

Innovations found on some early Gevril automatics include an indicator at 3:00 showing whether the screw-down crown is sealed properly (see silver dial below), and many were housed in a wooden box with a spring-loaded watch holder. It is a very slick piece of modern design. There are rumors on the Internet that these early Gevrils were designed and/or built by Audemars Piguet. The quality is certainly high enough that this is plausible, but I have never read confirmation of this theory.

More information on these and other early Gevrils can be found in this article on the Gevril Group website. The photos below were taken by myself of watches I own(ed).

Photos: click for larger.

Model A0111, #2560:

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Model AO111R, #1440:

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Model F0141, #1434:

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Model F0141, #1178:

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Text and photographs © C. Bradley Jacobs, WatchCarefully.com
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