The Origin of an Icon: Polerouter Vintage Mechanical Watch.

Feb 8, 2023 | High-end watches | 0 comments

Why is the Polerouter vintage mechanical watch so much admired? What is your story?

Universal Genève is a brand not so well known, if we compare it with Rolex and Omega, but for those who are immersed in the world of watchmaking is very close.

Especially for admirers of vintage mechanical watches because you can’t omit that this is a historically significant piece.

The History of the Polerouter Vintage Mechanical Clock

In 1954, the
Scandinavian Airlines System
established the first commercial flight between Copenhagen and Los Angeles.

A 2600 km flight over the North Pole that at the time represented a challenge for pilots and the equipment used during the flight.

Mainly because the action of the temperature and the high magnetic fields of the damaged the pilot’s instruments or generated erroneous results.

As soon as the airline understood the need for reliable instruments, they asked Universal Genève for a mechanical watch that could withstand these conditions.

Thus was born the Polerouter, which was later officially presented to the public. It should be noted that the first models were equipped with the same 138SS automatic caliber as those of the pilots.

The Creator of the Masterpiece.

When the request for this watch was made to Universal Genève, they did not hesitate to rely on Gérald Genta, who at the time was only 23 years old.

Genta was in charge of the design of this vintage mechanical watch Polerouter, it should be noted that, before coming to light this watch was subjected to various tests.

One of the genius ideas of the Univresal watchmakers is that they designed a tension ring adjustable to a curved dial and sealing the watch even more, this functioned as a shield against magnetic fields.

Vintage Polerouter Mechanical Watch Movement.

The initial models were fitted with a proprietary Bumper movement, known as the caliber 138 SS, but this was soon replaced by a state-of-the-art micro-rotor with a “Côtes de Genève” finish.

With this variation, a slimmer mechanism was achieved so that the rotor did not overshadow the rest of the components.

Polarouter or Polarouter?

If you see somewhere that this watch is called “Polarouter”, it is not a typo, but this was its initial name.

Later, the watch was renamed “Polerouter” as it was difficult to pronounce.

More Details About the Polerouter Vintage Mechanical Watch.

The watch was produced in many variations, which is why you can find some of these models in the vintage market:

  • Polerouter de luxe.
  • Jet Polerouter.
  • Polerouter Super.
  • Polerouter Genève.
  • Polerouter Compact.
  • Polerouter “NS”.
  • Polerouter Sub, which is the diving model

The workhorse quality of the Polerouter is its resistance and durability under extreme temperature and altitude conditions.

Among the different varieties of Polerouter you will get with single or double cross stitches, without cross, with twisted and / or straight horns, in steel, gold or 18k gold.

Those who admire the more traditional Polerouter model will agree that the best is the steel one, with a double cross-shaped dial, twisted horns, caliber 215 and fluted dauphine hands.

Polerouter Date an equivalent to the Rolex Oyster Date and the Omega Seamaster Date.

In the middle of the last century Universal Genève had a huge rivalry with Rolex and their sports models were on par in terms of price.

The Polerouter Date for example is a classic dress watch that is considered as special as the Rolex Oyster Date and the Omega Seamaster Date.

This version consists of a 34 mm case, with an asymmetrical date window and a clean dial design.

The mid-century versions were fitted with the 218-2 caliber, while subsequent models had the famed Caliber 69.

Vintage Mechanical Watch Polerouter Sub.

In 1961 appeared the Polerouter Sub which was produced until 1968, this was also designed by the mind of Gerald Genta.

It is ranked among one of the best watch tools that is ideal for amateur divers and experienced sailors.

There are two versions of the Super Compressor: the double-crown Super Compressor, which is considered rare, and the single-crown model.

The single-crown models have both symmetrical and asymmetrical case versions.

But in general, all models were equipped with the Caliber 69, except for the double crown subs, which still used the Cal. 215 original.

Today’s Polerouter Sub are longed for by vintage mechanical watch lovers and can be hard to come by.

How much does a Vintage Polerouter Mechanical Watch cost?

The price varies according to the version of the watch, materials, conservation and demand, in you can get models from 600 Euros to others that exceed 10 thousand euros.

Buy Vintage Mechanical Clock.

Mechanical watches have their charm and a select club of admirers, if you long to have one of these you can contact Adeler Jewelers and we will help you in the buying and selling process.

We have at your disposal Rolex, Omega, Zenith and other great brands so you can make an excellent investment.

And if you want to sell a used watch, we can offer you an accurate valuation.Contact one of our advisors!

Remember that…

We have years of experience in the market buying and selling watches!