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We’ve been many a place and seen many an astounding thing over the years, but the recent incredible surge in popularity and value of the Universal Genève Compax chronographs has blown us away. Seemingly out of nowhere, these gorgeous chronographs have begun to receive the attention that they have deserved all along, and we at analog/shift have been extremely lucky and proud to serve as the best source for enthusiasts looking to add one of these rare and fine watches to their collection.
While these Compaxes were once dismissed by all but a small group of hardcore UG fans as a budget alternative to the Rolex Daytona (the case size, style and movement are extremely similar), UGs have really come into their own lately, and they have developed a rabid following that is completely independent of their Rolex analogs. Collectors now recognize how special and rare these watches are, and with one UG for approximately every 100 "Paul Newman" Daytonas, finding one is no easy feat (despite having become somewhat of an analog/shift specialty).
This particular example, a Reference 885108, is a colorful cousin to the popular "Nina Rindt" and "Evil Nina" models blowing up in the collector market. Commonly referred to as the "Blue Exotic Nina," the Reference 885108 is even less common than its Panda-dialed family, with fewer than a half-dozen examples known to us (and trust us, we've looked!).
Making the whole thing even sweeter is the incredible condition of this particular "Blue Exotic" Compax, with a case that is untouched and unpolished, a flawless dial and original hands with light even patina to the luminescent elements and a clean, unblemished bezel. The original factory sticker is even in place on the case back! Seemingly unworn, the condition of this piece is truly breathtaking, and it even comes with its original signed bracelet by JB Champion, Guarantee Certificate (blank), and a hangtag, making it a museum-quality example if there ever was one. Packaged in a 36mm case with twisted lugs and an amazingly colorful design, the watch just oozes cool and is a joy to wear - we wouldn’t change a thing about it!
The Compax is powered by the Valjoux 72 manually-wound chronograph movement, which is a legend in its own right, renowned for its robust and accurate performance. The same movement that is found in the Rolex Daytona (and many of the time period’s best chronographs), the tri-compax subsidiary register configuration features a running seconds hand, 12-hour and 30-minute counter, all topped off with a central sweep seconds hand.
As you probably already know, this is a rare opportunity to get your hands on one of the most unusual, colorful, and downright incredible timepieces from the golden age of sport chronographs.
We’re sure this one will go fast, so contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
To learn more about the Nina Rindt Compax and Universal Geneve, visit our friends at Hodinkee HERE.
Stainless Steel case is approximately 36mm (excluding crown). Universal Geneve Reference 885108. Valjoux 72 Manually-Wound Chronograph Movement. Circa late 1960s.
Overall condition: Case is in excellent condition over all, nearly NOS with virtually no signs of wear. Twisted lugs remain sharp and crisp, with factory case back sticker intact. Dial is in fantastic original condition . Subsidiary registers and luminescent markers are clean and show very light aging. All-original hands are in similarly excellent condition. Outer bezel shows no blemishes. Original case back and signed crown.
Includes original signed multi-link bracelet by JB Champion, blank guarantee booklet and hangtag.