Black case mini version of the larger Camper
Hi, this is Alan (contact info below). Thanks for your interest. Here is a small and seemingly uncommon, mechanical TIMEX from 1983 which appears to be a black-case "mini" version of the classic mechanical Camper Watch or "Marines" watch sold at the time. See far below for pics of the date code 1983, or click this link.
This standard size pencil shows the relative size of the watch! It's about 24 mm in horizontal measurement, without the crown, substantially smaller than the 36 mm standard Camper Watch that TIMEX was selling. Whether this was marketed primarily to kids, or to women, or both, is uncertain. The full-size Camper is not rare, many examples for sale all the time. This one, however, does not come up much at all, and seems sort of rare. Likely was not made in large numbers.
The watch appears very similar to the above pictured watch, from an ad that appeared in an Italian magazine in 1983. The dial and hands are identical. The case on my watch is black, and it appears that the pictured watch has a green/olive case, just like the classic Camper Watch. Here is a page dedicated to the original mechanical Camper Watch. The case has the classic Camper morphology, created a single piece of injection-molded plastic/resin with fixed lugs. You can see the injection port for the mold, the little "belly button" in the center of the back. ASSEMBLED IN PHILIPPINES, WATER RESISTANT molded into back. A date code is on dial hidden until you disassemble watch. See below for few pics, or click here.
Lug width is 10 mm, and the watch came with a 10 mm nylon strap in black and grey.
The dial is very much like the larger classic Camper Watch. Black background, white markings, 1-12 and 13-24 hour designations, and TIMEX, WATER RESISTANT along with the WAVE symbol for water resistance. It is believed that this watch is one of the earliest ones with the wave, which existed for many years alongside WATER RESISTANT, until it finally stood on it's own, with WATER RESISTANT seeming to disappear around 1993 or so.
The hands, however are different from the larger Camper. Stick hands, with no luminous material, and a orange colored stick seconds hand instead of white.
Acrylic crystal is nearly flat at the face, rises up sort of steeply at the edge. Had some scratches when I got it, buffed out easily.
Steel buckle, allows adjustment of the length of the nylon strap.
Attractive little watch, overall. The colored seconds hand adds a little bit of fun. Black and grey strap complements the black case.
The above image is of the full-page ad from which the inset picture, earlier on this review, was taken. You can see the smaller watch is pictured alongside the larger 36 mm Camper Watch. It's from an Italian magazine called Topolino, from 1983, and they are called "MARINES WRIST WATCH." I am pretty sure the case color of this watch is green, and mine is clearly a black case watch. Otherwise, aside from the differences in strap color (this one has brown tones) the watches appear identical, and were likely part of the same development plan. My watch was purchased from someone in California. BTW, I have another watch, same size with a green case, that has a different dial, but has the exact same strap as the watch in this ad. Here is that watch.
I like the squared-off flat top of the 4.
All in all, a nice TIMEX mechanical from 1983, in a "military style," nearly identical to a "Marines Wrist Watch" TIMEX advertised in an Italian magazine. Essentially the same, except for a black instead of a green case. Obviously, this could be worn by anyone, man, woman, child, but it would be interesting to know how TIMEX marketed the watch, and/or how it was developed. If anyone knows more about this uncommonly found watch, please let me know. Thanks for reading.
*** New pics and info added, Dec 2018. ***
Here is the whole watch with the crystal and metal ring removed.
Few more detail pictures of the watch with crystal removed, no distortion from the glass, etc.