Valjoux 22: A movement that embodies the history of mechanical wristwatches

About the Valjoux 22

The Valjoux 22 is a movement with excellent workmanship that embodies the history of mechanical wristwatches. This is a legendary movement that was produced from 1914 until its end in 1974, and was in production for 60 years.
Until the 19th century, due to technical issues, pocket watches were the norm worldwide. Wristwatches then became popular around the world in the 1910s, and production of the Valjoux 22 began around that time. The Valjoux 22 and its derivatives were originally designed for use in pocket watches, and had a 14 ligne (approximately 31.1 mm) movement, which was larger than the typical wristwatches of the time.
The Valjoux 22 is a movement created in the early days of wristwatches against this historical backdrop, and is a hand-wound chronograph capable of 40 hours of continuous operation. The Valjoux 22 is also the model that powered the world's oldest chronograph. It is a highly valuable movement that has a long history of being used as a wristwatch movement, until the appearance of quartz watches in the 1970s and their competition with mechanical watches.

The most famous movement in this series is the Valjoux 72, which is in the same series as the Valjoux 22. The Valjoux 72 is a movement also used by Rolex and Patek Philippe, and is a model that was developed, improved, and produced from the Valjoux 22. It is a legendary model that began production in 1938 and has been produced in total in quantities of 750,000.
The Valjoux 72 basically uses the Valjoux 22 movement, which adds a long-term measurement function of over an hour to the two second and minute counters, and this movement has become widely used by many watch manufacturers.
The early Valjoux 22 had one pusher (Note 1) that was used to start and stop the chronograph. However, from 1936 onwards, two pushers were installed, and this led to the current design of wristwatches. This continued until the Valjoux 22 was discontinued in 1974.
Those who are somewhat knowledgeable about watches believe that in-house manufactured movements are preferable and that such watches are the most valuable, but there are also connoisseurs who find value in using movements ordered from outside. The movement that has come to attract attention from such people is the Valjoux 22.

The Valjoux 22 Used in a Variety of Watches

The Valjoux 22 is also used as a movement by famous watch manufacturers active at the forefront, for example, Breguet, which was in charge of producing watches for the French military in 1954, produced the Breguet Type 20 chronograph. The movement used in that watch was the Valjoux 22.
Breguet developed wristwatches for the French Air Force and Navy, and modified the Valjoux 22 to create the Valjoux 222, which was equipped with a flyback function (Note 2).
The Valjoux 22 was also used in Rolex watches, and the 1947 Rolex chronograph Ref. 2508 was equipped with the Valjoux 22. This watch uses soft iron, which has the excellent ability to block the effects of magnetism, and many Rolexes were produced using the Valjoux 22 movement.

Thus, the Valjoux 22 is a movement created at the time when the transition from pocket watches to mechanical wristwatches began, and it is still loved by many people today. Try holding a watch equipped with the Valjoux 22 and experience its excellent performance.


(Note 1) Pusher: Also called a push button. A button used to start, stop, reset, etc. the stopwatch function of a chronograph.
(Note 2) Flyback function: A function that allows you to stop the initial time measurement and reset the hands by simply pressing the push button once. When you release the push button, the hands start working again.
Valjoux 22
The history of the Valjoux 22 in famous wristwatches
Valjoux 22