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Underground Autavia!! or How Low Can You Go??

At long last, here is the story of the Autavia that spent at least five years buried in someone's back yard, and was then sold to one of our readers at a yard sale for the price of $1.00 (one dollar).

How about a "Caption Contest"? Is this Subterranean Autavia the answer to the Rolex Submariner? In terms of the price and the location, does this one win the "How Low Can You Go?" contest?

Please share your thoughts and captions.

Also, it would be great if someone might be able to provide a bezel for this historic Heuer.

Here is the e-mail that I received from one of our readers:


    I hope you can help me with this question.

    About 15-20 years ago I purchased a Heuer Autavia 2-register chronograph at a yard sale. From your website description, I believe it is a Model 3646 having 2 registers, one being a 45 minute register. I assume it is from the Sixties.

    The seller, in digging a garden, had unearthed it in his backyard. He assumed it had been buried for a number of years as he had been living on the property for over five years and it did not belong to him.

    Anyway, it was completely caked with dried mud, even under the pushers. The watchband (leather?) had rotted away and only shreds remained. It looked pretty bad but I figured the interior might have survived its entombment and some parts could be salvaged. So I paid him his asking price of a dollar.

    After a good bath and scrubbing I was happy to find that the watch was none the worse for its burial, all the chronograph functions worked perfectly, and it kept exact time. So I put a band on it, wound it up and have worn it off and on since then. I have never had to have the watch opened and it still functions and keeps time like a new watch.

    The burial did leave one scar. The moveable outer ring [bezel] which was calibrated in minutes (I think) was completely illegible although the ring itself survived well.

    Now the question: Can I get a replacement ring or at least the inset to the ring that has the numbers (hours, minutes, tachy or whatever)? I have attached a picture of the watch. Any help or advice will be greatly appreciated.

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Underground Autavia!! or How Low Can You Go??
Takes a lickin' & keeps on tickin'? *NM*
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