Gallet was first started back in 1826 by a flamboyant entrepreneur by the name of Julian Gallet. The company began making pocket watches for the well-to-do of Switzerland and the business proved to be a success with the company's watches proving a popular pocket watch to own.
The company was taken over by Julian's's son, Leon, in early 1860 and soon Leon expanded operations with a partner based in the US. This was a smart move by Leon, who although he wouldn't have realized it at the time, had managed to form an alliance with the one country that was ahead of the Swiss when it came to automation of machining watch parts.
The company's watches proved popular during the First World War with servicemen who found the watches hardwearing and functional. Many wrist watches had hinged glass covers that were easily replaceable and had high-grade movements fitted. Chronographs were the mainstay of the company with many fine designs coming from the factory.
For the collector, some model names you might come across when searching for these watches are the 'Duo-Dial', 'Eureka' and 'Electra'. Other time measuring devices like stop watches were also made by Gallet and many of these are still collectible at very reasonable prices. The Valjoux 72 is a rare and highly collectible movement from around the 1930s that is much sought after.
The range of military watches is quite large and you shouldn't have too much trouble finding one that you like the look of. Many of the older chronograph movements might need a clean, but overall the quality of these watches is first class.
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