Up for grabs is a stunning and extremely rare Heuer “Pre-Carrera” chronograph, produced circa 1940s, with a Reference of 346. This particular variation is one of the earliest gilt-dial chronographs produced by Heuer, with a screwback case with Heuer printed on the outside of the caseback (which was later changed to a solid, blank caseback). Further, these chronographs were considerably large for the era at 38mm, and the successor Carrera line would be reduced to 36mm. In addition, this reference was built with a rare Valjoux 71 movement, which was later phased out for the Valjoux 72.
This Heuer chronograph is in excellent vintage condition. The case appears unpolished, with minor wear. The dial, still retaining much of its factory gloss, is very attractive, aged to a caramel “tropical” brown color, which shines brightly in the sunlight (but can be seen clearly indoors as well). Further, the watch retains its original radium lume on both dial and hands, aged to a pale yellow, and reading strongly on a geiger counter.