Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv

Bulova Caliber 8137

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv

Caliber Number8137
Movement Type
Quartz, chronograph
262.144 kHz
Quartz Crystal
3-prong torsional resonator
Battery Cell
395 (SR927W)
FunctionsCentral hours; central minutes; small seconds at 6:00; chrono seconds at 6:00 when chronograph is running; 60 minute counter at 3:00; 12 hour counter at 9:00
Hacking Seconds?
Yes (energy saving)
Country of ManufactureJapan
Known Models
Bulova CURV Chronograph

The Bulova caliber 8137 is found in Bulova CURV chronograph watches. The 8137 is the world’s first curved chronograph movement. It is a high accuracy quartz (HAQ) movement with 11 jewels.

Bulova is owned by Citizen and the 8137 movement is made in Japan.

From Bulova:

“The world’s first curved chronograph movement features high-performance quartz technology with 262 kHz vibrational frequency for precise accuracy. Five-hand chronograph in a black stainless steel case with black and transparent blue dial, black hands and markers, anti-reflective curved sapphire crystal, exhibition case back with screw-back case, blue leather strap with an alligator grain texture and double-press deployant closure. Water resistance to 30 meters.”

Curved Movement:

The curve in the CURV is subtle, but it is actually curved. It is not easy to photograph, but the curve is there.

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curved

The image below is me doing my best to hold the movement holder and a flat object (plastic digital caliper) against it in one hand while operating the camera in the other. I did not go as far as calculating the degree of the curve, but you can see there is indeed a curve.

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Movement Test

The dial side is curved too:

Bulova Caliber 8137 Dial Side

No Central Chronograph Seconds:

The caliber 8137 is not like most chronograph watches with a central chronograph seconds hand that stays at 12:00 until it is activated. Watches with the 8137 do not have a central seconds hand. Instead, there is a small seconds subdial at 6:00 which serves as the regular running seconds as well as the chronograph seconds. Activating the chronograph function with the top pusher will switch the running seconds to chronograph seconds.

Chronograph Operation

  1. Press button “B”. The 6H hand will move to ‘60’ position.
  2. Press Button “A” to start the chronograph.
  3. Press Button “A” to stop the chronograph. Start again by pushing button “A” again.
  4. Press button “B” to reset Chronograph, returning all Chrono hands to the 12H position.
  5. Press button “B”. The 6H hand returns to current second hand time.
When there is no chronograph operation for 60 minutes after (1) or (4), the 6H hand will return to show current second hand time.

Resetting the Chronograph Hands to Zero:

  1. Pull the crown out to position “1”. The 6H hand will return to ‘60’.
  2. Press button “B” for 3 seconds.The 6H hand will return to ‘60’ again. (If it does not, press button “A” to move 6H hand to ‘60’.)
  3. Press button “B” for 3 seconds. The 3H hand will return to ‘60’. (If it does not, press button “A” to move 3H hand to ‘60’.)
  4. Press button “B” for 3 seconds. The 9H hand will return to ‘12’. (If it does not, press button “A” to move 9H hand to ‘12’.)
  5. Push the crown back to the “NORMAL” wearing position.


Bulova claims that the 8137 is capable of accuracy within 5 seconds per month, in part thank to their exclusive “Three Prong Torsional Resonator”. The Bulova caliber P102 has a quote where Bulova explained this technology like this:

The innovative Precisionist crystal has three prongs, creating a torsional resonator – the prongs not only move back and forth, but twist. Standard quartz crystals have only two prongs.

Battery Life:

Bulova states that the expected battery life for the CURV models with the caliber 8137 is approximately one year, but there have been claims of the battery lasting as long as two years. Using the chronograph more frequently will drain the battery faster. Please add your battery life experience in the comments below.

Extending the Battery Life:

“When the crown is in the “OUT” position, the motor and hands stop. Only the quartz crystal continues to vibrate, using very little power. If the watch is to be stored for a length of time, it is recommended that the crown be left in t he “OUT” position to prolong battery life.” -Bulova manual

Crown/Stem Removal:

To remove the crown and stem on the cal. 8137, look for the “PUSH” with an arrow pointing to a hole on the movement. There is a small detent tab with an indentation for your tweezers. The tab is centered for removal when the crown is pressed in. With the crown pulled out to time-setting mode, the tab is hidden to the side, preventing pressing with the crown in the incorrect position. Visual learners, see images below:


At a quick glance, one might think there is a metal cover (with a Bulova logo) over the battery that needs removed to access the battery. Actually, this is simply a sticker located on the inside of the caseback crystal, and has nothing to do with the movement. Below is what it looks like from inside the watch:

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Caseback Inside

Country of Origin:

The example watch for the images on this page is a gold tone Bulova CURV Chronograph (Ref: 97A144). The watch was brand new and came with a sticker on the caseback stating “JAPAN MOVEMENT CHINA BAND”. Apparently this is the minimum requirement of transparency required for customs (at least when importing to USA). Nowhere on the watch caseback or dial does it say Made in Japan or Made in China.

Bulova Curv 8137 Caseback Sticker

The only reference to a country of manufacture on the entire watch itself is the movement where the word JAPAN is crisp prominent. If the sticker was removed and the watch was used, the new owner would assume that the watch was made in Japan.

Upon disassembly of the watch, the back of dial (along the edge where you can’t see it when the caseback is on) has another country of origin stamp with the model number – implying that other components beyond just the band were also made in China.

Bulova Curv 8137 Made In China

This isn’t about whether or not stuff made in China is of quality or not, it’s about deception and lack of transparency in the watch industry. What if someone has a reason for not wanting to purchase items from a specific country? With a Bulova CURV, they’d be buying and wearing a watch that is assumed to be made in Japan.

Interestingly, with resurrected or acquired brands like Bulova, the origin story gets even more convoluted and confusing. A good example would be visiting the Bulova Wikipiedia page (which was possibly edited by Bulova or a Bulova hired PR agency, right?) and reading the first sentence:

“Bulova is an American timepiece manufacturing company that was founded in 1875 and has been owned by Japanese multinational conglomerate Citizen Watch Co. since 2008. The company makes watches, clocks and accessories, and it is based in New York City.”

Wow, there are a lot of origins there! If you asked someone on the street to read it, followed by the question: “Where are Bulova watches made?” Would they say America or Japan… or China?

Update: There is another country of origin stamp on the watch – and no, it’s not the band. Taking the caseback off, at the top on the bottom side (facing inside the watch when the caseback is screwed on), there is a laser etching signed “China Bulova”.

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Caseback Inside China Bulova

Additional Images Gallery:

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Movement Side

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Movement Holder Side View

Bulova Caliber 8137 Curv Movement

Bulova stock photo (left) and Caliber Corner image (right) side-by-side (caseback on vs caseback off):

Examples of Watches with the 8137:

Additional Resources:

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4 years ago

I’ve never seen a chronograph without a middle second hand before. I like it!

Jeremy Gomez
Jeremy Gomez
4 years ago

I have one and I love it. Even though the center seconds hands are usually thin, they still get in the way. I like how the logo on the dial isn’t covered by it.

3 years ago

I would like to by this movement, what is the price please?

3 years ago
Reply to  Julia

You can’t. It’s proprietary to Bulova and they won’t sell you the bare movement. Watchmaker repair parts suppliers like Esslinger or Ofrei don’t have them and cannot get them. If you want one, you have to buy a Bulova CURV chronograph with the movement inside.

3 years ago

What battery does this movement take? Thanks

Joseph h.
Joseph h.
11 months ago

I always wanted to see what the curved movement in these looked like but they are so expensive for a quartz chronograph watch. Thanks Caliber Corner! Now I’m even more intrigued after seeing it’s really curved.

Bob Hamilton
Bob Hamilton
9 months ago

Incredible review with high quality pictures. Thank you!

8 months ago

This is an amazing review, thanks for that. I have this watch and it is a absolute beauty. But i always wondered what is the use of the 11 jewels that are used here, Because there are other nr20 calibers with no jewels. No where in the internet can i find why? Do you think they have functional use, or are they for just Showcase purpose.

John raba
John raba
5 months ago
Reply to  chandan

Probably both. Some are possibly functional, and some are not. The high end citizen quartz has 9 jewels. None are under any load. My Longines VHP has no jewels. The hands move via stepper motors. I would like to see a disassembled Curv to see what it looks like under the top plate. In either case, I love my Curv. Contrary to some posts, it has an accuracy of +- 5 seconds per month, not per year. Still, that is extraordinary in terms of accuracy.

Prem Subrahmanyam
Prem Subrahmanyam
5 months ago

I experienced around a 1.5 year battery life

Tam O' Banter
Tam O' Banter
3 months ago

I have owned a Curv (titanium & rose gold on black silicon) for about 5 years now. It is nicely made for the price and fits my wrist well. I too thought it was 5s/year and was disappointed. Still, it is returning approx. 30s/year. I can’t understand why this “special movement” would only be as accurate as the several Swatch Irony watches I have owned. It is irksome that the Longines VHP models are literally 12 times more accurate for not much more money.

William Ransdell
William Ransdell
2 months ago

I took my Bulova CURV watch apart to change the battery in it but I cannot figure out how to get the battery out. It is held in place by two metal tabs and I can’t figure out how to release them. Can anyone help?

1 month ago

The smaller tab is spring-loaded to hold the battery on place. That tab has a little space to move in an arc – so pull gently that tab away into the space behind it to release the battery. Keep it against it’s need to spring back while inserting the new battery; then it’ll cost itself by the spring loading

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