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Rose gold watch-picture included - Page 4

post #46 of 64
Funny story about that. I live in Shenzhen and got Seagull's Hong Kong address from their website. I didn't notice until I was in front of the building that it was on the 30th floor and most definitely not a retail store. So I rode the elevator up and rang their doorbell. It turns out it was the office of Tsinlien Sea-Gull Co., Ltd, the only "abroad agent" for Seagull watches. I was invited in to a meeting room where two of the people in the office brought out a big black box with a dozen display trays of about eight watches each. I think they expected me to buy in bulk.

I tried to ask where you can buy them retail, but either the language barrier was too difficult or they didn't want to tell me. They were very helpful answering all my novice's questions and sent me away with some literature. I went back a few days later and put in an order for the watch I described above.

These links might be helpful:
http://www.tsinyi.com/gongsijianjie/all.htm
http://www.globalsources.com/gsol/I/...2485.htm#goto2

If there's anything I can ask them for you while I'm there on Wednesday, let me know.

Sara
post #47 of 64
Do you happen to know how much one of the men's skeleton chronographs are? (specifically the one in the bottom right corner of http://www.tsinyi.com/produce/Subkin...dong=3&page=13 )
post #48 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
I am aware of Dufour's methods of production which he takes pride in. He even makes the buckle. My comment was about vintage/antique watches in general and how their quality was exceptional using what methods they had.

Of course, what I like is the tradition of a product, not any of that plastic marketing companies use these days.

I chanced on this thread late, but I have some thoughts.

1. Philippe Dufour is an extreme traditionalist in his art, both in terms of conception and finish. All of his watches, the Simplicity, the spectacular Grande Sonnerie and the now discontinued Duality are the zenith of the watchmaking craft in terms of finish, not in terms of innovation; the argument that the Duality is groundbreaking can be made but it is not an entirely new idea. Watches with similar levels of finish, and at a fraction of the $50,000 retail price (and a multi-year waiting list) can be found on the vintage market. They include best examples of the Vacheron Constantin Chronometre Royale, for pocketwatches it's even easier to find superb levels of finish, larger parts are easier to finish. Other watchmakers like Vianney Halter, Greubel Forsey, amongst others, provide more and clever innovations than Mr Dufour. I think this is very very important when evaluating Dufour's work.

2. A minor correction, but I do not believe Philippe makes the case or the buckle for his watches, they are made to the highest standards by external contractors (the buckle for the Grande Sonnerie was a Philippe's own design though, the most complicated buckle I've ever seen - http://www.thepurists.com/watch/feat...ur/buckle.jpg). Even the dials are made by Metalem, and signed as such. And so are most of the parts of the movement, Philippe finishes them.

3. Lastly, the Seagull watches are interesting novelties at that price point. Most are not made to last for a long time, unlike Pateks, after all you look after a Patek for the next generation. :-) They are rough and they are crude, but also reflective of an industry that is at its infancy. You'll be surprised at how crudely parts were finished in watches from the late 1600s.
post #49 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by jj4
Do you happen to know how much one of the men's skeleton chronographs are? (specifically the one in the bottom right corner of http://www.tsinyi.com/produce/Subkin...dong=3&page=13 )

They told me US$250. Also comes in a brushed finish.
post #50 of 64
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SJX
3. Lastly, the Seagull watches are interesting novelties at that price point. Most are not made to last for a long time, unlike Pateks, after all you look after a Patek for the next generation. :-) They are rough and they are crude, but also reflective of an industry that is at its infancy. You'll be surprised at how crudely parts were finished in watches from the late 1600s.
First time I've heard that, what's your experience? Maybe something other than a Patek advertisement?

Tom
post #51 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiger02
First time I've heard that, what's your experience? Maybe something other than a Patek advertisement?

Tom

I do not have experience with the Seagull, though I do with similar Chinese watches; my comments are also based upon conversations with others more expert on horology than myself.

Seagull watches, and other similar watches, are usually made with lower grade steels, which will not stand the test of time due to corrosion and the resultant pitting. High grade steel that will last is expensive to make and machine, and uneconomical for a $250 watch. Even high grade steel will suffer in time, in a thousand years most likely even the Rolex submariner with 316L grade surgical steel will be in poor shape. Only precious metals will last nearly forever, and even then not all precious metals as some gold alloys will discolour over time (ie. pink gold turning red in some spots) Merely wearing the watch will result in that over time. This would apply to both the parts in the movement and of the case.

Regards,

JiaXian
post #52 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by SJX
I chanced on this thread late, but I have some thoughts. 1. Philippe Dufour is an extreme traditionalist in his art, both in terms of conception and finish. All of his watches, the Simplicity, the spectacular Grande Sonnerie and the now discontinued Duality are the zenith of the watchmaking craft in terms of finish, not in terms of innovation; the argument that the Duality is groundbreaking can be made but it is not an entirely new idea. Watches with similar levels of finish, and at a fraction of the $50,000 retail price (and a multi-year waiting list) can be found on the vintage market. They include best examples of the Vacheron Constantin Chronometre Royale, for pocketwatches it's even easier to find superb levels of finish, larger parts are easier to finish. Other watchmakers like Vianney Halter, Greubel Forsey, amongst others, provide more and clever innovations than Mr Dufour. I think this is very very important when evaluating Dufour's work.
Of course, that was what I was trying to say. Namely, I feel that Dufour's watches are masterfully finished and done but he is somewhat of a sacred cow being that if you question his intentions people automatically charge forth. That is precisely the problem since Dufour's methods are absolutely nothing new; rather, people seem to imply his methods herald something momentous in terms of innovation. Then also people who find solace in the black polished bridges of Dufour's or his bevelling tend to ignore the watches of old, which had absolutely stunning workmanship. Take a look at watches from Haas Neveux, C.H.Meylan, Touchon, et al, all of which are pretty much forgotten today. In fact, Haas Neveux was an inspiration for P.Dufour. It's somewhat hypocritical. As for his traditionalist attitude, I don't feel his case designs are particularly traditional. The Breguet aesthetic is the most traditional, I feel. I have no problem with Philippe Dufour and his beautiful niche. My issue is with the hypocritical cult surrounding his creations.
post #53 of 64
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SJX
Seagull watches, and other similar watches, are usually made with lower grade steels, which will not stand the test of time due to corrosion and the resultant pitting. High grade steel that will last is expensive to make and machine, and uneconomical for a $250 watch...
JiaXian
Interesting. Would you say that this goes the same for a $400 Hamilton, which includes ~$150 of cachet money? In other words, all modestly-priced watches? Or just the non-first world ones?

Tom
post #54 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiger02
Interesting. Would you say that this goes the same for a $400 Hamilton, which includes ~$150 of cachet money? In other words, all modestly-priced watches? Or just the non-first world ones?

Tom

Hi Tom, the production of low to mid range watches in Switzerland is so vast that obtaining steel cases of relatively decent quality is easy; there are scores of companies happy to do it relatively cheaply if you buy in volume, visit the Baselworld fair later this month and you'll understand. In China, majority of production, in the hundreds of millions of pieces per annum, is of the cheap disposable sort. As far as I know, it is difficult/impossible to obtain well machined and finished cases as neither the talent nor machinery exists as the demand for them is too small. That is changing though, Swatch Group in particular, owners of Breguet and Blancpain, amongst others, has started production in China of cases and parts, some bits of certain Swatch group products may come from elsewhere other than Switzerland.

Lastly, having owned both Seagull watches and Hamiltons, the case work on the Hamiltons are far better, edges are more crisp and brush finish is more consistent. I can't tell the steel quality by looking, but I suspect the Hamilton will win too. As you note, the $400 Hamilton has $150 of "cachet money", the $250 Seagull probably has $150 or even $200 of cachet money. In China, if you know where to look in Shanghai, such watches can be obtained for far less than what you see on the internet.
post #55 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by operationexpat
Here is a picture of what Seagull calls a "real Tourbillon"--from the catalogue of course.


Anything that is not made like a Breguet Tourbillon is not really a Tourbillon, but a variation thereof, such as a flying Tourbillon.

Jon.
post #56 of 64
Horologically speaking, China is not ready for prime time.
post #57 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomasso
Horologically speaking, China is not ready for prime time.
Except for: Kiu Tai Yu Flying Tourbillon's: Jon.
post #58 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiger02
Interesting. Would you say that this goes the same for a $400 Hamilton, which includes ~$150 of cachet money? In other words, all modestly-priced watches? Or just the non-first world ones?

Tom

Here are pictures of three modestly priced watches, all Japanese, which show a higher level of fit and finish than the Chinese ones, in my humble opinion. The one in the centre by the way, sells for less than EUR40.

Note my close up pictures of the Seiko Samurai diver, the orange dialled watch. See the brushed and polished titanium finish; titanium is difficult to bring to a mirror polished, how many Swiss, not to mention Chinese, firms can boast of that? also notice the milled pattern on the crown and bezel, tough to achieve with that fineness on titanium. I believe this is due to Seiko having a proprietary technique of creating cases from titanium powder instead of milling them from blocks or casting them from liquid which is the norm. The dial too exhibits a level of finish I don't see on Chinese watches, the metal markers have crisp corners and edges, and the luminous material is evenly applied.

The Samurai, retails for JPY35,000, which is about EUR247, of course you get a discount. If you know of a Chinese watch maker that produces watches at this price point, with this level of case finish, please let me know. I would be extremely keen to see their products.
post #59 of 64
Apologies, here are the pictures:







You can also see the polished titanium is not as perfectly mirror finished as gold, but it's reflective of the nature of titanium; that fact that Seiko can do it so cheaply is quite amazing.
post #60 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by imageWIS
Except for:

Kiu Tai Yu Flying Tourbillon's:



Jon.
I would say the same of the U.S., Except for RGM. And I don't even think that he has a Tourbillon, and is that Chinese thing even authentic.
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