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The Watch Appreciation Thread (Reviews and Photos of Men's Timepieces by Rolex, Patek Philippe, Brei

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by gdl203, May 20, 2007.

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  1. culverwood

    culverwood Well-Known Member

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    The original quotation was by William Morris in 1880.

    "If you want a golden rule that will fit everybody, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."
     
  2. Belligero

    Belligero Well-Known Member

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    I think that's a common dilemma for anyone who's considering new vs. vintage, regardless of manufacturer.

    There are many factors that go into choosing a watch, but I wouldn't let specifications put me off one I liked — particularly with Rolex, whose movements are some of the most proven and durable in the industry. Decades of empirical evidence attests to the soundness of their design and construction.

    Also, the older movements offer more hands-on craftsmanship than the newer examples, and this holds true for almost every manufacturer. The skilled labour that went into watches designed and produced 40+ years ago just doesn't exist any more at a cost that's reasonable for a serial-production watch, so there's something special about the older ones.

    One personal note about the technical inferiority of the older models: looks generally trump specifications. Mechanical watches have been inherently obsolete ever since reliable quartz came on the scene, so it hasn't been entirely about technology for quite some time. I appreciate the refinements that go into a modern movement like Rolex's Cal. 4130, but I also consider the older 15XX movements to be some of the best examples of their period as well. And they still reliably keep good time on the wrist, which is the main point. The quality is definitely there, and Rolex will still be providing parts and service for the 1500-series calibres for at least a few more decades.

    It's a wearable connection to period of engineering history that won't be repeated; the same one that put men on the moon. The aeronautical masterpiece Boeing 747 was designed using similar techniques, and the basics were so solid that they continue to operate efficiently to this day without any plans of being phased out.

    [​IMG]
    (drafting the Rolex 1500-series movement)

    But I mostly just enjoy how the watch looks and wears:

    [​IMG]

    I wear it for the same activities I'd use a new watch for; swimming, skiing, cycling, travelling... I just don't stress about its technical inferiority.
     
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  3. jgold47

    jgold47 Well-Known Member

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    I see to keep adding them to my collection. up to three. 1 white, 1 black analog-ish one and 1 black all digital one. Good weekend/casual watch. Have no problem wearing it around the house doing projects, etc... for the price, its a great watch (however you measure such things....)
     
  4. in stitches

    in stitches Well-Known Member

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    newC, excellent conversation you bring up.

    i think that as far as straight aesthetics go, there are some vintage models i prefer and some current models i prefer. as far as movements go, ive never been a super expert in all that and dont really chase movements for the most part. i appreciate movements greatly, and sometimes aspects of a movement affect my decision, but i have never sought after a particular movement. ive never really been in the price point where that would be a decisive factor.

    as far as these huge value jumps in the vintage market, that is usually entirely dependent on some factor of or rarity or other cause for desirability. could be the fact clapton owned it for example. the PN daytona i think is objectively a gorgeous model, but the value there is really only due to its history and the uncertainty behind it. with things like that i guess there is always the possibility of a decline in value, and if one is buying one solely as an investment piece, its probably not the soundest investment out there.
     
  5. Kaplan

    Kaplan Well-Known Member

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    It certainly looks like it, thanks.


    I've had similar thoughts about finding it hard to justify the prices of vintage Rolexes. But in my case it's not that I find them inferior to modern models (I think Belligero makes a good point above), but more a case of just finding them too costly. 22 years ago I bought a new Sub 14060 for about $1700. Now, I've since come to appreciate the aesthetics of a matte dial 5513, but paying 4 times the price I did for something used, only to get a minor cosmetic upgrade (coupled with my unnatural aversion to not being the first owner), makes it hard to justify. Also, I'm not the type who'd want several nearly identical watches, so there'd be no room for two subs and since I have history with my old 14060 having worn it from Greenland to New Zealand, it makes it even harder.

    Now, if I didn't have (almost) the Rolex I prefer, and if I was ok with their current pricing, I would almost certainly overcome my second hand phobia and go vintage as there's nothing in Rolex's current lineup I find value in.

    Btw, Belligero that GMT is beautiful :)
     
  6. no frills

    no frills Well-Known Member

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    I checked THIS one out yesterday, from their Aviation line.

    [​IMG]



    Somewhat large? Yes: Size of case/total weight -> 54.1 x 52.4 x 16.4mm / 118g

    Totally over-engineered for anyone except a Navy SEAL, I think:

    Multi-Band Atomic Timekeeping (US, UK, Germany, Japan, China)
    Receives time calibration radio signals which keep the displayed time accurate
    Auto receive function (up to 6 times per day/up to 5 times per day for China)
    Manual receive function
    Signal: US WWVB, UK MSF, Germany DCF77, Japan JJY40/JJY60, China BPC
    Frequency: US 60kHz, UK 60kHz, Germany 77.5kHz, Japan 40/60kHz, BPC 68.5kHz
    • Tough Solar Power
    • Shock Resistant
    • Triple G Resistant
    • Tough Movement
    • Auto hand home position correction
    • 200M Water Resistant
    • Neo-brite luminous hands and markers
    • Thermometer
      Display range: -10 to 60 C (14 to 140 F)
      Display unit: 1 C (2 F)
    • World Time
      29 times zones (29 cities + UTC), city code display, daylight saving on/off, home city/world time swapping)
    • Beeper Alarm
    • 1/20 second chronograph
      Measuring capacity: 1:59'59.95"
      Measuring modes: Elapsed time
      Other: Fly back
    • Countdown Timer
      Measuring unit: 1 second
      Countdown range: 60 minutes
      Countdown start time setting range: 1 to 60 minutes (1-minute increments)
    • Full Auto-Calendar (pre-programmed until the year 2099)
    • Day/Date Display
    • 12/24 Hour Formats
    • Accuracy: +/- 15 seconds per month (with no signal calibration)
    • Storage Battery: Solar Rechargeable Battery
    • Low Battery Warning
    • Power Saving Function
    • Approx. Battery Life: 6 months on full charge (without further exposure to light)
    • Module: 5240

    (Although that thermometer could come in handy if one of my daughters was running a fever...)

    Already one of their higher priced models at $600: http://www.gshock.com/watches/Aviation/GWA1000FC-2A

    I think this is just a passing fancy on my part, so I will continue to investigate and check out the wares but the fact that I haven't pulled the trigger given the price point and after seeing one on my wrist (and it ain't half bad either) probably - fingers crossed - means I will do without it. Whooooooooooooooooooooooa!!!!
     
  7. Dino944

    Dino944 Well-Known Member

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    Mimo, well done! Great hearing about the next generation of watch nuts growing into the hobby. I have lots of great memories of watch research, reconnaissance, and shopping with my Dad, both for his watches and mine. I hope he enjoys it, and that you will continue to enjoy this crazy hobby of ours with the added benefit of eventually having another SF'er (one in your own home) to bounce watch ideas off of. Great job!
    +1

    I agree with all that Belligero has stated. Particularly with Rolex, you will see more hand workmanship on vintage models, than what you will see on modern pieces. Sure there are some great advancements in production (allowing companies to make more watches efficiently), and technological advancements in materials such as ceramics, carbon fiber, and using springs that are largely anti-magnetic. But in the grand scheme of things, I don't find the technological advance, make me happier, make me appreciate a watch more, or make my older watches seem deficient. Production advances only help the manufacturers in terms of speeding up what they can make, and when I see current prices it doesn't seem any savings get passed on to me. As for the use of new materials, Carbon Fiber just seems like a politically correct and fancy way of saying plastic. Sure its light and strong, and makes sense in racing cars, but I don't find it appealing on watches. Ceramic, sure its scratch proof, but we've seen that it can still be damaged or shatter. The old aluminum bezel inserts could be scratched or dented, but they would still function, and they were less expensive and easier to replace. Beyond, that the colors available on the aluminum, the pepsi, the coke, the root beer, blue Sub, the green of the LV, seemed deeper, richer and more attractive to me than the modern ceramic green, or blue of current Subs. The only modern colored bezel I like so far is the Blue Black GMT2.

    I own a modern 116250 with Cal 4130, and it out performs my El Primero based 16520 in terms of advancements, power reserve, ease of service (not that I service the watch), seeing the luminous markings. Yet, the 16520 has more hand workmanship, was made in smaller batches because of the hand workmanship, and I find the dials more attractive. There is a place in my collection and heart for each but for different reasons.
    +1 another great post.

    I do appreciate movements. Once one is in a certain price range, I don't want to feel that I am wearing simply a more polished version of the same movement that is sitting in someone's $1,000 watch if I am wearing something that is substantially more expensive. It would be like finding out that the engine in a new Porsche Turbo is simply a chromed version of what is in someone's Kia. Each car has a job to do, but I would feel like I was being ripped off if that is what I found was under the hood of a Porsche that is drastically more expensive. That being said, I try to choose my watches/movements carefully. Still I can enjoy wearing my 12 year old Rolex 16570 Ex2 with a rather simply finished movement, just as I can enjoy wearing my 15202 Jumbo with cal 2121. Hell, cal. 2121 has been around for about 4 decades and is still celebrated as a great movement even if it doesn't have the technological advances of the latest Rolex.

    Celebrity ownership often affects values drastically. An early 1960's Ferrari 250 Lusso owned by Steve McQueen sold for around $2 Million dollars within the last few years and it was brown. Really nice 250 Lussos in far more desirable colors sell for 1.2-1.4 million. Documented celebrity ownership, by a popular person always drives the price up when it comes to collectors. Personally, I'm not sure owning something that belonged to a famous person would mean enough to me to pay a premium. I would rather have a pristine NOS item with all boxes and papers rather than something banged around by a celebrity. In the end, rarity will always pay a role, and on some level again, that ties into celebrity ownership. How many albino Daytonas can someone say are or were owned by Clapton or other celebrities. In the end what drives collectors is only known in the heart and mind of each collector.
    I'm not a fan of the Albino Daytona. I'd rather have either a PN or or vintage Panda. I think when you talk about vintage anything, it goes beyond technology. It goes into having something rare that not everyone has. Anyone can walk into a current Rolex dealer and buy any model and then can have it for you pretty quickly. You have to do a bit more than that to get a good vintage Orange Hand Ex2 or PN Daytona. Its also something you won't see on about a dozen people's wrists as you walk through the streets of Manhattan, LA, or Chicago.

    If someone is buying vintage, its about buying something that has survived decades, that may have some battle scars, because they were bought when people wore watches and didn't save them for investment purposes. So really good ones often take time to locate. I think if someone buys what they true adore, they won't be disappointed with the value if it only stays stable or it declines. Not everyone will like our choices, and markets for a variety of items is fickle. Resale value does become a consideration to many people, particularly if an item is very costly. However, it should not be the primary factor in one's decisions. If you bought it for yourself, you wore it and enjoyed it, then you got your money's worth.
     
  8. Dino944

    Dino944 Well-Known Member

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    While I think a G-shock could serve a valuable place in someone's life as a rugged beater, I don't think I'd spend a lot of money on one. Sure its far from Rolex, Omega, or Breitling watches, but I can't see spending $600 on a plastic digital watch...but that's just me. If it puts a smile on your face when you try it on go for it!
     
  9. no frills

    no frills Well-Known Member

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    Current retail prices at the Casio website ranges from $70 to $600, with secondary market prices all over the place.

    But yeah, I'm really not sure I'll get myself one.
     
  10. in stitches

    in stitches Well-Known Member

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    great stuff al always, dino. :fonz:
     
  11. Keith T

    Keith T Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    EDIT: revised meme generator to something potentially more humorous and less offensive.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
    4 people like this.
  12. qubed

    qubed Well-Known Member

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    Kaplan, keep in mind that $1700 in 1991 is just over 5 grand today with inflation today, so you really wouldn't be paying 4x.
     
  13. DLJr

    DLJr Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. Some of the G-Shocks are outrageous. I used to own a "simple" one years ago. I wore it around the house, something that my dog would bite when we played and I wouldn't care. Now it's been replaced by an Seiko 007, and I enjoy that far more as a beater. I have a running watch for any digital tool purposes anyway. Just my 2 pennies.
     
  14. Kaplan

    Kaplan Well-Known Member

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    qubed, you're of course right (without checking the specific numbers) and if I didn't already had something to scratch my Rolex itch I would probably find a way to justify current prices. For now I have settled for admiring the 5513 from afar :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  15. Belligero

    Belligero Well-Known Member

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    Regrets, Frilly — and you know I love ya — but when I see one of those over-the-top wrist computers, I don't picture "badass Navy SEAL", I picture "Dwight Schrute": [​IMG] Of course, that might just be due my general impression of the type of humourless forum person that gets a bit TOO into his Casios/Seikos and completely loses connection with reality. On the other hand, you do have some rather decent watches and write amusing stuff, so there's no real risk in going for their most convoluted gadget... probably. But have you seen the instruction manual for one of those things? They're typically the size of a Russian novel! It's cool that it tells you what temperature your wrist is and everything, but it seems a bit, y'know, much. Granted, Gs have never been about subtlety , but I'd just get one of their simple, tough and legible semi-normal models instead of wasting time reading tiny print trying to figure out how to set that damned thing. The whole point of a G-Shock is to completely not give a shit about it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  16. no frills

    no frills Well-Known Member

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    Ah no, no, I wrote that post with a bit of tongue-in-cheek slant. Hehe. Ain't gonna get this one. :)
     
  17. Belligero

    Belligero Well-Known Member

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    I kinda figured as much. Good example of the specifications-can-get-pretty-ridiculous thing. :cheers:
     
  18. Cylon

    Cylon Well-Known Member

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    I LOL'd

    Thanks Dino.
     
  19. in stitches

    in stitches Well-Known Member

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    i cant imagine wearing any G-shock. :hide:
     
  20. robinsongreen68

    robinsongreen68 Well-Known Member

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    stitches, what is the rolex you've been wearing in your waywts recently? datejust?
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
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