Let's Talk About Replica Watches...

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Pastafarian, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. Prince of Paisley

    Prince of Paisley Senior member

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    (somewhat) cool story:

    Many moons ago (before I discovered the lifechanger that is SF) I was on holiday in Thailand. Being a horological as well as sartorial noob, I had no idea what the PPs, APs and VCs of the world were. I was walking by a random street vendor when I happened to see a replica of Franck Muller's Crazy Hours. Of course, I had no idea who or what Franck Muller was, I just thought it was exceedingly awesome, so I picked up one for a bargain price. I forget what it was now, but it probably was no more than $50. It was reasonably well built - definitely didn't feel cheap, and as far as I could tell the movement was spot on. I didn't think much of it, wearing it once in a while and showing it to my friends as a novelty watch who were all suitably impresed by the movement and the jumping hands but who probably also had never heard of Franck Muller before so didn't comment on the authenticity.

    Fast forward a couple of years, and now, having discovered SF and TZ, I was aware that my beloved jumping hand watch was, well, to put it not very nicely, a fake. I still wore it though. I don't see how (a) Franck Muller or (b) my reputation was, or will be, affected. No, I would not have had purchased a genuine version - I didn't even know it existed at the time of purchase - and no, no one called me out for having a replica.

    I was wearing it at work one day when a colleague happened to notice my watch (while I don't know if he is a member here, he definitely would fit right in). So I told him, like I tell everyone else - 'Yeah, wanna see a cool trick?' and I show him the jumping hands. So it turns out he knows all about Franck Muller and asks me where I got it from. Mind you, at that time we were of a pay grade where if we scrimped and saved a bit it was reasonably possibly that we could afford the original, so it was not out of the question that it was the real deal. At the time my 'daily beater' was a Yachtmaster my dad had got me after I graduated law school, which said colleague had complimented me on before. Anyhow, I tell him the truth, and he is more wowed by the fact that some street vendor in Bangkok can get the movement right than the fact that I was wearing a fake watch.

    To cut a long story short - no, I wouldn't go out of my way to look for something fake, but I think some of you guys blow things somewhat out of proportion. I don't wear the watch anymore though. Saving up for the real thing :p


    Maybe you didn't get a fake. If I were you I'd convince myself it was 'hot' - i.e. the real deal.

    I just looked up what this watch was. I want one. The Crazy Hours Color Dreams is the most spectacular watch I've ever seen. Does any other watch company use the 'crazy hours' movement?

    Not that I know of - that's why it's called a manufacture movt. Personally not my taste as it's a bit of a gimmick and hard to read the time.
     


  2. aleksandr

    aleksandr Senior member

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    Maybe you didn't get a fake. If I were you I'd convince myself it was 'hot' - i.e. the real deal.

    Nah, doubt it. Although one of these days I really should visit the Franck Muller boutique and see what the real deal feels like.

    Also - those who posted about Parnis homages - thanks for the heads up, am going to pick up a IWC Portuguese off eBay for a princely sum of $79. Will post pictures when I get it.
     


  3. jwmbro

    jwmbro Active Member

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    I think Debaufre offer their Submariner homages in a variety of coloured bezels. Try their online store here. I hear their quality is very good.

    Thanks for the recommendation. I also found a Brand called Steinhart, selling similar watches, also swiss made, but somewhat cheaper.

    Perhaps I shall have to peruse watchuseek.com and get some more information there.
     


  4. Metlin

    Metlin Senior member

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    From what I've read on Parnis and Sea Gull at TZ and other watch forums, it sounds like they make surprisingly good watches, especially at their price points.
     


  5. apropos

    apropos Senior member

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    I love how you can imitate anything/everything, but just leave out the original logo and suddenly it becomes a 'homage'. Seriously, who are you guys kidding? [​IMG] You all do realise that calling something a 'homage' is really a marketing term for a cheesy ripoff that involved zero effort on the part of the issuer to replicate since it required zero creativity to design and zero effort to palm off to suckers who think that somehow by wearing something that bears a passing resemblance to the original that some of the mojo associated with the original will rub off on them, or worse that as opposed to the suckers who bought the original they got a real deal since hey this looks like 99% of the original but gee whiz I only paid 5%!
     


  6. Xenon

    Xenon Senior member

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    I purchased several fakes recently to see what it was all about and have to say I am very favourably surprised with the quality and feel. Obviously i stayed away from anything with fake diamonds or precious metal.

    It would be really interesting to have all the folks here way say that fakes are cheesy feeling or look like crap participate in a small test where they would distinguish between real and fake watches mixed together. Would the success rate be superior to 50% right? Id be willing to bet no!

    I bought a fake Hublot big Bang not knowing that hublot was a well known brand (the watch is cool but gimmicky looking) only to have a few people in awe/ compliment my watch and ask me "you know what this is don't you?" when I looked kinda perplexed that they admired it. I later looked up hublot and went to a local AD carrying Hublot and the real ones looked just as gimmicky (but cool) with the REAL cheesy looking rubber strap.

    Who pays that kind of money for a genuine watch with rubber straps and kevlar/ceramic parts? [​IMG]
     


  7. TheWraith

    TheWraith Senior member

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    Thanks for the recommendation. I also found a Brand called Steinhart, selling similar watches, also swiss made, but somewhat cheaper.

    Perhaps I shall have to peruse watchuseek.com and get some more information there.


    Debaufre and Steinhart used to be one and the same company, but have split in recent times and, from what I've heard, Steinhart are now the inferior brand (though I'm sure there will be some who disagree). Make of that what you will.
     


  8. jwmbro

    jwmbro Active Member

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    Debaufre and Steinhart used to be one and the same company, but have split in recent times and, from what I've heard, Steinhart are now the inferior brand (though I'm sure there will be some who disagree). Make of that what you will.

    I just read some similar opinions to yours on watchuseek. The thing that is a bit concerning is that, despite Debaufre being made in switzerland, they distribute via the US, which means higher shipping, import tax, and more hassle for returns/warranty if anything goes wrong.
     


  9. Patek

    Patek Senior member

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    Thanks for the recommendation. I also found a Brand called Steinhart, selling similar watches, also swiss made, but somewhat cheaper.

    Perhaps I shall have to peruse watchuseek.com and get some more information there.


    Please check out watchouseek.com before purchasing anything on ebay. They are very helpful and will ask you to post pictures and know the country of origin. Posting there prior to purchasing has saved me a lot of money. I'm into vintage watches and am particularly found of old Patek Philippe watches. However, it is a minefield out there so tread carefully. In addition, find a good watch repair person and have the watch checked out as soon as you receive it.

    As far as fake watches go, they belong in the same category as everything else fake:
    Fake tits
    Fake gold/diamonds
    Fake Shelby Cobras
    Fake watches
    Fake art
    Fake leather/croc/gator
    Fake people...

    There are plenty of stylish options without resorting to fakes. I was in China on a business trip and my co-workers were enamored with buying fake everything. It is all crap and is literally for posers. Some of the watches they bought stopped working before we left the country, others have been running for years. However, that is besides the point. The point (should be), to buy a quality machine/work of art that will last and is also beautiful.

    A genuine vintage watch has history and patina and will maintain its value or even increase in value and it something you can pass on to your grandkids.
     


  10. TheWraith

    TheWraith Senior member

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    I just read some similar opinions to yours on watchuseek. The thing that is a bit concerning is that, despite Debaufre being made in switzerland, they distribute via the US, which means higher shipping, import tax, and more hassle for returns/warranty if anything goes wrong.
    Maybe, but you get a better watch in the end by most reports, which is really what it's all about. If that is still a concern for you, I'd say go with the Christopher Ward Trident. It may not have the green bezel you're after but it's a high quality watch (you can't really call it a homage either, which may/may not be a plus for you), it's made in Switzerland but ships from England and they have a fantastic 60:60 guarantee. Can't beat that. CW would be my pick.
     


  11. latkaguy

    latkaguy Well-Known Member

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    There are plenty of stylish options without resorting to fakes. I was in China on a business trip and my co-workers were enamored with buying fake everything. It is all crap and is literally for posers. Some of the watches they bought stopped working before we left the country, others have been running for years. However, that is besides the point. The point (should be), to buy a quality machine/work of art that will last and is also beautiful.

    A genuine vintage watch has history and patina and will maintain its value or even increase in value and it something you can pass on to your grandkids.


    I collect vintage watches (mostly British military, as I like their classic simplicity), but have also bought a fair number of fake watches. Not every watch purchase has to be in order to leave a timeless heirloom for the future. Some people buy Swatches, some Timexes (many of the latter have wonderful simple style), and some fakes. I have to say that many of the copies that I have bought have cases and dials that are indistinguishable, and have sturdy, reliable Miyota type movements in them.

    I was recently in Asia, and picked up a Rolex fake for my daughter's boyfriend. What amused me about it was although the case and dial were of amazingly high quality for the money (and yes, I have had the opportunity to compare it side by side with a Submariner), instead of Rolex, the brand name was Bagel Sport. I just couldn't resist it. I don't think that by buying this, I am committing some sort of theft against Rolex. I can assure you that there isn't a snowball's chance in the world that I would ever plunk down the money to buy a real Rolex for this kid. So Rolex isn't out a dime in terms of losing business to some counterfeiter. But a Bagel Sport works just fine for the situation, with no harm done.

    So, sometimes, a quality watch is a timeless heirloom, and sometimes it is just fun. You know, sometimes we invest a bit too much of ourselves into material objects. There isn't that much at stake here, gang.
     


  12. jhcam8

    jhcam8 Senior member

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    If the look of a thing is important to you, as opposed to the thing itself, then you're probably a fake kind of guy.
     


  13. TheWraith

    TheWraith Senior member

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    I don't have a problem with homage watches. Many are of very good quality and are clearly labelled under their own name. I would never buy a fake/replica watch. Never under any circumstances.
     


  14. Patek

    Patek Senior member

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    I collect vintage watches (mostly British military, as I like their classic simplicity), but have also bought a fair number of fake watches. Not every watch purchase has to be in order to leave a timeless heirloom for the future. Some people buy Swatches, some Timexes (many of the latter have wonderful simple style), and some fakes. I have to say that many of the copies that I have bought have cases and dials that are indistinguishable, and have sturdy, reliable Miyota type movements in them.

    I was recently in Asia, and picked up a Rolex fake for my daughter's boyfriend. What amused me about it was although the case and dial were of amazingly high quality for the money (and yes, I have had the opportunity to compare it side by side with a Submariner), instead of Rolex, the brand name was Bagel Sport. I just couldn't resist it. I don't think that by buying this, I am committing some sort of theft against Rolex. I can assure you that there isn't a snowball's chance in the world that I would ever plunk down the money to buy a real Rolex for this kid. So Rolex isn't out a dime in terms of losing business to some counterfeiter. But a Bagel Sport works just fine for the situation, with no harm done.

    So, sometimes, a quality watch is a timeless heirloom, and sometimes it is just fun. You know, sometimes we invest a bit too much of ourselves into material objects. There isn't that much at stake here, gang.


    I appreciate your appreciation of vintage watches. My daily wear watch for working on the race car and playing with the dog is a Tag Heuer, so I am in no way a watch snob. However, I stand behind my opinion of all things fake. A fake watch to me is like a fake leather jacket. Sure, some people can't tell the difference and it might look good for a while, but you still know you are wearing pleather.

    I really don't care about the watch company and I did not use that arguement. If I want to buy a croco strap for my watch, I spend the $20 more and get a real one. Does it look different? Not much, but I just hate all things fake.

    I would have bought the kid an MP3 player...
     


  15. in stitches

    in stitches Kung Joo Moderator

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    I just looked up what this watch was. I want one. The Crazy Hours Color Dreams is the most spectacular watch I've ever seen. Does any other watch company use the 'crazy hours' movement?

    none that i am aware of, that is in the high end watch category there are probably knock offs of the idea im sure, and i try to be aware of everything watch related(check out watch time mag its great watch porn). essentialy its an extra complicated retrograde complication, where a hand "snaps" from one position to another usually (but not limited to) use for hour minute seconds or even chronograph hands.
     


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