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LA Guy

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I would love to know the shops where you are finding such deals in Japan. All the popular stuff is pretty expensive in Tokyo now. The only Rolex watches I see here regularly that are a good deal are lady Datejusts. There is a huge used selection of them for good prices. Pretty much everything else seems to been as expensive or more than most other markets according to Chrono24.
The prices on Chrono24 from the Japanese stores that I’ve seen there are higher than in the stores and on their Japanese websites (tax Included). You can find a number of them just using google or Rakuten. A few of them have storefronts in Tokyo or Osaka.

European stores tend to be the other way.
 

Thrift Vader

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Let's get this out of the way. @Dino944 incredulity and high horse skepticism do not look well on you. and as a member on here whom i like a lot, i will address rather than dismiss.

The $100 Patek? this is how it went down:
A sportsman, who was in his prime in the 80's. (had money, fame,and the lifestyle) spent all his money. in 2006? :dozingoff: He fell off the wagon some time ago. and was on drugs and went awol. just leaving. his stuff was with his father,who lived down the hall.
one day, the old man. (70's?) says to me "hey, you seem to like stuff. my son left these watches, you can buy them if you want. i know they are good. so a Hundo for which one you want".
(he needed money? for meds? i don't know) and he pulls out 3 watches. one is a Citizen.
the next is a pretty watch with a broken glass.says "Patek Phillipe" on it.
I know this is a thing. it's beautiful.
and 2006 me, in university. working 2 jobs. knows. - i can't afford to fix this.

but the third watch? it works. it looks nice. i put it on. it is stainless and gold. with a green crocodile band. sir, here is $100. i love it.
and i left with a $100 Ebel. I wore it for a few months before selling it to move to Japan.

Do i regret passing on the patek? not as much as others might. the "Thrift" provided. and i got what i needed.


My handle isn't "Retail Vader". I build relationships, and resources. and i know my stuff.
 

Dino944

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Let's get this out of the way. @Dino944 incredulity and high horse skepticism do not look well on you. and as a member on here whom i like a lot, i will address rather than dismiss.

The $100 Patek? this is how it went down:
A sportsman, who was in his prime in the 80's. (had money, fame,and the lifestyle) spent all his money. in 2006? :dozingoff: He fell off the wagon some time ago. and was on drugs and went awol. just leaving. his stuff was with his father,who lived down the hall.
one day, the old man. (70's?) says to me "hey, you seem to like stuff. my son left these watches, you can buy them if you want. i know they are good. so a Hundo for which one you want".
(he needed money? for meds? i don't know) and he pulls out 3 watches. one is a Citizen.
the next is a pretty watch with a broken glass.says "Patek Phillipe" on it.
I know this is a thing. it's beautiful.
and 2006 me, in university. working 2 jobs. knows. - i can't afford to fix this.

but the third watch? it works. it looks nice. i put it on. it is stainless and gold. with a green crocodile band. sir, here is $100. i love it.
and i left with a $100 Ebel. I wore it for a few months before selling it to move to Japan.

Do i regret passing on the patek? not as much as others might. the "Thrift" provided. and i got what i needed.


My handle isn't "Retail Vader". I build relationships, and resources. and i know my stuff.
Sorry, if you don't like the skepticism, but your stories seem too good to be true. They seem more believable if someone is new to this hobby. You seem like a nice guy and you know a lot about cars, especially JDM cars. However, that doesn't translate into watch knowledge, of which we can always learn more. One can read a lot about watches, but there is still something about having handled and seen watches in person to be able to spot authentic ones from fakes...and there are plenty of highly detailed replicas/fakes/frankenwatches/redials.

As for the phrases such as "the "Thrift provided. and I got what I needed." ???? I have no idea what that means.
 

LA Guy

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I would love to know the shops where you are finding such deals in Japan. All the popular stuff is pretty expensive in Tokyo now. The only Rolex watches I see here regularly that are a good deal are lady Datejusts. There is a huge used selection of them for good prices. Pretty much everything else seems to been as expensive or more than most other markets according to Chrono24.
lol. Dammit. I tried to give you names, but the items I had saved in my notebook were sold, and thus, not available.
 

patrickBOOTH

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I don't understand why you wouldn't have bought the most expensive piece (or the one you really wanted) for $100 regardless of the condition. You might not have been able to afford to fix it at the time, but in the future you surely could. If the story is true it just seems like bizarre logic/judgement.
 

LA Guy

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Does anyone have an opinion on this?

It looks too close to a Cartier Tank (Solo, I think, but someone correct me if it's incorrect) for me to like it. However, that might not bother anyone. It looks nicely balanced and has an attractive dial, like most Cartier watches.
 

CBrown85

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It looks too close to Cartier Tank (Solo, I think, but someone correct me if it's incorrect) for me to like it. However, that might not bother anyone. It looks nicely balanced and has an attractive dial, like most Cartier watches.
I love the tank, but it's $4k more than this.

Most of the money I had saved is now destined for some college or university in 13 years.
 

patrickBOOTH

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CBrown, did you ever settle on a watch? It was you that was looking for something in the $5k range, correct?
 

LA Guy

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imagine he didn't go to get appraised or someone who wants to pocket big...
Maybe... but the chances of this stuff happening are infinitesimally small.
Clearly not infinitessimally small, since this did happen.

Again, I don't know much about watches yet, but it happens in vintage all the time. Old Levis deadstock worht thousands is regularly found for a buck or two at Salvation Armys. Furniture worth tens of thousands are regularly found painted and repainted, with the original varnish in good condition because of the multiple coats of "protective" paint. being used as utility tables. Same goes with thrift shops. You have to keep yourself from jumping up and pumping your fist when you find a bunch of completely new Attolini suits in standard Navy and Charcoals for $25 apiece. which the Polo (a more recognizable brand) in dubious condition is being priced at $50.

I think that you may be underestimatng the level of arbitrage out there. That particular Paul Newman just fell into their laps, but this stuff happens.

Not sure where you live, but I know small, rural or other ex-urban communities, and I have $100 that says that I can walk out my door, drive to a little town (a few thousand people) and even in 2020, no one will have heard of Patek Philippe. Rolex, yes, but Rolex Daytona? No. Rolex Seadweller? Honestly, until about 2 years ago, I could not have told that that existed, and I have a lot more exposure than nearly anyone who lives in Troy, Idaho.

A thousand dollars, to most people, is very expensive for any watch. Movado is a great brand. A few thousand? That's for millionaires. Ten thousand? Billionaires, maybe. That a watch sells for half a million? People would be less surprised if they found out that aliens had taken over congress. And I think that you are overestimating how easy most people find it to do research on the internet as well. We are nerds. Nerds would look for things like tiny sigmas on a dial and how the "E" looks on a bezel. It's incomprehensible to most people.

Even those who have some passing interest can't necessarily tell the difference betweeen what we think of as big. I bought a watch from the original owner on a gamble. He had not opened the case, but a watch repair guy had told him that it was a certain reference. He sent pictures, and I was sure that it was another reference number. He didn't want to open up the case, I ended up buying that watch, in mint condition, for 50% of the average asking price on Chrono24. A very respected watchmaker and Omega specialist serviced it, took pictures of the caseback and movement, of I was right. And again, I'm hardly a pro. I've only been in this hobby for under 2 years.

As for the Daytona, if I had decided to sell it before I got interested in watches, there is zero possibility that I would have known what I had, or even how to verify it. I know that it was a Rolex, that it was a Daytona and that the Daytona was a popular model, and the approximate date it was bought, but I mean, there is no way that I would have understood how valued they were in 2018. I didn't even know that Rolexes had serial numbers and what was a reference number.vs a caliber number.
 

CBrown85

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How regularly, do you think, watches are used to launder money? I see all these kids on instagram with million-dollar watch collections and I can't help but think it's an easy way for their parents to funnel cash.
 

Dino944

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Clearly not infinitessimally small, since this did happen.

Again, I don't know much about watches yet, but it happens in vintage all the time. Old Levis deadstock worht thousands is regularly found for a buck or two at Salvation Armys. Furniture worth tens of thousands are regularly found painted and repainted, with the original varnish in good condition because of the multiple coats of "protective" paint. being used as utility tables. Same goes with thrift shops. You have to keep yourself from jumping up and pumping your fist when you find a bunch of completely new Attolini suits in standard Navy and Charcoals for $25 apiece. which the Polo (a more recognizable brand) in dubious condition is being priced at $50.

I think that you may be underestimatng the level of arbitrage out there. That particular Paul Newman just fell into their laps, but this stuff happens.

Not sure where you live, but I know small, rural or other ex-urban communities, and I have $100 that says that I can walk out my door, drive to a little town (a few thousand people) and even in 2020, no one will have heard of Patek Philippe. Rolex, yes, but Rolex Daytona? No. Rolex Seadweller? Honestly, until about 2 years ago, I could not have told that that existed, and I have a lot more exposure than nearly anyone who lives in Troy, Idaho.

A thousand dollars, to most people, is very expensive for any watch. Movado is a great brand. A few thousand? That's for millionaires. Ten thousand? Billionaires, maybe. That a watch sells for half a million? People would be less surprised if they found out that aliens had taken over congress. And I think that you are overestimating how easy most people find it to do research on the internet as well. We are nerds. Nerds would look for things like tiny sigmas on a dial and how the "E" looks on a bezel. It's incomprehensible to most people.

Even those who have some passing interest can't necessarily tell the difference betweeen what we think of as big. I bought a watch from the original owner on a gamble. He had not opened the case, but a watch repair guy had told him that it was a certain reference. He sent pictures, and I was sure that it was another reference number. He didn't want to open up the case, I ended up buying that watch, in mint condition, for 50% of the average asking price on Chrono24. A very respected watchmaker and Omega specialist serviced it, took pictures of the caseback and movement, of I was right. And again, I'm hardly a pro. I've only been in this hobby for under 2 years.

As for the Daytona, if I had decided to sell it before I got interested in watches, there is zero possibility that I would have known what I had, or even how to verify it. I know that it was a Rolex, that it was a Daytona and that the Daytona was a popular model, and the approximate date it was bought, but I mean, there is no way that I would have understood how valued they were in 2018. I didn't even know that Rolexes had serial numbers and what was a reference number.vs a caliber number.
Definitely an interesting story. The main issue seems to be he didn't know what it was worth. However, he was the original owner, he knew it was a Rolex, and that it was a nice watch, in fact it was so nice that he was afraid to wear it. Back when he bought it, $400 was a lot of money for a watch. In 1970 a GMT Master was $250 in steel and $500 in 18Kt gold (long before gold prices shot way up in the late 70's).

Today, it is so easy for people to go online to a forum, auction site, or a respected dealer and get an estimated value for an item. It happens all the time on dedicated watch forums...although sometimes it is someone who thinks they got a deal and they are trying to determine if a watch is real or not and what the value is. Someone posted on TZ within the last few weeks that their husband/fiance was gifted a limited Edition RO Offshore, and they wanted to know how much it was worth because they need a down payment for a house. It was a fake...looked something like an AP ROO with a carbon case...but the workmanship wasn't there and it said quartz on the case back. There aren't any quartz Offshores.

Here is another story about a Daytona...she found it in a sofa she bought in a thrift store...found out it's worth 250K.
 

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