The Watch Appreciation Thread - Part two (Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Jaeger LeCoultre,

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by mimo, Feb 12, 2016.

  1. mimo

    mimo Pernicious Enabler

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    Electronic tags belong on the ankle.

    My first instinct was to be drawn to the Alpina, because it's more like a "real" pilot watch: the hands and the bolder hour markers are reminiscent of the original Luftwaffe models, and the arrow on the second hand gives it that "technical" look.

    But. Actually, two "buts".

    But (1): If you wanted an authentic flavour for a pilot watch, then I always point to the original five makers: Lange and Wempe, who no longer make pilot models, IWC who make them expensively, Stowa who make them similarly but at a low price, and Laco, who make the cheapest, but not quite to Stowa's quality. In this price range, I always point to the Stowa Flieger models. True, none come with an integrated bracelet, but they have a steel mesh bracelet option, or rubber, plus their own leather and croc choices - and that's just the OM offerings.

    But (2): The Alpina is massive. And although I quite like that conical crown, on a 44mm case I think it's going to be a nuisance. You wanted a pilot that wasn't too pilot, and the bulk and styling cues of this make it a lot more showy, a lot more tool-like, and therefore a lot less versatile.

    So, the Oris: at 41mm it's large for a dress watch, but I think it's smooth enough to work with a jacket at tie or casual wear just fine. The fussy details on the bezel you like or don't, and I don't love that it says "Big Crown" "Pro Pilot" on the dial. Feels like insecurity! But on its own merits, I like the proportions of it, that clean modern look of the hands, and the tidy beveled edge on that "big crown". I think it's inherently a nicer watch for an all-rounder. The smooth-edged bracelet on the Alpina looks nicer, but I think this will be a lot more wearable.
     


  2. bigbadbuff

    bigbadbuff Senior member

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    I would look at the IWC Mark XVIII. Mid-3's and extremely sharp.
     


  3. mimo

    mimo Pernicious Enabler

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    Fair comment. I assumed the budget was fixed, but if you're going up to $3k-ish, then an Aqua Terra or even a used DateJust might be the perfect all-rounder.
     


  4. flvinny521

    flvinny521 Senior member

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    Thanks for taking the time to look into these two pieces. I appreciate your feedback; this is exactly the type of stuff I was hoping to hear.

    As for the first "but," I am not necessarily looking for a pilot watch. I am looking for a daily driver that, in this case, just happened to be one. Being a pilot watch is certainly not required for me to make the purchase. Also, for a watch in this price range, I am not too concerned about getting something "original." However, see my reply to @bigbadbuff below.

    Now, the second "but" raises a concern I didn't think about: My wrists are rather small. I've never worn a 44 mm watch, and I wouldn't have thought about that crown being a concern. However, I do see myself getting annoyed if it was constantly smashing the back of my hand. The Oris is definitely more similar in size to my dress watches (39 and 38 mm), but large enough to work as a casual piece. Also, while I have no first-hand experience, I have read reviews that compare their bracelets favorably even in competition with more expensive watchmakers, like Omega.


    [​IMG]

    Very nice, but I think it might be a little more than I want to spend right now. I could probably stretch the budget to the 3 range, but I'm not sure that I want to. This would be considerably more expensive than any other watch I currently own, and I wouldn't want to feel like I had to baby it and be concerned with every movement I make. At $1,000, the other options would allow me to be a little bit more aloof while wearing it. Maybe as I learn more and my collection gets more expensive, I'd consider this to replace the Oris.

    See above. Those are two of my "everyday" grail watches, although I also like the Planet Ocean or Explorer as well. At this price range, I'd need to spend a lot of time trying on different examples, and I don't think I'm there yet. I could feel comfortable going up to maybe $2k right now (that means $2,000, not $2,999, like my wife seems to think), and I would consider used if something great was available at this range.
     


  5. Belligero

    Belligero Senior member

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    ^
    Check out the Nomos Club while you're at it. If you aren't dead-set on having a bracelet, then I don't think it can be beat for the money as a casual, everyday watch. There are options for size, dial colour, date/no-date and manual/automatic winding, so you should be able to find exactly what you want. It dresses up rather well, too. :)
     


  6. flvinny521

    flvinny521 Senior member

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    I like that Nomos more than some of their other watches, but I am pretty set on a bracelet for this one. I can't wear leather for too long or it irritates a dry patch of skin on my wrist. Great option though.
     


  7. atia2

    atia2 Senior member

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    You might be able to snare an old Oysterquartz, then. I've seen them go for around that on eBay and Chrono24. In fact, there's a nice looking one with a starting price of $1,600 here. You can get lucky with these.

    I got mine for the equivalent of $2,400 last summer, but it was in very crisp condition (below). It sits perfectly on my narrow wrist, looks great, and goes with almost anything.

    [​IMG]

    (For the real aficionados there's also a 1530 on the block here. Rare as hen's teeth in good condition. I've only ever seen "project" pieces before.)
     


  8. dan'l

    dan'l Senior member

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    @Dino944, thanks a lot for the comparison photos! Very helpful indeed. I hope I wasn't being too rude when I asked for the pics, but since you posted them, I guess you were willing to indulge me and even included the group pic! :D

    Though the BNLR is 40mm, it looks larger than the previous generation Explorer II it is next too. I guess the ceramic bezel makes it stand out more.

    The 15202 looks very nice and balanced on your wrist. I didn't realize you had a 36mm RO in the past - how did it fit compared to the OQ? They have quite similar integrated bracelets with the overhanging lugs, although the OQ bracelet does not seem as articulated (i.e. links look larger) as the RO one.

    Thanks again for the pics.

    :cheers:
     


  9. dan'l

    dan'l Senior member

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    For some reason I was thinking your link was to another OQ and when I saw the watch, I even thought "Oysterquartz." Then I wondered why the movements had different reference numbers and only when I literally saw the "big picture" did I realize the 1530 was the model that looks like an OQ but isn't one (i.e. automatic movement in OQ case). I read about this watch years ago but never had the ref. number in my head. Very interesting and quirky piece.
     


  10. mimo

    mimo Pernicious Enabler

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    If you are prepared to go smaller e.g. standard 36mm DateJust/Explorer size, then there is plenty in your budget. If used is an option, then a Tudor DateJust equivalent or an Omega Seamaster among other things, are easily yours for $1500ish. If you're prefer something a little larger for its casual feel, then a 38-39mm Speedmaster or Breitling Colt, used mint with box and papers, is also in reach. If it's an Omega you've had your heart set on, maybe hold out and get it.

    P.S. The $2000 is not $2999 comment made me chuckle. Except in my case, it's me...
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016


  11. TheWraith

    TheWraith Senior member

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    That 38.5mm Aqua Terra I just posted about recently (and shown again below) cost me $1500US, so that model could be another option for you, @flvinny521. As mimo said, Aqua Terra's like that one (or the automatics) make great all-rounder watches, looking equally great with suits, sport coats and polo shirts etc.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2016


  12. Dino944

    Dino944 Senior member

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    No worries about the pic request, and no it wasn't rude to request them. In the past other people have requested wrists shots of watches some of the regulars poster here own, so its not any big deal.

    The BLNR has wider lugs than the prior generation Explorer II, GMTs, or Subs, and compared to the 16570 Ex2 the bezel of the BLNR sits taller, is angled differently, and the color makes it stand out more.

    I did not have the 36 mm Royal Oak at the same time as the Oysterquartz, so I never made a direct comparison. However, the OQ was thicker. While the OQ bracelet doesn't seem as articulated as that of the RO, it actually has more far more flexibility at each of the links after the lugs, while the RO bracelet is more rigid. You really have to try them on to see what I am referring to. Both are great watches, and are interesting as they show a snapshot in time as to the direction in which 1970's watch designs were moving. The RO came out, and then there were designs from Rolex, GP, Chopard, IWC etc that seemed to borrow or springboard from the RO influence. Cheers!

    Rolex ref 1530 and 1630 (the tutone version) were not very popular when new, had a short production run and sell for far more than the Oysterquartz or standard automatic Datejust siblings of the same period.
     


  13. Winot

    Winot Senior member

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    Tried on a few gold dress watches today (I don't own a single gold watch). VC Historique; VC Patrimony; Calatrava; JLC 1907 Master Ultra Thin. Lots of nice stuff.

    But hot damn, the one that is really singing my song is the Lange Saxonia 40mm Thin. How does Lange manage so much with so little?
     


  14. flvinny521

    flvinny521 Senior member

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    That is something that interests me, as I have admired the OQ whenever I see it posted here.


    These are great options as well. I think as I look to grow my collection, I'll probably buy a lot of used pieces. However, this is a watch my wife wants to buy for me, so I spoke to her about it and she'd rather not wait for me to find the perfect piece at the perfect price in the perfect condition... in other words, "pick something new and you can hunt for a used watch later." So I'm going to do that.


    That's a great watch and I can definitely see myself owning at at some point. Again, I'll probably ask my wife for the Oris for now, and down the road, when I am itching for something new, maybe look for a deal on one of these. I think an Omega will be in my future at some point.
     


  15. atia2

    atia2 Senior member

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    Yes, that's the one. It predates the quartz, so it is the origin of that timeless case and bracelet design (influences, e.g. RO, notwithstanding). I suspect that combines with the scarcity @Dino944 highlighted to give it standing among collectors. It was mentioned in reverent tones last time I visited the RSC in London.
     


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