Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by mimo, Feb 12, 2016.
Yes, I believe it is.
Black Bay, Submariner, Explorer and watch photos rant! (Long nerdy post with thoughts and a small rant)
Titles for the TLDR crowd.
Trying on the watches (Sub and Black Bay)
So I went to a local jeweler this afternoon to try on a couple of watches. Once again seeing a watch in the metal makes such a big difference. Prior to buying nice watches I wore as I've previously mentioned Victorinox Swiss Army divers. I got them generally at 80% off and being aesthetically driven I had mutiple colored bezel versions to suit my wardrobe. I rarely have to dress up, though make no mistake I'm not a slob, and to these suited me well. Since getting into nicer watches I've been drawn more to non-dive watches though. Now I'm thinking of going the diver route.
A big reason I've been considering going the diver route is that I like a few divers out there and I think they work well with my wardrobe and taste. Specifically though I've been drawn to the Black Bay. This has been the case for some time, since I first saw the watch (online) to be sure, and despite buying other watches it's always stuck with me. As I've noted before and as is evidence with the watches I've purchased so far, I tend to appreciate "heritage" or vintage inspired watches and the Black Bay is right up that alley. With the announcement that Tudor is finally going in-house with the Black Bay and the accompanying photos of what that watch will like look, it's had me thinking about moving on a Black Bay now as I prefer the current model to the in-house. More on that later though.
In addition to the Black Bay the other two divers that have occupied plenty of online time for months now have been a no-date Submariner and a JLC inspired diver like the Tribute to Deep Sea Alarm (preferably the European version, but I fancy them both) or even the vintage Chronograph. That may seem odd as there are some notable aesthetic differences between the models, especially with the JLCs, along with a notable price range. Still I'm coming from a place of potentially owning more than one diver over time and I like all three.
So the jeweler I visited today carries both Rolex and Tudor. I don't think anyone in the state even carries JLC, but owning two JLCs already I'd be comfortable buying online. I've not seen Tudor in the flesh before and I've only tried on Rolex a couple of times very briefly which left me not greatly impressed. Let me qualify that by saying that one was my first experience trying on a high end watch in years and a watch (Sub) much smaller than what I'd been accustomed to wearing for some time (the VSAs I mentioned above) while my second experience was trying on a pre-owned 16570 which was well worn enough and both try-on sessions were done in relative haste. Well I was pleasantly surprised by both Rolex and Tudor today. I started with a Sub, two-tone even, as they didn't even have a no-date in stock and the one they had with a date was already sold with down payment. They surprisingly allowed me to try that one without my even asking. Despite which reference I had on, and against what I felt during my previous two experiences, I really liked the watch. It didn't feel too "shiny" or "blinged out" if you will and the size was great. I'd previously felt it was too small, but I think the size is perfect. Also, the hour markers in photos online have bothered me as I feel in the photos I've studied they make the watch look too think/fat. In the metal I didn't think that at all and it go me wondering what I'd think of the hour markers on a 14060 and if they'd be too small. (I don't think they'd be too small as a result of trying on the Black Bay) I don't have a lot else to say about, but I could see myself getting a no-date Sub.
Next came the Black Bay. I was concerned about two things going in. Thickness and diameter. Thickness in how high it sat on the wrist as well as how deep in the case the dial sat and thus might look. Diameter in that it may look too big on the wrist. Both together in that in theory the thicker the watch and the smaller the diameter the fatter/chunkier it can look. Right away I really liked the watch though. I can see what all the fuss is about. In the metal it doesn't look nearly as large in diameter as it does in online photos. This is huge for me as the watch looks so much richer in the flesh. I've noticed with both the JLCs I own, specifically the Geophysic. On the wrist it didn't really feel any larger in diameter (or in general) than the Sub to me. Either that or I didn't notice a discernible difference. The watch also didn't feel or look too thick. The relatively flat case bottom helps here and I think I found in my online research that the Sub and Black Bay both sit about as high (are then as thick) when you consider the case back. Anyway, I gave it the shirt cuff test to see how that worked. The first watch I tried being on the bracelet and thus not being sized to my wrist was the watch I tried this with. It actually seemed to fit which is great. My VSAs fit, but it's a snug fit to say the least. I think the Black Bay must work better despite being the same thickness (to the eye) as it's smaller in diameter and thus the shirt cuff needs less room as it covers a small surface area. Either way I was comfortable with the Black Bay size and it's a fantastic looking watch compared to what I'd somewhat expected. Oh, and the crown tube isn't remotely an issue if you ask me. Saying that reminds me that I forgot to even look at the crown itself (which looks lovely in photos) as I was just taking the watch in.
Regarding what I touched on above about the current Black Bay and the new reference with in-house movement, like I said I prefer the former. An acquaintance on another forum, sports related forum to be specific, reached out to me about my opinion on some watches he'd been looking at and what he might get based on his budget. He owned a few cheaper watches I only know by name, like Squale, and was looking to get a watch in the $2000-$3000 range that would be his "one watch". He had a few things he was looking for like versatility and serviceability. He was looking at some Longines, Breitling Superocean, Rolex Oyster Perpetual, Omega Seamaster (no the master coaxials)... I suggest a Black Bay and the First Omega in Space. He ended up going with the Black Bay after trying on the lot (along with a Pelagos and a few others). Anyway, my points about the current Black Bay are the following:
-Dial has the Tudor rose as opposed to the Tudor shield. Big difference for me as I'm aesthetically driven and the rose matches the crown.
-Prefer the text itself and the layout of the text on the current Black Bay.
-Movement while ETA is "hot-rodded" according to the Hodinkee and should be easier to service.
-I know never buy based on this and I personally don't, but I think the current Black Bay will be a more rare watching going forward and for the reasons I just listed possibly more collectible.
The acquaintance who bought a Black Bay mentioned some of those as well. Add to those that some owners will be selling for the in-house movement has me thinking now would be a great time to pick up a Black Bay. Don't get me wrong, I still fancy a no-date Sub and if I went Black Bay I could see myself going Blue or Red bezel as a result. At the end of the day I'm in no hurry or I would have jumped on something already (I've watched multiple watches go by in the last month or two), but I am kicking some tires.
I gave the Explorer 214270 a quick try. I like the looks of the vintage Explorers, like the 1016, specifically for the numerals they use as I've always felt (based on photos) that again the modern Explorer looks too "shiny" and the numerals themselves were less appealing. I also feared it would look too big on the wrist. Well the watch was again much better in the metal and the thought of a modern Explorer isn't something I'd be against. Don't get me wrong, I'm nowhere near seriously considering one at present, but on the wrist it was pretty nice.
Didn't try it on, but in the case next to the Black Bay it looked too big. In fact it looked bigger than the Black as there's more dial. Like I mentioned when they announced the Black Bay 36, I think a Ranger 36 (or 37 or 38) would be really nice.
Watch photos rant
Long story short, online photos of watches drive me crazy. They're WAY too close up. Way too close up. I prefer that in the sense that if you're buying pre-owned you get a much better idea of condition, but the watches never look as good as they do in the metal. The watches all look notably larger and the details, whether it's the size of the hands, numerals, etc, etc, all look less rich. This for me was evident when I got my Geophysic (which I'd never seen in the metal prior to purchase) and it was very noticeable today with the Black Bay in particular. I honestly wish there were more wrist shots where the wrist is just say resting on your lap and the watch wasn't zoomed in on. I think you'd get a much better idea of the actually look of the watch in person were that the case. Again though, and as you can see by my thoughts above, nothing replaces seeing a watch in the metal.
Anyway, sorry for the long post and feel free to comment or rant back.
Here's the latest addition to the rotation: late 70's DJ 16013. A bit old man ish but i thought i'd treat myself to something modest for opening up my own law practice.
Let it all out dude; good post!
On the subject of online photos, the ones that really bug me are the official ones that look like graphic renditions rather than pictures. I tend to look at some real life pics taking by people selling used versions for a better feel. Also, a tip: phone pics (and we all take phone pics) have a huge perspective disortion. If you hold the phone further away and zoom a little, you flatten that perspective a bit. The result is a much more realistic representation of how big the watch is against your wrist. A "full body shot" for a watch seems like overkill, but I also think that helps when you're considering what to buy: take a selfie in the shop mirror with the watch on and see how it looks. Frilly has a dainty wrist and arms like a bulldozer, so his Deep Sea doesn't look out of place. From a wrist shot, you might think it did.
As to the watches, the standard Sub is perfection to me (though wouldn't be a suit watch in my personal taste). I also really like the Black Bay, and am totally with you on roses and ETA. Which one did you have in mind? Anyway, to quote The Dino, "good luck with whatever you decide".
I've been a watch guy long before I got into menswear.
Ever since I bought this my gym sessions have been much more efficient. Also, atomic time FTW:
^ Very nice
I think the Tudor BB is quite a fantastic all around watch for its price range. I personally like the blue bezel version best but honestly they are all pretty good looking. Tudor is maybe pushing it with all these iterations under that name, but not like they've gone into Omega territory with it.
I strongly considered it but in the end the 114060 Sub won out for me. Twice the price but I love it twice as much.
When you say collectible, its hard to know if you mean it will be worth more or if you are saying its just worthy of purchasing? Lots of watches are worthy of purchasing even if they will not appreciate in value.
Not sure that any of what you mentioned will truly make either version more collectible, or more collectible than a Sub. Personally, on a Tudor I prefer the shield to the rose, but that's subjective.
A hot rodded ETA...is still ETA even if very nicely done. These days the market in general isn't a big fan of outsourced movements even when they are from top movement makers (such as F.Piguet, JLC, Piaget etc). Most people prefer an inhouse movement, so an ETA movement is unlikely to be a plus in the future.
As for it being easier to service, do you mean if you want to bring it to an indy watchmaker? If you prefer indy watchmakers to factory service centers then maybe that is good for you, but if going with your collectibility issue (which may involve provenance somewhere down the road)...most potential buyers prefer to see service papers from the manufacturer's service center. When ever you see "Full sets" for sale with box/papers etc. when ever they mention or show that a watch also has service papers...its usually a photo showing it went for a service with Rolex, Henri Stern, AP etc...rather than papers from generic "Stan the watchmaker."
In terms of rarity, most watches today are made in far larger numbers than decades ago. So rarity is a relative thing, and rarity alone doesn't make something more collectible...there needs to be strong demand. Historically the Tudors that have gone up in value, were the less expensive alternative to its contemporary Rolex siblings...such as their big block chronograph, their Monte Carlo chronograph, and their Tudor Subs. However, even when one considers those models and how they have appreciated, the vintage alternatives from Rolex all appreciated far more significantly.
Anyway, just my devils advocate suggesting that you buy whatever makes you smile the most, as very few watches have the demand necessary to make even a somewhat rare watch appreciate in value. Good luck with whatever you decide. Cheers!
Thanks. Just wanted to share my thoughts as some, though from what I can tell not too many, may not have the opportunity to try on some of the watches or simply see them in the metal. A work conference in Las Vegas was just cancelled and while I won't miss going in general I was actually looking forward to it so I could try on and simply hopefully any number of watches in the metal. It makes all the difference in the World and some watchmakers are more difficult to track down here in the Midwest.
Glad you mentioned wrist size. I have a 7" wrist which is actually proportionately small compare to my upper body. It's not way out of whack, but just slightly on the smaller size in that regard and so it definitely makes a difference.
Yeah, I definitely like the Sub. The Tribute to Deep Sea Alarm is my favorite "modern" diver, though aesthetically there are things I prefer about a no-date Sub. And I can understand why the Sub is held in the regard it is compared to every other diver out there considering it's history and what Rolex has done with it for over a half century. While Rolex in my opinion doesn't stray too much from their originals, the Sub is for me one of the most true to the original models they make.
What do I have in mind? Well that's a can of worms. I have every watch I mentioned in mind. Specifically regarding the Black Bay? All three. Why? Like I mentioned, I had all those different colored bezels with my VSAs and I feel the same way about a Black Bay. I can wear them all differently and with different parts of my wardrobe. It's an "affordable" way of doing that again with a great looking watch. That said I shouldn't go that route necessarily as even with the prices you can snag a Black Bay for, when you add up all three I can get another watch that perhaps I prefer. It's probably funny to most too when you consider my alternatives. For example when I think about the Black Bay Burgundy and how I'd wear it, I also think of a GMT Coke as an alternative. Still I like the standard Black Bay in every color and they all have their merits. At the moment I'm not moving on anything, but I've been thinking and looking. I've also been thinking about a Nomos Orion (35mm) and another Nomos or two. I also passed on some watches that were good deals that I thought I might flip, but decided against that idea (though the watches were as I expected sold very quickly). Anyway, we'll see. Just wanted to share some thoughts.
Yeah, Tudor is starting to go a bit crazy with all the iterations. While they're for the most part not for me, I think some of them will do well. I can see the PVD Black Bay doing well for them. I also think the Black Bay 36 will do well. The Black Bay Bronze will probably sell well enough too, though I think it's too big to name one issue with it.
I was actually thinking 14060. About twice the price as well, but I would have no qualms paying it for what you're getting. I just like them both is the "problem".
I can see where you it's hard to know what I mean when you mention the watch being collectible when I go back and re-read my post. Based on what you quoted though I think it's pretty clear and to clarify I specifically mean the current Black Bay, or the first Black Bays, could be more collectible than the incoming in-house version. That's why I listed what you quoted which was all in reference to the Black Bay. I do agree with you though, there are a lot of watches worth purchasing and plenty more I fancy than a Black Bay. Sadly it doesn't make sense for me to drop into a Lange dealer and order an 1815 much less a Datograph.
I'm not sure if what I mentioned will make the first Black Bay any more collectible either. That said I think it will based on the reasons I mentioned. It absolutely is subjective, but I prefer the Tudor rose to the shield so much so that I can't see how everyone else isn't of the same opinion. I've read others saying this too. In fact John Mayer said as much in his "Week on the Wrist" write up of the Black Bay Black. For the record we're simply of the same opinion and I don't rest my opinion on his every word much less any word, but again it's an opinion I've heard elsewhere. Were it not though I'd still feel the same way and regardless of that the rose as it looks now will be far less common than the shield. And I agree, most seem to prefer an in-house movement these days. I know I do personally. That said as someone noted in an online discussion paying say $600 to service a watch you paid $2500 for is kind of steep. Of course I don't know what it would cost with either road of service and I would prefer to go through Tudor directly either way, but if you have a reputable person who can service it for less over time then that is an attractive option.
Yes, I agree and we've had this rarity discussion multiple times before. However I was specifically referring to the current Black Bay likely being more rare than the soon to be in-house Black Bay and that's it. The points you quoted were very specific to the Black Bay. So as regards the Black Bay I still stand by what I said in this regard. I would add that if the in-house Black Bay is produced the same or similarly as the Submariner has been in more recent times, where a reference gets produced for a good number of years before changes are made (at least from what I can tell), then that will in my opinion factor in even more so. Sure they've presumably made a lot of Black Bays, but what they've made in the past three years or so likely won't nearly as many as they make of the in-house version if that version is around for say a decade or so. And if you specifically consider the color, the first Black Bay Black will likely have been made in even smaller numbers. Now all of what I mentioned might not matter and there could be a vast majority of people who think otherwise in say thirty years. I just think otherwise.
To put a finer point on it, I wasn't saying I would buy the watch specifically because I felt it was collectible or more collectible than other watches. I only buy what I like and I was simply speculating as to which of the two Black Bays I felt would be collectible in terms of value. If I bought based on what I perceived as collectible based on value I would have bought another Thin Tribute Reverso on a Casa Fagliano strap that I just saw go for notably less than what I've seen them go for. Or I'd go to my local Rolex AD and get on the waitlist for a Daytona. I just wouldn't do that though because I think it's difficult to predict for any number of reasons least of which being watches might not be nearly as collectible or desirable as they are now.
Just a follow up to the excellent comments I got on here recently in case anyone is interested. I was in Vegas recently for work and had time to nip into Tourneau at Caesar's Palace forum. They had the latest YC in there which is slightly smaller than previous models and yet still looks enormous. They also had Portuguese Chronograph Classics which are slightly smaller still and to my untrained eye looked really nice. Still maintaining a slight sportiness but refined enough to not look out of place when suited and booted. So more food for thought for me and I appreciate the guidance I got. The SA there also gave me a lovely hard bound book of all IWC models, history, specs, movement details etc. I noticed there was a whole shelf full of them so if anyone is in Vegas and interested you could probably score one if you asked nicely.
Anyway just wanted to thank the TWATs - back to normal service!
I was going to ditch my colleagues and hit that very same Tourneau myself until my conference got cancelled. The SA I dealt with actually used to work with jewelers and knew my hometown jeweler here in the Midwest very well. I had a pleasant time in that Tourneau my last go round and I didn't even score any freebies.
Funny you mention the book. I've been looking at few on eBay of some of the brands that I like. They look kind of nice and would be interesting to have to reference.
I did a quick look at a Yacht Club before replying to you back then and wondered if I wasn't seeing a just a specific reference based on your reply as if I recall correctly I was seeing something along the lines of 45mm and didn't know they had another reference out there. Either way seeing a watch in the metal makes such of a difference. I would never base the size of a watch on the diameter alone as that can vary. You can find watches that are 38mm that wear as big as a 40mm watch simply because they're all dial. That's not to mention the lugs, the size of one's wrist, etc.
Again, I would say take your time and whatever watch speaks to you is going to be the watch that speaks to you. Watches would be far less interesting if we all only had the same one to choose from.
They gave you this one?
If so, that would be great - IIRC it was a somewhat limited print. And it's a pretty cool book; my AD gave me one when I bought my Mk XV.
Yes, I know you were talking about Black Bay first edition vs. inhouse movement version. My point was it was hard to tell from your use of the term collectible, if you are speaking as to whether it will go up in value or in a more general sense whether its worthy of being purchased.
Regarding service costs...they are what they are. My wife had her great grandmother's pocket watch serviced. The cost far exceeded the value of the watch. Its a decision she decided to do anyway. Service costs are not based on the value of the watch, its essentially a watch makers time. I only brought up use of a factory service center vs. independent watchmaker because you brought up the ease of service for the hot rodded ETA movement. Ease of service only matters if you are servicing yourself (I presume like most of us, you won't), or if you are looking for sources outside of factory service centers. So in the end I don't think that helps make the watch more collectible or matters much.
I like an own and love several pieces that have outsourced movements. However, an outsourced ETA movement even if hot rodded is an ETA movement and for many that will be a strike against the earlier model. Hell, even if it had a movement from one of the more elite makers such as JLC, F. Piguet, Piaget, or Zenith, it might still not be looked on as favorably as if it had an inhouse movement.
I can appreciate that you buy what you like, that is what people should do. I can also understand that you were expressing your thoughts as to why you think the earlier model will be more collectible in terms of value. As for articles or people talking about the earlier one having good chances of appreciating in value, people in the industry love to talk that stuff up...it creates excitement and moves merchandise. However, in reality there is no shortage of watches with relatively short production runs and/or which underwent changes during production, that don't end up appreciating drastically in value. I think each Black Bay has its merits, but I don't think there will be any real appreciation in the value of the earlier model over the new model because the demand just isn't there. Tudor is a nice watch, but for many collectors (or even average consumers) its not a grail...its more of a stepping stone to Rolex. On the used market it will be a great value to someone, but I just don't see the current models ever being specifically sought after and going up in value. Guys get into bidding wars for certain big name brands and Tudor isn't one of them. Rarity is one thing...but without demand it doesn't mean a hell of a lot.
Thanks for the comments, agreed on all points. Did you find one (deployant) from GP, or are you using 3rd party?
No mine was just plain white and square with black lettering 'Collection 2015/2016' on the front and 'Annual Edition 2015/2016 on the spine. It may be last year's and they are moving them out for the next season, I don't really care it's a lovely book and I was chuffed to get a freebie when I made it clear from the outset I was just in the contemplative stage.
Ah, I think that's their yearly catalogue (I don't know if they also make a less substantial paper back edition). I have the 2003/2004 one; as catalogues go, they're very nice.
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