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The watch DISCUSSION thread

Ambulance Chaser

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I agree with @Loathing and @venessian re. vintage watches. Vintage watches are like vintage cars. They use older technology (don't dare submerge one in water!) and are more finicky than modern watches, but they have a certain charm that modern watches lack. I wouldn't wear a vintage watch as a daily, but if it gets regular service and repair when needed there's no reason it can't run close to COSC specifications.
 

9thsymph

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I agree with @Loathing and @venessian re. vintage watches. Vintage watches are like vintage cars. They use older technology (don't dare submerge one in water!) and are more finicky than modern watches, but they have a certain charm that modern watches lack. I wouldn't wear a vintage watch as a daily, but if it gets regular service and repair when needed there's no reason it can't run close to COSC specifications.
My 50-year old omega has been serviced exactly once (by me, last year). It has been a relentless beast. I’m sure it doesn’t keep time on par with my current Rolexes/Omegas, but much better than I often hear described.
 

mhip

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My 50-year old omega has been serviced exactly once (by me, last year). It has been a relentless beast. I’m sure it doesn’t keep time on par with my current Rolexes/Omegas, but much better than I often hear described.
True that...
If you're obsessed with accuracy, buy a quartz.
 

Adsky Luck

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In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon - and in fact very common - for watches to use acrylic aka "plexiglass" crystals, many older Omegas have them, and while acrylic crystals have character they also develop something akin to a cataract - get all dim and cloudy and that is if they are not heavily scratched on top of that..
and it's not a given that you can satisfactorily replace acrylic crystals with glass or even sapphire ones because they tend to crack due to tension in a case that is not designed for them initially.
heck, it's not a given that can you replace with another acrylic, say off Ofrei, as even then what little moisture resistance the old watch has can be compromised.
 
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officine

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In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon - and in fact very common - for watches to use acrylic aka "plexiglass" crystals, many older Omegas have them, and while acrylic crystals have character they also develop something akin to a cataract - get all dim and cloudy and that is if they are not heavily scratched on top of that..
and it's not a given that you can satisfactorily replace acrylic crystals with glass or even sapphire ones because they tend to crack due tension in a case that is not designed for them initially.
Can't you just get it replaced with another acrylic crystal? They aren't scarce at all. Any competent watchmaker can perform this service.
 

Adsky Luck

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Can't you just get it replaced with another acrylic crystal? They aren't scarce at all. Any competent watchmaker can perform this service.
you can certainly try but it better be not a generic but a model specific one which you have to find first.
however I don't want to sound like I am dead set against vintage watches in general, especially if you get one cheaply or and better still if it has always been in the family.
 

9thsymph

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In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon - and in fact very common - for watches to use acrylic aka "plexiglass" crystals, many older Omegas have them, and while acrylic crystals have character they also develop something akin to a cataract - get all dim and cloudy and that is if they are not heavily scratched on top of that..
and it's not a given that you can satisfactorily replace acrylic crystals with glass or even sapphire ones because they tend to crack due to tension in a case that is not designed for them initially.
heck, it's not a given that can you replace with another acrylic, say off Ofrei, as even then what little moisture resistance the old watch has can be compromised.
look at the watch I posted. It’s from ‘69. It’s acrylic. It looks beautiful! Haha...
 

officine

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Can't you just get it replaced with another acrylic crystal? They aren't scarce at all. Any competent watchmaker can perform this service.
@Adsky Luck , I get why you (or anyone) would step with trepidation into the vintage portal. I was also very reluctant. Like anything, you walk before your run. If I may share my approach.

I started off by saying to myself that the fewer the complications the less stuff could presumably go wrong. Thus, I started with simple three hand, hand wind mechanicals (no date, no chrono, no bumper or automatic movements, etc.). Then I asked my watchmaker what I needed to look for when viewing a movement. He sort of overwhelmed me with info, but I synthesized it to the three main factors for the average Joe --- 1) do quick internet research on the caliber of the watch being sold (just to make sure the caliber is correct to the watch and timeframe being presented by Seller, and that this caliber has no history of problems); 2) look at the movement for rust/discolorations, as this might be sign of previous water damage (avoid a Seller who won't make the effort to get open back pictures of the movement); and 3) check to see that there aren't too many mismatched screws (sign of less than professional servicing or poor parts replacement). If the seller has proof of a recent service that's a bonus.

Then get a second opinion. If you have a watchmaker you can befriend, have them take a look as well at the movement. @Ambulance Chaser suggested showing pictures of the movement on Omega Forums for advice. That is a great alternative to not having a local watchmaker who will do you the favor. Just be careful not to be discouraged with some negative feedback, as very few of these older movements will look 100% pristine...so don't let them scare you away if they find some minor imperfections. You just need one that is in very good shape and that can be serviced if need be.

Finally, think about a brand that still has parts floating around and available to a competent watchmaker. That's why I chose to start with Omega, but there are others.

I think this is a risk-managed way to proceed.

Of course, you can outsource all of this by going with a site such at Omega Enthusiast (also referred to by @Ambulance Chaser), but suspect you will pay a premium for the piece of mind.
 
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9thsymph

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In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon - and in fact very common - for watches to use acrylic aka "plexiglass" crystals, many older Omegas have them, and while acrylic crystals have character they also develop something akin to a cataract - get all dim and cloudy and that is if they are not heavily scratched on top of that..
and it's not a given that you can satisfactorily replace acrylic crystals with glass or even sapphire ones because they tend to crack due to tension in a case that is not designed for them initially.
heck, it's not a given that can you replace with another acrylic, say off Ofrei, as even then what little moisture resistance the old watch has can be compromised.
Do you/have you own(ed) vintage watches? I have a few and my personal experience completely contradicts every point you’ve made about vintage watches. I’m curious if you might post some specific examples, rather than vague generalizations...
 

9thsymph

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In the 1970s it wasn't uncommon - and in fact very common - for watches to use acrylic aka "plexiglass" crystals, many older Omegas have them, and while acrylic crystals have character they also develop something akin to a cataract - get all dim and cloudy and that is if they are not heavily scratched on top of that..
and it's not a given that you can satisfactorily replace acrylic crystals with glass or even sapphire ones because they tend to crack due to tension in a case that is not designed for them initially.
heck, it's not a given that can you replace with another acrylic, say off Ofrei, as even then what little moisture resistance the old watch has can be compromised.


C6DB7D4D-AE33-4934-A258-857CE3821CFE.jpeg

Original acrylic crystal.

Cloudy?

Dude, c’mon...
 
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