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The watch DISCUSSION thread

ronscuba

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I think the idea of a Rolex (and a Sub in particular) being a bragging-watch is a bit exaggerated. Yes, on watch and clothing forums people believe they can determine someone's personality by the watch they wear (and there's plenty of people who have spreadsheets detailing the average time on a waiting list, value increase, and so on..), but you can also get branded a heretic for choosing the wrong weight of selvage denim for your jeans. It's not really a good indicator to what your average person thinks. If you were to wear a Sub in public, I think the most common reactions you would get is "Hey man, cool watch.", "Well, SOMEONE is doing well for himself!" and "Is it genuine?" Rolex IS the most recognizable luxury watch brand out there; my mum, who wouldn't know a Patek from a Casio knows that Rolex is fancy, and that alone makes it a bit of a style statement. But in my experience, most people aren't grinches who will hate you for your success, or think you're trying to put yourself above them by wearing a nice watch. The handful that would resent it sounds like jerks who you probably don't want to know anyway. I'd consider it an extra feature on the watch: "jerk-detector". Let's see an Apple watch do that!

That said, I WOULD worry about the inflated prices, and the fact that the watch being so recognizable means that a punk who wouldn't look twice at a Vacheron Constantin will instantly recognize a Sub, and knows it's worth stealing.
I have seen and experienced people bragging about their Rolex, telling my wife she should have gotten a Rolex like theirs instead of a Cartier because Rolex has better re-sale value. Asking me what kind of watch I am wearing ? Where is your Rolex ? I feel if I got a Rolex, I would be "joining the club", which is totally not what I want to do because I really dislike that kind of behavior.

I prefer someone compliment my watch itself vs. the brand. I like having watches and watch brands less known and less common than Rolex. I like to be a little different and visually, I like other watches more than Rolex.
 
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TheChihuahua

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Ha. Rolex talk!
Rolex is the best brand in all of the world in any industry when it comes to the most recognizable icon for luxury. Maybe Ferrari as it’s closest competition?

that said, it’s also extremely polarizing for all the reasons discussed here.

if somebody wants a Rolex, good for them, do it, great watch.
if Somebody thinks Rolex is the top of the ladder, well, good for them. What they don’t know won’t hurt them I guess.
 

dieworkwear

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I think it's reasonable to not want to wear something because it's associated with certain people. People often build a wardrobe around an idea of personal and tribal identity. I'm just not immersed enough in watch culture to have a strong view about Rolexes. Mostly want one because my dad had one.

@radicaldog Those suggestions were helpful! A couple of friends have suggested similar field watches. I've also thought about sticking with the 1016 because of the Cabourn aesthetic.

@bluejazzmonkey My dad had just graduated college and wanted to treat himself to something nice, so he bought a Rolex. The Vietnam War was still happening at the time, but I don't think anyone thought the North Vietnamese were going to get into Saigon. After the Tet Offensive, most of my family left, but they left by different means. My dad bought a fake passport and posed as a foreigner. He then sliced cardboard boxes and put very thin gold sheets between the cardboard, and taped everything up. Inside the main compartment, he put books, so he could look like a student. The gold was smuggled out so he could have some money later. Of the few personal valuables he could bring, but still look like a student, was his watch, so that stayed with him. He wore it because it was a "nice watch" and one of the few things (maybe the only thing?) left from his time in Vietnam.
 

TheChihuahua

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I think it's reasonable to not want to wear something because it's associated with certain people. People often build a wardrobe around an idea of personal and tribal identity. I'm just not immersed enough in watch culture to have a strong view about Rolexes. Mostly want one because my dad had one.

@radicaldog Those suggestions were helpful! A couple of friends have suggested similar field watches. I've also thought about sticking with the 1016 because of the Cabourn aesthetic.

@bluejazzmonkey My dad had just graduated college and wanted to treat himself to something nice, so he bought a Rolex. The Vietnam War was still happening at the time, but I don't think anyone thought the North Vietnamese were going to get into Saigon. After the Tet Offensive, most of my family left, but they left by different means. My dad bought a fake passport and posed as a foreigner. He then sliced cardboard boxes and put very thin gold sheets between the cardboard, and taped everything up. Inside the main compartment, he put books, so he could look like a student. The gold was smuggled out so he could have some money later. Of the few personal valuables he could bring, but still look like a student, was his watch, so that stayed with him. He wore it because it was a "nice watch" and one of the few things (maybe the only thing?) left from his time in Vietnam.
if you want a Rolex, by all means get one. Very nice watches. I might pick one up for my father for a milestone birthday approachinto. My wife has one that herparents bought her 30 years ago that’s she cherishes (although she wears her Girard Perregaux more often).

from what I can tell of you, you are more about traditional menswear and subtle quality/elegance rather than flashy showing off.
that said, you might want to stay away from the Rolex hype model (watches named after super hero’s and stuff, hulk and Batman and bat girls)
First, they tend not to be very subtle and elegant. They are bulky bezels with louder characteristics. Second, they have a bit of a stigma (as noted above)
If you weee into flipping the watches, they sell for a premium and there is a huge market for them. But if you are into wearing the watch in a style that fits you, go with a cleaner model.
 

Duke Santos

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so those of us that do are middle aged and trying to impress others?

See above about my psychoanalysis comment.
I would put it this way. Not everyone who wears a Rolex does so to show off and impress others, but of those who do wear a watch to show off and impress others, Rolex is the bright burningflame to that particular group of moths. Personally, when I meet someone in a Rolex, I like to think they're the better group unless they prove otherwise.
 

mossrockss

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Omega Bond Seamaster is my one watch collection, no question.
I've learned about myself that any watch that I want to wear every day in virtually all circumstances needs to have a steel bracelet. In 2004 my dad bought the original Bond Seamaster, and being a generous dude, said I could wear it whenever I wanted. So off and on for 15 years I wore that thing even after I moved away from home, including on travels around the world. I always loved the watch but was never a watch enthusiast, and considered that to be good enough to be my single nice watch.
Last summer I started getting into watches after my brother gave me a Bulova moon watch as a gift randomly. I started making plans to buy my first nice watch purchase, and specifically avoided the Bond Seamaster because I knew my dad would eventually pass it on to me, and I could borrow it if I really wanted to wear it until then. So I got a 41.5mm Aqua Terra on leather (black dial, orange details). It's gorgeous and works well with my tailoring but, in reality, I do too much around water (dishes, bathing our two small children 3x a week, miscellaneous house projects) that makes leather not viable daily. I don't love NATO straps, and the steel bracelet is eye wateringly expensive.

So after our second son was born in January, I got the Bond Seamaster (the 2006 coaxial model, 2220.80). I wear it even in the shower and to bed; only take it off to work out. I might just bite the bullet at some point and get the steel bracelet for the AT because I think it'd get much more wear.

I actually also think the 38mm AT with steel bracelet would be an excellent one watch, blue, black or white dial.
 

Duke Santos

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Omega Bond Seamaster is my one watch collection, no question.
I've learned about myself that any watch that I want to wear every day in virtually all circumstances needs to have a steel bracelet. In 2004 my dad bought the original Bond Seamaster, and being a generous dude, said I could wear it whenever I wanted. So off and on for 15 years I wore that thing even after I moved away from home, including on travels around the world. I always loved the watch but was never a watch enthusiast, and considered that to be good enough to be my single nice watch.
Last summer I started getting into watches after my brother gave me a Bulova moon watch as a gift randomly. I started making plans to buy my first nice watch purchase, and specifically avoided the Bond Seamaster because I knew my dad would eventually pass it on to me, and I could borrow it if I really wanted to wear it until then. So I got a 41.5mm Aqua Terra on leather (black dial, orange details). It's gorgeous and works well with my tailoring but, in reality, I do too much around water (dishes, bathing our two small children 3x a week, miscellaneous house projects) that makes leather not viable daily. I don't love NATO straps, and the steel bracelet is eye wateringly expensive.

So after our second son was born in January, I got the Bond Seamaster (the 2006 coaxial model, 2220.80). I wear it even in the shower and to bed; only take it off to work out. I might just bite the bullet at some point and get the steel bracelet for the AT because I think it'd get much more wear.

I actually also think the 38mm AT with steel bracelet would be an excellent one watch, blue, black or white dial.
Have you looked into the rubber straps that Omega produces for the AT line? Sounds like it might fit the bill.



And one other suggestion might be the CXL straps that Ashland Leather makes. Chromexcel has some pretty good water resistant properties that might be enough for you. If you have an odd sized lug width (why Omega? Why?), they do custom.
 

venessian

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But I realize the Sub is somewhat of a general "middle-aged guy who's trying to impress others" watch. I'm less concerned with that than I am wearing something that doesn't suit my personality. I'm not a very sporty dude -- definitely don't swim or go diving. I mostly want something I can wear with denim trucker jackets, bomber jackets, raw denim, flannel, heavy boots, etc. I wear a lot of Kapital, Nigel Cabourn, RRL type things and the Datejust still feels too dressy to me -- I think even if I switched out the strap.
Then the 1016 sounds like a safer choice. The classic Cabourn pairing would be a field/military watch (look at his collabs with Timex), and the old Explorer does have that look. I would also look at actual vintage field watches, as there are some gems there:

View attachment 1596096

Or if you're set on a diver then the Benrus Type I is great (they reissued it recently, but it was worn by Special Forces in Vietnam, so one may have varied feelings about that):

View attachment 1596094

Three-hand pilot watches would also work well for the look you describe, vintage or reissued (lots of great options beyond the usual IWC ones):

View attachment 1596097 View attachment 1596098

Anyway, sorry for all the unsolicited and elementary advice -- I just felt like googling some pictures!
radicaldog provided some great suggestions.

I would also say pilot watches (or Explorer I and variants), over divers, as long as the pilot is not too military. So, even though they might be considered "the usual suspects" (nttawwt), I still feel that the elegant pilot standard is the IWC Mark XV (or XII, but more rare) and their early brethren among other brands. But: forget IWC Marks after the XV.

The IWC XV has more than a few solid current homages at lower price-points, such as Stowa, Laco, Archimede, TimeFactors "Speedbird", plus older Wempe, etc. However, I do not like the typical broad arrow/spade "B-Uhr Flieger" hands* for your case though; I would much prefer the IWC XV "Bund"-style syringe hands* as they are not as pilot-specific and you are not looking for a full tool watch only. If you were, Damasko would be my recommendation, almost without hesitation. The MKII Hawkinge is a quite nice XV homage, even less expensive than Stowa etc.

*Here is a good primer on hands styles.
 
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venessian

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I've read people online say they hate people with Rolexes.
People online say they hate a zillion things. Who cares? Wear what you like, pay them no mind. If "they" hate others for their choice in watches, they're the ones who are screwed up, not you.
 

shrink1061

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37mm black Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra.

slim, elegant, simple, waterproof, compact enough to be dressy, rugged enough to be sporty, and not so expensive that you’d worry about wearing it.
 

mak1277

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I don't know very much about watches, but my "one watch" collection would be this Rolex Datejust. I inherited it from my father, who bought it in the 1960s shortly after graduating college. My family is from Saigon, and they escaped the Vietnam War, then the killing fields in Cambodia, and then the Iranian Revolution. Each time when fleeing, my dad had this watch with him. One time, my dad got robbed while in the US and someone pointed a shotgun in his face. Right before they approached, however, he had the calmness of mind to slip his watch off his wrist and throw it into the corner (his hands were under a counter and they couldn't see). Some years later, he gave it to me when I turned 30.


View attachment 1595781


I love the watch and it's easily the most important material thing I own. However, I only wear it with suits and sport coats. I find it too dressy for my casualwear, which goes between workwear (e.g. vintage Lee trucker with raw denim jeans and an RRL flannel) and some contemporary stuff (e.g. Margiela five-zip). I even find it too dressy for some CM-adjacent casualwear, like stuff from Kaptain Sunshine. Been thinking about buying a Rolex Submariner for casual outfits (mostly workwear and Kaptain Sunshine type stuff).

I have a friend who's really into clothing and watches, and I admire his taste. Sometimes we meet up for dinner and drinks when he's in San Francisco. When I mentioned to him my plan to buy a Rolex Sub, he said that he thinks I should buy a Rolex Explorer (1016) instead. He thinks it suits my personality better. I've been mulling on it.
Super watch and even better story. I think you should take @Dino944 's advice and try wearing it with your workwear fits. The story surrounding the watch transcends whatever other "message" you'd be sending by wearing it with a fit that you might find incongruous.

As for a new watch...why vintage? I might be in the minority of watch lovers, but I am 100% in favor of buying a new watch that is only yours...your story, your patina, your watch...not somebody else's. Perhaps the whole "story" angle is a little too woo-woo and you just like the look of vintage better, in which case, carry on. But imagine someday having two watches...one your dad bought new, and one you bought new. Two wonderful things to hand down or gift that have only ever been in your family.

Regardless, don't listen to anything anyone here says about what watch to buy. If you're undecided, enjoy the pics and get good ideas, but ignore the commentary. Buy what you want and what speaks to you when you try it on (and do try it on, whatever it is...it's amazing how many watches I've "had to have" based on pictures and just hated when i actually put it on my wrist).
 

Thin White Duke

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Omega Bond Seamaster is my one watch collection, no question.
I've learned about myself that any watch that I want to wear every day in virtually all circumstances needs to have a steel bracelet. In 2004 my dad bought the original Bond Seamaster, and being a generous dude, said I could wear it whenever I wanted. So off and on for 15 years I wore that thing even after I moved away from home, including on travels around the world. I always loved the watch but was never a watch enthusiast, and considered that to be good enough to be my single nice watch.
Last summer I started getting into watches after my brother gave me a Bulova moon watch as a gift randomly. I started making plans to buy my first nice watch purchase, and specifically avoided the Bond Seamaster because I knew my dad would eventually pass it on to me, and I could borrow it if I really wanted to wear it until then. So I got a 41.5mm Aqua Terra on leather (black dial, orange details). It's gorgeous and works well with my tailoring but, in reality, I do too much around water (dishes, bathing our two small children 3x a week, miscellaneous house projects) that makes leather not viable daily. I don't love NATO straps, and the steel bracelet is eye wateringly expensive.

So after our second son was born in January, I got the Bond Seamaster (the 2006 coaxial model, 2220.80). I wear it even in the shower and to bed; only take it off to work out. I might just bite the bullet at some point and get the steel bracelet for the AT because I think it'd get much more wear.

I actually also think the 38mm AT with steel bracelet would be an excellent one watch, blue, black or white dial.
I just used the chronograph feature to time how long it took to take off my watch and put it on the counter.
Five seconds.
Do this every time before you get in the shower and thank me later.
 

smittycl

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Was bit by the Rolex Submariner bug after watching Goldfinger when I was 10. I could afford one by the time I was 30 so I grabbed a Submariner Date 16610. Makes a great "one" watch.

Still eyeing the JLC Master Control as a dress watch, though.

1618861520345.png
 

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