Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Non-categorized watch related discussion
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temerityb
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Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by temerityb » Fri Mar 26, 2021 1:08 pm

Here’s a novel concept – let’s talk watches!

I always use a dive watch bezel to time when I park at a parking meter. I did it a couple of times and now it’s a regular part of my routine. No, I don’t use my cell phone – I use my watch. One of the places I need to use parking meters to go to is the venerable From Italy With Love in Westbury, NY, which actually a decent place to pick up a used piece or two, and they are an authorized Citizen and Movado dealer. Really great people. Another reason I prefer brick and mortar; they know me when I walk in the door.

Does anyone else have a guilty pleasure when it comes to a watch brand? Mine is a minor brand whose watches don’t even make sense: The California-based Skywatch. They’re Swiss-made quartz pieces that are really solid; I’d put ’em in a flat-footed tie with, say, Shinola or brands like that. The watches don’t make sense because they’re called “Skywatch” and they are mainly designed like divers. Skywatch is most likely the most obscure brand that Tourneau carries; Nordstrom is another retailer that carries them. Oh, and for some reason, Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop company sells them on their website.

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The watches are decent quality, just basic quartz chronos and three handers. They look like divers, but they're no divers. Not even close. The straps are far above their price point IMHO, including some of the best silicone straps I’ve ever felt; they’re good and durable. The case work also punches far above their status (that’s what I like about, say, Dan Henry as well). They make case sizes from 38mm to 44mm. Now, at their list prices (list on three-handers start at $395, with chronos $595), I wouldn’t get near these. However, I found one gray at a Nordstrom Rack or something for like $60; my wife got a women’s model for less than $80 on Amazon, and I picked up another for about that somewhere I can’t even remember. For those prices? A tremendous bang for the buck. Wouldn’t have gotten near them otherwise. Ronda quartz, 100m, Super Luminova (also surprisingly good). I got all three of these for about 100 bucks less than the price of one new. The newest one I have is about five years old. Oh, and if you register your watch online, they send you a little winged Skywatch plastic pin. Be sure to drink your Ovaltine.

I think the new Omegas that came out this week are mint. I like the “Black Black” Seamaster, and by and large I don’t like blacked-out watches. I think conjurer’s new Seamster has me all a-dither.

Is it just me, are the gray sites nothing to write home about any longer? Ashford’s selection is pretty feeble right now; Joma stocks far more watches but I really don’t think the prices are anything to, as Edgar Buchanan would put it, write home about.

Although my collection is pretty locked up (he say on a Friday, probably will change my mind by Monday), here are my own personal favorites of online watch sellers, based on personal experience: Bernard Watch and Long Island Watch are really outstanding. Of the grays, I still prefer Ashford, as the more I read about Joma, the worse it all looks. I have dealt with Authentic Watches, which is fine. I know I shopped at a couple of others but I honestly can’t remember who I picked the watch up from.

Amazon has shot itself in the foot when it comes to watch sales: They actually did away with their A-to-Z listing of the watch brands they carry. Let me state that again: You can’t look at a list of all the brands they sell. So, if you might think that they carry a brand, you have to type the brand name in the search bar to find out. I literally called Amazon to ask about it because I think it’s utterly stupid, and yeah, they told me there’s no list any longer. So, basically, Amazon literally buries watch sellers because if it doesn’t come up in a featured ad or some such nonsense, you’ll never know you can buy certain brands there. Totally f’ed up.

Hope you all are safe and healthy 100 percent. Please feel free to offer your own views or call me a pumpkin head.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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JAS1125
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by JAS1125 » Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:23 pm

I just checked Amazon for Skywatch, and they have 2. Bummer.... I hear good things about Nordstroms Rack, but none that close to me.

I've had good experiences with both Ashford and Joma personally, although I read more negative things about Joma.

Agree with your thoughts on Amazon. Frankly I go there first since I usually have credit points to spend. They seem to be more overrun with Chinese low end watches of late....very low end.

My guilty pleasure? Bliger homage watches.
Quality is decent, usually sapphire crystals and even the base movements are much better now. Seiko or Miyota available too. And the kicker is a glidelock clasp that actually works pretty well.

Great post, T.
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svaglic
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by svaglic » Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:45 pm

I look here for watches at good prices.
https://www.nordstromrack.com/c/men/watches/automatic
And
https://www.saksoff5th.com/c/jewelry-ac ... es/watches
You can look for brands and skip the fashion brands.

I also look hard at watchrecon, I hate buying full retail.
I go into the old mom and pop jewelry stores around here, some have old watch bracelets in the old style turn displays.
I always look for watch stores at outlet malls, they seem to not last long around here so it’s hit and miss.
I gave micros a chance and just wasn’t happy, overall, with them. I have several hked and his EMG brand, they are made well and I haven’t had a complaint in any of them. That is probably the only micro I like and trust. Well, I like my Dan Henry too, but I think hked and my EMG Nemo’s are better quality. That’s saying something.
I’m not sure if Circula is a micro brand or not, it was resurrected by the founders grandson, so I’m not sure what category they fall into. I know I like the one I have and will buy their compressor when it is up for sale. For a resurrected brand, this guy is doing it right.

It’s hard to pass by a Seiko. I keep telling myself that I need to spread it out with all the brands, but Seiko keeps putting out the watches that I can’t say no to. They just cover it all and there is always something that hooks me.
It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by Ocean » Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:10 pm

I have dealt with a couple brands with some better than others. 88 rue du Rhône is one of my favorites. I had first met Pierre in NY in 2012. Been following this brand since then. It has good roots and hopefully new watches will follow.

Grey market is blasé. Ashford I have bought from as I have from joma but last time I ordered it was on the old bdwf and cliff was a member and had to do something to get it correct. For the first time in ages I thought I sent all of it to spam but a Wow promo got through to my surprise they had a decent deal on a Tissot and Certina. Long Island I have good success along with Orient USA when they had codes.

I like the search of a watch, a brand or a certain movement. Sometimes it’s instant some I had searched for years for exactly what I was looking for and some taste changes. Movements are my passion I spent more hours than I will ever admit on CAD, research and patents. The help I received in this hobby is priceless. I have spent more money than I care to admit on r&d. To anyone that actually does their own in-house movement and own cases you should know that the price you pay is paying their debt. The research and development is incredibly expensive.
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by biglove » Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:55 pm

Enjoyable reading, guys.

The grey market has tanked. Offerings are higher priced and selection is down. Ashford looks barren and their site is very much dated.

Island Watch has a great new site and am very comfortable buying there. Gnomon seems to have more reasonable prices of late. Citizen company store online is another great place to shop. River Edge Jewelers will sell at a discount if you ask. And for MOT Inner Circle, at 40% off.

Seems like more manufacturers are selling direct to consumer these days. Even Seiko USA and Citizen sell direct.

Have found that Citizen has Europe only watches in addition to their JDM offerings.

At this point in my collection I am waiting to buy two GMTs and hoping Island will release a salmon dial SARB/DJ homage. Still waiting on my Tissot PRX to arrive.

No other lusts in the pipeline and not expecting to buy anything else. Want to keep myself to a 5-7 watch collection. GS and Rolex are completely off the table with their rabidly skyrocketing prices. Not playing those games.

What I do need is a analog quartz beater on bracelet that can survive anything I throw at impact and water wise but I don't want to drop big coin so Marathon is out.

And I still spend may hours per week eyeballing watches I won't buy. It soothes my brain.
"I believe in a God who doesn't need heavy financing." Irwin M. Fletcher, Fletch Lives, 1989
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temerityb
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by temerityb » Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:51 pm

Ocean wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:10 pm
I have dealt with a couple brands with some better than others. 88 rue du Rhône is one of my favorites. I had first met Pierre in NY in 2012. Been following this brand since then. It has good roots and hopefully new watches will follow.
I wish I had bumped into you a few weeks ago - someone was having an incredible sale on a bunch of 88 rue du Rhône models, like 90 percent of list or something akin to that. Now I can't remember where the heck it was. If I can remember I will send another message here.

I found that brand sale as I was looking for info on the Model 88 Henry Kloss table radio; I own one and it's the best table radio of modern times, blowing away the Bose and stuff like that. When my browser hit on 88 rue du Rhône, I just kept looking.
Last edited by temerityb on Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by temerityb » Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:52 pm

biglove wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:55 pm


And I still spend may hours per week eyeballing watches I won't buy. It soothes my brain.
Ditto. I don't have to own a watch to admire it.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by biglove » Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:43 pm

Finally gave up on the Tissot PRX ever arriving. The Canadian jeweler said they have been waiting more than eight weeks for them to ship to them.

Got a full refund.

Fucking Tissot.
"I believe in a God who doesn't need heavy financing." Irwin M. Fletcher, Fletch Lives, 1989
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temerityb
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by temerityb » Tue Apr 13, 2021 7:18 pm

biglove wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:43 pm
Finally gave up on the Tissot PRX ever arriving. The Canadian jeweler said they have been waiting more than eight weeks for them to ship to them.

Got a full refund.

Fucking Tissot.
Really? Even Tissot is under-delivering?

Stunning. Nobody else you could get one from - say, direct?
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by 3Flushes » Tue Apr 13, 2021 9:36 pm

temerityb wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:52 pm
biglove wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:55 pm


And I still spend may hours per week eyeballing watches I won't buy. It soothes my brain.
Ditto. I don't have to own a watch to admire it.
+Me

I have much more to gain than to offer here- I haunt the already mentioned places but have little discretionary dough these days. The grey market as noted has become a ghost town- Joma's offerings are no great bargain at all anymore.

It seems to me that production has dropped off and manufacturers have considerably less to distribute let alone to liquidate. Witnesseth the scarcity of Tissot and Mido releases, and the seemingly worse than lotto odds at landing the coolest Steinhart offerings, to name but a few. Pandemic related or wised up? Hard to know.

Sector used to be my Swiss go to when I had to have a watch but I have not looked at the latest offerings for some time; I'm not sure if they are even still part of Fossil. Got a couple of great divers and a perpetual calendar from them during the old school 'No Limits" line days when they still came in felt lined leather wallets.

Picked up some cool tips on brands to look for, thx- looking seriously at Steinhart instead of Seiko, although that new GMT looks mighty tempting if the price holds.

Very cool thread folks.
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by biglove » Tue Apr 13, 2021 9:46 pm

temerityb wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 7:18 pm
biglove wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:43 pm
Finally gave up on the Tissot PRX ever arriving. The Canadian jeweler said they have been waiting more than eight weeks for them to ship to them.

Got a full refund.

Fucking Tissot.
Really? Even Tissot is under-delivering?

Stunning. Nobody else you could get one from - say, direct?
Evidently the black and silver dials can be had new. Is the blue that is on back order.

Have seen Live Photo’s of the blue just this afternoon and I am underwhelmed. The silver really has a nice vintage vibe but the gold colors are impossible to discern in actual wrist shots, which is a bit disappointing. And it appears to wear quite large.

Maybe is for the best that I had to wait. Will see what they go for used as they are now popping up pre-owned.

At this point I am waiting on the salmon dial Islander SARB/DJ homage only. And will have the spare cash with the refund on the Tissot.


My big new purchase, with the last of the eBay Bucks program, is a Casio “Casino Royale” World time. Have looked at them for years and figured “why not?”
"I believe in a God who doesn't need heavy financing." Irwin M. Fletcher, Fletch Lives, 1989
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by Ocean » Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:00 pm

Since we are talking can anyone explain the fascination with Tudor? There are so many different watches in that price range that I’d much rather have.
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by conjurer » Wed Apr 14, 2021 6:55 pm

Ocean wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:00 pm
Since we are talking can anyone explain the fascination with Tudor? There are so many different watches in that price range that I’d much rather have.
Interestingly, my latest watch came down between the new Seamaster SMP (which I bought) and the Tudor Black Bay two tone; I settled on the SMP because it wasn't as clunky, and also because the centerlinks were only gold-capped, with stainless steel inside, which I thought was a little nutty, considering it was priced eight hundred bucks above the SMP (both gray market.)

I own an older Tooter Hydronaut, which I bought from Dr. Smells. It's a good watch, as are all Tooters I've seen and handled. The Rolex connection obviously helps with the allure, but most of them are simply good, honest watches, readily available at far cheaper prices than Rollies.
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by temerityb » Wed Apr 14, 2021 8:17 pm

conjurer wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 6:55 pm
Ocean wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:00 pm
Since we are talking can anyone explain the fascination with Tudor? There are so many different watches in that price range that I’d much rather have.

I own an older Tooter Hydronaut, which I bought from Dr. Smells. It's a good watch, as are all Tooters I've seen and handled. The Rolex connection obviously helps with the allure, but most of them are simply good, honest watches, readily available at far cheaper prices than Rollies.
I think part of it is that Tudor is the Coors beer of the watch world, when you think about it. Coors was just a regional brand, and then when it began being distributed wider, people went nuts. We tend to forget that Tudor left the U.S. scene for so long that when it returned, fans went ape shit - and in this case, they've never stopped.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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Re: Crazed Thoughts On Watch Stuff

Post by 3Flushes » Wed Apr 14, 2021 11:36 pm

temerityb wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 8:17 pm
conjurer wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 6:55 pm
Ocean wrote:
Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:00 pm
Since we are talking can anyone explain the fascination with Tudor? There are so many different watches in that price range that I’d much rather have.

I own an older Tooter Hydronaut, which I bought from Dr. Smells. It's a good watch, as are all Tooters I've seen and handled. The Rolex connection obviously helps with the allure, but most of them are simply good, honest watches, readily available at far cheaper prices than Rollies.
I think part of it is that Tudor is the Coors beer of the watch world, when you think about it. Coors was just a regional brand, and then when it began being distributed wider, people went nuts. We tend to forget that Tudor left the U.S. scene for so long that when it returned, fans went ape shit - and in this case, they've never stopped.
Marketing indeed, but more than expansion... complete reinvention.

Tudor was originally introduced by Wilsdorf in the 20's to attract customers to quality watches at below Rolex prices in order to expand their overall market, profits, that is. Ol' Hans did so by marketing Tudor as Rolex's little brother; Rolex was highly visible in advertising and Tudor was marketed as a Rolex subsidiary.

Tudor watches were very similar to Rolex models, even in name, and as a result, Tudor sales began to suffer from a 'just like Rolex, but worse' stigma that over time diminished the brand's appeal and sales. By 2000'ish Tudor had withdrawn from many markets.

About 2007 Tudor was 'reinvented, ' marketed as a stand alone brand, and their visible association with Rolex had disappeared. Old school and WIS types know because we remember. Expanding back into old haunts, and into new markets was indeed a major strategy, and Tudor has expanded into a genuine global presence. AIR, they were relaunched in the US and the UK around 2013 after a ten of fifteen year hiatus.

Tudor released unique models with their own names that appealed to younger customers propeled by a very slick advertising campaign and ambassadors like Lady Gaga. Along with unique models, Tudor is more progressive than Rolex which also attracts younger and trend savvy buyers. Take a look at the new Black Shield chronograph.

Tudor has its own facilities and has also rolled out proprietary technology, notably cases and in-house movements such that they have established themselves as a genuine high watchmaking manufacture, a sibling of Rolex, as opposed to a red haired stepchild, so to speak. While uncommon in the past, lots of folks now have both Tudor and Rolex in their collections - a notable Rolex fanatic at Watchlords, for example.

I've long felt that Rolex's greatest expertise, even more so than their watchmaking, is their marketing and their advertising campaigns. Even when you're as good as the very best and better than all the rest, you still have to put the products on people's wrists.

And boy do they ever.
Last edited by 3Flushes on Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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