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Old 3 June 2020, 11:22 PM   #1
bearxj86
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The direction of the collection - Some new thoughts

Hi everyone - I hope everyone is safe and doing well during these very difficult times.

I myself have still been doing a fair bit of watch buying/trading these months, but I wanted to share some revelations and thoughts with all of you. Some of it is an admission of guilt, and others are perhaps the process of self discovery for a novice collection such as myself.

For the first few years of watch collecting, I stuck with the basic steel watches, a Panerai, a rolex submariner steel (pre-ceramic), an omega speedmaster. In the beginning of course, my watch philosophy was on steel sports due to relatively low cost and of course versatility.

Pretty much everything changed with the purchase of the Patek Aquanaut in 2017, leading to the frenzy of the past 3 years... with countless sports and dress watches in and out of the collection, establishing relationships with Patek, AP, and Rolex ADs. One thing has remained consistent, I couldn't keep a full gold watch with gold bracelet for long. Several brushes with more "discrete" gold bracelet watches did not go well- two 5711Rs, full yellow gold 16808 (vintage), and recently even a YG birth year 36mm day date; all did not stay for more than 2 months. The difficult economic times recently has made me even more uncomfortable to wear these gold bracelet watches regardless of cost. I've even found myself selling some of my modern APs and most of my modern rolexes and Pateks because they are too "flashy". I'm also starting to much prefer discontinued pieces vs current production pieces.

It's actually quite interesting. This year (2020), I am actually spending MORE time and money on watches but it is vintage/neo-vintage Patek and vintage Rolex - also smaller watches, moving from the 40mm range to the 36mm range. However I feel like I am falling in love with watches all over again (had some Nauti/Aqua fatigue) and perhaps now for the "right" reasons? No one is watching my wrist since I am at home. I am buying books, I am reading, and I am talking to experts and really trying to be a student of the trade.

Anyway, thought I would share this revelation. I am going to probably be going down this vintage/classic track for the foreseeable future. Anyone else doing that today or did that in the past?
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Old 4 June 2020, 12:44 AM   #2
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Great that you have moved on to a more serious phase.

I'm still stuck at Nautilus and Aquanaut cycle, and have no vintage piece at all.

Going forward, I'm thinking of adding a GC, or 2 maybe, depending on my job stability in this economic reality. Maybe will add the FPJ resonance too.

I will still buy blue Nautilus when a new one comes along, a sport Rolex, and a few interesting titanium Grand Seiko.
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Old 4 June 2020, 03:04 AM   #3
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Interesting stuff. These last three months have been so odd and now throw in the general unrest and the hobby just seems off. I’ve been moving around too and moving popular stuff mostly due to the strong values. I’m slimming the herd down. My WFH has seen me wearing my quality pieces less, I’m not quite sure why as I don’t wear them for others, just for me. So then I’m questioning why I have so many. I’m not really changing my tastes though.
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Old 4 June 2020, 03:14 AM   #4
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Very similar journey, just maybe a little farther along. I did the steel sport watch thing for a while. Started with an Omega Speedmaster then bought my grail at the time, a two tone blue dial sub. Of course this was the 90ís so two tone was still in vogue. Several Rolexís later, moved onto IWC and Panerai before stumbling onto Patek. These were the Timezone days (pre Hodinkee) so an Aquanaut was out of the question. It had to have a complication. Worked my way through a 3940 and 3970 before discovering the ALS Dataograph. Got tired of buying watches I was afraid to wear so shifted gears entirely and went down the vintage Rolex rabbit hole. Once again, found myself afraid to wear my watches. The last thing you wanna do is ding up a mint full set 1675. So, switched gears again. Luckily my timing was good so I did well, this is usually not the case. Now I just buy what I like and will wear. Down to 4 watches, and I donít even own a Rolex:)

Enjoy the journey!
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Old 4 June 2020, 04:16 AM   #5
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I really enjoy these kinds of discussions. Thanks for starting OP.

Nothing overly unique to add other than I've been going through a similar re-thinking/re-internalizing of my own preferences....just organically. Simply put it's towards fewer pieces that I really will wear (about 3-5 or so) and very considered pieces.
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Old 4 June 2020, 05:43 AM   #6
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I have also thinned the collection

but conversely. I love gold watches w complications. The watch I am wearing the most is my journe monopusser. Frosted gold on bracelet.
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Old 4 June 2020, 05:52 AM   #7
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I started much the same way too. Rolex SS, then eventually a steel PAM for fun, then finally a speedy pro, then the jump to PM Rolex. I think I had to go that route. The value proposition of Rolex was just too good vs PP or AP. Only after that was I ready psychologically to get a SS on rubber strap (67) instead of a PM OF Daytona. Because that was already done.

I also like this idea of buying early enough that by the time I’m done, the pieces today will be vintage pieces. Best of both worlds IMHO.
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Old 4 June 2020, 06:43 AM   #8
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After 15 years of collecting I have started to collect time only pieces as you realise you donít really use most complications apart from the date and could face expensive repair/service costs. Also time only watches are normally slimmer so more wearable and comfortable on the wrist.

Less complications also means precious metal is more reachable so have been buying more gold pieces recently.

I tend to go for pieces that are currently not the most popular but I like the look of and can get for a decent price on the secondary market. Here are a few favourites from my current collection that I highly rate:
















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Old 4 June 2020, 07:37 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ansharma View Post
After 15 years of collecting I have started to collect time only pieces as you realise you donít really use most complications apart from the date and could face expensive repair/service costs. Also time only watches are normally slimmer so more wearable and comfortable on the wrist.

Less complications also means precious metal is more reachable so have been buying more gold pieces recently.

I tend to go for pieces that are currently not the most popular but I like the look of and can get for a decent price on the secondary market. Here are a few favourites from my current collection that I highly rate:
















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So nice! Iíll post next :)


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Old 4 June 2020, 07:42 AM   #10
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Hereís my top 7 - all discontinued except the 5167

3970G black dial - 36mm
3712a - 39mm
2526j black dial - 36mm
3919j - 34mm
5167a - 40mm
1680 red
16520 zenith









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Old 4 June 2020, 07:45 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearxj86 View Post
Hereís my top 7 - all discontinued except the 5167

3970G black dial - 36mm
3712a - 39mm
2526j black dial - 36mm
3919j - 34mm
5167a - 40mm
1680 red
16520 zenith









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Wow, amazing collection.
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Old 4 June 2020, 08:12 AM   #12
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Very nice varied top 7! You even made the 5167 look good ;-)
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Old 4 June 2020, 08:18 AM   #13
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Thanks to bearxj86 for starting a thoughtful and timely thread.

Being in NYC and spending a lot of time in lockdown has been good for me to assess my personal preferences in watches and reorient my collection goals. I’ve figured out the following:

Rolex makes incredibly attractive and solid watches and I’ve especially enjoyed wearing my WG Daytona with blue dial (116509), but I’ve come to the realization that wearing a Rolex watch does not best reflect my personal sense of style. So (gulp) I currently don’t own own a Rolex. In the last few months I sold my Sub Kermit, 16710 Pepsi, and 116509 Daytona. I’m also in the process of selling some other watches that I enjoyed owning, but never wore.

My collection is now reduced to a Patek 5164A, an FPJ Chronometre Bleu, an Oris Diver’s 65, a vintage Heuer Carrera 2447NST, a quartz Omega Seamaster, and a few vintage pieces that I just like to have around.

For a weekday office watch I alternate between the 5164 and the CB. On weekends I mostly wear the Oris. It’s so easy to wear and a terrific beater watch. The 5164 is also my travel watch. I wear the other watches on occasion.

There are a few watches I think I would buy at the right price, like the white dial 5711a at retail. And I’m sure there will likely be new releases that I become interested in buying. But for now I’m happy to have reduced the size of my collection. I do think there’s a very high potential for a sharp economic downturn this winter that may result in a significant drop in the luxury watch market. If that should occur, I’m ready to pick up that 5711 and maybe something else. We will see.

As an aside, if I were to completely start over and own just one watch, I would buy the current VC Overseas with interchangeable bracelet & straps. That’s just a very wearable and eye-pleasing watch. Best of luck to all!
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Old 4 June 2020, 08:26 AM   #14
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Whoa! I stumbled into a fun convo.

I knew myself to be a chronic upgrader so I didnít buy my first Rolex until I could have a President kids growing up on 90s hip hop dream about. I inherited two vintage DJs along the way to golf me over. I finally got there and really made a splash getting a Rhodium WG DD40 last Christmas. Warranty issues led to a generous AD trade where I ended up with a RG Olive DD40 and an AK 116900, because green is my favorite color. Turns out like OP all gold watches are just not for me, an old hand injury creeps up under the weight, and after 6 months I traded in the DD40 for a Hulk, Wimbledon, and Polar Explorer II. I think the Air King is a little top heavy for me, so I might trade that for a Kermit and Black Ceramic GMT to stay in the steel green theme.

From there Iíll reassess, but platinum Patek is starting to call to me. Something about the diamond hidden at the 6 between the lugs speaks to the ďmoney talks, but wealth whispersĒ mindset Iím settling into and there is always the green Aquanaut.




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Old 4 June 2020, 11:44 AM   #15
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Bill, I was telling FatNinja that my very short conversation with you a few months ago also influenced me in a profound way - not sure you know this:

You had referred to your Chronometre Bleu as so "choice". Since then I started wondering - with watches that I own, there is good, there is great, there is epic (usually some random RM or expensive watch), and then there is "choice", which is both subjective and objective. Such a great word that conveys the exact blend of emotions I now seek from my watches. I want to walk to my watch box each morning and be like damn, the watches are so "choice".

Anyway, thanks for sharing your story!


Quote:
Originally Posted by BigAppleBill View Post
Thanks to bearxj86 for starting a thoughtful and timely thread.

Being in NYC and spending a lot of time in lockdown has been good for me to assess my personal preferences in watches and reorient my collection goals. I’ve figured out the following:

Rolex makes incredibly attractive and solid watches and I’ve especially enjoyed wearing my WG Daytona with blue dial (116509), but I’ve come to the realization that wearing a Rolex watch does not best reflect my personal sense of style. So (gulp) I currently don’t own own a Rolex. In the last few months I sold my Sub Kermit, 16710 Pepsi, and 116509 Daytona. I’m also in the process of selling some other watches that I enjoyed owning, but never wore.

My collection is now reduced to a Patek 5164A, an FPJ Chronometre Bleu, an Oris Diver’s 65, a vintage Heuer Carrera 2447NST, a quartz Omega Seamaster, and a few vintage pieces that I just like to have around.

For a weekday office watch I alternate between the 5164 and the CB. On weekends I mostly wear the Oris. It’s so easy to wear and a terrific beater watch. The 5164 is also my travel watch. I wear the other watches on occasion.

There are a few watches I think I would buy at the right price, like the white dial 5711a at retail. And I’m sure there will likely be new releases that I become interested in buying. But for now I’m happy to have reduced the size of my collection. I do think there’s a very high potential for a sharp economic downturn this winter that may result in a significant drop in the luxury watch market. If that should occur, I’m ready to pick up that 5711 and maybe something else. We will see.

As an aside, if I were to completely start over and own just one watch, I would buy the current VC Overseas with interchangeable bracelet & straps. That’s just a very wearable and eye-pleasing watch. Best of luck to all!
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Old 4 June 2020, 12:44 PM   #16
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My philosophy has changed over the years. The recent pandemic has made me reevaluate, reprioritize and reflect on what really makes me happy. That being said, adding watches is the least on my mind.


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Old 4 June 2020, 01:22 PM   #17
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Somewhat similar - after acquiring mainstream sports pieces in the past 15 years, I'm consolidating and moving to smaller, dressy and more desirable/collectible pieces. Less is more. Hopefully one day to own a PCC from Patek to complete.
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Old 4 June 2020, 01:29 PM   #18
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I really enjoy these kinds of discussions. Thanks for starting OP.

Nothing overly unique to add other than I've been going through a similar re-thinking/re-internalizing of my own preferences....just organically. Simply put it's towards fewer pieces that I really will wear (about 3-5 or so) and very considered pieces.
I enjoy these threads as well. Thank you OP for starting this one, I enjoyed your post and I am definitely on the hunt for my first vintage Role.
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Old 4 June 2020, 04:05 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearxj86 View Post
Bill, I was telling FatNinja that my very short conversation with you a few months ago also influenced me in a profound way - not sure you know this:

You had referred to your Chronometre Bleu as so "choice". Since then I started wondering - with watches that I own, there is good, there is great, there is epic (usually some random RM or expensive watch), and then there is "choice", which is both subjective and objective. Such a great word that conveys the exact blend of emotions I now seek from my watches. I want to walk to my watch box each morning and be like damn, the watches are so "choice".

Anyway, thanks for sharing your story!
Itís all good. Itís true I was very reluctant to let that CB go, even when faced with a very compelling trade value-wise. But I just really enjoy wearing that watch. I plan to get a different color strap for it soon. Thanks for the kind words bud.
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Old 4 June 2020, 08:13 PM   #20
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Great thread. And WOW what a nice line up of 7 watches.
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Old 4 June 2020, 08:49 PM   #21
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I'm still not that into vintage pieces, save for maybe a few Rolex divers, but I am more interested in the dress firms like Journe, UJ, Gronefeld, not sure I really need a dress piece yet tho but I might have to grow up one day...
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Old 4 June 2020, 09:30 PM   #22
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This is a great thread.

Recently, while looking for "the" daily-wear sports watch (three kids under 8 y'all), I've found myself veering off to vintage Grand and King Seikos. Why? Seriously, no idea, but I've come to accept that something in them tickles me in a way few other watches do. I bid a huge amount, far more than it was objectively worth, on a new-old-stock GS45 - my favourite of the breed, of which I own more than one - and lost the auction by $3. And you know what? I was more upset about that than my long failure to source a 5711 or 5712.

It just proves to me that the perfect companion to our wrists is entirely subjective. It may take a bit of time to get there, but there are no wrong answers.
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Old 5 June 2020, 12:45 AM   #23
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Hey Jin, great collection. Have to confess, your 5167 r makes me sad I sold mine to help w purchase of 5711R ( which I love but don’t wear much) . Thanks for your great posts. Btw , what happened to our friend, the Ninja??? Is he permanently banned?? Been missing him.
Your pal, james
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Old 5 June 2020, 01:14 AM   #24
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I am still saving for 5167a. Not going to have any shot at getting one at retail though. Thanks for sharing OP.
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Old 5 June 2020, 03:07 AM   #25
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Always interesting to hear membersí thought processes regarding watch collecting journey. Last two months of being locked up at home has made me appreciate Rolex even more. I recently added a Pepsi 16710 and love the charm of this somewhat vintage piece. Also added the modern Pepsi when my AD called this week.

I also have Nautilus/Aquanaut fatigue but I wonít say no to a blue 5726 if my AD calls. I have a few more on my list then I will shift my focus back to Lange.
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Old 5 June 2020, 12:19 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bearxj86 View Post
Hereís my top 7 - all discontinued except the 5167

3970G black dial - 36mm
3712a - 39mm
2526j black dial - 36mm
3919j - 34mm
5167a - 40mm
1680 red
16520 zenith









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Fantastic collection
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Old 5 June 2020, 12:22 PM   #27
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Hey Jin, great collection. Have to confess, your 5167 r makes me sad I sold mine to help w purchase of 5711R ( which I love but donít wear much) . Thanks for your great posts. Btw , what happened to our friend, the Ninja??? Is he permanently banned?? Been missing him.
Your pal, james
Who is Ninja? Is he the notorious You Tube watch guru from Australia who is trolling watch forums
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Old 5 June 2020, 12:40 PM   #28
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This thread sort of hits home for me. At one point I had a pretty good sized vintage collection (mostly Rolex). I found that those, and haute horological dress watches, werenít really jiving with my lifestyle (travel, beach, pool) because they were too delicate and values were getting crazy.

So, I sold a bunch that I rarely wore and kept some vintage Rolex that I really liked.

Now, last few years, Iíve been collecting more modern, no-worry pieces that I acquire in circumstances that have meaning to me (such as buying when traveling to a special place, or for an occasion) as opposed to just buying for the sake of expanding a collection and checking the boxes. I have a real personal, meaningful connection to almost every watch I own now.


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Old 5 June 2020, 01:24 PM   #29
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Great thread. I came to watches from Reveros and vintage pieces, and largely remain in that space. I've yet to own a PP, and whilst I really adore the 5167 (having tried it on many times in Geneva), the hype puts me off completely. I've never owned more than two watches at any one time: one dress, one sports. Usually I just wear one all the time. The present pandemic has afforded me more time to explore what I like, and its ALS, JLC, vintage Heuer, and neo-vintage Breitling that have my attention--although, the 5960/01G has hit me like a breath of fresh air and I'm struggling to see anything as good or unique. Damn.
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Old 5 June 2020, 02:15 PM   #30
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Who is Ninja? Is he the notorious You Tube watch guru from Australia who is trolling watch forums
Nope
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