So, while not new to 50s/60s vintage I am new to Etrerna as I own none. I had a few buddies on the Omega forum who were nuts over Eterna and I do know what they are known for most- the 5 bearing rotor and automatic innovations. That said I would like to know if I got myself into a pickle, or lucked into a decent gamble, or, just did so-so. And yes-I understand I took a big chance w/o movement pics and would always advise a beginner to shy away from any eBay vintage with no movement pics but I am fairly certain watch is untouched for years.
I normally research first-then bid- but in this case it was just a hunch late at night and -in particular-the really good looking dial with the exceptionally interesting 12-6-9 and subsidiary index markers plus the inexperience of the seller made me want to take the gamble. But the index markers? never saw any quite like this before.
SO to start....I was REALLY searching for a nice 50s triple date to replace a nice Zodiac tripleD I sold a while back. Somehow-an Eterna Centenarie '56 came up for $200BIN and I was intrigued. Then, searching for more Centenaries for comparison and info- this Kontiki popped up. I know the Kontiki dive watch from its reputation as a military (IDF) diver and expected even a plain SS Kontiki would be fairly pricey by virtue of its connection to the bezel/diver. Plus-the beefy case and chunky markers pulled me in, reminds me of a 60s DJ.
So while normally I am one of the one's here always saying: do the research BEFORE you buy-in this case it was late at night and I just impulsively took a gamble. But in order to determine the sellers 'reserve' I used an old bay trick which I guess came back to bite me on the butt. I had to bid higher then I would have and couldn't retract due to an
'internal error'. So my $320 was going to stand even though I would have only bid $275 tops. I was surprised when I won it though because by this afternoon-research showed me that sellers ask pretty high for these though I am not sure they are worth much more north of $500.
So my 3 questions to Eterna experts is:
1) I am not so worried about condition as I can pretty much see this is in the appropriate condition for its age and expect a c/s is in order. But are there any red flags I am missing due to lack of expertise with the brand? I know the pics are sub-par but hoping my experience can spot a winner thru the fuzz. I'm pretty sure the dial is orig. I can see the casebook medallion in place and figure its in average condition. And the bracelet I believe is original to watch as well. I have to admit-I've always been intrigued by those 5 dots on the dial, crown ( and of course-in all the ETA movements that use them in their rotors). So, do I own a nice piece of Horological history here-or is it just a run-of-the-mill 3-handed beauty? [honesty appreciated]
2) where does Eterna fit into the hierarchy of mass-produced luxury watches in the 50s/60s? Is it, e.g. lower then Omega but on par with Movado or Boluva? Equal to Longines? I have no clue where the market for Eterna watches was in the 50s 60s. I only know about their innovation of the rotor.
3) How desirable is this particular Kontiki to an Eterna fanatic? If I wanted I could easily get out of this sale as there is an eager second place bidder who would love it if I bailed and gave the watch to him. But would I be crazy to even consider this? If my hunch is correct and it just needs a c/s do I have a winner here? I am pretty sure its NOT one of the more collectable kontiki dials -like the ones with the triangular index markers or of course the actual divers. Are all kontiki's 'collectable'?
Any opinions and info-thanks and the link:
Eterna Matic Vintage Kontiki Watch Automatic | eBay