Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

Thread: Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

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  1. #1
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    Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

    Hi folks, glad to meet you. Let me start by saying that i'm a search for a dress watch and been looking for both vintage and new pieces. Since i have a rather small wrist my upper limit size wise would be 37-38 mm. Recently i've stumbled upon a BAUME et MERCIER Chronograph with a Landeron 148 movement (photos below). As stated in the listing the case is solid 18k gold. I've had some trouble identifying the exact model (i think it's a vintage Baume et Mercier Classima from the '50s). My question is are there any changes of restoring this beauty ? (the dial looks pretty beat up, the glass too). How serviceable/reliable is the movement ? The piece is undeniably classy and beautifully made, always had a weakness for vintage cronographs. Also the asking price is around $900 which seems pretty low.


  2. #2
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    Re: Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

    Welcome to watchuseek, and thanks for posting these photos. It's a great idea to ask questions before taking the plunge.

    This chronograph has no particular model name, which is common for watches from this era. This chronograph looks mostly original (with the possible exception of the crown) and in fair condition. As you mentioned, the dial shows significant damage and the case is badly over polished. Beauty is, however, in the eye of the beholder and if you find the watch to be appealing overall, that's the important thing.

    The crystal is easily replaced, but other than that you should not expect to do any restoration. You would need to accept the dial and case as they are. If this is a 37-38mm chronograph the asking price is probably pretty fair, but definitely not low. The Landeron is an entry level movement, the condition isn't great, and Baume et Mercier is not a particular desirable brand on the vintage market. If the watch is smaller than 37mm, the price is probably a bit high.

    By the way, you said you are looking for a dress watch. By no means is this a dress watch.

    Edit: One thing I neglected to mention is that you should budget at least $400 for a full service and crystal replacement. Service and repairs on chronographs are significantly more expensive than on simple watches.
    Last edited by badbackdan; January 15th, 2018 at 15:51.
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    Re: Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

    Quote Originally Posted by badbackdan View Post
    Welcome to watchuseek, and thanks for posting these photos. It's a great idea to ask questions before taking the plunge.

    This chronograph has no particular model name, which is common for watches from this era. This chronograph looks mostly original (with the possible exception of the crown) and in fair condition. As you mentioned, the dial shows significant damage and the case is badly over polished. Beauty is, however, in the eye of the beholder and if you find the watch to be appealing overall, that's the important thing.

    The crystal is easily replaced, but other than that you should not expect to do any restoration. You would need to accept the dial and case as they are. If this is a 37-38mm chronograph the asking price is probably pretty fair, but definitely not low. The Landeron is an entry level movement, the condition isn't great, and Baume et Mercier is not a particular desirable brand on the vintage market. If the watch is smaller than 37mm, the price is probably a bit high.

    By the way, you said you are looking for a dress watch. By no means is this a dress watch.

    Edit: One thing I neglected to mention is that you should budget at least $400 for a full service and crystal replacement. Service and repairs on chronographs are significantly more expensive than on simple watches.
    many thanks for your reply Dan. Indeed, i know that chronographs are not dressy in the traditional sense but i find something very charming in it and i do think the model can pull off a formal attire (not evening). Of course, i'm still in search of a dress piece at around the $1k mark (new or vintage). Recently i have been toying with the idea of a Longines Conquest Heritage Automatic, ref. L1.611.4 Bf307674. What would you suggest to be an appropriate timepiece ?

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  5. #4
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    Re: Help needed in identifying a Baum & Mercier cronograph

    Quote Originally Posted by andreic17 View Post
    Recently i have been toying with the idea of a Longines Conquest Heritage Automatic, ref. L1.611.4 Bf307674. What would you suggest to be an appropriate timepiece ?
    Well, you could obviously look at the actual vintage Longines Conquest models, or Flagship, All-Guard, Admiral, etc. That way you wouldn't be throwing your money away.

    Similarly, you could look at Omega Seamaster, DeVille, Geneve, models from the 1960s. Universal Geneve and Zenith would also be very good options. All of these made beautiful and high-quality dress watches that will probably appeal to you if you like the Longines Conquest Heritage, and SS models can be found for under $1k. Personally, I have a weakness for IWC dress watches from the 1950s and 1960s, although it will take some patience to find a decent one for $1k these days.
    -- Dan (formerly known as @badbackdan)
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