Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?
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  1. #1
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    Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Hello,
    I already own several Seiko vintage dive watches. Interested in other inexpensive (less than $500) brands. Which watches/watch brands should I consider? Bulova and Zodiace Divers seem to be above $500

    Vintage Divers that seem to be below $500
    Bernus, Edox, Baylor (Neptune), Buler, Caravelle, Bucherer, Cortebert.

    Other brands that I should look for ? Brands to avoid ?

    Thank you !

  2. #2
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    This is going to be a very subjective opinion. In that price range, I don't think that the brand name will be meaningful. Instead, you should look for examples that are interesting to you and are in excellent condition, with desirable features, like large (at least 38mm for me, but this is a matter of taste) all stainless cases with good finish and well-designed shapes (not just common chunks of metal), good recognizable movements (ETA, Felsa, etc), screw down crowns, good depth ratings (20 atm and greater), etc. That's about the most you can hope for under $500 these days, although with patience you can get watches like this for $300-$400.

    The brands that you mentioned made some watches like these, but also some cheap/disposable diver-style watches. And there are many high-quality divers with brand names that will not be familiar to you.

    I would be skeptical of Lucerne and Sheffield. Look very closely, because they are often very cheap "diver-style" watches, with chrome-plated cases, low-quality movements, no real water resistance, etc. However, sellers will still try to get hundreds of $$ for them.

    Bottom line: be very observant and focus on quality, not brand names in this market segment. Feel free to post links to watches you are considering.
    Last edited by badbackdan; September 10th, 2017 at 04:19.
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Thank you, Dan,
    Your suggestion makes lots of sense, I was getting dizzy with the brand names.

    So far my favorite style has been a Cortebert Diver with an ETA 2462 this example is above my price range ($825) but have seen similar watches for considerably less.
    Another Similar Duxot Diver with Felsa 4462 ($150 needs repair)

    I was getting caught up in the brands.

    - Mark
    Last edited by museumplanning; September 10th, 2017 at 04:40. Reason: Bad link

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  5. #4
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    By the way, I think you can still get a decent Zodiac Sea-Wolf for about $500 with some patience, although it will generally need some repair/servicing. They are a bit small for me, but I think it's a desirable watch with a great name and following, and if it appeals to you, it's worth the investment.
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Quote Originally Posted by museumplanning View Post
    Thank you, Dan,
    Your suggestion makes lots of sense, I was getting dizzy with the brand names.

    So far my favorite style has been a Cortebert Diver with an ETA 2462 this example is above my price range ($825) but have seen similar watches for considerably less. I was getting caught up in the brands.

    - Mark
    Unfortunately, that link didn't work for me.
    -- Dan (formerly known as @badbackdan)
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    I'd put my money on vintage Bulova or there sister brand Caravelle divers. All the 666ft divers are pretty cool imo.
    badbackdan likes this.

  8. #7
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Maybe you are talking about this watch: Gregoriades » 1960’s CORTEBERT Swiss Vintage Automatic Steel Date Diver ETA Cal. 2462

    I think it's ok, and in very nice condition overall, although I don't like the mis-matched lume on hands and dial. That's a real turnoff for me. It has some nice features, like the broad-arrow hand. This seller is pretty overpriced. With patience you can certainly find a watch like this for under $500. Maybe not this particular brand, but in this style, with these features, and of equal quality. Actually, you're lucky because this is a pretty conventional diver watch style, so it's not like you're looking for something unusual. Also, it's 37mm, which is fine, but not large enough to command a price premium like you will see for 39-40mm cases.
    Last edited by badbackdan; September 10th, 2017 at 04:37.
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Dan,
    Thank you for the suggestion! Will take a look.

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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    Sorry updated the link CORTEBERT ETA Cal 2462

  11. #10
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    Re: Inexpensive Vintage Divers (Non Seiko) ?

    OK, since you asked, here is a watch I think is a good deal: Vintage 1970s Betina Diver Mechanical Watch - cal. AS 1802/03 - Big Size | eBay

    I have watched the auction end previously with nobody bidding at a starting price of $200. I considered buying it, but I just don't need yet another watch like this one. All SS, 40mm diameter, 30atm depth rating, hand-winding AS movement. Case has been polished, but still nice. Dial, hands, and bezel are nice. No-name brand, but good quality and decent condition. I'd be happy with this watch.

    Edit: After another look, I'm not 100% sure this is all SS, and the case-back is not legible. Should probably check with the seller on this point.
    Last edited by badbackdan; September 10th, 2017 at 05:40.
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