Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

Thread: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

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  1. #1
    Member TheJohnP's Avatar
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    Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    In honor of the new year (and Spinal Tap), I've put together a Top 11 list of my vintage grails.

    Enjoy the long post with a ton of pictures borrowed from all over the internet.

    #1) Hamilton Pacer
    - The Ventura was one of my very first vintage infatuations. But I gotta say that I prefer the Pacer even more. This is my ultimate vintage grail.
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    #2) Omega sub second
    - As far as high grade brands, Omega is at the top of my list. I can't say I'm well versed in the various models. But I if ever pick one up, I'd want one with a sub second. Classic look.
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    #3) Zodiac Olympus
    - Something about this model reminds me of Hamilton style design. I don't necessarily need a mystery dial, but I wouldn't complain if I found one!
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    #4) Valjoux movement
    - Not really looking for a particular brand, but rather the movement. And I blame all you of you here in WUS for that! I would really love to add a mechanical chronograph to my stable and having something along the lines of a Valjoux 72 would be ideal.
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    #5) Raketa Copernic/Copernicus
    - Love those hands. This would probably be the first of the grails I could attain as it doesn't seem as costly as others on my list. And it would be the first Russian I'd own.
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    #6) Mido Commander
    - Another odd case design. I know others have used the "stadium" case, but Mido is the one that comes to mind when I think of it. That and I only have one other Mido and the guy is kind of lonely.
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    #7) Accutron Spaceview
    - Not a big quartz guy, but I'm a sucker for design and this one has it in spades. And even though battery operated isn't high on my priority, I'm interested in what a tuning fork movement is like in real life.
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    #8) Fortis Trueline
    - Another one with an intriguing look. I really dig the design of the dial. Very mid century.
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    #9) Date pointer
    - Again, not a particular brand per se, but more of the feature. Definitely screams vintage and that's right up my alley.
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    #10) Benrus Jump Hour
    - I have another jump hour in my collection, but nothing like this. It looks like a classic Cadillac on your wrist. There were several designs from what I've seen, so would depend on what I could get my hands on.
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    #11) Micro-rotor movement
    - Another cool movement that I would like to have in my collection. Not the highest priority, which is why it's at eleven.
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    Granted, I know I could buy all these today if I had the funds. But it ain't easy when I don't have the largest budget to spend. But after seeing all those amazing finds on the vintages under $100, I have high hopes that some of these might land on my wrist one day.
    I've got more Converse sneakers than watches, but it is a close race.

  2. #2
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    A couple warnings so you're aware of potential trouble spots:

    - Be wary of the Spaceview and micro-rotor - they may be parts & maintenance issues.

    - There are some nice pointer date watches from the 40's and 50's that can be had cheap if you're willing to risk the parts issue. Benrus' version (and a few others) used a push-crown to change the date hand which frequently broke and parts are getting scarce.

    - Bulova made an identical watch to the Mido on your list. If it uses a Solveil et Titus movement similar to an ETA 2879, that will have a parts problem too - there's a click for a date or day change in that watch that breaks regularly. Luckily the part is still available for about $15, but it will cost some for the labor.

    - The Valjoux 72 is a sweet movement, head & shoulders above the 773x series used from the late 60's on. Chronographs are expensive to service.


    Okay, now that you know what you're getting into get going! I've tried on that exact Benrus jup hour and it's a cool watch. I think your analogy of it being like a classic Cadillac is a pretty good one.

  3. #3
    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Interesting list. I generally don't go after specific watches but rather look to buy values in general areas and let the market determine what I get. I've filled some of the areas I've wanted so don't feel the pressure to a special watch or watches. Collecting always has stages.
    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

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  5. #4
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Mmmm. I have my list, but buggered if I am publishing it, I have enough people to bid against as it is

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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Quote Originally Posted by trim View Post
    Mmmm. I have my list, but buggered if I am publishing it, I have enough people to bid against as it is
    'zackly. Also, bad juju. Watch collecting gods don't like it and work against you.

  7. #6
    Member TheJohnP's Avatar
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Quote Originally Posted by LouS View Post
    'zackly. Also, bad juju. Watch collecting gods don't like it and work against you.
    I know the "won't get your wish if you say it" mentality.
    Considering what I see some of these go for on occasion, not something I'm going to be jumping into anytime soon anyway.

    Just haven't seen a thread like this floating around, so thought it might be interesting to see what others were on the hunt for. Might give me some additional inspiration to bump my list to 20!
    I've got more Converse sneakers than watches, but it is a close race.

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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJohnP View Post
    I know the "won't get your wish if you say it" mentality.
    Considering what I see some of these go for on occasion, not something I'm going to be jumping into anytime soon anyway.

    Just haven't seen a thread like this floating around, so thought it might be interesting to see what others were on the hunt for. Might give me some additional inspiration to bump my list to 20!
    As much as I like Lou and Kris, I say "pffft!" to worrying you won't get your targets if you make them public.

    Every January I put my Most Wanted list on the forum somewhere (Public, Omega here - General on Watch Talk Forums) and it hasn't cursed me yet. For interest's sake I'll give it to you here too.


    1) IWC ribbon lug caliber 89. (already got it a couple weeks ago)

    2) Longines Grand Prize caliber 352. (sort of got this one too - I think)

    3) Zenith El Primero caliber 3019.

    4) JLC Geomatic or early Reverso..... undecided which to target first.

    5) Omega Seamaster caliber 353 (date at 6, white waffle guilloché dial, home plate indices) inside a reference 2627.


    Since the first two were handled so quickly, I have to reconsider the priorities and add a couple to the Top 5 from these candidates:

    - Omega '56 Seamaster Melbourne XVI Olympic Commemorative (took a step back after the near miss)
    - UG microrotor of some sort (Polerouter?)
    - VC reference 6073, 6099, or 6426
    - Longines caliber 22L and 30L (several series options)


    And there's always my white whale: a very late 50's/early 60's Longines Conquest Power Reserve caliber 294 in 18K solid white gold. Not even sure if there are any examples of this watch still available so this might be a pipe dream, but if there are any out there I'd sure like one as a centerpiece to my Longines collection.

    Of course, vintage pieces are realistic for me. Modern watches come much fewer and further in between. I wouldn't mind getting a new Seiko dive watch (SKX175?) to replace the OM since I've owned that over 2 years, and I'm about to pay for a Blancpain Villeret which I've wanted for a long time. The others are either priced into the stratosphere or higher (Patek 5159, Breguet 5197) or are so uncommon that I might as well be looking for a unicorn (Roger Dubuis Sympathie Guilloché Main LE in rose gold - one of 28 made). A little more realistic but still on my drool list is the Chopard 1860 in white gold. A nice tax return combined with a couple good bonuses and that one may be a possibility.

  9. #8
    Member trim's Avatar
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Quote Originally Posted by ulackfocus View Post
    As much as I like Lou and Kris, I say "pffft!" to worrying you won't get your targets if you make them public.
    I don't feel cursed though - and don't believe in Murphy

    Very short list. Many others to acquire, but these are special.

    1. Curvex cal. 311
    2. Stingray S
    3. Polerouter
    4. Roamer Alarm
    Last edited by trim; January 23rd, 2011 at 22:39.

  10. #9
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Dream watches from Rolex 17J chrono 6234 valjoux 72BC, AP, 193 tourbillion, Movado Polypan & Musuem, JLC Memovox , Blancpain Aqualung, Brequet skeletonised 21j, Breitling RF 808 Chronomat 1950, GP Seahawk, Le Coutre Reverso, Vacheron triple date moon phase, Glycine Airman 1970, Omega speedy moonwatch, IWC, Glashutte, Ulysse Nardin.,

    And then I woke up and my coffe was cold. Ok back to reality, some nice dive watches by Sinn , Doxa etc. An old Omega bumper, Elgin drivers 12 o'clock winder , Mido multifort grande luxe extra flat , something by Zenith & Zodiac. My number one for 2011 is a manual alarm watch of any affordable make, so far found the following:

    Seiko bellmatic (found but wants $150 ?)/ Certina,Sandoz,Tissot,Fortes based on AS 5008 / omega memomatic/ Helbros. Any more suggestions ?
    Angelus,Baum & Mercier,Breil,Bulova,Buren,Certina,Cortebert,Cyma, Elgin,Enicar,Ernest Borel,Eterna,Helbros,Helvetia,Jaeger Le Coultre,Lanco,Longines,Lucina Geneva,Mido,Mira,Movado,Nivada,Omega (22) ,Oris,Rado, Roamer,Rolex,Rotary,Seiko,Tissot,Tudor,Universal Geneva,Zaigor,Zenith, Zodiac

  11. #10
    Member DaBaeker's Avatar
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    Re: Top 11 vintage grails for 2011!

    Omega Flightmaster 910, Rlx bubbleback w.g., JLC master-compressor black dial
    :ROLEX OMEGA LONGiNES ♦ SEIKO Aquadive ♦ ELGIN ♦ hamilton O&W imexZodiac......

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