A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have
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  1. #1
    Member LouS's Avatar
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    A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    A few days ago, I finally got my hands on a long-coveted grail:



    For those who don’t know, the Excel-O-Graph is a slide-rule chronograph released by Gallet in 1965, and powered by an ExPark 40-68. It has also been documented in versions branded Excelsior Park and Sinn, which are otherwise identical. It is a seriously attractive watch, in the genre of Breitling, but to my eye even more appealing. This watch entered my consciousness early and aggressively. I first saw it in Jeff Stein’s 5-4-8 piece, where it reached out to me from among the bevy of other seriously attractive chronographs featured in that writeup. It was reinforced by seeing David Alstott’s example occasionally posted in the “what are you wearing?” threads in this forum. Many months ago, I started the obsessive collector’s stalk that I think we are all familiar with in one form or another for this watch.

    That’s where Bill Gates comes in: any internet search for an Excel-O-Graph yields hundreds of hits for Microsoft Excel help sites, sales sites, how to sites, in eye-numbing profusion, all discussing how one makes graphs in Excel. I waded through page after page of this garbage, day after day, week after week, almost always with no relevant result. It was almost enough to make me give up.

    One finally popped up, and I jumped on it, although it has some problems. This one was found abandoned in a desk drawer at a grass strip airport in the Midwest by a private pilot. It had no band and had velcro glued to the back. He meant to repair it but never having got around to it after three years, he sold it to me. It runs and keeps good time, including the chrono, but the hour totalizer just does its own thing – runs or not according to its mood, and never resets. The gasket on the snap back is rock hard and turning to dust, but the movement is clean. Obviously, service is a priority – can anyone recommend someone who has ExPark experience? I can’t imagine parts are easy to come by, should that become necessary.

    A couple more shots...





    And the ExPark 40-68, cribbed from the Invenit et Fecit website’s excellent history of Excelsior Park (Page Modčles)



    Cheers all,

    Lou
    Last edited by LouS; August 29th, 2010 at 02:29.
    DragonDan and aero-engineer like this.

  2. #2
    Member 2manywatchez's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    Congrats on finding that grail. What an awesome story. You saved this one from the ash can of horology. And it's beautiful to boot.

  3. #3
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    What a beauty and for sure a keeper. Way to kick gates butt
    1979 5513 Submariner
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  5. #4
    Member trim's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    That is a splendid thing...

  6. #5
    Omega Forum Moderator emmanuelgoldstein's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    Congratulations on finding a grail. It's one of the best moments in this hobby. I hope you find someone able to service it.
    “Education is the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the indifferent by the incompetent”

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  7. #6
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    Wonderful watch! Just a slight tip: if you google for "Excel-o-graph" (in inverted commas, i.e. exact expression), you'd get there quicker.....

    Hartmut Richter

  8. #7
    Member LouS's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    Thank you, gents.

    Quote Originally Posted by emmanuelgoldstein View Post
    Congratulations on finding a grail. It's one of the best moments in this hobby.
    EG, you are exactly right about that. It's a nice rush...and usually lasts a good while too!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hartmut Richter View Post
    Wonderful watch! Just a slight tip: if you google for "Excel-o-graph" (in inverted commas, i.e. exact expression), you'd get there quicker.....

    Hartmut Richter
    Ha, it works! I never knew that..thanks, Hartmut, you just made my life one degree simpler

  9. #8
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    congrats on a nice watch try nesbit for servicing your watches, they might have the spare parts for it.
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  10. #9
    Member JohnnyMonkey's Avatar
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    Now that's a nice watch, and a nice story to go with it

    Good luck with finding someone good to service and do this watch justice

  11. #10
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    Re: A Vintage Grail Arrives: The watch Bill Gates didn't want me to have

    what a stunner!

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