[Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?
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  1. #1
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    [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Hi gents!

    Great forum, and a great help to new watch enthusiasts who don't know a whole lot about watches (yet)! :)

    Anyway, to get to the point. I am about to graduate and am allowed to pick a nice watch as graduation present. Price is not really an issue (I'd say upto 12k euros or so is OK.)
    The type of watch I would like should be 1) a classic, which I can still wear with pride when I'm 50; but 2) also sportive/'young', and suitable for a 25-year old.

    The models I am currently considering are:

    IWC portuguese yacht club chronograph (in white, or possible in black)
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    IWC portuguese automatic
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    (However, I just read -on these forums- that this model tends to run fast (as in 20+ seconds per day!).)

    Basically my questions are:
    1) Would any of you have suggestions for other similar watches (that are 'classic' and 'sportive'/'young')?
    2) Which one would you opt for when having to choose between the portuguese yacht club and automatic watches? (also, what color -black or white- would you choose?)

    Looking very much forward to your suggestions and insights!
    All thoughts are appreciated :)
    Last edited by Tomassi; December 6th, 2011 at 15:49.
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  2. #2
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Lucky guy, congratulations! I might suggest something a bit more rugged, with good water resistance?

    When I graduated high school (a long time ago!), my parents bought me a Zodiac Seawolf automatic. It was/is a rugged watch that I still have after all these years, and when I was younger, I wore it all the time. I can't tell you how much that watch went through -- I even wore it to bed! But I don't think a more fragile watch would have made it through. A young person is pretty active and I'd think you'd want an active person's watch.

    So you might want to look at something like the IWC Aquatimer dive watches if you're into that brand, or an Omega Seamaster, something like that?

    Sodiac
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  3. #3
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Get an Omega AT8500 and save your parents some money

    Else, I think you can step into a whole new other league with a watch from an independent who customizes watches like Dornblueth (those watches will never go out of style!). I'd also recommend a Zenith El Primero chronograph, else a Breitling Transocean with the cal. B01. Or, if you prefer IWC as a brand, the Ingenieur 3227*.

    *Edit: I forgot the Seiko Ananta with the cal. 8R28, Brightz Phoenix with the cal. 6S37, or if you're lucky the Flightmaster with the same movement (they're all chronographs, and available only in Japan, but can be purchased from reputable online dealers like Seiya, Higuchi and Chino).
    Last edited by v76; December 6th, 2011 at 17:31.
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    I am currently in the same situation. Absolutely love the Portuguese auto, and I am leaning towards that. The yacht club is phenomenal, and I have yet to try it on, but at 45.4 mm it is a big watch - I'm not sure how long that will be in style, especially give the current trend back down in size. I am also looking at the JLC master calendar, which is a great watch and I love the complications. I have an IWC so going to JLC has its allure As for iwc 3227, they haven't made that in years so you would be looking used.

  6. #5
    v76
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    You're right, the 3227 hasn't been made in years, but they're still available ... even with some ADs. There are other newer model versions of the Ingenieur he can probably have a look at, but if it's over 44mm, that dial doesn't look proportional anymore (to me).

    The Yacht Club is huge, and the Porto though pretty does seem to suffer some problems with accuracy*, so personally, I'd pass on both.

    *Edit: This is from what I've read on this and other forums. Not sure if it's some inherent design flaw, or just not being well regulated (and adjusted) to begin with, but reports of 8 to 10 s/day off (with positional variation) are not uncommon with complaints. I'd suspect the latter given that it doesn't use any groundbreaking technology (in other words mature tech. where little can go wrong).
    Last edited by v76; December 6th, 2011 at 18:08.
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Panerai Luminor 1950s 8 days GMT.. right at the top end of your budget, but worth every penny!

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  8. #7
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    You said you wanted to be able to wear it with pride when you're 50, this pretty much means nothing above 42mm and with a reliable movement. It also should mean a relatively classic case. I think some good options are:

    Vacheron Constantin Overseas (Uses a movement based on the JLC 889)
    Audemars Piguet Royal Oak (with the new 3120 movement, which is excellent)
    JLC Master compressor series (memovox) if you want something a little more sporty.
    Glashutte Original sport evo (not my personal favorite but it fits the bill)
    The ubiquitous Rolex Submariner/GMT Master II
    JLC Master Dual Time, a good balance between sporty and lasting style with an excellent dual time movement (JLC 975 has all the latest bells and whistles though not as finely finished as the VC/AP)

    Best of luck and feel free to PM me, I was once in your position too.
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Between these two, definitely the Port Auto.

  10. #9
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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Quote Originally Posted by TeutonicCarFan View Post
    I am currently in the same situation. Absolutely love the Portuguese auto, and I am leaning towards that. The yacht club is phenomenal, and I have yet to try it on, but at 45.4 mm it is a big watch - I'm not sure how long that will be in style, especially give the current trend back down in size. I am also looking at the JLC master calendar, which is a great watch and I love the complications. I have an IWC so going to JLC has its allure As for iwc 3227, they haven't made that in years so you would be looking used.
    What current trend in downsizing? Last I heard, even Rolex is now making watches over 40mm (the new Explorer II, the DeepSea, the Yachtmaster, and rumors of a 42 or 44mm Submariner in the works).
    TAG Heuer Monaco LE|Omega Speedmaster|Seamaster 300MC|Rolex Submariner|Tudor Ranger

    How did it get so late so soon?

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    Re: [Graduation watch] What to choose? IWC yacht club, automatic, or other?

    Congrats on the graduation and welcome to WUS, Tomassi! :) Also, congrats on the generous parents. ;) I think a watch for graduation is one of the most cherished gifts a man gets in his life. At least it was for me.

    Both watches you picked are beautiful and have in-house movements. So that's already good. Now, I suppose you would want to be able to wear that every day. Does your everyday include long-sleeve shirts with cuffs and suits? In that case, it would be a good idea to choose something with the measures 42(diameter)x14(thick) or smaller. Because when a watch is bigger than that it might not fit under cuffs well or not at all. The 7day Portu Auto is right about at that size, so that would be OK. The Yachtmaster would be too big. In that regard, you should also think of your wrist size. You're a young man and the young guys sometimes have a taste for watches that are too big for their wrist. This will not be a classic and long-lasting choice and the young ladies (at least the classy ones) will recognize that more than you think. ;)

    Also, when you choose a dial color, in general the lighter dials are perceived as being more elegant and the black ones more sporty. Just a general direction for your reference. It is useful to know because then you can balance out the design with the dial color. For example take a watch that is rather big but choose a white or silver dial. I'd do that for the Portu auto, too, btw. The white dial with gold indices is gorgeous.

    Another thing that you should think of is that a bracelet made of metal will be sturdier and more versatile than a leather strap. It will also be much cheaper to buy the watch right away on bracelet than deciding later on you'd like one and buy it extra. They charge about $1200 for a bracelet for a luxury watch. Ouch! But you can get great streaps from independent companies for $50-300.

    That said, with 12k Euro (a lot of money!) you can get into a different realm still of watches. I'd seriously look into the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15300 (the reference number). And like edeag suggested the JLC Master Dualtime or really any JLC with 975 movement would be a great buy. The JLC Dualtime could even be had in gold for that price but I think it is wiser to not yet choose a gold watch at your age. Rather go for an exclusive steel model. The Royal Oak fits that perfectly.

    So does the Overseas by Vacheron Constantin. The advantage compared to the APRO is that it is a bit sturdier and has higher water resistance and it is a bit cheaper. The movement in it is also a JLC. So no problem there. In-house is generally more prestigious but, hey, a VC modded JLC is nothing to sneeze at and JLC makes among the best movements in the industry.

    Both watches are prime examples for the luxury, sporty-elegant steel watch, that can be worn with casual clothing and suits. They are also both quite flat and they are just beautifully made. Both can be worn every day. But be aware that because of the prestige of the brands and because of their extraordinary cases and bracelets, it will be quite expensive to have them maintained. Count about Euro 1000 every seven years or so for a full service with case and bracelet work. Without c/b work done it will be less. You should only have the case and bracelet re-polished when it is absolutely necessary as every intervention will take away metal. An over-polished watch loses value.

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    The VC is on the left. I used the blue dial for the AP pic because that is the classic color typical of the APRO. But many people choose a white dial. In the pics the AP looks bigger but it is smaller in reality.

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