Ball quartz watches recent production?

Thread: Ball quartz watches recent production?

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  1. #1
    Member Elkins45's Avatar
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    Ball quartz watches recent production?

    Iíve seen some relatively inexpensive Ball quartz watches pop up for sale in a few places recently. Are these old stock or is Ball making quartz watches for markets outside the US? I emailed one seller and was told the watches they are selling were made in 2019 but I have been told by someone on a different forum that Ball hasnít made quartz watches for at least 15 years. Normally it wouldnít matter but a 15 year old tritium tube has already lost half of its brightness.

    Mostly Iím just curious. The once Iíve seen arenít designs that appeal to me all that much.

  2. #2
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    Ball regularly makes quartz watches for the Asian market, mainly Hong Kong, but some are sold in Japan and perhaps elsewhere as well--no truth to the 15 year claim.

  3. #3
    Member Nokie's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    If you shop carefully some of them look like a good deal if not bothered by quartz, IMHO.
    "Either he's dead or my watch has stopped"
    Groucho Marx

    "The only reason for time is so that everything does not happen at once..."
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  5. #4
    Member zuckermania's Avatar
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    I wouldn't be surprised if some of the Railroader models you see are NOS with aging tubes. I almost pulled the trigger on one but read a less than flattering report on the bracelet quality and dim tubes.

  6. #5
    Member Elkins45's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    Quote Originally Posted by zuckermania View Post
    I wouldn't be surprised if some of the Railroader models you see are NOS with aging tubes. I almost pulled the trigger on one but read a less than flattering report on the bracelet quality and dim tubes.
    A popular grey market seller has some Inspector models on sale. I emailed them and was told they were new 2019 production. A member on another forum contacted Ball and was told those models were produced in 2008. In the discrepancy between the two stories I know which one I would trust more.

  7. #6
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    Just to keep the tritium tube age issue in balance, here is a picture of my 15 year old Ball Fireman, with original tubes--the lume picture was taken a few months ago--yes, the lume is a little less bright than when new, but not noticeably so--this watch is still my "go to" watch for any night events that require knowing the time, such as going to the movies.

    Referring to the above, the Railroader is an Asian Market entry lever quartz, manufacture date approx 2018, not sure what you mean about "dubious bracelets" given the price point ($250?)--the quartz Inspector series seems of similar vintage and quality. Remember, the quartz watches are an entry class watch, made for the less-discerning buyer in a less discerning market, and are considerably cheaper in both cost and construction than any of the automatics. And, referring to the Inspector series, that has nothing to do with this thread, as the 2008 manufacture date is when the first automatic version of this was issued--2008 simply is when the production started, it does not mean when the actual watch was produced, as Ball serial numbers do not indicate date of actual manufacture. The quartz models of both are much newer, and much cheaper, in all respects.
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    Last edited by timefleas; 2 Weeks Ago at 14:48.

  8. #7
    Member Elkins45's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    The Ball Inspector watches I’m referring to are quartz watches in rectangular cases. Maybe there were two different series of Inspector watches? I’m hesitant to provide a link out of respect for our forum sponsor, but here’s a picture. The reference number for this particular watch is NM1021D-S-BE

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  9. #8
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: Ball quartz watches recent production?

    Thanks, after a bit of digging, found that the quartz version is much more recent and designed for the entry level Asian market, apparently produced in 2018 or thereabouts and aleady appears to have been discontinued and bought up by a graymarket seller, so it is clear that they make/made both an automatic and a quartz version. Again, though, any date you would come up with would be the first year of production--hard to say when and if any particular model was discontinued, and when any specific piece of any model was actually made during the course of the model production run, unless you had the stamped warranty card.
    Last edited by timefleas; 2 Weeks Ago at 14:52.

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