1. What watches do you currently own?
That’s an interesting question and for a serial flipper like me, it varies almost from one day to the next.
I’ve slowed down a bit and am very content with where my rotation is. I’ll say that I’ve rid of all higher end watches at the end of last year and earlier this year, that means you will see no more JLC, BP, Rolex or high end IWC at this point. It was by necessity to put funds in more important things. Shall next year be good to me, I have a couple in mind. ? Anyway, at the moment, the collection includes a variety of watches from a $100 Seiko or Mondaine to a couple of Tudors and a Pam. I took this bad pic to show my current collection as it may be easier than just listing a bunch of names.
I just love watches, and the price or name on the dial isn’t what matters to me the most. I buy what I like and mostly from an aesthetic perspective. So you can see my box is filled with affordables and medium to high prices pieces, micro brands and established Swiss brands…
The ones I wear the most are the Tudor blue sub 79090, Bell&Ross 123 GMT, Alpina Fliegerstaffel 1 big date chrono and its PVD brother, and my Pam 005.
The blue 79090 is without a doubt my best horological purchase. I was not gonna buy it and the seller, whom I had delt with before, really urged me to. I did and was he right!!! ??
Absolutely fell in love with this one at first sight at a B&R event. Bought it at the AD that night. Overpaid but never regretted it. Also got great after sale warranty service from both the AD and B&R.
Alpina Power! Those watches are amazing and under-appreciated for sure!! They are undervalued, which is great for me. Better prices. ?? True Swiss brand with history and all Swiss made. The case work is fantastic. My best 2015 buy and the Fliegerstaffel is the watch I’ve worn the most over the last two months.
The Pam 005 was a recent unplanned purchase. I had Pams before, 2 243’s, 176, 177, 000 and 112. The 005 feels like Panerai team woke up one day and said: back to basics… Noting fancy… And recrafted the Pam1! It’s the Luminor case with the well known crown protection system and painted “sausage” ND dial sub second subdial , polished case, SS casaback…. To me it embodies what Pam is/was. Oh and how much fun are those for strap-nerds like me. ??
And then there is the Tudor Pelagos… Ah what can I say… Those who know me or follow me are aware of my weird relationship with it. ?? I’ve owned 9 or 10, quite frankly I stopped counting. This last one I purchased brand new from my local AD at their last event. I think it’ll help me in keeping it this time. It’s obvious I love the watch and it may be one of the best dive watches out there. Awesome titanium case and an amazing dial with 3-D effect all made by Rolex! Slap Rolex on the dial and it becomes a 10k watch immediately.
2. Currently, what is your favorite watch that you own and why?
That’s a very hard question to answer for a WIS I think… Or is it just me? ?
So my answer will be from three different perspectives:
- Sentimental: no doubt it’s my late grand dad’s Omega Seamaster chronograph with the 1040 calibre. I inherited the watch from him when cancer took his life. He was more than my gd dad, he was the kindest man I’ve ever known, my role model and my friend. We were very close when I grew up in France. I spent most of my vacation time with him and my gd ma, including a month at the beach every summer. I also worked with him at the family print shop after school and on Saturdays. He would patiently teach me his trade and with passion too. His everyday watch was a gold square Omega while his weekend and vacation watch was the Chrono. I admired it every summer, borrowed it(it seemed huge then on my tiny wrist) and even flooded it once using the chrono under water ? so long story shot it’s now mine. It was in really bad shape and not in working condition. After a year’s search I found the right watchmaker in Illinois to get it back to working condition. I kept the original pitted and damaged dial as it brings back memories, got a new OEM crystal by necessity and just a very light polished. It runs great and looks fantastic with each mark being like a memory in one’s brain. I don’t have great pics of it but here it is.
- Overall favorite purchase: by far and above the BP FF & Bathyscaphe, JLC NSA, or any others, it’s my blue Tudor sub 79090. It’s vintage but wearable daily and versatile in any setting and with a variety of straps.. Did I mention I was a strap addict!?? ? I just love the case. To me it doesn’t get much better for a daily watch and in general than a Rolex classic sub case. I love the dial and prefer it to the equivalent Rolex sub! Blue is my favorite color … But mostly it’s crazy hot and has a LOT of character! It has a certain “je ne sais quoi”. I’d be happy if it was my only watch. The old folded link bracelet has to be the most comfortable bracelet I’ve ever tried. It just molds to the wrist!? Plus it’s made by Rolex, in fact it has a Rolex case, bracelet, crown and caseback! It’s just quality! I also think it’s cool it doesn’t say Rolex on the dial.
- Current fave: the one I wear the most. I won’t spent much time on this one as I brought it up above. Case work is comparable to that of watches costing thousands and with well known brand names – the transitions from brushed to polished and back to brushed SS, level of finish… Then you have that beautiful dial with applied SS markers, which reflect the light beautifully as do the gorgeous faceted hands.
3. What is your grail watch and why?
To be honest, I have stopped using that term when it comes to watches. Not sure it makes a lot of sense and so many of us WIS are so fickle that the Grail changes often, so how can it be a Grail??
There isn’t one watch I dream about and have to have in however many years of saving $. Sure I’d like a Patek diver or a ALS watch, which is unlikely to happen with 3 girls to put through college. ?
Plus if I did save 20-35k for a watch, I’d probably use the $ elsewhere. Maybe a fun car or $ down on a condo at the beach for the family.
More reachable and likely to join my collection is a Rolex BLNR or another Bathyscaphe TI… If all goes well at work when comp time comes.
4. In your opinion, what is the best “bang for the buck” watch available today? (new or used)
Wow! That’s another difficult question. There are so many out there, is it even possible to answer this question? Seiko has many offerings that could fit that category and I think the SKX007-009 have lots to offer. True diver. Tough. Cool shape and looks. Cheap. Versatile. I love mine.
I have recently acquired Paul’s improved Scurfa Gen II Diver Ones, all 3 of them. I love them and he is such a great guy. Plus the watch was designed by a real diver for divers. The latest Gen II SS model is my favorite and is also a great value.
At a higher price I think the Omega PO 2500 is a great watch and alternative to the pricier Rolex. It’s aesthetically more pleasing and less bland I suppose. More daring perhaps yet just as versatile whether you find yourself beachside with it or at the office.
5. What is the URL of your watch website, when did you start it, and how do you plan on making it stand out?
I thought about starting my own horological website but my family and work take most of my time. I also am active in a few watch forums and Instagram so it hasn’t been a priority.
In the meantime I am mostly active on IG and here is the link
My feed is mostly watch related and my FB more family oriented. But my IG feed also includes some family pics and my pups too. It’s who I am and it’s PG too. I want everyone to be able to access it and in public. It’s down to earth too I think. I don’t own expensive photographic equipment, not take glamour shots or use a light box. I post watches of all styles and price range because I enjoy the hobby and one can enjoy a $150 Seiko as much as a $10k Rolex IMHO. I am also a strapnerd so you’ll see lots of straps and I switch them often. It changes the watch and a good strap often makes a watch! I think my followers enjoy my “playing Barbie” and new straps as much as my watches. ?? So you’ll find everyday shots of affordables and pricier timepieces. I don’t discriminate ?
Thanks for the opportunity to share my thoughts on watches. I love the hobby and have a blast!