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Caller.

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Posts posted by Caller.

  1. Well, time for an update on my quest for the truth of this watch.

    I did indeed liaise with 'Omega passion', the author of the guide - the bible, some might say - about this watch and his initial, immediate response, was reasonably promising.  

    There were obvious issues, the bezel was not original, but a later version produced by Omega, the hands are modern and not the original tritium. There was hope for the case, albeit heavily polished. Further pics were required in respect of the dial and obviously, sight of the inside was needed.

    By this stage, I had returned to Hua Hin, which wasn't an issue as I could zoom back up to Bangkok at any time and that's what I planned to do, on Friday 26th. I had communicated to Pete the further info I wanted, including sight of the inside, via email on the 24th. He responded by phoning me the same evening and we had a very long chat about the watch, as I said previously, his English is excellent.  

    Well, the upshot of that chat was that he was happy to provide the pics as requested by Omega Passion, indeed he went further, and sent three videos of the watch as well, via the Line app. But he wasn't happy about opening the watch. Similar to what Jot said above, it all has to come out the front as there isn't a traditional back and he was worried about getting it all back in again, having removed it. So I offered to pay for someone to do this. However, he stated his watchmaker was based 30km from Bkk and it was too inconvenient for him to travel there and return with the opened watch and then have to return after for it to be re-assembled. 

    So based on that, I didn't bother going to Bangkok, I duly received the pics and videos and sent them all off to Omega passion for his opinion. And of course, by this stage, I still really wanted to get the okay to buy this watch.

    It wasn't forthcoming. 

    Clearly not being able to view the movement and case stamp to prove authenticity was a big issue. It's not fair to relay all of his comments, which were pretty blunt - lol! But he suspected that it's a watch made up of parts in Switzerland, which ties in with Pete saying he was contacted by a well known dealer in Switzerland, asking if he wanted the watch. So why no paperwork?

    So yesterday, I contacted Pete to let him know I wouldn't be buying the watch and he replied that he understood and thanked me for my interest.

    Anyway, here are the pics Pete sent (I couldn't upload the videos), followed by a photo I hope is okay to use, sent to me by Omega Passion of a real Omega 1000. And what a beauty it is too.

    Thanks also to Artist Mike for his help and support here and via PM.

    In the positive side, this has opened my eyes to a different type of watch collecting - elusive vintage watches. I wonder what else Bkk offers? Oh, and if anyone wants a real Omega Seamaster 1000 for circa 20k, let me know.........

    There is a certain irony in Pete sending this first pic, comparing his watch to a photo of another. As the dial in the watch alongside his watch has a v3 dial, which has the 'swiss made' under the minute tracking at 6 o/c as can be seen. Whereas the watch I have been looking at has the v2 dial, where 'swiss made' is part of the minute tracking as you will see in later pics.

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    The real deal:

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  2. 25 minutes ago, Littlelegs said:

    Phil, I’ve got your flexible lugged Swiss army watch.
    Keeps good time and is very comfortable. I won it as a raffle prize from you. I’ve added a couple of marks to the glass which I should try polishing out really:thumbs_up:

    Ah, sorry for my mistake. Glad it's still alive and kicking and working well  - and now you know the history of the now defunct brand as well!

    Relaxer obviously won the watch case that I raffled at the same time. Sorry for the confusion.

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  3. I love boxes! The best box I have is for the dark side of the moon. The Aerowatch box was nice as well. The new Chris Ward box is very big and long and like one of those Russian dolls that need taking apart before you get to whatever. When you finally get to the watch its dwarfed by everything else.

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    The epic CW watch box opening!

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    Fini.

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  4. On 21/02/2021 at 18:17, artistmike said:

    If anyone is interested in the history and how Victorinox started producing watches, this is a good read.

    https://www.watchhunter.org/2019/01/unofficial-history-victorinox-swiss-army-watches-origin-historical-timeline.html

    That guide is absolutely brilliant! I can't understand how I missed this before, albeit on watchuseek or wherever. I spent so many hours trying to find out about the brand and the link to Victorianox and Wenger.

    I became smitten with a Swiss Army watch (not victorianox) somewhere or other in Asia, where they were then common on all the stands selling fake watches. I can't even recall what Country I was in when I first saw them.

    But I do remember when getting back to the UK, to seek them out and it wasn't difficult. I'd sold a flat in 1996 and as part of the profit from the sale, I went straight off to Mappin & Webb, who not only back then, had a branch in Kingston, but were also a dealer for Swiss Army Brand. At a cost of 305 pounds, I walked out with this (it was quite battered by the time of these pics):

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    Note the flexible lugs, such a good idea.

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    I gave the watch away in 2017, either as a freebie or a fund raiser for the forum. It went to this esteemed forum member:

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    And this is my current Victorianox, an Inox bought in November 2014, so one of the first batch, which in addition to the usual rubber strap, came with this very nice NATO, especially designed for the watch and also a mini Swiss Army knife, which has never been used and the nato was only for a few days.  

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  5. 15 hours ago, Biker said:

    I've bought one from the US one from Holland and the others from the UK but mainly used from Ebay. I am always on the lookout but never seen an AD over here, however, one of my local jewellers told me he used to stock them in the 80's

    They used to be available from a jewellars in Newbury, which I noticed when walking past their window one day. What I missed was their closing day sale and by the time I had noticed, most had gone. The jewellers parent company was a Rolex dealer in Swindon Old Town, can't recall their name but Swindon, when I was living in that neck of woods, was dire for watch shops, so I am sure there would still only be one Rolex dealer there. They may still stock Eddox as well? 

  6. Thanks once again to Mike and thanks to Scott - yes, the watch has a concave back. 

    The Omega book isn't mine, it's owned by the guy selling the watch and he stated he bought the guide  at auction. It's pretty hefty. So the watch featured made over 16k - wow. For a watch first produced in 1971 and where it is believed only 150 were made, all for private consumption - I am actually struggling to believe that 4 years after the initial order and whilst they were preparing to produce an amended model for commercial sale, they made what must have made what amounted to an almost one-off, but who knows?

    Okay, I will send everything I have to the author of the collectors guide and wait for his response. 7pm here now and early tomorrow I have to return to Hua Hin, so it will have to wait until tomorrow when I am back. 

    My thoughts are that everything on the watch bar the case is a genuine part. Whether it was a watchmakers build from NOS, or was used to replace a battered old case is open to conjecture. What is obvious in it's current guise, is that it hasn't done any serious diving. The worst damage I can see is on the underside of the lugs. 

    As soon as, I hear anything, I will report back. 

     

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  7. Firstly, can someone explain what the term 'service parts' mean? Are they original parts, or more obviously,  those added at an actual service and if the latter, how do they know? Lots of references throughout the chatter to this term. Thanks. 

    Well, 3rd time lucky today as 'Pete' was there in person and as stated above, did speak very good English. He seem's a good guy. Been in the business for over 20 years, explained the foibles of Thai watch collectors (no heavy wear or damaged goods) and happy to discuss the watch. He explained he only deals in pre-owned Swiss watches, as well as being a small outlet for Zeno. All of his watches are bought directly from Switzerland via a network of collectors he has 'built up'. This is only the 2nd Omega 1000 he has had. There is no paperwork. 

    He uses various guides and for this watch, a 15 year old manual (which he bought at auction) called Omega Mania, which he said was produced by Omega, (or that's what Pam thought he said). I should have asked directly, but forgot. Seems more like an auction guide to me. This is the page that shows the watch: 

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    It states the watch featured was made in 1975. This is the year before the guide posted by Mike in an earlier post above, states the watch went into commercial production with the calibre 1012, rather than the 1002, as per the watch featured. But the original batch started being manufactured in 1971 and only 150 were known to have been produced. Would one of that batch really have been made as late as 1975???

    And that seems the tale of this model generally. More questions than answers. Even the authoritive guide supplied by Mike warns not to treat it as a definitive guide and that record keeping wasn't so good back in the day. Even the Omega archive website gives scant information and surprisingly, no accompanying photo. In this thread from the Omega forum from 2019, the OP states he contacted the Omega archives about the watch only to learn, there wasn't anything there! 

    https://omegaforums.net/threads/seamaster-1000-the-grand-dial-question.106826/

    Of note in that thread is the OP's photo's and in particular the photo's from the entry by Janv on December 28. The OP's watch has an original bezel, with a 3rd generation dial. This is possible as many dials were damaged by water, based on the depths they were professionally being used at (no helium valve). For reference see Janv's photo's (he has 5 of these watches). 

    Then we get to this auction guide which seems to have various data that appears inaccurate as you scroll down (dates, dials, calibres et al). 

    https://www.collectorsquare.com/en/watches/omega/seamaster-1000/lpi

    So on to the watch I am viewing. As I said, no paperwork and the watch was purchased directly from a known and trusted Swiss collector. He was amazed by what I was questioning him on, but completely relaxed. He conceded that for a watch of this age, various changes could have been made (a bit like Triggers broom) and not having access to it's insides, I could only really discuss the outside. 

    As far as I can tell, the dial and bezel are a match, the hands are legit, as is the bracelet. The movement is 99% likely to be genuine (cal 1002, but not known to be used when the watch was produced for general sale) which leaves the case. And that's where the guide I have been using suggests the case isn't an original. 

    This is the guide supplied by Mike that I have been using, for ease of reference, which provides photo  examples of originals and copies, but with proviso's:

    https://www.omegaseamaster1000.com/

    First up is the machining. It states original cases had a radial finish, copies a sunburst finish. The watch I am looking at appears to have the latter, I say appears, as being honest, only in one area near the lugs, could any albeit very faint, sunburst be seen, just. I can't use a loupe, but Pete can. He suggested the whole case has been machined, perhaps in response to earlier damage. It basically just appeared matt. 

    And if you look at the photos I referenced above from Janv, you will see absolute evidence of a sunburst finish on a watch where everything, including the case, looks well and truly battered / original. In fact, I haven't found a singgle pic with an obvious radial finish. 

    How easy would it be to create a copy case on a 50+ year old watch, especially circa that time? Especially considering the curved and grooved case back? 

    The 2nd issue is the lugs and I would appreciate some help here. According to the guide, the originals should have a 'stepped lug' (an example is given), whilst copies don't. I can't honestly tell what this watch has. But I suspect the latter. 

    The 3rd concern from the case is at the back, where the bracelet fits. The guide states originals are stepped, copies are rounded. As far as I can tell I have a set of each at either end of the case! Very strange. 

    One final puzzle. In the guide, the crowns for both calibres used are flat topped and appear identical. Whereas many of the pics I have seen (and in above links) show a dome shaped crown. These are not mentioned in the guide at all. The crown on the watch I am looking at is flat topped. 

    As far as Pete is concerned, based on his guide, the trustworthiness of his source and his knowledge, the watch is genuine, maybe bar some replacement parts. The price reflects the changing market conditions in Thailand. It's worth noting that tourism and exports, two big earners here, were going belly-up long before the virus appeared, after all Generals aren't designed to run Countries. Not to mention the absurdly high value of the Baht. Many economists here claim the economy is on the verge of collapse. 

    So that's where we left it today. Pete's not budging on his price and gave me his card to call him if needed. He's not open tomorrow, due to some other business committments, but would meet us at the shop if I decided to go ahead, having given it some thought. My thought is that I send everything off to the author of the guide for his thoughts, including a valuation, which he kindly provides an email address for. 

    And the watch? It's brilliant! Fits like a love. 

    The phone pics haven't been played around with at all, bar the close up of the bracelet clasp, where I adjusted the contrast, to make it easier to read the engraving. 

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  8. 24 minutes ago, artistmike said:

    And there was me getting all excited to hear about the negotiations and whether it had any history... It gets nerve wracking this watch collecting lark when there's something a bit special in the offing. :)

    Tell me about it! I decided to search the net for info on the company and found an entry in an expat forum from 2010. Different location and opened at two, a now defunct website, but good feedback from expats about the owner, who speaks excellent English, so if he is still the owner, it wasn't the guy I met on Sunday. Interestingly, they were a Zeno stockist in 2010. Two comments from last year on Google from I assume expats - the first complaining the shop wasn't open on a Sunday, the 2nd in reply, saying stick with him, he's a good guy and lastly, a Facebook page not updated since 2016.

  9. There are a few brands that pass me by - Lange, Moser, Rolex, Ball, Hamilton, Baume & Mercier, Tissot, Rado (bar Captain Cook), Nomos and various others (edit to include Tudor, reminded by above post). Until recently, I would have added Bell & Ross, but I am warming to them now, especially the newer round case models. On the other hand, Chronoswiss was a brand I loved the look of, but now I get to regularly see them over here, I've cooled on the brand. 

    But being honest, with most brands including Seiko, Longines, Mido and others, it's only the sports and tool watches I have an interest in. 

    Even Grand Seiko, despite all their brilliance blah, blah, blah, are deadly dull to look at, unless the dial is special. I must have walked past about 30 in a display earlier today, all lined up one next to thr other and they all look the same. So it was the two Credors that caught my eye! 

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  10. No update as for the last two days, the shop hasn't opened! I went yesterday morning and only then checked it opened at 13.30 (till 19.30). Went today at 14.30 and still shut. A neighbouring shop said best to come at weekends, as always open. It's a relatively small shopping complex, with various shops and restaurants, but there is always a (generally upscale) market of one sort of another at weekends, which is why we first went there - for a farmers market. 

    • Like 1
  11. 33 minutes ago, JoT said:

    Not easy to open up, everything comes out of the front, it's a major task

    Ah, thanks for that. Pam doesn't think he has any great knowledge anyway. It was a Sunday, so maybe he was just covering the shop? I did notice not much was coming back to my questions, not just about the Omega, but other watches as well. I assumed it was just stuff lost in translation. It was an interesting shop, apart from watches, there were old model cars, some prints and art, clocks and a little furniture. But the shop has been there for as long as we have been visiting this area, which is a few years now. 

  12. Well, I am planning to return in the morning and although Pam has to be at work, she is just translating my / your queries! 

    • Any paperwork, service etc. 
    • What he knows of its history
    • How long has he had it
    • Is it an original or NOS
    • If serviced, are original parts available
    • Details of serial numbers and can he open the watch up
  13. 3 hours ago, JoT said:

    The one in your pictures looks so pristine it is tempting to say it has had an Omega makeover with a service dial, hands, date ring and bezel insert - still rare though even if it has

    Do you mean changed at a service? I hadn't considered that. I was just thinking they were original surplus parts put together as a watch by a watchmaker, but yes, thinking about it, with the watch likely to be over 40 years of age, the condition is exceptional, but would Omega service it, even if they still had the parts? 

    On 15/02/2021 at 15:23, Always"watching" said:

    What a great story, dear @Caller., and what a fascinating thread. I do hope you achieve your ambition for these two watches. Buying at this level for a pre-owned watch would certainly make me nervous and your research and caution is exemplary, aided excellently by expert posts on this thread.:thumbsup:

    Well I really have Mike to thank for the information he sent me. It's an amazing guide. But yes, it's great how this small forum can produce so much in answer to an open question. 

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  14. 10 minutes ago, artistmike said:

    That's all very interesting, actually it reminds me of what went on over the Omega Seamaster 300 Military watches a few years back, when many watches were being cobbled together from genuine Omega parts, especially from one particular dealer 'down under'. Mind you there may be a lesson here, ... many of those franken watches he put together are now worth a good bit more money, so although that one that you're looking at may not be totally 100% an issued watch, as it's from genuine parts, I suspect that in the future it will certainly increase in value ...

    You could be on a winner if you can squeeze him more, given you both know that situation.... :biggrin: Mind you, that Zeno is great too, well worth it at that price.

    Yes, I like the Zeno too. We will go back and see the dealer together about the Omega and just see what can be achieved. Thanks for all your help. 

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  15. 19 hours ago, artistmike said:

    Do let us know how you get on, watches like that are few and far between and definitely worth knowing more about.  It's great to see one of the rarities of our horological world. :)

    The problem being that, based on the very helpful information you sent me, that it's unlikely to be an original. The movement is a 1002, which was from the first batch, whereas the 1012 was used on the later commercially released models. And whilst from what else he has said, it appears I have the correct dial, hands and bezel and probably bracelet, the lugs are not of the type used on an original and at the rear, where the bracelet was fitted, the original 'cut away' was square, whereas on the one I saw, they are rounded, as can be seen in my pic of the rear of the watch. 

    These 'copies' are the work of watchmakers using surplus parts issued by Omega (how times change) and based on the report provided can still fetch about 5k. Originals from 8-10k.

    Also, watch dealers over here aren't mugs and will be aware of the rarer pieces. The dealer in conversation with Pam said he was looking for more than 200,000 baht, but was prepared to negotiate, which is now (pound on the up) just under 5k pounds, which suggests he is well aware of what he has. 

    Interestingly, the Zeno above is on sale for 1800 euros via Zeno, but all the Zeno's were reduced in store and I could get the Bullhorn for 1200 euro (about 1000 pounds). The economy is really beginning to hurt here. 

     

  16. Goodness! 

    Thanks very much Mike. That guide has already enabled me to identify the dial, crown type and worryingly, that the bracelet, which probably is original after all, is on a copy case back. But I need to read the guide again to fully understand what that actually means. 

    I was a little taken aback by the price I was quoted, which was a hell of a lot more than expected. But before getting too excited, I need to go and have another look, especially at any paperwork. 

    Thanks again. 

    • Thanks 1
  17. Went into a pre-owned watch shop in Bangkok earlier that I've been meaning to have a look at for some time. It had some interesting Heuers available, a his and hers Omega Dynamic and some older Breitlings and others - and Zeno - plenty of them! Turns out he's a stockist and he had a bullhead chrono LE in stock as well, which is very tempting. It's this one - 

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    But the main watch that caught my eye was the seamaster. The condition was excellent. A big bull of a watch with a 1000 metre / 3300 foot depth rating. Just as well that was on the dial, otherwise I'd have never known! The dial is blue / navy and the dial is dominated by the oversized orange minute hand. The bezel worked well, but when I turned over to look at the case back, there wasn't one! Unfortunately, neither of us spoke the others language, but even I could see what had replaced the case back was to grip a diving suit, as the depth this thing is meant to dive at, considering it's age, would probably blow a normal watch apart for all I know! The mesh bracelet, isn't as far as I could tell, an original. 

    I know I have seen this watch on the Web before, but I know little about it. I'm sure it must have fetched a high price and I doubt they were produced for very long, but I have no idea of It's age. Any further info would be appreciated, especially whether it looks legit! I have a price, pre-haggling, and that's where I left it.

    I have two pics - 

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