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Inherited gent's watches; Medana, Roamer and Villard


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Hello, this is my first post, but I've been lurking for a good while - I especially enjoy the WRUW threads in Open Discussion.  I have always been interested in watches, but lately am developing an interest in vintage watches, especially automatics (largely because my more expensive quartz watches have stopped during lockdown and I'm irritated by the perpetual cost of getting them sorted) - I like the aesthetics of older designs and have treated myself to some inexpensive vintage ones on-line, whilst I save for something special - I'm thinking maybe a dress Omega or a dial pointer Oris.  I'm a woman, but prefer the look of gents watches (why do manufacturers insist on making ladies watches, pink, mother of pearl or festooned with 'diamonds'), but unfortunately, modern watches are just far too large for me, where vintage ones were that bit smaller.

Whilst clearing my parents' house, my sister and I have found all sorts of 'treasures', as they didn't throw much away, including a number of watches, many broken and of little value, but a few worth keeping hold of and potentially wearing.  I've been variously cleaning, fitting new straps and replacing batteries and am now left with a few mechanicals, as shown in the photos. 

The Roamer seems to be a winding mechanical that's just dead - doesn't wind, doesn't tick - although when moving it around when taking the photos, it set off ticking and went for 15 seconds then stopped again.  I quite like the slightly military aesthetics of the face.

I very much like the Medana - I think that and Roamer are the same company - it's a smidge smaller than the others (32mm) and as a woman, it's a decent fit on me - I've popped it on a tan pigskin strap that I had, for now, just so that I can wear it and see if I like it enough to spend money on.  It was covered in tiny spots of magnolia gloss paint, it had obviously been consigned to being a work watch.

But it perplexes me too - when I first came to it, it wouldn't wind, the crown was stuck solid.  But on moving it about, it sounded like an automatic and started ticking.  Without ever winding the crown, it ran for almost 24 hours - with occasional pauses.  And today the crown would wind, albeit stiffly - I gave it a few turns and it has now run for over 90 minutes with good time.  Is it an automatic - nothing visually suggests that it is, it's quite thin and just has a pop off back.  I'm reluctant to try taking the back off a mechanical, where quartz don't worry me.  Is it possible that it's a hand wind that was simply coiled so tight it was jammed solid, but some warmth and movement has released the spring into action?  The number on the back of the case is 6827, but that doesn't appear to be a caliber.

watches2_0440df.jpg

I also have an automatic Villard - which was a shed when I came upon it, but I've cleaned it externally, polished the glass and replaced the strap - it was opaque with scratches and whilst there is still some crazing going through the acrylic, it's come up visually lovely, but that may still need replacing.  It seems to work well enough and keep good time, but it's a smidge large on me, but I have been wearing it - I just love the horizontal baton hour markers - I've only seen a couple of other watches with this style.

watches2_0443df.jpg

Were these watches good enough when made to be worth spending money on to get them serviced - are they just in need of some TLC or have they perhaps already run their course?  If I might get a few years out of them, I'll perhaps spend some pennies on them, but not if they're likely to have come to the end of the road anyway.  They were all either one of my grandfathers and they probably haven't even moved for over 30 years - so they have some sentimentality attached (enough to not want to sell or throw them) but perhaps not enough to spend lots on them, for occasional wear.  

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Thank you @Roy - on both counts.  

Will parts be available for such old pieces, should they need them?  Are generic parts available and suitable in such cases?

Perhaps you can answer me a supplementary related question too - I've been looking at Cousins site, but couldn't find the answer there - as a trade supplier, do they have a minimum order value - I need some oddments that I'd perhaps struggle finding elsewhere - like a quartz movement I want to replace in a watch that has sentimental value, so my sister can have it (she's let me have everything else watch-wise), a replacement glass for another etc.

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28 minutes ago, BooJewels said:

Thank you @Roy - on both counts.  

Will parts be available for such old pieces, should they need them?  Are generic parts available and suitable in such cases?

Perhaps you can answer me a supplementary related question too - I've been looking at Cousins site, but couldn't find the answer there - as a trade supplier, do they have a minimum order value - I need some oddments that I'd perhaps struggle finding elsewhere - like a quartz movement I want to replace in a watch that has sentimental value, so my sister can have it (she's let me have everything else watch-wise), a replacement glass for another etc.

Original movement parts should be available.

Cousins do not have a minimum order,

 

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@BooJewels personally I'd have them lightly cleaned, and the movements serviced. There's a list of watchmakers here;

This will give you an idea of costs involved. The cost may well exceed the value of the watches, but given the choice I would definitely look at getting the Roamer, and the Medana looked at first.

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Thank you both. 

Thanks for the list of repairers, that's a really big help.  I'd already noted a couple of them from other posts, as I have a Raymond Weil, a TAG and a Longines that need new batteries and they're beyond my confidence level to do myself (don't mind fiddling with a 30 quid Timex or Accurist), so I'm going to send them off at some point.  But these need proper servicing - with potential remedial action.  I'll start with the Medana, as that's simply my favourite and most wearable and the Villard is at least working.

You mention cleaning - you should have seen them before I cleaned them!  One of them was an entire ecosystem of its own.  I couldn't find a suitable green smilie.

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