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Must have watch under $500


JayDeep
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1 minute ago, JayDeep said:

Yomping?

Strictly speaking, British Royal Marines slang for a long distance march with a load on your back. Not really what I do obviously, but when I was on pilgrimage I walked over the Pyrenees and other mountains with 10 or 11 kg on my back. A couple of us on the walk used the term “yomping” and it has kind of stuck with me ever since for any kind of hike.

Apologies to any former or present serving personnel. My version is definitely “yomping lite”.

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I think a "must have" but will add "at some point in life" would be a (probably vintage) Seiko 5.

Perhaps not for the avid collector as such but for the introduction of mechanical watches to the uninitiated or beginner horologist.

They are (or used to be, hence 'probably vintage') solid timepieces that can be modified, loved and kept for a long time without worry or mechanical woes.

Nice examples can be bought new or purchased 2nd hand for well under $500 and used to inspire or start a collection. 

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1 minute ago, SolaVeritate said:

Nice examples can be bought new or purchased 2nd hand for well under $500 and used to inspire or start a collection. 

Of course, most of us on here are not looking to start a collection. If anything, we have the opposite problem.

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"Must have" is probably pushing it, but as watches under that price range that pretty much any watch enthusiast will probably have owned at one time during their own journey (unless their journey was one that started later in life and they were fortunate enough to jump directly into high end watches):

- A Seiko 5 (or just 5 Seiko's!)

- An Orient Mako

- A Casio G-Shock

- A Citizen Eco-Drive

- A Hamilton Khaki

- Something from Tissot.

- A Swatch Irony.

- If in the UK, a Rotary of some description (that probably looked a lot like a Rolex, PP or Omega of some description).

Most (or many) probably had a fashion brand watch or two, like Armani or Hugo Boss, maybe a TW Steel, during this phase as well.

You probably had something where the word "Swiss" was in the brand name as well (Swiss: Army, Legend, Military, Ant Farm, basically the word "Swiss" followed by any other word. It also had a red cross on it!)

 

Stage two, which when I was there still came in well under £500 (certainly in the pre owned market space) would include:

- Omega Seamaster (vintage - and forever your first "real watch" and the point you see yourself becoming a WIS)

- A CW of some ilk (I'm sure I'm not alone in seeing my first CW as my first decent quality modern watch?)

- A Tag (probably not the Tag you really wanted at that stage, but the one you could afford off of Ebay)

- A first step into microbrands, feeling cool because people in your social circle had never heard of them.

- Some type of Homage watch, whether by a lesser brand that has a model that's a lookalikey or by some Chinese copycat like Parnis and the various homage only 'brands'.

- Something old and vintage and manual that only @spinynorman or @Karrusel would have a prayer of finding the history of. It probably came from India and the dial was repainted but hopefully not in bright green, yellow or red! (Mine was a Farve Leuba with a black dial).

- A first crack at something you regarded as higher end and recognisable to those in the know, maybe a Certina, Oris, Fortis, Longines, maybe Rado. If your stage 2 journey started more than a decade ago you may have even managed a first (vintage) Rolex under the £500.

I'm sure much of the above is a well trodden path up a mountain, that most of us are now freewheeling down the other side of!

 

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Nobody mentioned the Ruhla watch- first watch into space so I’ve been informed. I did pick one up some time ago from eBay. Apparently one of the first massed produced watches but I stand corrected if one of our expert’s disagrees. Oops I’ve just noticed it said sub $500 not £5.00 doh.gif.0dd598358b26428e3edf288a4ffcdf7d.gif it’s that bloody American thing again lol 2C6168CE-9693-4015-97AC-FAF7C1C7A3F0.thumb.jpeg.beb9a464a9333d5c100a05076db8d48b.jpeg

 

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2 hours ago, Bricey said:

"Must have" is probably pushing it, but as watches under that price range that pretty much any watch enthusiast will probably have owned at one time during their own journey (unless their journey was one that started later in life and they were fortunate enough to jump directly into high end watches):

- A Seiko 5 (or just 5 Seiko's!)

- An Orient Mako

- A Casio G-Shock

- A Citizen Eco-Drive

- A Hamilton Khaki

- Something from Tissot.

- A Swatch Irony.

- If in the UK, a Rotary of some description (that probably looked a lot like a Rolex, PP or Omega of some description).

Most (or many) probably had a fashion brand watch or two, like Armani or Hugo Boss, maybe a TW Steel, during this phase as well.

You probably had something where the word "Swiss" was in the brand name as well (Swiss: Army, Legend, Military, Ant Farm, basically the word "Swiss" followed by any other word. It also had a red cross on it!)

 

Stage two, which when I was there still came in well under £500 (certainly in the pre owned market space) would include:

- Omega Seamaster (vintage - and forever your first "real watch" and the point you see yourself becoming a WIS)

- A CW of some ilk (I'm sure I'm not alone in seeing my first CW as my first decent quality modern watch?)

- A Tag (probably not the Tag you really wanted at that stage, but the one you could afford off of Ebay)

- A first step into microbrands, feeling cool because people in your social circle had never heard of them.

- Some type of Homage watch, whether by a lesser brand that has a model that's a lookalikey or by some Chinese copycat like Parnis and the various homage only 'brands'.

- Something old and vintage and manual that only @spinynorman or @Karrusel would have a prayer of finding the history of. It probably came from India and the dial was repainted but hopefully not in bright green, yellow or red! (Mine was a Farve Leuba with a black dial).

- A first crack at something you regarded as higher end and recognisable to those in the know, maybe a Certina, Oris, Fortis, Longines, maybe Rado. If your stage 2 journey started more than a decade ago you may have even managed a first (vintage) Rolex under the £500.

I'm sure much of the above is a well trodden path up a mountain, that most of us are now freewheeling down the other side of!

 

Gods Bricey. You are a deeply promiscuous person :tongue:

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Hamilton Khaki field manual wind any flavour you like , just introduced a bronze case and some 42mm versions , bronze is over budget but thrv42mm can be had at budget or there abouts......imho the best value mechanical watch with a backstory and some kudos

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 I was about to start a new topic before I saw this about ‘iconic’ watches around this price point and below, which stemmed from a chat to a chap in a watch shop yesterday about my Vostok amphibia.

I don’t think there are any “must haves” at any price point, but there are some even under 500 with a story or something cool about them. Might not necessarily be the “best” or nicest watches at that price, but have got something about them beyond just being any other watch you can buy from a high street jeweller. Probably some history, a good origin story, cool/‘new when introduced’ technology etc.

I’d put a lot of those mentioned above into that category - Vostok Amphibia, the Bulova lunar pilot, some form of rectangular Casio, Hamilton Khaki field.

I’d probably add Sea gull 1963, a Citizen eco-drive. Interested to hear more.

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19 hours ago, yokel said:

"Must haves"?

Perfectly appalling thing to say, but if I thought they existed, I'd have some.

I haven't.

 

There are lots of "OK to haves" though . . .

I think a "must have" of anything is an appalling idea to you in general, regardless the price point. Unless you're willing to admit an extreme level of snobbery.

I cannot imagine there not being must haves in every price category, and yet I still don't have them and am okay with that. Doesn't mean I can't recognize that they're worthy regardless. Thus must have!

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