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What If Your Grail Doesn't Exist?


RTM Boy
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Much discussed already, I know, but here's a slightly different take.

I don't have a grail.  But I would do if it were made today.

Let me explain.  I don't lust after anything flash, my heart's desire is not set on a PP, AP or Rolex, etc, etc, blah, blah, blah.  There isn't anything in their catalogues that I like, which is just as well as the current shortage of unobtainium is a double problem :laugh: but thankfully not for me. :biggrin:

But there is a watch that I really, really like. In fact I find it the most attractive watch that I know of.  The Breitling Transocean 7102 from about 50 years ago.  Yes, although not very common, they are available through the usual secondhand channels at a stiff price (for me), but nothing silly.  I'm not against vintage and almost everything about it is spot on for me but what I really want is this watch but 2/3mm less wide, perhaps with a slimmer chrono movement than the Valjoux, and brand new so that I can put my own patina on it.  Such a watch really could (would) be my one-watch collection.

Am I being silly and should I just buy an original, or should I start a one-person campaign to persuade Georges Kern to revive the model? :hmmm9uh:

Save me from myself and tell me what to do! :laugh:

 

211-BreitlingTransOcean-Close_1024x1024.

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That’s really cool but I’m not sure what’s going on with the clasp?

I had to look it up, personally I think it’s a reasonable size although I would prefer it to be a tiny bit smaller and slimmer but I can’t see anyone making a reissue smaller than that so I think it comes down to buying one or missing out. That said I would not daily a watch that size but it would be a great weekend watch.

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I'm the complete opposite, well in some respects although similar in others. That sounds confusing, what I mean is, I have several very real grails, watches that I'm genuinely love and lust after. That's where we are at opposite ends.

The similarity is that my grails are all plausibly possible, they are all sitting at a budget that I fully expect to be able to build to, none of them are crazy Premier league footballer type money, and none of them are particularly rare or exclusive, truth be told I could clear my current trinkets and probably have 4, 5 maybe 6 of my grails, but I do enjoy the variety of a slightly larger collection than just 5 or 6 watches and expect that I always will.

I'll happily join in with the sensible chuckles at my approach to collecting and flipping, but ultimately for me it is a treadmill and there are watches I have now that would never have made the grail list that I expect to keep forever because the regular little steps (and even some of my missteps) have seen them land with me and strike a chord. By contrast there have been a few 'grails' that I've got and seen their light dim and them not stick and gel as I'd expected.

Maybe the real difference is what a grail means to us, for me a grail is not (as where we take the term) the one and only above all others, it's all those I don't yet have or haven't yet had, that light a fire in me each time I spy them in a window, on a wrist or in a picture.

You're life is probably simpler to wish for one unachievable nirvana than mine of seeking out and building towards a shelf full of pretty wishes.

 

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A reissue of the Hanhart 417ES I’m the original 39mm size. I’ve looked at the 41mm and it is just too big for me. I’ve read articles including teasers that an original size reissue isn’t beyond the realms of possibility but nothing definitely in the pipeline.

Just hope that I have the readies available if they do release one!

47447B0C-D0F0-4FC4-837A-0EAA37D29766.jpeg

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I can see why you like it, and it occurs to me that you didn't mention trying one on your wrist. It is just possible that if you tried it you would find the size isn't the problem you imagine. The movement could also turn out to be a positive, because it is a very long running movement that it should be easy to source parts for. So if you haven't, I think it is worth trying one on, you may be pleasantly surprised, or you might be over it once and for all.

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12 hours ago, RTM Boy said:

Am I being silly and should I just buy an original, or should I start a one-person campaign to persuade Georges Kern to revive the model? :hmmm9uh:

Go for it, specifically specifying the size that suits you, tell him your surname is "Beckham".

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This "grail stuff" is pretty heavy stuff. I lustre after certain watches and like @Bricey there are a few in my collection that are already part of my final "team". Initially, when I started collecting I was content to go for the unusual but slowly I started to appreciate the more refined watches that were our there, and that's not watch snobbery that's purely personal choice. I guess what I am doing is building my ultimate team of maybe a dozen personal choice watches ( like @Bricey they won't be anything like the Pro celebs watches) but also trying to continue with a smaller collection of the unusual which I can happily share with my Grandsons in the course of "time". I have always held the view that if I like it, can afford it and want it I will have it ,not because someone else approves of it but because it is my choice. You will note that in all of this I have never ever stated that I would be looking to buy a watch as an investment I am certainly not in that category of collector. It is interesting though to hear other members views and I do appreciate everyone else's contributions. Let's keep it going because that's what makes this Forum so enjoyable. Rrre.gif.a719c5f61f9c812fab0d0f2f1cd5a1fb.gif

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My grail used to be the titanium IWC Aquatimer 3536.  I have to say that I'm not so sure now (too many watches too few wrists!) but I live in hope that I'll get a pleasant surprise on my fast approaching 60th birthday :jawdrop1:

In the meantime I'm just going to continue to enjoy collecting, & occasionally tinkering with, watches :thumbs_up:

As for your Breitling dilemma..... just get it bought. It's alright thinking it's your grail but you'll never really know until you own it! I expect then you'll find another grail to lust after/aspire to, It really is an illness but I suspect that people who collect anything - beermats, jukeboxes, paintings, cars, candlesticks etc etc etc - all think the same, we wouldn't be collectors otherwise :laugh:  

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I hear so much about grail watches and I don't think that way. My "grail" wasn't 'a' watch, it was to have a 'collection' of watches. Sure, there are watches that I would like to have in the box (an Urwerk UR220 for example) but these things only make my "grail" more interesting. I think this is why I can have a lot more fun with watches.. I can have a £10 chinese oddity one day and the next day a 1950s classic automatic.. I reached my grail, the rest is just making it more interesting as I buy and swap out less interesting watches with other new pieces. 

@pauluspaolo you're absolutely correct. 

51 minutes ago, pauluspaolo said:

just get it bought. It's alright thinking it's your grail but you'll never really know until you own it!

My "grail" didn't start perfect, won't ever be perfect, and won't ever be finished. It's still mine though, something I always wanted and now I have it.

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Not sure I have a grail. I used too but then gave up on the idea. I now own a Speedmaster, zenith Pilot, skyflake and air king. At one time I’d have considered them all grail watches, now they’re just watches I love. 
 

i suppose I do have an exit watch though, the last watch I ever want to buy, and that’s a Reverso with the family crest engraved on the back, but that’s something I want to buy as a keepsake when my parents pop their clogs off

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17 minutes ago, WickerBill said:

I suppose I do have an exit watch though, the last watch I ever want to buy, and that’s a Reverso with the family crest engraved on the back, but that’s something I want to buy as a keepsake when my parents pop their clogs off

In a split from what I would normally expect to say, I hope you have a long wait to achieve your "grail", and many happy years enjoying its delay. :thumbsup:

Edited by Bricey
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Thing is with grail watches, they keep moving, what was a grail when i first started collecting has mostly fallen by the wayside even if ive never owned them. There are always new things turning up that ive never seen before.

At this present time the closet thing i can think of as a grail is a BP 50 fathoms, or the ultimate unobtainium, 1958 bakelite bezel Rolex gmt !! thats never gonna happen

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 29/10/2021 at 07:57, Bow said:

A reissue of the Hanhart 417ES I’m the original 39mm size. I’ve looked at the 41mm and it is just too big for me. I’ve read articles including teasers that an original size reissue isn’t beyond the realms of possibility but nothing definitely in the pipeline.

Just hope that I have the readies available if they do release one!

47447B0C-D0F0-4FC4-837A-0EAA37D29766.jpeg

Well that didn’t take long! :shothead:

Gutted!

https://monochrome-watches.com/introducing-hanhart-417-es-red-lion-39mm-specs-price/

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2 hours ago, WickerBill said:

I dont really have a grail, but i do have a handful of watches that i lust over....plan is to get all 6 of them and call it quits!

Calling @Davey P, I need a decision on whether this kind of behaviour would constitue a banning, or at the very least the start of a disciplinary procedure?

 

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32 minutes ago, Bricey said:

Calling @Davey P, I need a decision on whether this kind of behaviour would constitue a banning, or at the very least the start of a disciplinary procedure?

 

Got to be worth a warning at least mate.  Unacceptable behaviour I reckon :yes:

32 minutes ago, Bricey said:

Calling @Davey P, I need a decision on whether this kind of behaviour would constitue a banning, or at the very least the start of a disciplinary procedure?

 

Got to be worth a warning at least mate.  Unacceptable behaviour I reckon :yes:

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My grail (I suppose I will call it a grail as I have 3 just as wild) is not really unobtainable as such.. it is.. shall we call it.. astronomical. 

image.thumb.png.596e5e04ef3890d4ed9e2737811d5a22.png

Even if it was mine and in my hands I couldn't justify my life by keeping it and knowing that family and friends would benefit their lives more than me telling time from it. 

Your grail is just difficult.. not non-existant.

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