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Older Watches Faces Too Small?...


james brodie
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I have some beautiful older watches with lovely convex faces, ie: A Certina, Pronto, Omega and Longines, all from 60's/ 70's- but they look so small and effectively 'unmanly' upon my wrist and really unflattering. Now I accept I've become a larger man over the years, but has the fashion really changed so radically over the last few decades? I'm not talking the silly oversized watches, but now a good manly watch is around 42cm across, yet the older ones are around three quarters of that. Any comments on this?...

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I have some beautiful older watches with lovely convex faces, ie: A Certina, Pronto, Omega and Longines, all from 60's/ 70's- but they look so small and effectively 'unmanly' upon my wrist and really unflattering. Now I accept I've become a larger man over the years, but has the fashion really changed so radically over the last few decades? I'm not talking the silly oversized watches, but now a good manly watch is around 42cm across, yet the older ones are around three quarters of that. Any comments on this?...

You'd have to have a big arm for a 42cm watch! :tongue2:

I am looking at Trench watches as little as 32mm, but fitted to a wide WWI military style strap. But yes, my current 35mm 1950s watch does look small compared to todays watches. I don't mind as I like something different.

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Fashion certainly has changed a lot over the years with wristwatches and I've seen most of them, from the original ones that you are talking about where the movement fitted the case, through a short fashion of ultra-slim ones to those common today where almost the same movement is lost in a huge wrist-clock, which to me seems rather pointless. ...... Apparently some men need a huge watch... some sort of compensation mechanism in place maybe ? .. :D

I still tend to prefer slightly smaller cases to be honest, unless the movement calls for it and this is about my perfect size at 38mm and I'm not a small bloke at 6' 1"...

10760193833_ce6bdeaeee_o.jpg

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I have 7.25" wrists and am not bothered about the size of the watches I wear - if I like it I`ll wear it :D

Here`s a couple of my smallest, both originally sold as watches for men...

Services Hendon, circa 1937 (22mm excluding crown)

ServicesDSC_0456_zpsc7d996da.gif

"Services" Sports, circa late 1920s (23mm excluding crown)

ServicesDSC_0077-1.jpg

plus a couple of my largest...

Reproduction WWII Seikosha `Navy, Aviator Chronometer`(48mm excluding crown)

SeikoshaIMG_2020_zps77de0ea1.jpg

Steinhart `Marine Timer`(47mm excluding crown)

SteinhartDSC_0011_zpsd30d381f.gif

I also sometimes wear my pocket watches fitted in a special adaptor...

Services , circa mid 1950s (50mm excluding crown)

ServicesDSC_0027_zps0837d413.gif

I do wonder why some people get hung up about size :naughty: :lol:

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Maybe one would get used to a smaller faced watch, but after wearing a submariner type, which kind of looks good with double cuff shirts as well as casual, those older ones don't look right imo. That said, a small SQUARE face is acceptable, that was the idea to look elegant. But small and round? Look rather effeminate in comparison. Yes I'm a 6ft bodybuilder type, so I guess I'm sounding slightly narcissistic :lol: , but that's just the way I feel at moment, for my sins....(!)

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Thanks for raising this subject, James Brodie, which has long interested me. I have in my researches, followed the various fashions for the different watch sizes for both mens and womens watches, and as someone with a smallish wrist, I much refer the older style of smaller diameter cases. In fact, rather than write a bit more about your topic, I really can leave it to artistmike, who has said what I would have said. :)

I also must thank mach for his selection of watches posted here - really nice. :)

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Indeed Roger and that's why some of these large watches that do have standard movements have dials that are totally out of proportion. About the only movement that really lends itself to larger watches is the Unitas 6497/8 and I suppose that's why the current fashion really started with Panerai..

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Guest robert75

I am about 6ft 2 and generally prefer watches 38mm and hate anything over 42mm. I purchased a Precista Italian a while back which was 44mm and ended up moving it on because it just didn't feel right wearing such a large watch. The only watches I wear that are large would be my G-Shock and the odd divers watch for swimming, trekking and general sports other than that I wear a more formal watch.

I don't like the trend today of making watches larger and personally I think it just makes them look ugly. Case in point, making the Rolex Explorer larger just killed it for me.

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For me, it really is down to the watch - some larger diameter watches can look small and vise versa. As others have said, it's the proportions that make the difference. And the thickness of the watch makes a difference too.

Don't forget, until the late 1990s most watches were +/- 38mm. It has since become fashionable to wear a small satellite dish on your arm, but it's a function of fashion. The likes of Bond, Lord Brett Sinclair, Jason King, Jack Carter, George Carter, Jack Regan and other fictional heros/anti-heros...and real people too...had no problem wearing a 36mm watch. Jokes about 'size' apart, it really is a matter of what you're used to. But wear what you like and enjoy.

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Personally I prefer a 36mm or 38mm case with shirt cuffs although even 44mm work if they're not too deep. My speedy sits under long cuffs well. Tee shirts and other short sleeves seem to look better with watches over 40mm. Only my opinion but this works for me.

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Boldly wear whatever you want and tell everyone else to go to hell.

Whatever anyone else thinks of you is none of your business.

p.s. William - try to find a video of "Dedicated Follower of Fashion" - probably about the same era as "Itchycoo Park". You can dedicate it to everyone who thinks they must wear a large watch.

p.p.s most of my old watches are 30 - 35 mm. I refuse to wear dinner plate sized watches.

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