I need someone to pick out one best broker from those on this list here.
I need someone to pick out one best broker from those on this list here.
If I were going to pick one, I’d pick the Pathfinder. But frankly, if I was in a position where I needed a compass, I’d bring an actual compass and map.
On my last big holiday to unfamiliar cities, I took a phone with GPS, a compass, and the first thing I did upon arrival at each place was to purchase a paper map. My partner initially thought I was daft, but the GPS turned out to be terrible, and I think I won some brownie points for actually having a reliable way of navigating!
I was thinking about collecting this evening, and had an amusing observation that anyone who decides to collect watches also becomes a box collector by default. So I decided to run through some notable entries in my watch box collection for you.
First up are my two oldest boxes, both from the mid-1960s. The Universal Geneve and Longines boxes are quite similar; both are vinyl-clad, have embossed lids, and have a rigid flocked platform on which the watch lies sideways.
Next are three typical modern watch boxes: one from CWL, a US market Seiko, and a JDM Seiko. The CWL is a mid-range watch and has higher quality packaging. It has a cardboard outer box protecting the leather-clad presentation box which has a cream-colored leather lining. The watch rests on a padded form, and comes with a slew of papers that I haven’t pictured because they go to a different CWL that I own. The US Seiko box is nicely presented, two piece cardboard with a branded cushion that the watch (Recraft Green Dial) rests on. The Japanese don’t care much about packaging I guess because the JDM Seiko box (for my Alpinist, which costs 3x what the Recraft does) is a cheap, gray cardboard affair, and kind of nasty. It gets the job done, but only just.
Next are two high-end boxes from the same company: Rolex/Tudor. Unsurprisingly, aside from color and materials, they’re almost identical form factors. They both have simple outer boxes housing robust, leather-clad presentation boxes within. Both boxes have a central well containing the watch and cushion, and pockets inside the lid containing the paperwork and warranty credit cards. The Tudor box is lined with smooth leather, but the Rolex box is lined with high quality suede. It’s really nice, and I would love a jacket made out of the same stuff.
Lastly is the box my Speedmaster came in. When it comes to elaborate packaging, few can compare with the sheer zaniness of Omega. This is the outer, protective box with the previous boxes left in frame for scale:
Inside is the actual ballistic nylon-clad box (designed to look like some sort of important safety equipment I imagine). Behind the box in a vertical slot is the instruction book (it looks enormous, and it is, but Omega prints one book that covers its entire range, and in several languages, thus the Tolstoyesque thickness). Under the box is a booklet that gives strap and bracelet fitting instructions, and a picture book outlining the Speedmaster’s contributions to NASA and manned space flight. A vertical leather wallet with the warranty credit card is also included. Moving inside, the square compartment to the left of the watch contains an Omega branded loupe that has a repeat of the watch’s tachymeter scale bezel on the objective rim. The long compartment contains an Omega branded spring bar tool, and the OEM bracelet, NATO strap, and spacesuit strap. Lastly, a solid steel table medallion with the traditional Omega “Hippocampus” logo.
Anyway, as you can see, there’s more to watch collecting than watches! I had a lot of fun looking at, and handling these boxes again; they’re usually hidden away and forgotten, so it was like reconnecting with old friends. I can still feel the excitement I had as I opened these for the first time!
When the packaging looks like it’s outside of your budget, it’s time to forget about owning the watch…
That brings up a good point. The Speedmaster used to come in a nice, but mundane box:
The switch to the current lunatic box came with their general price increase of a few years ago. Luxury watch mark-ups are huge, especially for desirable brands, and I think they did this in part to “justify” the higher price. The nice thing about Speedmasters is that there are a ton of them on the gray and secondary markets, so it is not necessary to pay full boat retail for one (I bought mine new, but on the gray market…don’t tell anyone!). They still aren’t cheap, but you can find them for almost 40% off if you do your homework. In the end, the boxes don’t really matter (personally, I would not factor the presence, or lack of a box into a purchase unless there is something really interesting about the packaging).
I have been embroiled in busy business recently, and have not posted here very much. I have basically been wearing my Speedmaster every day, so you haven’t been missing anything, but I did watch this neat Watchfinder & Co. video about the genesis of the rivalry between Rolex and Omega last night. Very interesting!
Haven’t been to this thread in a while. Honestly, as much as you think it’s “mundane”, I think your Omega box is my favourite of the bunch. There’s something about the colour, profile, and rounded corners that really appeals to me. Also, that NASA band is amazing.
Thanks! I love the band! I think you misunderstood me about the box though. I meant to show that the old Omega box was mundane in comparison to the newer box, which is utterly bonkers. I wouldn’t mind if they still came in the old red boxes, they do look sharp.
Ah, now I get you. I completely agree. That new box is A LOT. Just my opinion, and not that the new box has gotten there, but I think at a certain point the excess crosses the line into tacky. Your boss’s bedazzled Rolex has definitely crossed that line for me (don’t tell him I said so though).
Edit: I don’t mean to yuck others’ yum. The Rolex is simply not my taste. My partner’s mother, for instance, loves things like that, which is of course perfectly fine.
S’fine. I have these because I like them, not because others do.
Quick update: I continue to wear watches, but I am heading to Florida for a bit to finish moving my Mom up to NH closer to me. Guess I’ll have to edit the membership map. Anyway, don’t be surprised if I am incommunicado for awhile.
I’ll be glad when this is done.
You called London on your watch?
Or did you have to call London, and they would have known the false-contact would have had a sub-par watch, only you would have had this one?
Or (god, I hope this is is it) you wouldn’t have been able to call London if you didn’t pair-up the watch with the secret microchip in your shoe!
Dammit, I always knew you were some kind of secret agent!
Although, calling all of London kind of gives it away.
(I’m being pedantic, I’m so sorry for being a jerk. (Obviously not that sorry.))
None of the above. It’s set to EDT & GMT-1. Simultaneously. So I don’t call my customer while he’s having supper.
NB: That should read “GMT + 1”.
Finally, someone posted a watch that I want to actually wear!
I don’t mind saying that this is the most confused I’ve ever been when reading this thread.
That is a replacement for the one that served me admirably all through the '80s and early '90s before its tragic loss. Mk. 1 Twin-Graphs are somewhat difficult to find now and my example has numerous scratches and handling marks, but I’m glad to have found one. I was even more happy to find someone with a NOS original Twin-Graph printed watch band set (like most of the examples you will find for sale today, this one had a non-original replacement band installed when I bought it). It’s a sentimental favorite, and still a darn useful watch (two time zones, perpetual calendar, chronograph, countdown timer, and quasi-functioning alarm).