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For the Group: What's important in a watch?

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  • For the Group: What's important in a watch?

    This is a pretty eclectic group, with tastes in watches that vary a lot. Some like beautiful dress chronographs like Kurt, others like me are relatively bare bones. It think it would be fun to examine what everyone here considers important in a watch.

    For instance, I'm big on pilot's watches and dive watches because I rate legibility and reliability highest. See below.


    My modded Precista Speedbird. Now contrast it with my Pelagos.

    tudor pelagos02.jpg

    The Speedbird is 35mm, but wears much larger. The Pelagos is 44mm. If it weren't titanium, I probably wouldn't wear it. Likewise, if the Speedbird didn't wear like a 40mm I probably wouldn't wear it either. My sweet spot is 40-42mm.

    Ergo, I like a watch between 40-42mm, highly legible day or night, utterly reliable, and accurate. I can appreciate the beauty of something like Kurt's Gevrils, but haven't been able to keep them over the years.

    What works for you guys?

    Cardigan American Princess Celeste says, "It's too quiet. You guys get up off your butts and start doing things."

  • #2
    Like spicy food, fast motorcycles and faster women—I like complications!
    "So Many Watches / So Little Time"


    • #3
      Good question, George. I suspect we will hear some surprises here and there, but also a few similarities.

      Legibitly, reliability, intetesting dials, and comfort. And, for me, to some degree, pedigree.

      Another requirement as of late, is the mechanical aspect of it. The more mechanical it feels, like having to wind a manual, the more satisfaction is seem to get from it. If I know it has more internal stuff going on than the average watch, I tend to be drawn to it.
      But, I can also appreciate the 'strap it on and go' aspect of some watches that fit my aforementioned criteria.

      They've done studies, you know. 60% of the time, it works every time.


      • #4
        Originally posted by kurt48 View Post
        Like spicy food, fast motorcycles and faster women—I like complications!
        Well said, lol

        They've done studies, you know. 60% of the time, it works every time.


        • #5
          I'm with you on legibility. I want to be able to tell the time with a glance and not have to find silver hands on a white background (just as an example). Second to that it has to have a good degree of WR due to the "stupid factor." that is me being stupid and jumping in a body of water without thinking of how a 30m WR watch is going to fare. Hint, it didn't work well for past watches

          Size is way down on the list anymore. I wear a Marathon 34mm field up to a 45mm Seiko diver just as easily.


          • #6
            Mechanical watches. A few of you know I am wearing a g-shock more often than not, so they are exceptions. Accuracy: I am fascinated by accuracy in a mechanical wristwatch. Legibility. These eyes are not young. I hate to squint. If I looked like Clint Eastwood it would not bother me. Durability. I have put some watches through "bad times," banging them into things; wrecking motorcycles; mud, dirt, climbing, plus a lot of sweat as I live in the South. Comfort: I wear titanium most of the time.


            • #7
              What motorcycles have you been wrecking? I just had my 92' Venture Royale serviced. I brought
              it home from Idaho Falls 3 years ago where it had been stored, along with my 93' Goldwing, for
              almost 25 years.

              The Yamaha has 150k miles on it and looks almost as good as the day I got it.

              It's been to Alaska three times (Prudhoe Bay once), and everyone in my family has ridden on the
              back for extended tours of the Rocky Mountain West.

              It is basically a 'toured out' V-Max, but I think that's why I love it. It's a little trickier to ride than my
              Goldwing or most touring bikes, but leaned over at 80+, it's hard to beat.

              Like watches, I've been blessed to love two-wheelers today as much as I did when I bought my first car in 1964—, a BSA Gold Star (tongue-in-cheek).

              The summer of 1969 was the happiest of my life to that point. I bought a Croton Chronograph from EJ Korvettes in May and was the first to take delivery of the CB-750 in early July. Back then it was the absolute King of the motorcycle world.'

              I couldn't imagine life ever getting better than that summer. My rent was $60.00 a month which my job pumping gas more than paid for.

              I rode that bike, and wore that watch to Woodstock that summer and that was the only downer of 1969.
              Between the rain, the crowds, and the flakes, I couldn't wait to get back to Ocean City. The Atlantic City Rock Festival that summer was a much better event.

              Anyway, I didn't mean to go on this long, but here's the bikes and the watch.


              My CB-750 (sand cast) was green. I still have it. It was converted to a Cafe Racer (Paul Dunstall) almost 50 years ago, and I'm seriously considering—, —once I get my wife's TR-6 restored—, —to start working on it this winter. My son's never seen it on the road (he's 37), but he's heard all the stories and road tales from my riding friends from years ago.

              My Croton...

              My Beloved Venture Royale...

              Colby was always trying to figure out how to get on...

              Last edited by kurt48; 08-16-2019, 11:10 PM.
              "So Many Watches / So Little Time"


              • #8
                My last wreck was almost 35 years ago. It was a modified Kawasaki 1100 Eddie Lawson... if you know how fast it was stock, you can figure how stupid it was to modify. Totaled. Thankfully I was wearing full gear, and in time broken bones heal. Watch was a Seiko Sport Tech circa 1982. It was completely protected by my glove, though I broke my arm in close proximity to my wrist.

                Other wrecks were Yamaha 2-stroke... not bad, rideable after repair. Broke my watch band: one of those LED Bulovas. Incidentally I sold Yamaha to get a Honda 900F. I never wrecked it. After wrecking the Kawasaki I went back to a 900F that was "reasonably" modified. My riding was adrenalin junky stupid. When I got over that I stopped riding motorcycles and went to bicycles for about 15 years. First wreck was a dirt bike, no longer remember what, it was in the early 70's. I wasn't hurt. No watch then.

                Re: your BSA... my first street bike was a Triumph (used). Happiest day in my life to that point was the day I bought it... surpassed by the day I sold it. I learned to wear black jeans to hide the oil stains.

                I have never owned a touring bike, and only ridden those of friends for short (50-100 mile) spins. Ever since I read Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (great novel I recommend it to anyone) I have thought of a long tour. Won't happen because my wife has only been on the back of a bike once.

                Fix the TR6. One of my favorite cars. You can go on drives together.


                • #9
                  Interesting, you seem to have great luck.

                  Before I got married, I road-raced a Yamaha TD-250.

                  Great days...


                  "So Many Watches / So Little Time"


                  • #10
                    I can tell you after almost a mil. miles, the best tours are the one's done alone.

                    That way 'group think' gets totally left behind. You go where you want, when you want,
                    and in the direction you want.

                    I just got back from a solo 7,300 mile ride. If you fly into Vegas, you can rent a bike from
                    American Eagle, and circle the Rocky Mountains (Routes 89 and 191) in about 10 days.

                    I miss the days when all I had was a bike. I would regularly put 30k a year going back and
                    forth to Penn State, Daytona for Bike Week, and then West during the summers.

                    A solo tour will change your life. Almost like a Vision Quest for Native Americans!

                    "So Many Watches / So Little Time"


                    • #11
                      For me, it's not one or two things, but the overall look of the watch. I like dress watches, dive watches, pilot watches - all of them. I prefer 42mm and up, but nothing over 47mm. I can live with 40mm, but other than my Sea-Dweller, 40mm seems to small. For some reason, the SD seems perfect even though 40mm.

                      One pet peeve I have is that I don't like hands that are too short, so hand proportion is important. Also, I like quartz, manual wind, and automatics - for me how the watch looks is more important. I don't care too much about legibility as I have some cool watches that I like even if I can't read them well. I tend to like unusual watches and usually know immediately if I like a watch or not.

                      Never owned a motorcycle - but used to ride with friends who had dirt bikes and Honda 250s.

                      Speaking of TR6s, I've owned two - wrecked them both street racing, but loved them. They sparked my love for roadsters and are the reason I drive a roadster today.

                      Wish I still had this 1969 TR6 - it had the 4 speed with an electronic overdrive, essentially giving you a 5th gear through flipping a switch on the steering column.


                      • #12
                        Timing bezel
                        WR 200m+
                        Dial of at least 30mm not including rehaut


                        • #13
                          Very cool!

                          I bought my wife (Kathryn) a 1976 TR-6 (the last year) as a wedding present.

                          The only negative is she insisted on the 'chocolate' colored model.

                          We still have it and it only has 36,000 miles on it.

                          I only ever wrecked one vehicle (praise the lord) and that was an Austin
                          Healey 3000 on the Garden State Parkway.

                          I still miss that car.

                          "So Many Watches / So Little Time"


                          • #14
                            Repair the TR-6, Kurt, but be prepared to be nickeled and dimed forever. Brit sports cars all have the characteristic of having a little something go bad from time to time. The less said about Lucas electrics the better. I've had 4 Triumphs.

                            I had a Spitfire my senior year at the Citadel. That was the year The Battle of Britain came out in theaters. Saw the movie, zipped up my A-2 leather jacket, put on my Citadel issue leather gloves, went out and got in my Spitfire, and went looking for Volkswagens.

                            Never had a motorbike, but I've put many a mile on road bikes since my teenage years. Stopped twenty years ago and now I ride a recumbent when the weather and my health get together. My favorite was a a Giant with a Campy gruppo. Several thousand miles thereon. Pictured is what I rode when I was feeling classical: a Pinarello with friction shifting and a bunch of other old school stuff.


                            Cardigan American Princess Celeste says, "It's too quiet. You guys get up off your butts and start doing things."


                            • #15
                              Very cool. With all their 'nits,' I still prefer the old cars (and bikes) over the
                              techno-wizardry they make today. The greater the technology, the more it
                              separates you viscerally from the ride.

                              "So Many Watches / So Little Time"