Rich man watches that I like

I do really appreciate watches that most can afford, however, I do occasionally venture to the dark side and look at watches in the $1,000+ range. It is still my belief that you really experience diminishing returns over $500 or so, but I still like these watches:

Omega Speedmaster Pro

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I tried on this bad boy at a Baily, Banks, and Biddle. It is the classic moon watch. It went to the moon and looks stunning on Earth. Easy to read and not too large, only 42mm. If I ever come into some real money, this will be on my short list.

Omega Planet Ocean:

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I tried on this one as well. Very bold and orange. The saleswoman was actually pretty knowledgeable about watches. She asked me if I knew why the watch was orange? I told her it is because it is the last color that disappears in low light when diving. I wasn’t wearing my Orange Bullet that day. This is a pretty nice looking watch, but the Arabic numerals are a little pointless. Fit and finish were nice, but not crazy nice. The bezel is a lot easier to turn than the regular Omega Seamaster.

Seiko Marine Master

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Ah, another Seiko. Have not had a chance to see this on in real life. It is the Marine Master. It is available in conventional automatic or the revolutionary Spring Drive. I like the classic look of the automatic. The unique thing is that is a single piece case. There is no screw on back, thus eliminating a leak path. The rugged looks and classic Seiko diver’s design are what appeal to me.

I’ll add more when I get a chance. Any rich man (or woman) watches are out there that you like?

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Grail Watch

Most watch collectors have one (or a few) “Grail” watches. This is the watch you really really want, but for one reason or another, usually money, you usually don’t have that watch. For me, it is a rather modest watch, compared to a Rolex or an Omega, it is a Seiko Alpinist, SARB017.

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It is a quite stunning watch. It looks like a little like a vintage Rolex Explorer. It does have the cool compass feature as well, and it is water resistant to 200meters. It uses the new 6R15 movement, which is very similar to the 7S26, but hacks, handwinds, and has a 50 hour power reserve. It also has a sapphire crystal, which is nice touch on a watch at the $400 price point. All the photos I have seen of it are very impressive. It is a Japan only model, but Seiko seems to keep its best watches at home. Someday.

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Simple watch

In case I don’t get this as a gift, I like the SNK789 Seiko 5. I have it on my master list, but I found on eBay, if you get it with a metal bracelet instead of leather, it is less than $70 shipped!

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I still think it would make a great replacement for my white Timex. It looks like I can even steal the new leather band I have on the Timex! It does have a few advantages over my old Expedition, it is an automatic, has hardlex instead of acrylic crystal and it is made of stainless steel instead of ‘base metal.’ The styling is similar. Strait hands, white face, and red second hand.

Though it has served me well, the exposed base metal does make me itch when I wear it. Must be brass or something with high nickel content.

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Sedentary lifestyle revealed in wrist watches

I have seen quite a few complaints on automatic watches online pertaining to the watch stopping at inopportune times.  The owners often admit they live a sedentary lifestyle.  I was wondering, how sedentary do you have to be to not wind your automatic watch? 
I did a little research and my automatic watches, which use a Seiko 7S26 movement, take about 3200 swings to fully wind.  This sounds like a lot, but for every stride you take, it swings the watch 2 times, so you have to walk 1,600 steps a day to keep it fully wound.  1,600 steps is really not a heck of a lot. Anything below 5,000 and you are considered sedentary.  So, we are talking about less than half of this.  An average person takes 2,000 steps to cover a mile.  So, if your automatic watch stops, you are walking less than 4/5 of a mile a day.  Also remember, you don’t need to walk to wind an automatic watch.  Just moving your arm around winds it as well.  So not only are you not walking, you are not even moving your arm around while you are sitting. 
Now, why would watch companies design a watch that stops occasionally?  Well, turns out nearly all of our ‘modern’ automatics were designed in the 1950’s.  The modern movements are just refinements of older designs.   I would venture a guess people in the 1950’s walked and moved around more than people in the ’00s.  So, yet another example of how Americans have degraded into useless couch potatoes/cube dwellers.  You can’t even move your arm enough to keep a watch wound.

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Durability

I was talking to a co-worker during a training session, and I noticed he was wearing a Seiko 5 (Automatic Watch) which was well worn.  He told me it was 10 years old now, and still works great with no servicing.  His previous watch was a Seiko 5 which he wore for 20 YEARS with no service.  He just got sick of the styling and gave it away.  Think about that.  Something that costs less than $100 lasting 20 years with no maintenance.  We are not talking about something sitting on a shelf here.  This is something strapped to your arm, with endless shocks, exposure to temperature extremes, and water.  Yet, this humble, little watch lasted 20 years with no complaint, and as far as we know, it is still ticking away somewhere.  I wish they could make everything that well.

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The Grand List

My birthday is coming up, so I am trying to narrow down what I want to ask for. They are all automatics, I have decided against battery operated chronographs. Here are the top 13 watches I would like next, in no particular order:

Seiko SKX033K2

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It’s a Seiko SKX033, a 100 meter watch, not a true diver. It looks
very similar to a Rolex Submariner, but with Seiko style hands. Very
similar to the SKX031, except with the ‘Pepsi’ blue and red bezel. I
think I like it more than the all black ‘031. The splash of red adds a
lot. Again, Rolex looks at a decent price. About $120 on eBay. Its $159 on Chronograph.com.

 

 

Seiko 5 SNZB19K

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Another 5. I really like this one. Pearl face with a cool lime
green second hand. Only about $120 on eBay. I could use a white/light
faced watch. My only other light faced is my Timex. It’s $165 on Chronograph.com.

 

 

Seiko 5 SNZE49 J1

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I like the red face of this one. It is a Seiko 5, so it is an
automatic. The bracelet looks pretty sharp as well. About $130 to 150
on eBay. It’s$153 on Chronograph.com

 

 

Seiko 5 Superior SKZ207J

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A Seiko 5 Superior, SKZ207J compass watch. I like the look, cream
face, and compass feature. It also comes in blue and black. Not sure how the compass works yet, bit I
love the looks of this watch. 200m water resistant. This looks like a Japanese made unit,
since it has the 7S36 movement. About $125 on eBay.  A whopping $235 on Chronograph.com! Ouch.

 

 

Seiko SKX031K2

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It’s a Seiko SKX031, a 100 meter watch, not a true diver. It looks
very similar to a Rolex Submariner, but with Seiko style hands. It also
costs about $5500 less. A Rolex homage with the hand style I like from Seiko. It’s $158 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNK339K

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Sporty, baby blue face. Is is too baby blue? Not sure. $115 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNK391K1

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Cool retro brown faced watch. I don’t know why I like it, but I do. I like the bracelet as well. Only $95 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNK789K-L

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If I ever want to retire my Timex, this would be the one to replace it. Simple, white faced watch. $135 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNKE03J1

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An all black watch. Would be a very different addition to my collection. $168 on Chronograph.com is a bit more than I wanted to spend.

 

SNKF49K1

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Simple, clean lines. Looks like a Grand Seiko. I think it would wear well with formal or casual clothes as well. $128 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNKF51K1

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This one has some nice features. Black bezel and carbon fiber face. The red second hand is cool looking as well. Would also look excellent on black leather strap. $138 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNZB21K

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Nice, manly looking watch with a green second hand. The hands are a style I like as well and I like the 1/5 second hash marks. The bracelet it very nice looking as well and the watch would look great on leather as well. $128 on Chronograph.com.

 

SNZE74K1

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A rose gold and black faced watch. I think it is quite stunning looking and I like the full day of the week is spelled out. $168 on Chronograph.com.

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TLC

Spent the time to clean up my Kinetic watch.  It is a very nice watch and gleams like new again.

I took off the bracelet and soaked it in a jewelery cleaner and then soaked and cleaned the watch itself.  It is pretty amazing what dirt comes off after wearing a watch 5 years.  Overall, the watch has held up well.  There is some wear to the underside of the bracelet (rubbing against a desk) which is pretty typical. It still keeps amazing time, even for a quartz watch.  It is currently dead on to N.I.S.T. time, no adjustments over the last 5 months!  The worst I have seen it is about 0.5 seconds off at the last daylight savings time change.  I don’t wear t nearly as much as I used to.  My Orange Bullet Diver’s and my Blue 5 get worn at work all the time, and the green military gets worn every night at home. I think I will wear it soon to charge up the energy cell to 6 months charge again.  It is currently at about 2 months reserve.  Seiko still makes this exact model, which is a good sign.  I like the fact someone still makes a men’s standard size watch, 36mm, not the hubcaps you see strapped to peoples’ wrists now. 

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As always, looking, and first impressions.

Went to Kohls the other day to look at chronographs. Not entirely convinced if I should get one, or just stick with getting more automatics. I really do like autos. I did spot a really nice looking Seiko SNAA63 for half off. It still was $187.50 though. I can get a really nice auto for that kind of coin.

Sharp looking watch with the movement I like. Still not sure though.
I also looked at a Citizen for about the same original price $325 vs. $375 original. It was an ecodrive, which I have wanted to try. But, and this is a big but, you know what they say about first impressions? The Citizen was very disappointing. It felt cheap and light. The bracelet was hollow and squeaky. This is ok for a sub $100 watch, but not for over $300! The much bigger issue was when I went to use the chronograph function. I pressed the reset button. The second hand swung back into place but the 1/10 of a second subdial didn’t budge. Started timing, still didn’t budge. I thought maybe I was in lap mode. I reset it twice, still no movement. The Seiko, of course, reset perfectly every time. I don’t know, I know Citizen is supposed to be very good, the #1 Japanese maker (in sales) right now, but the first impression sucked.

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