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The $80 mechanical watch vs my Rolex 1018

December 2 2017 at 12:50 PM
John Ieland  (Login ffigcar)
VRF Moderator
from IP address 104.35.110.199

The easy answer is obvious. My 1018 (see last picture) is the superior watch. But that $80 Seiko is an amazing value. If you want a very very very good mechanical watch that will do its job and never give you heartburn if something happens to it, this is the one to look at. I found it in a Wall Street Journal article "Penny-wise Advise on Mechanical Watches." They were all under $250 and at $80 the Seiko was cheapest...and looked the best IMO. I followed the links, read the specs and reviews, spent my $80 and a few days later Amazon delivered it. Its a decent size, 38mm, they had a 42mm version with manual and autowind, but I chose this for the size. To wind I have to shake it back and forth for a couple of minutes and then it will keep going as long as I wear it. But off the wrist, the power reserve is less than 24 hours in my experience. Setting the time, day and date is routine and easy, with the warning about not setting the day and date between 9 pm and 3 am. Accuracy has been very good...on par with my Rolex. The look of the Seiko is also excellent. The dial is well made, the case is a matt steel, and a little thick for my choice. The case back has the see through crystal and the movement is nice and shiny. And the movement is made in Malaysia. Not sure where the entire watch is assembled but so far it keeps working away and I have no complaints. The original nylon strap was very stiff and uncomfortable so I splurged another $20 and bought a softer Hadly Roma nylon and leather strap that is much more comfortable. So here are pictures...sorry you'll have to use the links until I get Imgur sorted out. It is a very decent field watch that will probably never be worth repairing...and yet if you love mechanical watches, how could you not make the effort.

As for the Rolex 1018...the 36 mm case is as perfect a size as ever made. The watch lays on my wrist and seems to float there. The folded metal Jubilee bracelet is perfect. It is my daily wearer...even more than my 1013. Hope this entertains all of you.



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Lou
(Login seve1945)
VRF Member
73.107.54.71

The Seiko is a very nice watch. Many people are

December 3 2017, 6:40 AM 

purchasing them. The are many models to choose from. Some are
fairly expensive. I like yours.


    
This message has been edited by seve1945 from IP address 73.107.54.71 on Dec 5, 2017 2:00 PM


 
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Neil
(Login ninjanoel)
81.102.7.51

My £180 Seiko

December 3 2017, 7:55 AM 

I too have a Seiko mechanical watch. Its an SKX 007 with the 7S26 movement. I wear it as my daily beater and is incredible value. If it was lost or broke I would buy another.

 
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John Ireland
(Login ffigcar)
VRF Moderator
104.35.110.199

Re: The $80 mechanical watch vs my Rolex 1018

December 3 2017, 10:48 AM 


Here are pictures now that I've found a way to post here.

L1090649

L1090650

L1090660

1018a

 
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Karl
(Login OysterCollector)
VRF Member
118.210.138.236

I have a $70 Parnis automatic in 316L SS which

December 5 2017, 7:38 AM 

are exceptional value for money and for what they are. These little quiet achievers made in the far East are the best secret in town. They are as rugged and reliable as most other timepieces made there like Seiko, which were indestructible especially amongst Soldiers during the Vietnam war.

Mine is a 40mm in 316L stainless steel with a miyota automatic movement. I have been wearing it as a daily beater for almost 5 years. I can replace the movement for some $25 and do it myeelf which is far cheaper than servicing it, even if I were to do it myself when considering that I will need to buy the oils and cleaning hydrocarbons that are not cheap either. Enjoy both of yours in good health!!!!

 
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Ashley B.
(Login AshleyBowler)
VRF Member
76.94.50.229

Personally, I can’t see any appeal in wearing a cheap watch.

December 5 2017, 10:27 AM 

(unless you're 10 years old). If you want to know the exact time, look at your cell phone. Without sounding like an a**hole elitist, cheap shoes, cheap suits and cheap watches should be avoided.


    
This message has been edited by AshleyBowler from IP address 76.94.50.229 on Dec 5, 2017 10:53 AM


 
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Lou
(Login seve1945)
VRF Member
73.107.54.71

A lot of people like Seiko watches and they are Kool in

December 5 2017, 2:03 PM 

their own way. Cell phones usually are in a persons' pocket, while
watches are more accessible.

 
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Ashley B.
(Login AshleyBowler)
VRF Member
76.94.50.229

I realized after writing that long-winded , somewhat pompous

December 5 2017, 2:41 PM 

response....that I have the Seiko “Black Monster”. I do think it’s a terrific watch for the money, and seems virtually indestructible.


    
This message has been edited by AshleyBowler from IP address 76.94.50.229 on Dec 5, 2017 2:46 PM


 
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Karl
(Login OysterCollector)
VRF Member
118.210.136.69

There is a difference between cheap and inexpensive

December 5 2017, 10:04 PM 


The price of the item is not always refective of the quality.

In horology, we have very expensive watches that are still cheap in quality. I have two watches on my work bench; both a Tissot and a Tag Heuer. They are both in quality stainless steel cases, with the same eta quartz module costing approximately $45 trade. Both have rotating bezels with a screw down crown and of same water resistant capacity. There is nothing wrong with neither of them but in need of a new battery and pressure testing.

The DIFFERENCE is the price tag, where one is over $3000 and the other $500. Without declaring which is which, I guess you can all work out which one had the higher price TAG (excuse the pun). You could say that the $500 timepiece is cheap and should be avoided, but the $3000 one is appealing because you are paying more so you believe to get a lot more for your money. In my opinion they are either; both junk or both good, depending on which angle you look at. Now, if you are buying a lower end Rolex for $3000, then this is different as it is all inhouse with a mechanical module which is of course more expensive. I cannot justify paying $3000 for one of those watches sitting on my work bench. That is very inferior quality for the price you pay, but definitely NOT cheap!!!. I could build a generic clone of the same for just under for $200. Surely if Seiko had 4 digit price tags, then they would not be looked at as cheap or inexpensive.

 
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fatboyharris
(Login fatboyharris)
VRF Member
5.71.64.14

The potential real difference is in an individual's perception

December 6 2017, 1:33 AM 

of the brands worth and somethings worth can be measured in many ways.

Its also a strange old world we live in...eg how many people wear a submariner type watch but never get it wet or a cosmograph type watch and never use the timing capability?

So often its the branding synergy that really counts ie where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

regards

John

 
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Karl
(Login OysterCollector)
VRF Member
121.45.64.66

Agree,as with the old saying "is it the singer or is it the song?"

December 6 2017, 6:17 AM 

what's in a name or lable ? Everything!!!!

 
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John Ireland
(Login ffigcar)
VRF Moderator
104.35.110.199

What attracted me to the $80 Seiko

December 6 2017, 4:12 PM 

First, the article in WSJ opened my eye to the fact that good inexpensive mechanical watches are still being made. Of the three watches in the article, both the looks and Seiko's reputation (an older watch making company than Rolex) made me chose it. For the money it was an experiment. I know there are lots of quartz watches for the same money but a mechanical watch at that price caught my imagination. Hanging over my desk is an old Bulova and a Lord Elgin, both from the fifties. I keep them because I'm not sure anyone else would want them. Certainly not big buck haut horology by today's standards.

When I got the $80 Seiko a sticker on the watch band indicated that the original retail price was $200. This was obviously NOS clearance. I looked at the other Seiko offerings in this discount arena and selected this one because of the size. It actually gives me what my other field watch doesn't...the movement. The other watch is an Eddie Bauer quartz analog piece made in France...and found by me in the gutter by the side of the road. For me almost any watch worth saving so a new battery and strap and now it hangs over my desk with the Bulova and the Lord Elgin.

But the Seiko for me is a real watch...a mechanical watch. That it was made in Malaysia by people who work hard and don't get paid a fortune...well buying it also gave me a chance to show them my respect for their efforts.

And one of the best things about it...it isn't worth enough to ever sell. (How I miss the two Rolexes that disappeared into a Porsche.) So here it is...keeping great time...a nice looking well made watch...and great value for the money. At night it sits by the bed, the luminous hands and markers glowing in the dark just incase I need to know what time it is. On my wrist is one of my two Rolexes from the 1960s...the luminous material long since dead.




 
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Karl
(Login OysterCollector)
VRF Member
121.45.79.131

you would be surprised what you can pick up as NOS

December 9 2017, 5:13 AM 

in most outlets. When I lived in Australia, my favourite way to relax and pass the time was to rummage through some of the local disposal stores and flea markets. My favourite find was three new old stock Australian assembled watches with eta 2783 movements, which were often snubbed by Ozzies as cheap watches because of how they were branded. They had some womans name "Felicia" on them but these little tickers were bullet proof and reliable. They still had their original price tags on them from the jeweller of $AUS40.

Another find which still haunts me with deep regrests, was in a side street of Adelaide CBD, where a jeweller shop was closing it's doors after 70 years in business. He had just over half a dozen NOS solid gold mechanical watches in his safe which he wanted to pass onto me for just the price of gold alone. Three of them were 18k solid gold Omega speedmasters (gold and black dial) with gold bracelets, 18k solid gold Automatic Jaeger LeCoultre and a Blancpain 40 plus jewel cylomatic in 18K solid gold - both on a leather band. His asking price was at the time $AUS22 per gram in gold alone. Watch dials and movements came as complimentary. This was circa 1994. I was leaving for London in two weeks. What a dilemma!!!!!!

 
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