We’ve got a great mix of watches for you this week on Market Watch(ing). Get ready for some modern-classic dive watches, a high value chronograph and calendar, a legendary vintage chronograph, and more. Prepare your wallets and negotiating tactics, it’s time to deal.

Neil’s Picks

Omega Seamaster Pro 2531.80 “Bond”

The Seamaster Pro “Bond” is what I would call modern classic. Aside from being a great looking watch, it also has the distinction of ushering in James Bond’s Omega era when it was prominently featured on the wrist of Pierce Brosnan in “Goldeneye” (although, he wore the quartz version in his first Bond film).*The size, proportions, and look fit right in with any modern watch, yet are still reserved and classic enough to fit in with the vintage crowd. With the deep blue “wave” dial and bezel, along with Omega’s fantastic Bond bracelet, it makes for a stunning combination that still hold up 20 years later.
This piece was recently serviced and looks to be in great shape. The caliber 1120 (ETA 2892) is well known as one of Omega’s most reliable and accurate movements, so, in serviced condition, you’d be in great hands. Many of the others I’ve seen don’t appear to be in nearly as good of condition as this one. At $1,350, the price is more than fair*and you get an amazing watch at an incredible value.

Marathon SAR

Marathon is brand that I feel often gets overlooked. They are very prominent in the the military and dive watch communities, but have somehow not managed to gain mass appeal. Marathon*represents a solid value proposition, and not only do they walk the walk, but they talk the talk when it comes to hard-use military and dive watches. They don’t produce watches in large numbers, and I’m starting to see their older, less common pieces increasing in demand and price. Maybe that’s a sign of things to come.
The SAR-D has long been sold out from retailers, so this is quite the find.*This one comes with a rare and desirable bracelet from Marathon, along with the rubber strap. It’s just a little over 41mm, which is just right. Many comparable military-focused watches with similar features are often 44mm and up. You get 300m water resistance, a fully graduated diver’s bezel easily operated with gloves, and a reliable ETA 2824 movement. It’s the perfect workhorse for those that put watches through their paces.

Isaac’s Picks

F.P. Journe Chronomètre Bleu

There are some watches currently in production today, that no matter who you are, how badly you want one, or how much cash you’re willing to drop with a moment’s notice, you just can’t get a hold of one. A prime example of this is the FP Journe Chronomètre Bleu. It’s such a highly coveted piece (and with very, very good reason), that they’re rarely in the brand’s own boutiques for more than a day, and independent retailers often don’t get to sell them altogether. Because of this, many collectors will choose to source one on the secondhand market, where they pop up occasionally, but again will move rather quickly. If you ever get the chance to handle one, which I have many a times in that a good friend owns one, you’ll instantly understand the appeal, which is by no means just hype. Journe’s manufacture crafts one hell of a good looking movement, and the dial is simply mesmerizing — producing a variety of tones and shades of blue, even more so than Patek’s Nautilus.
During my nightly browsing of the many online watch shops, I noticed an example has just become available at San Francisco’s H.Q. Milton. Its tantalum case appears to be in great shape with minimal wear, and the box and papers are included, though the strap could potentially use a replacement. That said, beggars can’t be choosers, right? With H.Q. Milton’s track record of moving pieces in record time, your best bet is to inquire on this one yesterday.

Omega Constellation

Throughout my travels over the past week or so, I’ve spotted a solid number of older Constellations — or “Connie’s” as their known by some devoted collectors — on the wrists of older Italians. They’re really quite sharp looking watches, with a number of exciting details between variants that’ll surely keep you occupied with something to study, and a number of upcoming pieces on the “need list”. Additionally, the Constellation market hasn’t seen the same type of commotion as some other vintage waters have, so finding a nice example won’t always break the bank. One more thing to note, Gerald Genta designed a Constellation at one point in his career, so there’s that!

Here is one example that time has surely been kind to: a 1950’s Ref. 2852. This example’s currently available for purchase from Kyle Leung of Patina Timepieces. Despite the fact that the crown has been replaced at some point in time, its dial has aged beautifully to produce the even, sun-kissed aesthetic that we see here today. Kyle is a pleasure to deal with, so don’t hesitate to send him an email with any questions.

Dean’s Picks

I’m going to keep my ramblings short and sweet this week, ’cause I’m a little preoccupied with preparations to travel to Upstate NY tomorrow to see my favorite band play approximately 12 hrs or so of music.
Omega Museum Collection Cosmic 1951

My first pick is a watch I’ve long admired and seems to me like a HECK of a good deal — the Omega Museum Collection Cosmic 1951. Now, here is what you are getting for under 6K EUR: a limited edition, 18k Rose gold, triple date calendar Cosmic from Omega with a stunning black dial and beautiful sculpted lugs. It’s powered by Omega’s automatic Cal. 2601, a double barrel movement based of the Piguet 6763-4, with 72 hrs of power reserve.*Yes, its a little fancy/dressy and the gold watch thing isn’t for everyone, but boy does this thing just ooze class (as I’m sure I’ll be doing in approximately 24hrs from now).

Vacheron Constantin ref 4072

Well, if that watch isn’t classy enough for you, here is one that will certainly fit the bill. Everyone just about shit in their Wheaties this week when Vacheron announced their cow horn re-issue chronograph, and I agree, it looks great. Here’s an opportunity to own a real deal vintage VC chronograph in excellent condition. What you have here is a VC 4072 chronograph with the Caliber 492 from the 40’s (at least i think its a 4072, I’m no expert when it comes to vintage VC) in IMMACULATE condition. It really doesn’t get any better than this. The dial is clean, the case looks sharp as hell, and just take a look at that movement. Absolutely gorgeous. This beauty is listed at ¥4.5M, which I understand is something like $36K.

Shane’s Picks

Breitling Top Time ref 2002

First up for me is a vintage chronograph that still seems to be undervalued. I’ve seen panda dial versions getting more expensive, but this basic silver dial Breitling Top Time is a steal. You get a monocoque case construction, a reliable Valjoux 7730, and a clean chronograph layout for $1500. Overall, this example was clearly worn, but the case is pretty sharp, and the movement looks clean. The seller says he hasn’t had it serviced, so I’d consider a service in a year or so, or sooner if something goes wrong. The sale is for “head only”, but luckily this Top Time would look good on just about anything in your strap drawer.

IWC Aquatimer ref 3536

This is one of those watches that every time I see one, I want it more and more. I’ll get one eventually, but for now, I’ll live vicariously through you guys. Here we have a mint and complete set IWC Aquatimer ref 3536 with a tritium dial. I don’t know the exact year of this example, but it should be closer to 1998 than 2003 since it has tritium. The titanium case and bracelet appears to be in outstanding condition for its age. It was serviced by IWC in 2009, so it might need another movement cleaning. If these Aquatimers aren’t already modern classics, they will be.

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