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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gang,

I want to eventually buy a watch made in my birth year, 1959. I probably won't spend over $500, although I could talk myself into spending more for the right watch. Here are some things I like:

1) Something black - either the face or the markers or numbers (just a preference, not a requirement)
2) Nothing too small (I have an 8" wrist)... definitely nothing under 38mm.

I've looked at a Gruen Precision... have gazed at a few Omegas... a Hamilton or three... but don't know hardly anything about vintage so I'm reading and learning and now, asking!

Any thoughts, suggestions or information will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Gary
 

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Well this is a rather difficult request because of your criteria.. 1. Vintage watches, especially 50s, are rather small and 38mm would be considered large for 59'. 2. Vintage black dial watches are uncommon and you have to be wary of fakes/redials. I was going to suggest Bulova because of the ease of the date codes and a few models with black dials but the size is a killer. You may want to try a vintage diver or chrono for larger size and black dial or markers, although they may push the budget.
 

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A Rolex of some kind, Datejust or Submariner is the obvious choice for me but there are other models or even a Tudor. A Navitimer could also be an interesting one to go for.

EDIT - sorry I didn't notice the part about the $500 budget. Maybe in that case I'd say to just look for a vintage Hamilton or Bulova from that kind of era.
 

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Not for $500 though, you could probably get a Breitling Chrono or similar for under $1,000.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The face doesn't have to be black... what I see often in the 50s watches is white faces (or off-white) with silver or light gold markers or numbers and hands... and there just isn't any contrast going on!

Thanks for the input so far... keep 'em coming!

Gary
 

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I have two birth year watches, both Hamiltons using the 770 movement. Both are engraved with my birth year, which at the end of the day is a pretty good indication that your watch was at least sold and engraved in that year, if not made. The advantage of concentrating on Hamiltons is that they are fairly numerous, many in relatively good shape, and parts are not impossible to find. They are also fairly large for that time period. The 770 movement is one of Hamilton's best hand-wound movement for a wrist-watch, Made in America (if that matters to you) and compares, even after all these years, to the best made today favorably.
 

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A Bulova Accurton, the first year they were sold.
I believe it was actually 1960, but I can't find definitive documentation.

BUT, Bulova's not such a bad idea. Their 'His Excellency' series from those years were larger watches, with 23j US-built movements. By 'larger' I mean larger than most 1959 watches were.
 

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Look for Eterna-matic Kontiki with Eterna 1424UD movements that date from 1958.



Image from internet

John
 

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