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I'm going overseas in a month, so I have very little money to spend. But I'd like to start my vintage watch collection before I leave. I'd probably only want to spend $30-$50 on the first watch, because every dollar will count when I'm in Asia.

I've seen a few HMT watches on eBay, are they any good? I haven't heard much about them. I'm currently looking at HMT Kanchan, HMT Sonata and HMT Kohinoor. Other than quality, I'd also like to know around when these watches were made, the only info is '1970-1999'.

If the HMT watches aren't what I'm looking for quality or age-wise. Can anyone recommend some decent quality pre-1980 watches? I like conservative, gold-faced watches that look good with a brown leather strap. For example, when I have a bit more to spend I'll be getting a Poljot DeLuxe.

Thanks.
 

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The Indian HMTs have to live in what is often a tropical, humid environment. Vintage offerings often show movement damage due to water intrusion. Make sure you get a good and clean movement. Which means non-movement pictured watches are speculative at best. With this caveat, they are interesting watches to collect. But in this (as in most) market, knowledge is power. So have fun learning!

Never buy a watch because of the strap (unless you are a strap collector). They are easy to replace and usually should be.

As to decent quality vintage, eBay is full of them... and non-decent ones too! In vintage, be prepared to see prices increase substantially for good quality ... and it is usually worth it! But vendors always have an inflated opinion of their quality... Again, knowledge is power.

Vintage has a far higher variety of styles and technologies than new. Welcome!!
 
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