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99 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been spending so much time on this site, I think it will do some damage to my back pocket! It's beginning to add up. So here I am making up for lack of posts with word count and dodgy photos using my iphone. Warning first, as a noob and a long long walk from being remotely near WIS status, I find it iphone acceptable. But only just (and because my a picture is worth a thousand words and it's all I have right now :p)

When I was 18 I got myself a TAG Kirium. It served my well and is still my daily. Loved the style and most of all, the striking blue dial. Shame that lineup was discontinued. Very sleek and svelte At my first battery change, I was feeling naked so got myself a Lacoste dress watch. Rectangular, black strap and dial. Here it is (purchased circa 2004)

View attachment 745176

I would alternate between those two over the years. Last year one of my dogs chewed through the strap so that sat in my drawer for some time. So TAG it was everyday. Just last year, my fiance nephew must've played with it and damaged it so the clasp couldn't close properly as alignment was slightly off. No watch repair would touch it and suggested I take back to TAG. I didn't and ended up getting my jeweller overseas to bend it right with pliers. Not a bad job, as the clasp closed and locked shut, just couldn't open again without brute force or a steel butterknife lol. So that too saw little wrist time.

My next purchase since 2004 was just last year 2011 when I was on holidays in Taipei. Impulse buy as I walked around whilst my buddies were shopping and left the tiny watch store after spotting a nice looking black Marc Jacobs. I know I know, dress watch etc etc. It looked alright and when I'm travelling, a watch is better than pulling out a phone all the time. Plus it was my one souvenir of a country I've never been to before. Beats geting a T-Shirt lol.

Just in Feb when I was due to fly back to Australia with my fiance (met her overseas), she asked if I could give that watch to her dad. His Rado broke and he was using some cheapie that broke too. To be honest I don't like giving away my things and I would've liked to hav gotten him a new watch but it was towards the end of a 3 month holiday and funds were running low at the time.

So back in Aus with a naked wrist again. So I go on auction sites looking for a bargain. Scored plenty of items on the cheap so I'm hoping to do the same. I find one and bid like crazy for it. My first mechanical. Looked good, similar to my Lacoste so I went for it and won.

The pains of not doing research properly as the watch didn't fit my small wrist and just sat really bad due to the longer LUG to LUG length. Not a quality watch or a brand that would meet anyone's approval here. In my defence, I got it purely on looks and price. The auction site had it valued at $2199 by their independant valuer so I thought it was a great buy (paid labout 10% retail). My step dad saw it and was taken by it. He doesn't know watches and was wearing my old Lacoste with a new strap. I felt bad cause I had given my future father-in-law one watch so decided to give my step-dad this one. He loves it and at the end of the day, if you love your watch, does it mater te price or brand? It made him happy to own it and that made me happy.

So onto my search for another watch to wear. A Hugo Boss which I liked quite a lot but found it better to give my future father-in-law this one. It would suit him more than the Marc Jacob. That was a bit more for 18-30 year olds. The HB was more appropriate forhis age.

So that leaves me with no watches yet again and then I put in a bid for not one but TWO Christian Audigier quartz. Impulse buy with no hope of ever wearing it. Why did I bid? I don't know. (yes, my dress watch acquisition continues).

Highly inappropiate and can't see me wearing it ever so my search goes on. This time I miss out on a G-Shock but win a pair of Swatch watches. Both for $39AUD so not a bad deal. I also won a Casio for my little sister cause it was only an extra $1.20 shipping. She LOVED it so much. I'm happy making other people happy. Will probably give the two Christian Audigier away too.

I don't think I would ever give the Swatch some wrist time so I continue my search. Difference is, I RESEACH and learn as much as I could before I buy my next watch. Hopefully one that I'll wear and will be a keeper. I come across WUS and WOW everything right here. You guys are really helpful and informative you know? I spend countless hours trawling through the site. Learning about Mechanicals and Quartz, handwindables and automatics, hacking/handwinds, mushroom brands, mid-level tier and high end serious timepieces. I was formulating a plan. Initially I was going for an Orient. Cheap, quality for its pricepoint and a great beginner's watch to see if I could live with an automatic. No harm done if it doesn't. Even got my counter offer accepted from a watch site online ($75). But my fiance and friend tells me to stop buying lots of these cheap watches and just buy one expensive one. OK, they have a point with my recent purchases.

More research and more time on WUS. Next watch on my radar, Tissot Visodate. There's a great review on here by teeritz and to be honest I was smitten by the design and with fantastic writing by teeritz, I went out that morning (I was up all night on WUS) to try one on. Local shopping centre didn't have it but the one 20km away did. I went there and tried it on.

(borrowed pic from teeritz thread

It looked a tiny bit big on my wrist @ 40mm and I really wanted to to see how the one with the black strap looked on me. I go home to think about it some more and to show my fiance to get her thoughts on it. She gradualy warmed to the classic designs and it was just about a certain I was going to buy this watch. Soon as I woke up, I had to do my final research before I commit to buying it. All reviews are positive and I can't find a reason to NOT buy the watch. But I come across Tissot Le Locle as suggested by other members here. I look and that just made things worse. I couldn't decide which to get. Both priced around the same and the guilloche dial really took my fancy.

I preferred this one and at 42mm, it was going in the wrong direction size wise but Bang for your Bucks, I couldn't go wrong with Tissot. I entertained the idea of Hamiltons too (Jazzmaster) on suggestions picked up from members here but just no AD in Australia and I wanted to try it on before buying. I went to another shopping centre and they had the Visodate in Black as well as the Le Locle. Just to confuse me more, he introduced the Ballade III Quartz

I was beginning to have a good problem to have. What three good watches to choose. I wanted an auto, but it was just to see if I liked the Ballade more as the casing was different with the coin edging. I actually liked the Ballade more as though that and Le Locle was the same size, the Ballade looked marginally smaller and better suited to this small wrist of mine. He didn't have an auto on stock and since it was a special order, I had to pay full retail and couldn't get any discounts. Also he was a bit rude when I asked about hacking ("what is that?" he asked) and yelled at me when I was winding it up to get the watch going. He also gave some dismissive remarks about Seiko being cheap and not in the same league as Tissot as one was Japanese and other was Swiss. I must say, even though I have no experience with Seiko, I stood up to him and told him that the company are quite fantastic and make well built, accurate pieces. Just because Seiko has some affordable watches, doesn't make the whole range cheap and junk. Grand Seiko could easily be compared to a Rolex (I didn't say that to him but from what I've learnt, that's how I feel the GS stand in the pecking order of horology). His tone was condesending re Seiko so I'm here to buy a watch not see who knows more than who. He goes off to see what he can do for the watches he does have on hand and I wait around looking at the 3 Tissots. 15 mins later he comes back and gives me his best prices on all the watches. Quick calculations in my head had discounts of between 4-7% off retail. Rather insulting and peeved I waited that long for such a crap offer as other stores had 20% right off the bat before serious negotiations take place. I tell him so and list all the stores I've been to and prices quoted and was told he had to check and will need to get back to me. I leave my details and leave.

That was only last week and in that time I trawl WUS and the internet more. I read up more on Mont Blanc. It's always been a favourite watch long before I knew anything about watches. The only more expensive brands I knew were TAG, Longines, Cartier, Omega and Rolex. But Mont Blanc got my attention more so than the other brands. I didn't own anything from them. Not even their famous pens. My fiance (then just GF) knew my love for the brand and got me a wallet as a gift. Replaced my Burberry wallet which I had for only a year. I loved it and still use it. Getting back on track, I look more into Mont Blanc's watches and I come across a pic posted by Texas Tee (thanks bro, I think you helped me find my watch)

To me, an absolutely stunning piece. I am getting married soon and would like to have a nice watch for my tux. Initially I wanted to keep the budget to $1k but the more I look at the Mont Blanc, the more Tissot fades from memory. At least the urge is no longer there compared to the Star Chrono Auto. We talk about the watch and it retails for $3800 so it's not something I can do on impulse. Not with our wedding on the horizon. She agrees to go with me on her day off to try it on.

to be continued....


99 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Just on Tuesday, with the help of Google map I find the two Mont Blanc boutique in Sydney. Within walking distance to each other. I find the nearest underground carpark and drove straight back out. $69 for up to 2 hours and it jumps horribly again straight on 2 hrs and I see I think over $100 for parking for 3 or 4 hrs. I forget. Not the kind of fee I want to pay when planning on lots of window shopping for watches and real shopping for the missus. Does anywhere else charge $69 for 2 hrs to park their car that's not at the airport? I baulk at paying $20 for lost ticket, driving a porsche or no porsche, it's just outrageous.

I walk into the boutique and customer service is great. Seated at a nice table with the padded felt in the middle and offered a glass of water. GREAT start and well done Mont Blanc in getting employees to serve with appreciable service! I try on the watch on I know it's for me (thanks for the start and help Texas Tee, your watch help me narrow which Mont Blanc). Black leather on a white 38mm guilloché dial. Fits me perfect and more importantly, gives me that insane buzz and tickling sensation when you find a watch that (as you guys say often) "A watch that SINGS to you". I try a few others but I keep going back to the one I specifically asked for. I just want to try on the black dial one before I commit. They don't have it which is a shame because I don't want to buy and fall in love with the black down the track. I need to make sure and also I haven't been to the other boutique and I have no idea if I can get a better deal. I leave my details and take Tiffany's card (thanks Tiffany, love your attention to me and your follow up calls) and promise to stay in touch.

Some pics of the watch attached earler. (damn, got attached in earlier post so you guys get a preview since I cant delete it and keep photos in my thread's chronological order)

Since I'm sindow shoping for watches, I go to the Hour Glass to see what else they have. I thoght I saw that they stocked Mont Blanc on their website but when we arrived they didn't. We were there so didn't hurt checking out the store. Man, its heaven for someone who recently found interest in watches. They stocked some really nice time pieces. Any WIS in Sydney, if you're willing to spend 10k-50k plus, this is teh store to be. AP, PP Rolex, Cartier, Chopard, Baume&Mercier etc etc. The sales guy was showing my fiance a diamond Choppard and I've never seen a Patek Phillipe in real life so I wandered the store looking at them. I must say, the Patek Philippe Calatrava would be my pick. Elegant and classy. That would be my pick if I ever buy a watch instead of a small sized car. Wow.

Whilst I didn't find a watch that made me feel the way the Mont Blanc did, I did get to sample some Rolexes. My criteria was simple. A mechanical with date for under 10k. Realistic? Yes. I had quite a bit more on me at the time so off to Rolex stand we went. Let's get this straight, Rolex has never appealed to me as the style suited an older type. The design is a classic and that's why it'll never change. It just never wowed me. Not to say it isn't classy or elegant either. But one did catch my eye. ONE.
View attachment 745212 View attachment 745213 View attachment 745214

Diamond hour markers and that dial is crazy. Gave it a more youthful appearance and something I could pull off. If I ever own a Rolex in the next 10 years, this would be it. No brainer. My fiance loved it as well. Actually after we left the store, she grabbed my arm and shrieked, "GET IT GET IT GET IT, IT'S A ROLEX and so BEAUTIFUL!!!". Even went so far as to say she will contribute $5k and I make up the rest. If there's going to be one watch for your lifetime, make it a Rolex and THAT one. Discount wasn't much but still just under $9k which I have no idea on whether that was a bargain or normal? Still when I think about it, for $9k I rather have an extra 60 bottles of Hennessy XO for our wedding. And still the Mont Blanc is what I long for. Could be any Mont Blanc because they make some really nice pieces. I like the design language. And the price of a Rolex could get me into Nicolas Rieussec range (entry) or for more moolah, the grey Twinfly. I can only dream.

So now all I am waiting for is for my friend to buy his airplane ticket so I can get a further 10% off (General Sales Tax here) on a watch I buy. The Mont Blanc will be the one I think. My wedding watch and hopeful something I can pass down to my children. Having a second or more child will just mean I need to be fair and pass them down another watch as well :) Other watch enthusiasts out there, you have just found an 'out' for your expensive hobby when being confronted by your other half (also known as THE BOSS to some). You need to buy not for you but for your children!

That was on Tuesday and on Wednesday, I went shopping and bought this watch for my little brother. A Casio Street Rider range
(excuse bad quality and thumb print)
View attachment 745224 View attachment 745226

It was so great looking that I was in search of a similar and long story short, found the same one on my usual auction site. Which was lucky as I stopped looking on that site ever since I decided to get more serious with watches (unless they had Mido, Hamilton, Omega, Tissot, Orient etc) and auction happen to end that night. A bit over two hours actually.

So what have I learnt? Don't buy lots of cheap watches. Get one that you want and if you can't afford it right now, save up for it because it wil truly be worth effort. And now I have a newfound respect for Seiko and Tissot and why they offer such fantasic value for your hard earned money. I promise myself that I will steer away from dress watches and to pay more for the craftmanship and history and not because it happens to be the hippiest or trendiest name out at the moment. That love of watches comes down to how it makes you feel and not the names stamped or pricetag attached. And that watches, no matter how simple, can bring enormous joy to others. If you have a watch that you don't wear that much, look for a family member or friend who doesn't have a watch, and give it to them. They will love it and you will feel the happiness too. Bit corny but for lack of a better way to describe you have to live with that lol.

Now back to the real world and life. Enjoy your tick-tock pieces!

27 Posts
Nice watch-desire history/blog. At some point in the near future I predict you will own one of your dream watches! I read somewhere that any watch over $500 is mostly jewelry. But that doesn't seem to jive with some of the very well made automatics that are available.

99 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I know thread still in it's infancy so I just want to thank you all for your support. As a New member (even new lurker) it's nice to hear positive feedback so will encourage me to keep on writing and sharing. If you can't learn from me, at least you will find a find some entertaining posts!

Whilst I will likely spend no more than $10k on any watch, to be honest, my knowledge on history and movement is so basic that it will be wasted on me as I will not be able to appreciate to the same extent a WIS would. Not to say I won't love the piece, I WILL but for me to go there, I will need to see and know for myself why that tick-tock piece cost 10k and looking past the brand as the answer.

As for a GS, it was actually one of the watches that sparked an interest in it's clean dial and baton markers. The reason why I was interested in the Visodate with similar clean display and nicely edged shiny batons.

Seeing as I have my TAG, Lacoste, (any day now G-Shock) and very soon wedding watch (I'll lose bargaining leverage after our End of Financial Year sale at the end of June- so I need to MUSH MUSH on the purchase) it'll leave me with 4 more pillows to fill my mahogany display case. 5 if I see a watch that grabs me and I boot out the Casio. Hey, it's a robust and enduring G-Shock so it'll can happily reside on the roof, in the freezer or on the dresser.

Right now I am researching on some AFL games. I've still to collect $2,150 so who knows, do I take the sensible route and bet just the odd $150 (bets lodged to win $450 already), do I continue with my $1,000 bets or just double-up and bet the rest? Kick-off in 43mins (and counting) and another one 90mins after that.

Back to this, I've plenty of time and I can mull over my gambling as I type. I'm great at multi-tasking hehe.

So what am I looking for in a watch? Something mechanical so I can have a real watch with history and craftmanship in the cogs and wheels and laboratory grown gems. Since I was prepared to buy a $75 Orient and $3800 Mont Blanc (will get 20-25%off) it leaves a lot of possibilities in-between. I have an open mind. I just say no to Ugly. Will I stop at my wedding watch? Probably not. Will I stop buying cheap watches? Probably not unless it's a real bargain and it's something I just can't help or explain. Cast your mind back to the Christian Audigiers. Yes, S, plural.

So to keep my focus, I will narrow it down (for the time being)
- a military watch (Seiko 5, Hamilton Khaki, Traser P5900)
- a classic/Clean watch (Tissot Vissodate, Hamilton Jazzmaster, Orient FDOD003W (love the PR indicator and that it's symetrical)
- a vintage (Rolex, Omega, Longines all the brands I recognised as having status and prestige when I knew diddly squat)
- a random bargain that I got purely on price and one that I will KEEP

So is that sensible? If you haven't noticed, all those types of watches I can find in a smaller size, preferably 36-38mm and I would not give a hoot if it was 32mm. Any smaller and unless I have a vintage, I HAVE NO EXCUSE. One day the trend will reverse and be th smaller is better.

25min to kick off. Hmmmmmm, one well placed bet and I can fill my case in one fell swoop. One bad bad bet and my head rolls off in one fell swoop. Or teste (she'll let me keep one just so we can start a family) to reside in that mahogany box to remind me not to do it again. Already regretted showing my tremendous enthusiams when my team won so she knows how much I haven't collected yet.

Fk it, a man needs convictions.
AFL game @ 4:40PM EST (Sydney/Melbourne time)
Adelaide Crows vs North Melbourne
Betting Adelaide to win by 15.5pts or more.

Watch the score box tick over and WILL the Crows to win by a hefty margin. Then you can hear more from me. I'm much funnier and creative when I'm in a good mood and losing money (even 5 bucks) makes me grouchy. What can I say, I'm a sore loser haha.

Cheers and laters!
PS If you really want to follow the game go to 2012 Carlton Draught Match Centre -
I'll check back on here during the game we can have a live chat on watches then or AFL if you follow the code.

Need to go now and grab a bite cause the first game on soon is the first leg of my multibet. Fingers crossed.

Premium Member
13,596 Posts
great read and nice collection, thanks for sharing

99 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Losing bet... but sensibly banked more than half away. Actually couldnt get through to bookie to I did a bet (bye bye Visodate) with cash I had buying a steak sandwich at a pub with a TAB (racing/sports betting agency).

Least the missus won't have a clue I lost so I can add another watch or two. Russian/German watch sounds good for price & quality plus the obscurity. Means many more hours researching and expanding my knowledge.

So why is the voice back of my head keep saying these three words? Focus focus focus?
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