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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There are so many watches that I can find nowhere else but India. ( For the most part) I dont believe in painting a whole sub-continent of watchmakers with a broad brush. People on WUS are forever saying that India is a hot humid environment..tough on movements.etc. India is huge with many varied environments. The weather in the north , say, Kashmir is cool, the weather in the south is Hot and humid. And there is everything in between. I have bought and had good experiences
with Indian made watches. 2 HMTS, 1 vintage and 1 new Pilot. 1 nos Timestar. No irrevocable problems at all. The nos Timestar did need a service, as it had been sitting somewhere for 50 years. My point is this. My 70s HMT Kohinoor works like a dream. I paid all of 8 dollars for it a few years ago. Why should I avoid a watch, for example, a Swiss made Favre Leubre, that has not been redialed and has ( from what I can tell from the photos ) a clean movement. ?? Just because it come from India? So I would like to know any ones experiences..good and bad, with Swiss made or Japanese vintage watches, that are out of India. ( I really want a Ricoh bad. The poor mans Rado, in terms of design, IMHO.) So, please folks out there..Give me a real reason not to buy Indian. Thanks in advance. I hope. P&P
 

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Hard to give a definite answer, satisfaction will vary from seller to seller, like in any other country.
If you're buying on the bay, research the seller's feedback to find any snags - not much, but it will weed out the troublemakers.
Prices out of India seem to be lower than other countries, the country's population is huge, so they must have a very large pool of watches available to pick from.
I recently purchased an automatic Seiko 5 (1960s) form an Indian seller for $20 including postage. The watch is in very good nick, no rust, just serviced according to the seller.
Took forever for delivery, and then it run 3 minutes faster over 24h. Small bickies, easy to fix through the regulator. Watch now keeping good time.
At that price, a good buy. If you find a watch you really like, I'd say go for it - don't matter where it comes from, provided you know the seller is reasonably OK.
 

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If you know watches, read the seller feedback, and you're not investing too much in any one item, go for it. I'd take an item with some unapologetic flaws (visible in the photos and also honestly described in the listing) over something flashy and perhaps too good to be true. I agree that there are good, honest, reputable dealers in every corner of the world -- just as there are plenty of nefarious, untrustworthy scammers in your own backyard.
 

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A little off topic.

I have friends who bought high end watches (Rolex, Tudor and Omega) in India while working or touring the country. The prices were indeed competitive according to them. Indians are smart businessmen, they are more than willing to work with u on prices, especially when u paying cash. Only thing is, choose the right dealers, e.g. ADs.

Sent from my GT-I8160 using Tapatalk 2
 

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The only brand I've researched that has a strong India connection is Favre-Leuba. Nearly all that I've seen from India are easily identified by the painted dials that are utterly unlike how the dials would have looked originally. And when they show the movement, one does often see green schmutz inside the case, a sign of corrosion. I never found a vintage Favre-Leuba originating in India that was original and looked to be in good running form. (The one I bought actually came from China.) All of them were originating from Mumbai, to the point where I dubbed the name "Mumbaitis" to describe the disease of garish dial treatments.

I don't know about other brands and other parts of India, which is a big place. But what I have seen has made me cautious.

Rick "due diligence required" Denney
 

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I think the advice to avoid India on ebay is meant mainly for vintage collector newbies. A good watch can be found anywhere in the world, but India is one of those places, like Ukraine, that has a large ratio of watches a collector would not want to add to their collection. This means that when a person who gets an India special tries to show off their watch or sell it later, they end up with the surprise that their "great buy" wasn't so great after all. On top of that, if they receive the watch and realize it is not as described, they have to come up with around $30~$50 just to send it back (assuming the buyer is a European or American).

So the advice is not correct for everyone, but until you are an experienced collector, you should probably avoid India (and other locations with similar issues) until you become an expert on what you are trying to find there.
 

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One big problem with vintage pieces from India is the climate.
Due to the huge extremes of heat, and humidity, the cases, dials and movements get VERY distressed.
Therefore
That means you either end up with a dial/case that is extremely distressed or a disgusting redial, rework

A
 

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I love India and bought several HMT's when in India. The nicest one is a 70's watch I got from its first owner. Had been on the owner's wrist for 30-40 years. I had it repaired locally.
None of these show any troubles caused by the climate, all have lovely original dials.
The HMT's are no Omega's though. (Obviously not since they are Citizen's). You can't expect the accuracy of a Swiss watch, is what it means.
On the other hand the swiss watches for sale on ebay India, I would avoid, except perhaps if you want a favre-leuba that was made for the Indian market.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I love India as well. I was not buying watches when I was there as a youngin. I repeat.. India is so vast and the climates so diverse that not all the watches can possibly be subjected to a humid environment. Not to be vague about it. You makes your bet and takes your chances, I guess. Im not ill prepared to be buying from there. No expert..not by a long shot, but I have been collecting for 30 years. Since I love Soviet watches and collect Luch and and a few other names, I have fought my way through the vastness of the former Soviet Empire's states with some success. How much worse can buying Indian be? Just curious what other folks experiences have been. And as I said before I have bought Indian Brands before. Correct me if I am wrong, but I have sweated my way through the Spanish summertime in say, Madrid. Are all Spaniards watches destroyed by years of sweaty summers. But then if I buy a watch in Ibiza, where the cool breezes blow through summer, I may not have the same problem. Possibly. Salty air might be bad. I want a Ricoh (IMHO the poor mans Rado, by design) and they dont come up much, any place else. So I will bet and let you all know how it turns out, in due time. Thanks for all the input so far. P&P
 

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Well living in Spain, I can answer that.
Yes, vintage watches are damaged (effected) by the severe heat, albeit the humidity is much lower than India.

Even a well serviced pocket watch out on display, and a well serviced pendulum clock, all failed after 2 years.
wearing a vintage wristwatch would be a disaster now.

These old pieces just can not take the extreme heat, humidity and sweat, and if you do wear it for 20+ years the face, case etc deteriorate.

That is my experience anyway
Regards
a
 

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Remember the warning was for beginning vintage collectors. Those with experience know how to interpret the signs, but even then sometimes get stuck.

Rick "who wouldn't by a GP from Argentina, either" Denney
 

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"Real reasons?" I doubt there is going to be a tangible reason not to buy at least one Indian made watch. Just like any place else, India surely has folks who've been well trained in the craft of watchmaking and who thus make a fine watch. I would say exactly that about watches made in any country. I don't think the dirt under the watchmaker's feet has anything to do with the quality of the watch s/he makes.

All the best.

The moment a little boy is concerned with which is a jay and which is a sparrow, he can no longer see the birds or hear them sing.
- Eric Berne
 
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