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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi! I recently came across this Favre-Leuba Sea Chief in great condition and I am so so tempted to get it! However there are a few things that seem off to me. I wish absolutely love any help that I can get in verifying it's authenticity
  1. The reference number mentioned is 61513
  2. It does say repainted - but the red colour is also iffy
  3. The hour markers are also different to what I've seen in other sea chiefs online.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks in advance guys!!
15858079
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi! I recently came across this Favre-Leuba Sea Chief in great condition and I am so so tempted to get it! However there are a few things that seem off to me. I wish absolutely love any help that I can get in verifying it's authenticity
  1. The reference number mentioned is 61513
  2. It does say repainted - but the red colour is also iffy
  3. The hour markers are also different to what I've seen in other sea chiefs online.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks in advance guys!! View attachment 15858079
Yes
Looks like a Mumbai Special, (Indian redial - often done in garish, unsuitable, colours. They also come through other sources/countries these days). If an original F-L movement the condition/state of service is also often questionable on these.
yes it has been repainted, the mvmt in pictures looks original but don't know about condition.

Does the repaint usually mean it is a fake dial?
 

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Original dial, but the original paint has been removed and new paint added. Same as repainting a car a different color.

Makes the dial look more fashionable and make it stand out.

Not good for resale later on, so best to avoid

DON
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Original dial, but the original paint has been removed and new paint added. Same as repainting a car a different color.

Makes the dial look more fashionable and make it stand out.

Not good for resale later on, so best to avoid

DON
Thanks a lot Don! However I'm getting it for quite cheap and don't intend to acquire it for resale. Want to however know that the watch isn't just spare parts put together and repainted. The photos of the movement and case back seem to be legit.

Do you think it's ok for releatively cheap starting Swiss?
How do you know?
this is the photo provided
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks a lot Don! However I'm getting it for quite cheap and don't intend to acquire it for resale. Want to however know that the watch isn't just spare parts put together and repainted. The photos of the movement and case back seem to be legit.

Do you think it's ok for releatively cheap starting Swiss?

this is the photo provided
15858543
 

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this is the photo provided
So have you identified the movement? Or are you assuming it's authentic because it says "FAVRE LEUBA"? I'm not saying it's inauthentic BTW, just pointing out that you can't simply assume. Many of these watches are faked.
 

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Looks like a Favre-Leuba 101 movement, despite the terrible engraving coming out when enlarging the image. What's the number on the right under the balace wheel (three digits, not the longer number on the left)? The watch has no particular value, regardless what is original or not. If you like it and it was cheap, wear it and do not worry about legit or partly legit or not. It really doesn't make a difference.

What people must understand about Mumbai/Bombay-specials and faked or cobbled together Favre-Leuba pieces in India, as terrible as they are (I tend to call them an emetic):

Favre-Leuva started very very early with their exports to India. A few people within this large country could afford one and it was a luxury for some and a dream for the rest. No wonder, they are keeping them alive as long as possible. Favre-Leuba became a synonym for the word watch. When Favre-Leuba went into difficulties, the company changed hands and finally went to an Indian investor. He kept the company alive - IN SWITZERLAND. He did not only buy the name, he let them follow the old paths. Satyarup Siddhanta, one of the few Indians to have climbed the 7 summits would not have gone without a Favre-Leuba on his wrist, he would have rather left his shoes behind. So it's all a bit folkloristic about Favre-Leuba in this part of the world.

If you do a Google image search, there is a movement on eBay specified as 404 but this is wrong. You can clearely see the 101 caliber number there.


There is something looking like a shock protection where there should be a simple bearing jewels, but that is original.

 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So have you identified the movement? Or are you assuming it's authentic because it says "FAVRE LEUBA"? I'm not saying it's inauthentic BTW, just pointing out that you can't simply assume. Many of these watches are faked.
Honestly the only way I was able to validate was off a Google photo of the movement
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Looks like a Favre-Leuba 101 movement, despite the terrible engraving coming out when enlarging the image. What's the number on the right under the balace wheel (three digits, not the longer number on the left)? The watch has no particular value, regardless what is original or not. If you like it and it was cheap, wear it and do not worry about legit or partly legit or not. It really doesn't make a difference.

What people must understand about Mumbai/Bombay-specials and faked or cobbled together Favre-Leuba pieces in India, as terrible as they are (I tend to call them an emetic):

Favre-Leuva started very very early with their exports to India. A few people within this large country could afford one and it was a luxury for some and a dream for the rest. No wonder, they are keeping them alive as long as possible. Favre-Leuba became a synonym for the word watch. When Favre-Leuba went into difficulties, the company changed hands and finally went to an Indian investor. He kept the company alive - IN SWITZERLAND. He did not only buy the name, he let them follow the old paths. Satyarup Siddhanta, one of the few Indians to have climbed the 7 summits would not have gone without a Favre-Leuba on his wrist, he would have rather left his shoes behind. So it's all a bit folkloristic about Favre-Leuba in this part of the world.

If you do a Google image search, there is a movement on eBay specified as 404 but this is wrong. You can clearely see the 101 caliber number there.


There is something looking like a shock protection where there should be a simple bearing jewels, but that is original.

Thanks alot! This really helps me a lot. The number under the balance wheel is difficult to tell but certainly does not look like 101

I would still get the watch but I feel the redone dial just doesn't do the watch justice so to speak
 

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If it makes you happy buy it. But an advice is to not pay too much for it for reasons already stated above.
 

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Looks like 111 under the balance.
Then it is the very similar Favre-Leuba 111 movement with 17 jewels. All in the family. What always puzzles me when I look at these movements is the odd bearing jewel looking like a shock protection. If you look at the triangle to the right from the shock protection, it is the upper one on the left, straight below the 'S' in 'Swiss'.

15859422
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Then it is the very similar Favre-Leuba 111 movement with 17 jewels. All in the family. What always puzzles me when I look at these movements is the odd bearing jewel looking like a shock protection. If you look at the triangle to the right from the shock protection, it is the upper one on the left, straight below the 'S' in 'Swiss'.

View attachment 15859422
Yup I noticed that as well. However in the photos and videos I have seen of the 101 movement it is a recurring theme.

Ps- I am a beginner when it comes to horology all all your inputs are really helping me gain a lot of knowledge here!
 

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It's a Kif Duofix cap jewel setting on the escape wheel. These are often mistaken for shock protection settings but that is not their function. They serve as a means of affixing cap jewels and allowing access for servicing/oiling.
 

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Hi! I recently came across this Favre-Leuba Sea Chief in great condition and I am so so tempted to get it! However there are a few things that seem off to me. I wish absolutely love any help that I can get in verifying it's authenticity
  1. The reference number mentioned is 61513
  2. It does say repainted - but the red colour is also iffy
  3. The hour markers are also different to what I've seen in other sea chiefs online.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks in advance guys!! View attachment 15858079
ive bought two Mumbai specials. the first a seiko 5 didn’t have a repainted dial and ran okay. My son used it for a beater watch and it kept time. The watch was obviously old and tired and “ pragmatically” refurbed.
it was what it was, it definitely wasn’t one to start a collection with although he was happy with it as a student watch and eventually lost it when the bracelet snapped.
recently bought a refurbished citizen for him he liked. The dial was repainted and was pretty fuzzy around the lettering. The case had been polished which made it shiny but very worn.
As a watch though it was dreadful. Couldn’t keep time and totally unreliable.
I got 50% of my cash back from the vendor.
The refurbed Indian watches are very variable.in my experience they can be useable but certainly not collectible. They are cheap but there is a reason for that, They are generally made from old tired recycled parts.
I would steer well clear of any repainted dial.
Indian watches are likely to have had a life exposed to a hot, humid and dusty environment which doesn’t do the working parts any favours at all.
if you are looking to start a collection there are lots of vintage options which have had a very much easier life, will be in better condition and for not much more mone.
you could get lucky on one of these Indian refurbs, but similarly you can be very disappointed.
your money, your choice but please let us know how you get on whatever you decide.
 

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ive bought two Mumbai specials. the first a seiko 5 didn’t have a repainted dial and ran okay. My son used it for a beater watch and it kept time. The watch was obviously old and tired and “ pragmatically” refurbed.
it was what it was, it definitely wasn’t one to start a collection with although he was happy with it as a student watch and eventually lost it when the bracelet snapped.
recently bought a refurbished citizen for him he liked. The dial was repainted and was pretty fuzzy around the lettering. The case had been polished which made it shiny but very worn.
As a watch though it was dreadful. Couldn’t keep time and totally unreliable.
I got 50% of my cash back from the vendor.
The refurbed Indian watches are very variable.in my experience they can be useable but certainly not collectible. They are cheap but there is a reason for that, They are generally made from old tired recycled parts.
I would steer well clear of any repainted dial.
Indian watches are likely to have had a life exposed to a hot, humid and dusty environment which doesn’t do the working parts any favours at all.
if you are looking to start a collection there are lots of vintage options which have had a very much easier life, will be in better condition and for not much more mone.
you could get lucky on one of these Indian refurbs, but similarly you can be very disappointed.
your money, your choice but please let us know how you get on whatever you decide.
Well, he is from India, so I guess he will need to stick to Indian refurbished watches if he lives there ;) I mean, he can fine tune the search, get the most original watches... maybe, but maybe not. For me the dial is screaming "no, don´t buy me please!" but hey, the fact that there are so many like that in India it does seem to be a cultural thing, maybe people like colourful stuff there! Besides that any country/region/historical era with hardships tends to refurbish pragmatically (I love that concept!), not only India has tired mechanisms. Yeah the weather, fine, yeah the pragmatic refurb, but there are a lot of hit and miss in any country or region or brand, there are so many things that they go into consideration when it comes to the tiredness of vintage (old) watches anywhere. Another very different thing is that in India there are a lot of fakes with generic **** movements, I think that is not cool.

I would encourage you to buy the watch if you like it, collectable or not for the standards of some purists, I think is about the taste and the tolerance to franken watches understanded as resourcefulness and ingenuity of many Indian watchmakers.
 

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Checking Ebay. 99% are being shipped from India. Many using the manual wind movement

How did so many end up in India?

DON
 
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