December 2008

Beautiful Patek Philippe Rose Gold Annual Calendar with Moonphase, ref 5396R. This is a absolutely stunning watch, completely hand made and finished in the legendary workshops of Patek Philippe. 38mm watch with a exhibition caseback showing off the intricately decorated Patek Philippe movement.

I helped me uncle purchase this watch for his collection, and now have been wanting to get myself a Patek. Not sure which model yet, though. Perhaps a Nautilus. At any rate, this is a beautiful watch. I got to convert this video to a higher quality so when I uploaded it, it has a high quality version as well if you are on the youtube site.

This is my current favourite Navitimer of choice and the one that finds itself on my wrist the most often these days. Just thought I would share some pics with you. The Montbrillant Datora has a full calendar, but no date realisation in that it does not know which month has how many days. You will still have to adjust the date at the end of short months.

The one I have has a beautiful black dial, and larger 43mm case. The case on the Breitling Montbrillant Datora is slightly larger than the classic Navitimer cases which are 41.5mm. The difference isn’t huge, but it is noticeable, and appreciated in my case.

I put it on a Navitimer Bracelet, which suits the watch well. The lugs are 22mm wide, and the watch actually looks equally good on a crocodile bracelet as well. The Breitling Caliber 21 movement is based on on a Valjoux 7751 which is basically a Valjoux 7750 with additional features.

Overall, a very nice watch and one of my keeper Navitimers for the time being. I enjoy the 43mm size as its not too big, and not too small. Very wearable in almost any situation that I find myself in. I hope you enjoyed the pics!

I don’t know about you guys, but when Christmas rolls around, my watch fund is usually depleted due to presents for the Fiance and my parents. My parents like nice things, and so does my fiance, so that usually means the budget for a nice watch or two is gone once I purchase their gifts.

This year is no different. 🙂

What do I do when Christmas comes and I have an itch to buy a watch? Well, last year I didn’t buy anything, but this year, I have decided to cut my budget down to sub $1000 watches. The ones I picked up recently are a Marathon TSAR and a Hamilton X-Wind. I have also picked up a couple of very affordable watches hand assembled by a fellow in the USA. I have been noticing an increase of this kind of maker in recent years. Small boutique in-house watch assembly, perhaps self-taught, but not swiss-trained. The watches are affordable and the movements are not usually Swiss, which is fine since they are usually sub-$300 watches and have their unique charm.

This year of course with the international economic crisis and credit crunch people are being doubly frugal during the holiday season. Wal-mart is the supposed store of choice for Christmas shopping this year. What else can we do to aleviate the need to fulfil the watch craving? Try magazines, or old clocks… Aircraft clocks are in abundance on ebay and can be easily had for under $100. They also have 8 day mechanical movements which make them quite appealing to mechanical watch collectors. Also do not forget Howard Miller mantel and desk clocks. The good ones have 8 Day German made movements, and retail well over $500US, and can be had on ebay for under $200. The quartz variety are much cheaper.

Another watch brand I picked up one of is a Ticino, which is a slightly higher quality Asian manufactured watch than the typical peices from Alpha and Trias, etc. I did also purchase an Alpha for under $50 as well, which I will be reviewing as soon as it comes in. Seeing as I have just gone back to school and am out of a job at the moment, I figured I should not buy any more expensive watches until I start my new job after the new year some time.

So here are some more affordable solutions from the Breitling Source to alleviate those Holiday Watch Spending blues (if you even have them!).

  1. Affordable Swiss Brands (Hamilton, Oris, Marathon, Tissot)
  2. Asian Made watches (Ticino, Seiko, Citizen, Alpha)
  3. USA Hand-Crafted Home-Made Watches (Try Ebay)
  4. Howard Miller Mechanical Clocks
  5. Aircraft Instrument Clocks

New video review! The Fortis Spacematic watch. Affordable, minimalist design, with a tried and true ETA Automatic movement to boot. A good way to test the automatic watch waters, or a good sport watch for the weekends. The 40mm Fortis Spacematic is a great all rounder.

I probably should have posted this before, but it just occured to me. Ever wonder how to pronouce some of those Watch company names? Like Jaeger-LeCoultre? or Audemars Piguet? Well, here is a list of Watch brands and related watch terms and an AUDIO TRACK(!) for each one. No need to read phonetics, this ones read out for you!

Here’s the list:

Audemars Piguet
Baume & Mercier
DJ Richard
Dubey & Schaldenbrand
Dubois & Depraz
Philippe Dufour
Jacques Etoile
Franck Muller
Gerald Genta
Glasshutte Original
Girard Perregaux
IWC (in German)
Jaquet Droz
Jaeger LeCoultre
Lange & Sohne
Maurice Lacroix
Muhle Glasshutte
Officine Panerai
Paul Picot
Patek Philippe
Roger Dubuis
Revue Thommen
Universal Geneve
Ulysse Nardin
Vacheron Constantin
Van der Bauwede
Van der Klaauw
Sinn EZM
Zenith (in German)
Equation du Temps
F.P. Journe
Ollech & Wajs
Reserve de Marche
Sjoo Sandstrom
Le Vallee de Joux

And here’s the link:

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