It’s Friday morning, and the roundup is ready for your enjoyment once again. This week, there’s a bit of an Omega bias thanks to the inclusion of a 2915-1 Speedmaster and a less complex Chronostop. Others are accounted for in the form of Longines and Patek Philippe for complex chronographs and travel timepieces. Whether you want something on your wrist by Monday, or you’re after a project, we’ve got you covered this week.
Omega Speedmaster Ref. 2915-1
We’re kicking things off this week with a pick of a different sort, but an exciting one nonetheless. As we’ve discussed before, 100% original vintage watches are becoming fewer and farther between with the passing of time, and with parts for desirable watches not being entirely impossible to track down, projects present a unique opportunity for ready and willing collectors. By no means will it be as expedient as pulling the trigger on a good-to-go knockout, but you’re guaranteed to see a new side of the watch scene in doing so, and you might even save a few bucks in the process.
Being a Ref. 2915-1, this is more or less the holy grail of Speedmaster collecting, but Speedy connoisseurs will immediately be able to spot the rub. Although the watch would’ve originally left the factory fitted with a steel bezel, along with a set of Broad Arrow hands, it’s currently fitted with a later bezel and an incorrect handset, yielding something resembling a confused Ed White. Having said all that, its Huguenin Frères case looks to be unpolished, and the dial seems pretty clean, meaning that these wrongs could be righted if you were so inclined.
The way I see it, there’s a lot of work to be done in tracking down what’s essentially the single most desirable handset and bezel of Omega collecting, but again, it’s not like others of note haven’t done the same before. In retail-ready shape, we’d be talking about a six-figure watch, meaning it’d be worthwhile if you’ve got the time and money to spend on bringing this one back to a semblance of its original glory. Exploring the underbelly of the vintage watch scene is more or less a collector’s right of passage, and I couldn’t think of a better way to do so while also putting a great watch on your wrist.
Collectible Auctions is offering this Speedmaster in an online sale ending on August 24. Its estimate has been set at $ 5,000 – $ 10,000, and at the time of publishing, the high bid stands at $ 2,500.
Longines 30CH Ref. 7413
Spend enough time focusing on the design of a product small enough to hide under a cuff, and you’re bound to pick up a few perhaps pedantic opinions. No, a certain sub-dial typeface isn’t capable of throwing off your biorhythms, but if you’re putting up the cash for something you have to look at every day, you’re going to want to love every bit of it. This is something I learned upon first becoming more interested in 30CH-equipped Longines chronographs, and recognizing the superiority of certain variants over others. Just as you’ll soon see for yourself, the most seemingly insignificant of details have the power to elevate a timepiece’s appearance drastically, virtually eliminating consideration of all other options.
You’re looking at a Ref. 7413, but no ordinary one. With a pulsations scale surrounding the dial’s perimeter, this would’ve been originally intended for those working within the field of medicine. Personally, I believe this piece to be an objectively more attractive watch than the busier blue and red multiple-scale variant, as it’s simply more subtly accented and, as a result, more versatile. This variant also has another trick up its sleeve in the form of small luminous applications surrounding the rehaut, further cementing its status as the more compelling choice over the aforementioned alternative.
As far as provenance goes, there’s no name of note associated with this one, but that isn’t to say we’re not aware of its past. According to the included extract from the Longines archives, this chronograph was invoiced to the Argentinian retailer Perusset in 1971, where it would’ve likely been sold to a medical professional. Whoever that was ought to be commended, as despite there being signs of wear, the watch was clearly worn with extreme care. Its case remains unpolished, and its dial appears flawless, with all luminous applications still intact. It’s a good one.
Cars and Watches has this flyback Longines listed for €11,500. Head on over to their site to get the full scoop.
Omega Chronostop Ref. 145.009
I’ve got a penchant for Omega Chronostops, and it seems my friends know it all too well, as being forwarded relevant listings has become somewhat of a running joke. As I’ve probably ranted on about far too many times now, they represent one of the best values in vintage watches as a whole and are equally compelling to collectors green and seasoned alike. Though it might not have been long since we last took a look at one, another fine example has surfaced, and I just can’t let a good thing go unnoticed.
With a white dial fitted, and a contrasting chronograph hand in orange, it’s hard to not get borderline Alaska Project-esque vibes from this one. The difference is, it’s nowhere near as pricey and can be worn with infinitely less worry than a more significant Omega like that. I don’t know about you, but I love a watch I can get into without breaking the bank, but still actively enjoy and get excited about wearing. That’s exactly what the Chronostop is for me, which is an admittedly rare thing in vintage watch collecting.
So as not to rouse the masses, I won’t say you’re looking at an untouched watch, but believe me when I say it hasn’t been meddled with. Prior to being photographed and listed for sale, this was discovered as a barn find of sorts with a good bit of gunk on it, and aside from cleaning the majority of that off, it remains just as found. The collector offering the piece was smart not to polish its case or replace its original bracelet, as these two traits bring this example to that next level.
The collector Bazamu is selling this piece on the Omega Forum with an asking price of just $ 1,500. Hit the link to get in touch.
1961 Patek Philippe Ref. 2597 Retailed by Gübelin
I may be the guy that writes the vintage watch column, but I’m also the guy that thinks the only people with any business needing a dual time-zone watch are professionals of a previous era. Given that we live in an age when smartphones are always within reach, your GMT-Master II really isn’t making life easier, and it is likely only complicating matters if you are using it as intended. All this to say, I don’t fancy myself a pilot in a past life, but recently saw value in a travel watch for the very first time after crossing three time zones twice over the course of two months on the road.
After enduring the treachery that was advancing the hour every now and then, I could’ve used something along the lines of this exceedingly special Patek Philippe. The Ref. 2597 is characterized by its independently adjustable hour hand, as developed by the trailblazer of world-time complication watchmaking that was Louis Cottier. With the Cal. 12″‘-400-HS at its core, the user can advance the hour without removing the watch from your wrist, ensuring a plush travel experience free of time-changing hassles.
I chose to bring this particular example to your attention for two reasons. By now, you’ve already seen the photos, making it clear that cleanliness warranted its feature in part. But, its configuration and production series shouldn’t go unaddressed. This example hails from the first series, making the specific variant representative of the manufacture’s most daring ideals during the period. Furthermore, it just so happens to have been retailed by Gübelin, whose name is proudly printed above the seconds sub-dial at six o’clock. Together, all these traits make for an outstanding watch — that’s coming direct from the original owner, no less — which any important collection would be privileged to welcome.
Bonhams will be offering this Patek Philippe in its upcoming New York sale, taking place on August 21. Its estimate has been set at $ 70,000 — $ 90,000, but my guess is it’ll pass that rather quickly.