Every now and then the stars align and two people come together and both get what they want. A fine gentleman contacted me asking if I would like to buy his watch, that he had owned since new.
Oh yes I would.
One owner watches are a grail to me, unmolested and with full, if undocumented history. I now see these watches look different, Genuinely different from many of the watches offered by dealers or even collectors that have had a bezel swapped here or hands changed here – The more owners a watch has, the less original it looks. Its a hard thing to spot, but it is a skill that if you are in this hobby, you cannot fail to pick up.
Even servicing changes a watch, and the difference in an Omega standard service and a less skilled independent, can be obvious to me, when the independent is not as careful. If you want to know what I am talking about, google “Watchmaker Screwdriver dressing”.
As always when dealing with strangers over the net, we both circled slowly…..The more I learned the more I liked – He works the ski patrol, an retired Sherifs Deputy….how cool. One of the photos of the watch sent to me included a shot of four ski patrollers – the guys who get you down safe when you break a leg or do something stupid.
So we talked back and forth. I tend to over pay for a privately owned watch because firstly if they have contacted me through here, I feel an obligation to give a full honest valuation, and secondly, I do not want to have the seller go anywhere else, if it is a private, untouched watch. The most important factor, is that I do not need to factor in a profit. This is my hobby.
So I thought of a price, added a bit on, then added more on, so that I could not be accused of taking advantage. Then I organised Parcel Pro to pick it up. Made all easy. I had no qualms send the money by wire first.
When it arrived, I was thrilled to see included was an original brochure from 1960’s or 1970’s.
Look at the scratches on the crystal – another sign of an original watch!
I was told this watch was serviced in the 1970’s by Omega, but thankfully all seems to be original. The crystal has some deep scratches but that never bothers me. The movement feels a little stiff, but my next trip to STS is next week.
I have not had time to follow my own advice – I have not opened the back, and checked the serial and case back – that will have to wait until I have a clear hour or so, with no circling children. (A word to the amatuer watchmaker – wait till the children are asleep before doing even the simples of operations. One Slip, and you will hate yourself each time you look at the watch).
More on this wonderful, One Owner Watch next week when I get it open. (Using Pahawi’s opener of course).