When I was a watchmaking student, I was very hungry to possess anything and everything watch related. I wanted every tool or movement that I could get my hands on. I was addicted to the wonder and magic that is horology, and this tiny world that I had grown to love, just seemed to offer more adventure everywhere I looked. I would scour through flea market stalls and garage sales and would scoop up anything that had a mechanical movement or some semblance of one (the bag of Timex movements is testament to my cute naivety). There were a few other students at school that shared this same enthusiasm. One guy (Serge), was a “mature” student who had, over his life of watch love, collected many pieces and busted up watches. He surprised us one day with a couple boxes full of various watches and movements that he let us to, like vultures in the desert. We all flocked to the boxes and respectfully took turns claiming movements, cases, and parts. I managed to claim about 20 or so movements and full watches. This was very useful to me as I later used many of the pieces to restore and fix several watches. Most of the movements just ended up in my parts box and I would visit it every once in a while when I needed something.
Finding yourself interested in watches has many roads. For me, it was a mechanical route as I first caught the bug from seeing a movement in an old Omega pocket watch. For some, it’s a combination of influences like style, history, and just plain coolness. It’s always an interesting conversation when someone new to the hobby questions why one watch is very expensive and a watch that seems identical or similar, is drastically cheaper. This is a question that I still can’t answer. Yes, quality in many instances, is dramatically different, but sometimes the reason cannot be rationalized. We all know that more than not, the brand on the dial is the most valuable thing.
Now it may appear that I am a big Bulova fan here, being that my third watch is yet another Bulova. Well, I guess you’d be correct as there are a few other vintage Bulovas that I also have my eye on. At the moment though, my collection is capped at 2.
I think of John Cusack’s advice in “High Fidelity” about the do’s and don’ts of making a mix tape. You want to start out strong for the first song and then take it up a notch for the second. This was my thinking when I decided that this watch should be the second installment in this blog series.