1. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    Hi

    My first post on here, so hello to you all. A strange title for a thread on a watch forum you might be thinking, but leyt me explain.

    My Uncle Geof was (still getting used to "was" rather than is) one of those uncles that every kid should have. He was always funny and always had time for me, on top of that he was an unrepentant petrol head. When I was young he would always get me doing jobs round his workshop or cleaning whatever classic sports car he had at the time, the reward for which would be a gloriously fast spin out in it. I can still remember bombing down the Radley/Oford road at 100mph in a TR6, what a grin it put on my face as an 8 year old. I can also remember telling my mum and dad about it , my Uncle Geof in the background grinning to himself as he saw the look of horror on my mum's face.

    He would take me to the Motor Show at Earls Court, an event I would remember more for the sight of the bikini clad models alongside the cars than the cars themselves, I have a feeling Uncle Geof would approve of that memory :). He worked for Austin and then BL as an upholsterer (leatherwork) on cars made at the Cowley plant and continued to enjoy his cars and motorbikes well into his retirement.

    Unfortunately Uncle Geof passed away recently and for reasons various I found myself having no memento of him other than some great memories and photographs. It tuns out that Uncle Geof left me some money in his Will and after having discussed it with my better half I've decided to buy a watch that reminds me of him and the great times we enjoyed together.

    Given his love for all things automotive it makes sense to buy a watch that has a motoring heritage and Heuer/TAG Heuer seems the obvious choice. I've done some research and thought I would share that with you and take any advice you have to offer. I only get to buy this watch once, so I would like to get it right.

    Please bear with me as I post my ramblings on watches I've researched and thank you in advance for any help you offer.

    Cheers

    Bob
     
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  2. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    I suppose the obvious first question could be, vintage or modern?

    That's not really how I'm going to approach this, i think I'll just end up buying the watch that appeals and works as a watch that can be worn a a regular basis.

    It's probably easier to list some attributes that don't appeal. watches that appear technical or over complicated really don't wrinkle my prune. Neither do watches that lean toward the "diver" style, skeletal watches nor quartz, none of these will rev my motor so to speak. Having looked at the Heuer watches that pretty much rules out the Autavia watches and many of the later Carrera styles as an example.

    What I do like are the very stylized watches, watches with bright colours, watches with colour contrasts, details that hint at all things automotive, plain watches with colorful accents etc. It's probably easier to pop up a few pictures of what appeals,

    upload_2018-7-7_8-1-18.jpeg

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    Edited Jul 7, 2018
  3. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    One question I do have that hopefully someone can help with is the accuracy of the oder watches compared to the newer ones. I think I would expect plus or minus a few seconds a day on a newer watch, what can I expect from a 1970s Heuer?
     
  4. Hubert

    Hubert Jul 7, 2018

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    Great story Bob! Thanks for sharing this with us. Seems like you are a truly lucky guy to have had someone like your uncle in your life.

    I'd say, find a vintage Heuer or heritage TAG Heuer that brings you some significance to your uncle. Narrow your choices, and feel free to post them here, if you want some guidance from our community.

    Welcome!
     
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  5. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    Thanks Hubert, much appreciated. I've got a couple of months to think this over, I'me sure you'll all be tired of me by then:)

    One watch only, must remember, one watch only :)
     
  6. Hubert

    Hubert Jul 7, 2018

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    That should be plenty of time! Make sure to check-out Calibre11.com to see all the reviews and the ultimate guides.
     
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  7. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    Been reading those with interest, what a fantastic resource.
     
  8. Hubert

    Hubert Jul 7, 2018

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    Credit to David @Calibre11
     
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  9. imagwai

    imagwai Jul 7, 2018

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    How big is your wrist and do you favour a classically sized watch or a modern "look at my watch" size?

    In answer to your question about accuracy, then a vintage watch may not be as accurate as a modern one on receipt by you. But with a service/regulation, it should be able to be capable of getting pretty close.
     
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  10. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    Largish wrist, 35mm and below looks a bit lost on me. Having said that if I were to wear a big "look at my watch" type then I think it would have to be a white or silver face to help tone it down a touch. I've scouted through the modern versions and the following do appeal. Apologies for the large pics, I'll get used to the names soon then I won't need to post up the pics.

    Am looking through the 70s watches, some very stylized types available :)

    I note with this one that some have the word Chronomatic on and some don't. Those with it on are a nice reference back to the originals. I don't know why they didn't all have it on, any ideas?

    Calibre 17

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    The smaller re-edition from 96 (based on the earlier 64)

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    The 40th edition

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    the 8oth

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    and the calibre 6. Not sure if it has a chrono function, but does have chrono written on it

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  11. imagwai

    imagwai Jul 7, 2018

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    I think you're getting your terms a bit confused.

    Chronometer - a watch certified to COSC standards of timekeeping
    Chronograph - a watch with a stopwatch function
    Chronomatic - the name given to a type of movement (an automatic chronograph) used by Heuer and others circa 1970s

    The Calibre 6 is COSC certified but doesn't have a chronograph function. If you want an automotive watch, you really want a chronograph. The Carreras you've shown above are all nice. I own the smaller re-edition and it's a manual winding watch that's very consistent with the original Carreras of the 1960s. It's a lovely watch but I think it'll be too small for you at 35mm. The 40th edition is a bit bigger at 38mm. The JH80th is 41mm and I would heartily recommend that for people with larger wrists. Or you should take a look at the Autavia.
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  12. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 7, 2018

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    Thanks for the clarification, much appreciated. Record collecting is a walk in the park compared to this :)
     
  13. MRC

    MRC Jul 7, 2018

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    What imagwai said! 1960s Carreras and Autavias (and re-editions) wear much larger than the specification would suggest, and if expertly serviced can run close to modern accuracy. A couple of mine despite being 50 years old are very close to COSC Chronometer standard. But if you need accuracy get a 20 Quid quartz Casio -- or a 1000 Quid iPhone. If you want to get involved with the watch get a manual wind. Wind it every day, look at computer or phone or radio-controlled kitchen clock to get a time check and if you need to correct the watch well that is another 30 seconds of admiring it. If just checking the time of day doesn't put a smile on your face that watch is not for you.


    TR6? When I was at the Polytechnic studying Mechanical Engineering a classmate pitched up with a TR3 he had just bought (I had an Appallingly Squeally Sprite). 110mph he announced. So after we turned out of the pub (ah-hem!) we took it up the brand new M6 motorway which ended its then incomplete route close by. I had my new Heuer Carrera on my wrist and the M6 had posts very accurately every 100 metres of course. We drove a couple of junctions north but the posts were too hard to see at night. And 100 mph-ish. And several pints of beer. So we turned back, same lack of clean timing, but I was pretty sure we had not exceeded 100mph. As we pulled onto the off-ramp blue lights appeared behind us.

    Do we have a problem here, Houston? No. The police had not picked us up in time to get a true speed, and my left wrist was tucked out of sight by the base of the seat. Chronographs being rather rare at the time.
     
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  14. abrod520

    abrod520 Jul 7, 2018

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    I can think of no better suggestion than a Viceroy Autavia -

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    Reasonably priced and easy to find a good example with a little bit of effort. It doesn't get much more classic than this - you can research the background but they were originally sold as part of a promotion for Viceroy brand cigarettes. 42mm size, but wears a bit smaller since the case hugs the wrist
     
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  15. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 23, 2018

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    Thanks for all the advice to date, much appreciated. Have been reading a lot about the Heuer watches, as well as some of the later re-issues and generally zeroing in on the 1970s watches.

    A quick question, a lot of the 1970s watches have minute and hour sub dials, the main second hand being activated by the Chrono. Is it OK to run these movements with the chrono on for extended periods, if for no other reason than to add some "action" to the watch?

    I have found some (1153 Carera, 3 dial Camero etc) that do run seconds on a sub-dial. At the moment the watches I am researching include the 1153, Camero , that 1980s Silverstone, the recent Gulf re-edition and the "brown" barrel Back Carerra (I think there was a blue version of this with the Geneve finish).

    This is keeping me busy in the evenings :)
     
  16. Aquagraph

    Aquagraph Jul 23, 2018

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    Hi Bob
    Sorry to hear that your uncle passed away, but I think it's a great idea to buy a watch to remember him by. One thing you haven't mentioned is budget, the Autavia above is about £4000 - it would be helpful to give us an idea of what you have available money wise.

    How about a Monza 40th Anniversary?

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. abrod520

    abrod520 Jul 23, 2018

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    Well the 1153 Carrera also doesn't feature a running seconds - the 1553 does though. Same with the barrel-case watches - a Calibre 12 model is minutes / hours subs, while a Calibre 15 model will have a minutes subdial and a running seconds at 10 o'clock.

    You can run the chrono on these movements day in and day out, though given their age and difficulty in finding replacement parts, I might not recommend doing so as while it won't break it or cause undue harm, you will be wearing out the mechanism a bit quicker than you would otherwise - so you'd need to service it more frequently.

    -Any Camaro will have a running seconds subdial, whether it's two or three register.

    -There were no Silverstones in the 1980s; the original '70s model was powered by the Calibre 12 and the mid-2000s reissue was powered by a modular chronograph that does feature a running seconds

    -The brown barrel Carrera is the 150.503f and having owned one in the past I'd say it's a very fun watch to wear, but you'll want to either keep it on a winder or wear it daily as it's somewhat difficult to hand-wind due to the case design
     
  18. MRC

    MRC Jul 23, 2018

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    The chronograph part of the movement does not have any jewels in most watches, so the normal advice is to run the chrono side occasionally to keep the oils distributed but not to run it constantly. If the movement is stated to have more than 40 jewels then the chrono does have jewelled bearings and it should be OK to run constantly For example the Speedmaster Automatic has 46, but anything based on the Valjoux/ETA 7750 has 17, 19 or 25 with none in the chrono part.


    AFAIK all watches with 3 sub-dials and some with two, depending on the movement, have a running seconds hand. For me, I am so used to seeing the seconds, minutes and hours registers not moving (for nearly 50 years now :eek: ) that unless I'm consciously timing something it looks wrong.
     
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  19. elbeik

    elbeik Jul 23, 2018

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    Wherever the debate goes, it has to be a Carrera, non-mutant.
     
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  20. BobC44

    BobC44 Jul 24, 2018

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    I think I need to get myself to one or two of the dealers out there. I suspect that seeing the watches in the flesh will help a lot.