In the 1960's, Heuer manufactured chronographs for other retailers and were sold under various brand names. Considerably less expensive, these watches were more commonly referred to as a “Poor Man's Heuers”, and any time we find a good one, we snap it right up. This particular example was manufactured by Heuer, and sold by Sears Roebuck under the Tradition name brand. Like other "Poor Man's Heuer" examples from brands such as Zodiac and Hamilton, this Tradition bears a striking resemblance to the iconic Heuer Carrera of the same era.
With similar quality components to the name brand, including a manually wound Valjoux 7730 movement, the only real difference is the slight variation in case design - and several thousand dollars. This particular example features a desirable "Panda" dial layout, with a patinated silver sunburst background and beautiful black subsidiary registers.
Don't miss your chance to acquire a super cool vintage chronograph with Carrera-like looks -and an equally interesting story - at a fraction of the cost!
Lots more information on the "Poor Man's Heuers" can be found HERE, at OnTheDash!
The Omega Railmaster may just be the coolest watch from a major manufacture that you've never heard of. Designed as an anti-magnetic tool watch from engineers, it is very much the Omega counterpart to much more commonly known Rolex Milgauss or IWC Ingenieur. Originally released in 1957, the Railmaster initially featured a manually winding movement, but later moved into automatics. The example we have featured here is an early example from 1963, featuring the Calibre 286 manual winding unit.
Although we typically stray from "overhauled" vintage watches, a pass can be given to those with restorations performed (sympathetically) by their original manufacturer. Such is the case with this piece, which after receiving some nasty water damage at some point in the past, was treated to a full restoration to the internals by Omega itself. The prior owner of this piece was careful to specify that all original parts that could be kept should be kept, as is outlined on the documentation that will go along with the sale of this piece. The original case and bracelet remained completely untouched, while a complete servicing of the movement and restoration of the dial and hands was performed. The dial itself is actually the original - as it was deemed salvageable by the watchmaker. Minor touch ups were needed, but it is intact - which in itself is pretty cool! All luminescent elements were refinished with modern Superluminova.
Railmasters have a small but committed following from enthusiastic collectors, and it isn't often that we're able to pry one away long enough to offer it up for sale, but we were able to do so here! This beautiful piece is the horological equivalent of having your vintage Bimmer serviced by BMW Mobile Tradition - a thoughtful nod to the past with modern components and craftmanship, wrapped up in an original package. Truly, an excellent opportunity to obtain a rare and delightful vintage Omega!
For more information on the Railmaster, check out "The Third Master Explained" HERE, on Hodinkee
As far as we're concerned, a vintage Heuer Carrera is about as cool a chronograph as you can get, featuring amazing vintage looks, true motorsports pedigree, and a design originally penned by the man himself: Mr. Jack Heuer. The Carrera got its name (in 1963) from the legendary cross-isthmus road race in Mexico, known as La Carrera Panamericana. At least one other noteworthy international brand also borrowed this name for one of their products (hint...it has four wheels and the engine in the back).
Originally, the Carrera was powered by manually winding chronograph movements, but with the advent of the automatic chronograph in 1969 (also pioneered by Heuer), production began shifting towards automatic in a serious way. The Carrera was among the first models to be treated to an overhaul, and a bevy of different executions began flooding out of Heuer's factory. This model, reference 1153, is one of the most highly sought after pieces from the automatic era, and dates to around 1976.
Featuring a brilliant silver sunburst dial with grey-blue subsidiary registers and outer tachymetre ring, this particular piece is a rarity in any condition - never mind one this clean! This piece was fully serviced and overhauled by TAG Heuer in 2007 with a keen eye to maintaining its originality, and is ready to faithfully serve its next owner. Of particular delight is the inclusion of its original Rice Bead bracelet by legendary strap manufacturer Gay Freres. These go for big bucks all by themselves when they turn up in good condition!
The Explorer II is definitely a timepiece for the man who craves something a little different from his vintage Rolex. Released in 1971 as a follow up to the original Explorer made famous by mountaineers in the 1950s, the Explorer II utilized a larger Oyster Case-design more in line with the larger sports models already offered (the Submariner and GMT). Featuring a four hand display with a large and distinctive 24-hour pointer hand, the Explorer II was essentially a GMT Master with one notable difference: a fixed steel bezel was installed in place of the characteristic two-tone from the aviator's model.
The reason for this fixed bezel was the target demographic: Speleologists - subterranean explorers. This hearty breed of mankind spends days on end underneath the surface of the earth and without seeing the sky are prone to losing track of day and night. The 24-hour hand would point to the appropriate place on the fixed 24-Hour bezel indicating whether it was AM or PM. Essentially, while the original Explorer was designed to go into the clouds, the Explorer II was designed to descend into darkness. Pretty cool, right?
Although the Explorer II was produced in far fewer numbers than its Sub and GMT counterparts, it maintains a strong collector following, due partially to its assumed connection with Steve McQueen. In the early 2000s, a rumor was started that the legendary actor/racer/all-around King of Cool owned a 1655. In truth, no evidence exists that McQueen ever wore one, much less owned one, and there is no photographic proof to substantiate the rumor. Regardless, his name is forever connected with the watch, and although prices have cooled down since the truth was revealed several years back (he actually wore a Submariner 5512), the Explorer II remains a highly collectable and totally awesome member of the vintage Rolex family.
This particular late example dates from 1977 and shows just the right amount of patina for a daily-wear vintage piece. If you aren't a fan of stashing your vintage treasures in a safe and would rather wear and use them as intended, look no further. Whether it is spelunking or stock-brokering, this beauty is ready to go!
We are a couple of guys based in New York City with a passion for bespoke style, substance, and authenticity. Admittedly, we appreciate ALL well-crafted and precious things, from fine single-malts to handmade cordovan bluchers, but we have a special and earnest love for the world of vintage goods, in particular, the world of vintage and luxury timepieces. We love the stories and histories vintage watches contain and the unparalleled craftsmanship with which they were made, often harkening back to an era when raw value was respected and a firm handshake was unflappable. Most importantly, we enjoy them for the works of wearable art that they are. We've had it with digital...we are 100% analog.
Our goal is to find and bring to market a small collection of exceptional vintage and contemporary timepieces. All of our items are hand-picked by our team, representing horologically interesting, important and desirable pieces. Essentially, we scour the market for the best available wristwatches, authenticate them and present them to you in an honest and straightforward manner.
We are here to help you buy a watch — not sell you one.