#thesubregister is back with a roundup of some interesting watches that have caught my eye of recent. No particular theme this month, other than watches that I would potentially buy or consider myself for various reasons. Follow along with the hashtag on instagram, and feel free to send anything you come across or have questions about.
Anybody that has read #thesubregister a time or two knows my affinity for the Excelsior Park powered vintage chronographs. And although this is one, it is (slightly) different, in that it’s a sterile dial, which really showcases the simplicity and legibility while allowing those blued steel hands to really pop. Add the very crisp and well defined lugs on the 36mm stainless steel case, and you have a something that feels old, modern, and thoroughly cool for day in and day out. I also like that the asking price is much less than if it said Excelsior Park or Gallet on the dial, at just 1900EUR on ChronoTrader here.
I am admittedly heavily biased because I own a variant of this watch, but this is an opportunity to pick one up at a relative discount. These 36.5 mm EPSA cased super compressors wear extremely well and have so many quirky little details that only those that have seen or worn them really appreciate. This appears to be an early Mark I Jet as indicated by the hands and dial text, per the fantastic guide at thespringbar.com. The matte black dial appears pretty clean overall, with heavy scratching on the acrylic crystal that could easily be replaced. There is some minor lume loss on the minute hand, but everything else is pretty well intact, down to the lollipop central seconds hand. The red date wheel adds a nice bit of pop situated in between the two large tv-knob style, and correctly crosshatched, Saturn crowns. The starting price of $800 would make this an immediate buy for me, but it says “reserve not met”, so I’m not sure what exactly the seller is looking for, but my guess is around $1,000 given the $1,450 buy it now. All in all, that’s still a decent price for a watch that will typically trade hands for around $2,000 in good condition. Find it on eBay here.
This one has actually been relisted a couple of times, which might be a red flag, but I always find myself clicking on it when I see it lately. There is nothing special about this watch, you have a no name brand, probably due to import restrictions, an average (Landeron?) lever actuated chronograph movement, a chrome case that appears to have lost it's plating, and a minute hand with a bit of lume loss, but you know what? It's has that warm patina that just draws me in. The blued steel radium lume filled syringe hands, and clean layout with just a pop of blue to dial by way of the out Tachy track, just make for a really inviting watch. At $350 asking, it might be worth a low offer and see if you can score a good old chronograph.
Maybe I’m getting too predictable, but here’s your second EPSA cased super compressor for the week, and it’s a gamble. I do believe that under the badly scratched crystal, is a good dial with some attractive lume. And I think in the right hands, of a vintage-sympathetic watchmaker, this watch could clean up very well. The hands would need to be relumed, but could be done to match the dial, at the time of much needed service, and if this price stays low, you’d still be under general market value for these fun watches. Everything else looks to be in order on this one, though sourcing another original crystal with the internal magnifier over the date window may prove difficult. Currently sitting at $215 on eBay here.
I’ve been taking a more active role in searching for a 90220 Tudor Ranger, which has me spending more time in the vintage Rolex and Tudor space lately, where I came across this. I did not join in on the bidding, but I also haven’t gotten this one out of my head since it ended Saturday. It’s easy to get caught up in the heavy hitting Rolex sports watches, and overlook some of these really cool predecessors that can be had for a relative bargain. The minimally simplistic dial and hand layout will make the approximately 34mm case wear larger than the size might suggest, and I think most would be surprised by just how well the right 34mm vintage watch can wear. I love those dagger hands and the big drop tail central seconds hand over the eggshell white applied indices and logo. The oyster case with rivet oyster bracelet make it a classic and comfortable icon, and I love the idea of getting to unscrew the crown, and wind this movement up every time it gets the call. It sold for $1,275 on eBay here, which provided it’s correct and in good order, seems like a relative bargain for a great looking watch from the iconic brand.
Thanks for reading. As always, if you want your watch featured, or if you find something interesting out in the wild, please email me at email@example.com, contact me here, or comment below.