5 watches you didn’t know you could afford

I wrote an article a few months ago about investing in your first ‘proper’ watch but the issue most guys have with this is the cost, or perceived cost. Australia is expensive, watches in Australia are expensive and I spend a lot of time on the internet looking at the second hand market where guys are dealing in new/mint condition second hand timepieces that are stupid not to consider when you’re looking to buy. This article 5 watches you didn’t know you could afford shows you 5 of my favourite watches from 5 excellent brands that are not just timeless but far cheaper than you and most others would imagine them to be. And just to confirm this I’ve included links to examples that you can purchase (click on the image to view details and price).

Omega Speedmaster: 


I’ve been looking for one of these as a daily beater for the last few months. In all honesty you can’t really beat it for an everyday watch. You can pick up a mid nineties automatic model in the smaller 39mm case for around $2000 on Chrono24 in mint condition. If you’re looking for a real head turner the Cal.861 (50 years old), is the marque vintage model, expect to pay above $2000.

Jaeger Le-Coultre Master Control: 

Master control

I’m baffled as to why this piece isn’t seen on more wrists! Jaeger Le-Coultre is a brand that people instantly perceive to be well out of their price range but the Master Control is perfectly achievable and extremely versatile. In the $3500-$4500 price range you’re likely to find a model from the early to mid nineties that looks like it was made yesterday – a truly timeless watch suitable for work or formal wear. 
Prices rise the newer the model gets, this one above is $3669.

Rolex Explorer:
Rolex Explorer

Don’t get me wrong I love the Submariner but the Explorer also holds a special place in my heart. People just don’t understand just how timeless and affordable Explorers are. They look great on a steel bracelet and even better on a leather NATO strap. The Ref.14270 ‘Explorer 1’ from the mid nineties is a solid option and will set you back around $4500.

Linde Werdelin Hard Black I/II:
Linde Werdelin Hard Black

I was lucky enough to spend a day with Jorn Werdelin and his watches late last year and have been obsessed ever since. I find them fascinating and so unique, there’s nothing quite like them on the market. On the wrist they are powerful and impressively masculine. The Hard Black was LW’s first exploration of DLC (Diamond Like Carbon) to reduce surface scratching making it a great looking and functional sports watch. You can find an example for around the $4500 mark.

IWC Portuguese:

For a new Portuguese you’re going to be looking at around $14k, which is a serious amount of money. Having a Portuguese adorning your wrist is also like driving a 1967 Mercedes 250SL, everybody uhhhhs and ahhhhs, it’s arguably one of the most universally appreciated timepieces ever made. So what if I told you could pick up a mint 3714-01, often-unworn older stock, for $5000-7000? Well gents you can and you should, it’s as simple as that!

Feature Image: IWC Forum


James is the Founder and Editor of The Versatile Gent.

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