Vintage Watch Blog.
Not too long ago, I discovered the discontinued Patek Philippe Neptune Ref. 5080. As a dealer of fine watches and always looking for good quality inventory, the all stainless steel Neptune with a pitch black dial, not only caught my eye but won my heart. I usually focus my efforts on finding great examples of vintage Calatrava's; but there was something about this obscure Patek that I couldn't let go of. It was strange that I had immediately took a liking to this rarely heard of Patek. Especially because, that for the most part, the Neptune was not a successful watch financially and quickly shuffled off the stage by PP. When available in the 90's along with a small line-up of other popular sports watches like the Nautilus, the Neptune was wildly different than Patek's other sports pieces and for good reason. When taking a close look at the marketing strategy surrounding this watch, I believe it was Patek's intention to create a hardy sports watch that may also be worn suited up; wetsuit or a fine Italian wool. That's right, this watch was obviously meant to break the barriers between a sports watch and a dress watch. Something the world was just not ready for, a God (Neptune was the god of freshwater and the sea in Roman religion.) of tool watches that is also suitable for a king.
Just take a look at the bracelet and finish. The steel is finely finished in mostly polished surfaces along with edgy but elegant design elements. There was much attention given to design in fact. The dial, thin automatic movement, bezel and bracelet exhumes wealth while the hardy solid material and screw down protected crown said it's time for some fun. The dial is most appealing with dressy applied Roman numerals combined with luminous material and a seconds chapter ring. Is it a sports watch or a dress watch? Well, honestly I think that was not only what made the watch so special, but also the reason it was unpopular. After all, if you can afford to buy Patek Philippe, you should be able to have a sports watch and a separate dress watch. For the James Bond's of the world that need to throw on a suit and drink a martini just after disarming an underwater explosive device, the Neptune couldn't be more perfect. But then again, how many people are we talking about? Hence it's unpopular reception at the time.
Fast forward to 2017. The Neptune, considered nearly vintage now, is an extremely well rounded watch with much appeal. In today's busy world that takes a more minimalist approach to jewelry, I believe a relaunch would be a huge success.
I would compare this watch to a couple other modern sucessful watches, but, much better in terms of haute horology, pedigree, design and function. When wearing this watch, it reminds me of my first ever luxury watch purchase, the 36mm Rolex Explorer I and the watch I'm wearing right now, the Tudor Black Bay 36. The Neptune has a certain ruggedness to it like these pieces - you'll not be afraid to wear it as a daily wearer. The big difference is that unlike the Explorer or Black Bay, there is no question that the Neptune holds its own at a black tie event, plus it's a Patek Philippe...not a Rolex. As a bonus, the calibre 315 ultra-thin automatic makes it much less top heavy than any other luxury sports watches of the era and also presents larger on the wrist because of the thin profile of the case. It is one of the most comfortable sports watches I've ever worn.
So, by now you know I like this watch. The Neptune was made in several variations and also the ref. 5085 with two additional complications, moonphase and power reserve indicator. The simplicity of the 5080 in stainless with a black dial keeps the Neptune true to its intentions and is certainly the most desired iteration.
This watch is for sale in our inventory. You can check it out by clicking here: Patek Philippe Neptune
Okay hold your horses, first I will say that my blog today has nothing to do with the band "Vintage Culture" in fact I didn't even know there was a band with that name, I was simply doing some research to get opposing views about today's vintage culture. By the way gentleman, great name for a band! Maybe I'll listen to a few songs and see if I like it...I'm a child of the 70's so I'm skeptical.
Now that I've taken your entire day clearing that up, let's continue. I was thinking the other day, as I often do, what causes trends...like fashion and social trends; and are they connected? Being in a business that appeals to people who value culture from whatever period it is, I thought maybe it would be good to know or at least have a hypothesis. Of course, not all vintage watch buyers buy for those reasons, but there is definitely a powerful subconscious voice in the background of most people. Did you notice something? A lot more vintage cars are on the road, people are wearing jean shirts again and vintage watches are on people's wrist. These watches represent something to people; it could be craftmanship, an important innovation, rarity, artististic value; many men believe that watchmaking is an art form (I'm not sure about Woman but I can be enlightened in the comments), I could go on. In my past blogs, I often speak of how well the vintage watch business is doing; and not just well, but has a long sustainable future ahead. The "vintage style" business in general is expanding like crazy with a huge shift to vintage fashion for both men and women that's been brewing over the past few years. Favored toys include watches, classic muscle cars, pens, guitars, eyeglasses, books, coins, and clothing.
The big questions are, does this shift to vintage fashion have boundaries? Are fashion and design shifts in general connected to current society? These are the questions I'll share my view on today. My views are typically matter of fact and do not contain bias. I do think that there is demographic boundaries to vintage culture. The unfortunate fact is that there are many people that cannot afford a ten thousand dollar vintage Patek Philippe Calatrava or a 1964 Ford Mustang. In order to obtain such objects, you need cash or good credit standing. But don't be in despair just yet, there are endless companies, established brands and emerging brands of just about anything new made to look like a real vintage product. Complete fakes aside, these items are usually made of inferior materials, sub-par craftsmanship and in countries with corrupt & harsh business practices and little concern for the environment. I have no opinion of this of course :). I don't like companies like this unless they are high quality and made by the original manufacturer. Like vintage styles of Levi's jeans sold today - probably made in China now. I feel like these other companies are feeding into the vintage culture frenzie by providing low cost and low quality merchandise to the people that cannot afford an original of something. In the world of luxury vintage watches I live in, these sort of things are discarded like the pesky daily paper thrown on my driveway. What I'm saying, is that these people just aren't in the club. Vintage Culture isn't cheap. So yes, I do think there are boundaries, especially socioeconomics.
Finally, the question of society's influence on fashion, design and commerce. Duh! Of course society influences fashion. They are the consumers, they provide supply and demand and determine what companies are going to make. My question goes a level deeper. What causes current culture to influence what people are interested in? In this case, all things vintage. I haven't quite come to a conclusion of my view on this. But I think part of the influence is due to the fact that the world has changed so much in the past 30 years, and for many, they see it not for the better. They keep nostalgia, memories and objects of times past to comfort them. I know for myself, I have a weird sense of comfort when wearing a vintage watch instead of one of my moderns. It's hard to describe, but it's just happier to look at. I'd love to hear some other ideas on this topic, for now - I've got to go because I have a ton of other work to do today. Hopefully I'll get a vlog done which are published on my YouTube channel @adamvintage. Please look me up on YouTube and subscribe to my channel and of course like us on facebook or I'll never forgive you. Peace out.
To me, the Hamilton Watch Co., prior to becoming a Swiss brand, was one of the greatest American manufacturers of the 20th century; and most certainly the most important American Watch Manufacturer. Vintage Hamilton watches are quite popular among all watch enthusiasts, especially American patriots, US citizens and dedicated Hamilton Watch collectors. Today we will learn some fun facts about the original Hamilton Watch Co. from Lancaster, PA and I hope you find it amusing and educational. Please write comments if you know more facts for the vintage watch community to read. And I promise, there are MANY more facts, so have at it.
As shown in the above advertising gallery, Hamilton was no amature to genius branding and brand loyalty. Much like Rolex, Hamilton employed almost every conceivable marketing strategy to appeal to both utilitarian timekeeping and pulled on consumer emotions as the perfect gift or necessity. Most notable, were a grand series of Hamilton "named" dress watches, another genius marketing strategy, that began in the 1930's and ran through the end of the 1950's with millions of what seems endless named watches produced. Many of these watches were named by watchmakers working for Hamilton with their approval of course. Below we see a few examples.
It wasn't just Hamilton's marketing prowess that made Hamilton the most important American Watch Manufacturer. Hamilton was a true manufacturer, producing some of the best and fine pocket watches, military watches, chronometers and wristwatch movements made both in the USA and abroad. Hamilton movements easily rivalled the Swiss during this period and was favored by American consumers among other important American companies like Waltham and Elgin to name a couple. There are so many patents, innovations and prestige that Hamilton enjoyed; that it would be impossible to name them all on this blog. Let's learn of a few uncommonly known facts.
Did you know that in 1961 Elvis Presley personally selected a Ventura in the film "Blue Hawaii"? wwwamiltonwat
Well, I could go on and on. In summary, Hamilton was considered the best among Railroad Grade Pocket Watches, Military Grade Pocket and Wristwatches, Flight Watches, and of course all the beloved watches made for consumers. Today, Hamilton is a Swiss company under the umbrella of the Swatch Group. Luckily, the Swatch Group, appears to have kept many Hamilton traditions in today's modern world. I hope some day, Hamilton will be sold to a US investor and once again prevail as an American watch manufacturer. Many thanks to the Hamilton Museum for some of these facts. At AdamVintage, we have a large variety of vintage Hamilton Watches for sale among other fine timepieces. Thank you for reading - Peace out.
Adam J. Dubilo, founder of Adam Vintage
Phone: +1 413 219 1104
Mailing: 7 E Circle Dr. E. Longmeadow, MA 01028
Powered by Creative Website Logistics of New England
Disclaimer: Any and all trademarks mentioned here are for descriptive purposes only and are the property of their respective owners. Adam Vintage Watch Co. and its owners and affiliates are not authorized agents for Rolex Watch Company and are not affiliated with them in any way.