07 June 2012

Watch Wednesday Thursday (6/7/12)

I will probably never own a Rolex, or a Breitling, or an IWC, but there are plenty of great, interesting, collectible watches that cost far less than one of the finer brands. I've focused on acquiring watches that are affordable and that I want to wear. What I have to show you today is what I have long considered the coolest watch ever, the Accutron Spaceview:
I've featured other Accutron watches in the past, but a Spaceview has been missing from my collection for a long time. I actually bought one around 13 years ago, early on in my collecting. After a couple of years my feelings about the watch had changed (I realized that I preferred a different style) and I sold it, planning to get another one somewhere down the road.

"Down the road" became a decade. I looked on and off over the years, finding ones that were in excellent condition and comically overpriced, or ones that were not running and in need of a total electronic and cosmetic overhaul. Also, during the years they were produced, there were many variations in case designs and in the markings on the crystal, and I wanted the very specific style that you see here, a stainless steel case with the metal ring around the edge with hour and minute markers, and the Accutron name and symbol on the crystal at the 8 o'clock position.

Last fall I renewed my search with a bit more enthusiasm than I had given it in some time. I found that people were still asking outrageous prices, and I started to worry that I would never be able to find a watch at a reasonable price. In November I came across a watch for sale on eBay that had been tucked away in the proverbial dresser drawer for 40 years. It was running and in very nice condition cosmetically, and being offered for a realistic price, so I bought it.

When the watch arrived, I found that while it did indeed run, it was afflicted with a problem common to many older Accutron watches: it ran quite fast, much too fast to wear even for a day. I knew it would need servicing. I remembered a New York based eBay seller who sold watch parts and also offered Accutron repairs at a flat rate. He has been repairing Accutron watches for over 40 years. When I was planning my April trip to New York, I contacted him and asked if I could drop off the watch in person while there.

It took a few weeks for him to complete the repairs, but the watch arrived back to me last week. Not only is it running just right, but he polished everything so it looks like a brand new watch. To complete the package, I had him put the watch on a period-style Accutron strap with the tuning-fork logo on the buckle. I'm thrilled to have this watch, and very happy that I was able to get it repaired so it runs properly. Watches are wonderful to look at, but they are meant to be worn.


Wildcat Whisperer said...


I've got a similar model Spaceview...mine's more of a barrel or tonneau-shaped case, which I wear on a gray carbon-fiber strap. Mine was an eBay purchase a few years ago.

It runs a bit fast too, but I haven't bothered to get it adjusted. Recently got a minor scratch on the crystal which was disappointing, but I suppose that means now it's really "mine"

Curious if you caught Mad Men last week? It was quite a shocker...looking forward to the season finale this weekend.

And I enjoy your blog quite a bit...been a lurker for many months now.

-Tom in Houston, TX

Some Assembly Required said...

Thanks for your kind words, Tom. If you ever want to get your watch serviced I can provide you with the info about the guy I used.

I have been keeping up with Mad Men, I just had several weeks where I could not watch it and write a review promptly, so I felt it was better to stop doing it, at least temporarily. After this weekend I'll have something to say about the season as a whole.