Welcome to another episode of Fratello On Air. This week, we take a listener’s suggestion and discuss how we research watches before buying. We’ve touched upon this before, but it’s a constantly evolving topic that deserves an update. For our beloved listeners, the watch content begins after 19 minutes.

If you’re a watch collector and enjoy vintage, landing a great specimen often requires research. In this episode, we mention some of our most common tactics. Some of these processes are tried and true, while others are more recent. They’re all helpful, though, and can lead to a rewarding result. The lack of doing one’s homework, however, can be disastrous.

Omega 30T2 how to research watches before buying


We open our episode on watch research with a recap of Balazs’s experience at a recent UEFA European Championship match in Stuttgart. It was a fantastic time without any travel troubles! Mike mentions a recent disappointing trip to the famed Portobello Road in London where the watches were abysmal. For the Handgelenkskontrolle, Mike is wearing a new arrival. It’s a ’60s 14K gold Movado Museum watch with a manual-winding movement that needs a service. This leads to a discussion about Nathan George Horwitt, the designer of the watch. Balazs is still (rightfully!) in love with his recently acquired Rolex Submariner 5513.

Zenith 143-6 how to research watches before buying

Research before buying

One of our faithful listeners, Adam, sent us a note and asked if we could discuss how we research a watch before deciding to buy. In particular, he mentioned defunct brands. The topic is a wide one, but we mentioned several of our go-to tips, including:

  • Using a site like Google Images to compare different examples of the same watch
  • Following the links found on Google Images to see if old forums or sales ads add new information
  • Digging into watch forums
  • Using social media, including Instagram, to find similar models and authorities on given brands who can help

It is even more difficult to research defunct brands or watches from the ’30s or ’40s. We discuss our techniques for sorting the good from the bad.

Thanks again for listening, and we hope you enjoy the show. Feel free to send additional ideas for show topics, and we will add them to the queue!