The story surrounding the first perpetual calendar wristwatch is somewhat hazy, but the Patek Philippe replica watch is widely treated as to be one of, if not the first wristwatch to feature a perpetual calendar. Therefore, there’s something special when the fake Patek Philippe launches a new perpetual calendar watch. Besides, this was exactly what happened earlier this year at Baselworld 2017 when they declared the new Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar model, which is a little special because it adapts and combines traits of various vintage Patek Philippe perpetual calendar watches.
There’s something rather unique about wearing a perpetual calendar watch from Patek Philippe, or any perpetual calendar watch for that matter. It relieves its owners of the arduous task of having to adjust the watch to account for the inconsistencies of the number of days in a month. Helpfully, it also displays the current day and month, and also the date and phase of the moon. It is almost as if there is a microprocessor inside the watch.
Starting with the case, it is 40mm in diameter and done in white gold. I personally feel that 40mm really is the sweet spot, as far as I am concernned, and the replica Patek Philippe appears neither too bulky nor too dainty on the wrist. The case has many elements worth talking about and the design seems to have been influenced by the model perpetual calendar from the ’60s. For instance, the bezel and lugs are stepped, which adds more visual appeal to the case, and not to mention complexity in construction and finishing. The stepped lug concept, in particular, is an interesting touch that is seldom seen on new fake watches.
The construction of the entire case is also uncommon that it is stamped from a block of white gold and then machined down and finally finished with a mixture of machine and hand-finishing. Stamping in metalworking is often thought of as a low-cost process, but the finalized product that we see here is as well constructed and finished as any other high-end fake Patek Philippe watch that I have seen. In fact, if I hadn’t volunteered this piece of information to you, you probably would never have known that the case was stamped.
The dial comes in a warm ivory cream color that I like very much. The color is rich and consistent throughout the dial, but it should be noted that it is lacquer and not enamel. The dial configuration is classic Patek Philippe replica : apertures for the day and month at 12 o’clock, a moon phase display and date sub-dial at 6 o’clock. To the right of the date sub-dial you also have the leap year indicator, and to the left you have a day/night indicator. All of the perpetual calendar indications are well-sized and easy to read at a glance.
It’s Friday, and our tradition is back: our vintage replica watch expert, Louis Westphalen and Bring a Loupe. Another Friday tradition is on hiatus this week: Friday Live is taking a long weekend as the H. Team is traveling far and wide, but we’ll be back next week.
Vintage Tag Heuer replicas got some headlines this week, including a fake Heuer Autavia at Christie’s. This example had a very coveted feature: an Indianapolis Motor Speedway logo on its dial; this is the very same logo found on the Heuer Carrera “Dato 45” highlighted in this article. And we show some more love to Heuer today, with a first execution Autavia model, and its characteristically large sub-registers. Modern watches are always remembered.
This fake watch presents those characteristics, and its serial numbers – found on the case and the Valjoux 72 movement, and both indicating a production in late 1962 – match those characteristics. It comes with dauphine hands, the second execution after the full lume handset. Note that the seller indicates that the hands have been relumed, as was the lume triangle on the original bezel, but that the dial displays the proper radium lume. The case is described as unpolished; the lugs are indeed thick and well preserved. Lastly, the watch comes with the period-correct buckle, with the correct Sun stamp.
In general, original double-signed dials trade at a premium, as they make the watch rarer than the “standard” version, and give it even more historical cachet by indicating where it was originally sold. And with vintage Heuer watch, the rule definitely applies with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, among the rarest fake tag Heuer, as they were only sold through the local gift shop at the Indianapolis track.
The present watch is the Tag Heuer Carrera watch, which is often called the “Dato 45” after the unusual placement of its date window at 9 o’clock (this corresponds to the second execution of the replica watch, the first having the date at 12 o’clock). Only a handful of the black executions have been unearthed, and this one might be the very best one judging from its outstanding condition, with unpolished case and almost flawless dial. The watch even bears the original bracelet and replica Tag Heuer signed buckle. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway logo is beyond any doubt the sweetest part of this Heuer, placed just below the single chronograph counter.
In March of 2015, that is almost two years ago, something happened that we had always dreamed of but never really expected: we were given access to all four of the replica Rolex’s main manufacturing centers. Les Acacias Plan-Les-Ouates, Chene-Bourg, and actually, Bienne, where Rolex movements are made, were all on the itinerary and while we went there with a lot of assumptions about what does and doesn’t go on during the innovation of Rolex watches, many of those assumptions were overturned and as well, we were exposed to an incredible wealth of new information.
All in all, what we have discovered was the fact that much more hand-work goes into making the fake Rolex watches than we’d realized and that indeed, Rolex is one of the most thoroughly vertically integrated watch manufacturers on the planet, a situation which is partly responsible for the amazing degree of uniform top quality of manufacturing and performance on which the fake Rolex’s reputation has been built, and which has made it what it is today.
Besides, we weren’t just wowed by all the new information we got; we saw the proof that the Rolex replica is doing things its own way and doing them extremely well. An independent watchmaker – not a Rolex employee or associate – whom we consulted for the story in order to get another perspective, told us in part:
“Setting Dufour and Voutilainen level movement finishing aside, from a pure engineering perspective, the best fake Rolex’s 3130 based calibers have resigned supreme for close to 30 years now. No mass-produced movement outside of Rolex comes close to matching their quality, durability, and reliability. They have come terribly close to defining the epitome of what a perfectly conceived mechanical watch movement should be.”
Therefore, if you missed the story when we first ran it, or if you’re a new reader here and community member, or if you just want to step back into one of the most thoroughly interesting and genuinely revelatory factory visits we’ve ever done, check out Ben’s take on what we discovered when we went Inside All Four Rolex Manufacturing Facilities, in 2015.