Feb 21, 2018357 views

Budget watches for the novice: Sea-Gull dress watch

I am still new to watches and i have been trying to grab some few budget pieces with good quality and brand. At the moment i am mainly focused on owning a large number of watches on the lower end of the budget ( max. $200.00) that retain some resell value (think.. seiko, casio, tissot, vostok, poljot, sea-gull etc).
At the moment i am considering a sea-gull dress watch;

What do you think people? It is going for about US$215.00 including transport. It has a Sapphire crystal, self-winding and link the blue hands :-)! Any better alternatives for the price? I am also considering a seiko 5 SNKL23K which is going for around $150.00 including transport. Frankly speaking, i think this sea-gull is a better looker than the Seiko 5 but the latter is more iconic i guess, and might retain vaue in the aftermarket. What are your thoughts?
I recently came across the Sea-Gull 1963 handwinding;

It is going for $300.00 a little bit steep for me but is it worthwhile checking it?
Watch Features:
  • Movement: Seagull Hand Wind Mechanical 19-Jewel Chronograph
  • Case: Polished Stainless Steel, 38mm diameter x 15mm thick
  • Back: Exhibition window back
  • Crystal: Acrylic
  • Band: Olive green NATO style strap, buckle closure. 18mm lug
  • Water Resistant: 30 meters

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For a budget dress watch, you'd be better off with the Orient Bambino currently offered here on MD or the Citizen watch which is a screaming good deal at $99, IMO.

The Sea-Gull 1963 has a genuine Chinese military provenance worth investigating. And the ST19 movement is supposedly a clone of a 1940's era Venus 175, even using the original Swiss machinery.
I think the Sea-Gull chronograph movement is a stunner to look at, and is a neat conversation starter for a budget watch. Someone should check me on this, but it's probably the only new mechanical chronograph in the price range too. Get it if you like it!

Seagull makes pretty watches, but I am not sold on any of the Chinese brands yet in the long term. They lack a sincerity and spirit to me honestly that just doesn't make me say "Gotta get one!" Granted, the feature sets look great, but you can get a lot of nice, storied time pieces from companies that are well established and proven, and that will provide much more piece of mind for me.

Furthermore, I have friends who are watchmakers that refuse to work on most Chinese made watches, as the products and parts used (Even from the same manufacturer) have not been consistent, and prove almost impossible to get in case of repair. Even regulating proves enough of challenge that one fellow charges justifiably more that if it were a Seiko. Doesn't bode well for my long term confidence (and I keep watches long term)

In the end though friend, you have to get what you like, and these Seagull's sure do look nice. As a budding collector, having the variety ultimately leads to the discerning enjoyment of watches, and the whys and likes of certain models and brands. Get what makes you happy.

I have a couple of Seagull watches and love them both. An M182SK skeleton watch, and the larger 42mm version of the 1963. The skeleton seems to run about 10 seconds fast per day, and the 1963 seems even better.
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