With a never ending stream of watches going through eBay, we thought we'd have a sit down and see what peaks our interest in the sold section - since eBay is simultaneously the best and worst place to buy a watch (or anything, really...) we knew we'd be able to find some gems.
VILLARD Vintage Racing Chronograph
Starting things off I wanted to look at a mid-range price to find something of decent quality, but that would still fly under the radar. I think this Villard chronograph fits that bill perfectly! It is very striking with the coloured hands and subdial text, while remaining very classic in appearance thanks to the no-frills bicompax layout.
This Villard chronograph is reminiscent of classic chronographs from the likes of Heuer and Breitling, but differentiates itself with the funky and very 70's 'tv style' shaped subdials.
The watch is said to be from the 1970s and has a great looking Valjoux 7733 inside. The watch is also in pretty great condition overall. This sold for around the £600 mark which seems like excellent value for a swiss equipped fully mechanical chronograph.
"The Valjoux 7730 is a hand-wound, dual-register chronograph movement produced from 1966 to 1973. The 7730 includes a small seconds sub-dial at 9:00, a jumping 30-minute counter at 3:00, and a central seconds counter. With no date complication, the crown moves between just two positions, a refreshingly simple configuration. Originating as an alternative to column-wheel chronographs, the 7730 employs an affordable cam-switching system that helped to democratize the chronograph watch during the middle of the last century." - Worn & Wound
Vintage Heuer Chronograph - Reverse Panda Dial
Next up we have this stunning reverse panda dialled Heuer chronograph. This definitely fits closer to the 'grail' category than the last watch, which is also reflected in the price! This watch went for about £1,800, which compared to a modern day TAG Heuer actually seems exceptionally good value.
This Heuer is known as the reference 73321 and actually shares the same base caliber Valjoux 7733 as the Villard above. This watch was from a more affordable Heuer range in the 1970s, sharing the same chrome plated case that Heuer used to assemble other brands but with a Carrera handset.
The pictures speak for themselves really with this one. A stunning and undeniably classic chronograph in a great condition considering the age. The patina is even and very attractive, just looks like it desperately needs a new strap to properly do justice to the watch as this one is slightly too wide.
Vintage Seiko 5 Chronograph
Finally I thought I'd look at the cheaper end of the spectrum and came across this charming little Seiko 5. The orange dial with the red accents definitely captures that classic motorsport vibe, a lot of fun for the modest £124 selling price. The single subdial chronograph movement is also quite unique and just goes to show what interesting watches can be found for very little.However, since the description was simply just:
"vintage seiko chronograph day date function
38mm funky sports chrono. Needs a service. Dial reconditioned. Great wrist presence"
You'd definitely need to bid with an open mind, as it would be very hard to tell what running condition it would be in when it arrives!