Hi, my name’s James and I’m a watch degenerate … I don’t really want to be. I honestly go into every watch purchase with the heartfelt belief that this will be the replica watch that I will keep for the rest of my life and pass onto my son. But inevitably I change my mind (again). Before I know it, I’ve traded up for another watch that I simply cannot possibly live without. Ever. Until I discover that, in fact, it turns out that I actually can.
Why am I stuck on the watch-flipping carousel? The biggest problem, I think, is that my horological ideal won’t stay still. It continues to change and evolve. Either that or I’m just addicted to the thrill of the chase.
This particular tale has its origins firmly rooted in 2018. Baselworld rolled around and Rolex delivered the goods as usual with a new stainless-steel case fake Rolex GMT-Master II Pepsi on Jubilee.
With Buckley’s chance of getting one of these bad-boys at retail my attention shifted to the smash hit of the 2018 fair – the Tudor Black Bay GMT. At the time I owned a Tudor Black Bay Blue (also now flipped – insert facepalm emoji), so I was very familiar and happy with the format and style.
When I was finally able to try one on in the metal, well, it was definitely love at first wrist-roll. Unfortunately, the model I had the opportunity to buy was on the leather strap and I had my heart firmly set on the bracelet. So it was a no-go at this stage, but that watch stuck with me. I knew it was a piece I wanted to own and was confident it would scratch that Pepsi itch to the point where I’d be happy to move on.
Eventually the Black Bay GMT became available on bracelet. I happily paid a slight premium, strapped it on my wrist and off I went with what I fully intended to be my go-to travel watch for the next 20 years.
And that remained my intention. Right up until I met the Grand Seiko Sport GMT with the high-tech 9F Quartz movement. Giving off incredible Explorer II vibes (the good one, not the huge sun dial that Rolex currently runs with) coupled with the price and the ridiculous finishing and build quality, this watch was an absolute no-brainer.
That’s when the idea of flipping multiple watches and funnelling the funds into something more significant began to crystallise in my mind. After all, if I was only really wearing two out of the 10 watches that I owned, perhaps it was time to bump out a few bench guys for another definite starter.
The Black Bay GMT and Grand Seiko Sport pieces were among the more desired pieces in my collection, so they were the first casualties of my resulting flipping frenzy. Having banked some cash from their sales, it was time to go grail hunting.
Here we go again …
Sadly, the original 2018 Rolex replica watch with Pepsi bezel still wasn’t an option, unless I was willing to go through the rest of my life a kidney light. So I pushed it to the back of my wish list. My main issue was finding a watch truly worthy of bumping my obsession for the Pepsi.
The answer eventually came in the form of another famous soft drink. After flipping the last two auxiliary pieces in my collection — a Rolex Rhodium Dial 39mm copy Rolex Oyster Perpetual and an Omega Seamaster 300M — plus a few bucks I had squirrelled away, I picked up my high quality replica Rolex GMT Coke from Bob’s Watches.