Saturday, July 7, 2018

Three Shops Selling the Identical Used Watch

Credor Spring Drive Moonphase:
Stunning no matter how it's sold.
This is interesting. These three online shops are selling the identical Credor Spring Drive Moonphase watch. The exact same. The scratches on the watch are identical.

Here are the links to the watches: (¥ 498,000) This watch is also available on eBay. (¥ 353,580) ( ¥ 590,444)

 (The prices are in yen; for a rough conversion to dollars, just cut the last two digits.)

The price difference from the most to least expensive is 236,864 yen, about $2,100 —  for the same watch. Notably, none of these stores are watch shops.

Credor is Seiko’s high-end line, even higher than their Grand Seiko division. My favorite Credor is the Eichi II, which weighs in at $50,000, and is worth every dollar. Unadorned and elegant through design and simplicity, the Eichi, also a spring drive, is grace and polish personified in a watch. But I digress. We’re talking about the Credor Moonphase here. It’s life was brief, and can be found in the used market for about $4,500, give or take a thousand.

The same scratches on all
three watches. 
There’s no Credor watch that isn’t handsome and stunning, the work of master craftsman whose watches bloom refinement and beauty, but the Credor Spring Drive Moonphase is even more gorgeous than most. Spring drive is a Seiko-invented technology that enhances a watch’s mechanical movement. There’s a bit of a misconception about spring drive watches. Although they have a quartz crystal inside, they’re not quartz watches. These watches are powered by a mainspring just like every other mechanical watch. Spring drives use a Seiko-grown quartz crystal to calibrate and modify the speed of the mechanical movement eight times a second. Spring drives don’t have a battery inside; their electricity is generated by the mainspring. That’s double duty for the watch’s mainspring, which has to power the gears and hands as well as generate electricity for the quartz crystal and electromagnetic braking system that keeps the watch accurate to within a second a day.

So, there you have it. The Credor Spring Drive Moonphase, a rare bird, one of the rarest Seikos you can find. And you can find one — the same second hand one — for sale at wildly different prices in three different stores. But what’s going on here? It’s not a scam — not unless you think that somebody selling the same product at prices that vary by $2,100 is illegitimate. It’s probably just a watch being sold by somebody who thinks some people might shop and buy it at a lower price, while other potential customers prefer spending more money, possibly because they equate spending more with getting more.

How the watch is being sold doesn’t detract from the fact that the Credor Spring Drive Moonphase is a magnificent watch.

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