Saturday, 1 September 2018

ON THE WRIST: TAG Heuer Formula 1 Calibre 16 Chronograph

CAU2011.BA0873

TGS Pawnbrokers / Northampton, 3rd August 2018

Walking past the pawnbroker near where I work the other day I spotted this in the window, unfortunately by the time I'd got back to work I'd convinced myself it had red hour markers and wasted quite some time (and unfortunately someone else's time - apologies to Tom) trying to establish if what I'd seen was some sort of Limited Edition for Japan or something.

In the end I made it back to the shop, only to find the watch missing from the window. It had been put in the safe because someone had paid a deposit on it. The lady in there wasn't keen to show me the watch but she did kindly write the number off the back down for me, but that didn't really help since all that really did was point me in the direction of the standard model - at this point I still believed the hour markers were red, so was it fake? The only way to settle it was to see it again.


Fortunately, the buyer pulled out, and I went back to see the watch, and confirmed that it was me all along, the hour markers weren't red at all and I'd just been over-eager! But, I have to say... rather unexpectedly when I actually got to see this one I was rather taken with it! I know it's remarkably similar to the CAU2012 I sold earlier in the year, and I do still have reservations about those crown guards and the 44mm case, but it doesn't seem as noticeable on this one and the bracelet is bloody lovely!

It's a big, chunky, flashy watch though. No getting away from that, and the red flashes don't make it any less 'shouty', but I kinda like that. I think the red works much better on the pushers than the orange on the Calibre 16 F1 I had, and the ceramic links look fantastic contrasting the brushed steel outer links, while the small polished inserts give the watch just enough shine, without going OTT. This isn't one for sliding under a cuff, but I doubt the wearer would want to hide this watch anyway.

Unfortunately I couldn't quite get the clasp to close, the bracelet is too short for me and there's no spare links with it, which is a shame because the price is very good (£1200) for what is a mint condition watch that has absolutely no sign of wear. I could well see myself wearing one of these in the future, and I noticed the watch is still in the window now (31st August)...  but no, I really must try not to buy any more watches this year!

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