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IT Engineer, Watch Collector

Frederic, 40, father of 2 young kids, IT engineer, is a Swiss citizen and lives in Geneva. He bought his first automatic watch in 2007 for his 30th Birthday. It was a CERTINA DS Podium Chronograph, hosting a Valjoux 7750. Since then, he got hooked by the watch virus… He gently switched to the vintage world a few years ago. The addiction got worse… His favourite brands are OMEGA, ZENITH and ROLEX. His other addictions are cycling and chocolate.

1. Do you remember your first watch?

My father offered me a CASIO with digital display in the mid 1980s. My elder brother received the one with the calculator and I was jealous. I ended up with the CASIO calculator a few years after! Being 100% Swiss, I am not that proud of it now, but we were in the middle of the quartz era and mechanical watches were no longer popular. Hopefully the swiss watchmaking tradition is renowned again.

2. The 3 most iconic watch models?

ZENITH El primero A386 (the first automatic chronograph), OMEGA Speedmaster (the Moonwatch), and ROLEX Submariner (the iconic diving watch).

3. A noteworthy anecdote with one of your watches?

When I started liking watches 10-12 years ago, I hated ROLEX watches and the OMEGA Speedmaster. I did not like the ROLEX design and the cyclop on the glass. I now love it… Regarding the Speedmaster, I did not like the domed glass and found silly to have a hand-wounded movement when you can have automatic movements … Now the Speedmaster is one of my favourite watches. It is funny how tastes change when you get older.

As a more general observation, I’ve unexpectedly come across a lot of great people since I use Instagram. A lot have become real friends that I meet in person from time to time and other people I look forward to meeting them soon. It’s been definitely a fabulous experience!

On the other hand, I’ve had 1-2 bad experiences with some dealers who reserved a watch to me and ended up selling it to someone else. Sadly some of them are most interested in profit and their passion had faded away (hopefully most are not like this…).

4. Are you more modern or vintage?

I was more modern, but now I much prefer vintage watches. Vintage watches carry a history, they have a soul and every single vintage watch has become unique as they all aged differently. Looking at a vintage watch is exciting, it raises so many questions about its life: who was the watchmaker who assembled the watch? In which occasion was it bought? In which country? Who was the owner(s)? Why was the watch sold? …

5. I love Speedmasters because …

I love it because its history is unique, and because its design is perfect: timeless, simple, sober and efficient. This is the magic recipe! A Speedy can be worn in any condition!

Ask someone who don’t know anything about watches to spot differences between a late 1960’s and a 2018 Speedmaster, most will tell you the watch is the same.

6. Your favorite Speedmaster?

To me, the ST 105.012 is my favourite Speedy as it is the most iconic reference, it is THE Moonwatch …

The CK 2915-1 also has it is a grail to me ….

7. A single personal item you would take with you for a long stay on the Moon?

Paper and a pencil to make a journal.

8. You just won the lottery. Do you first buy a sports car or call a financial advisor?

I would buy a sports car for sure, invest most of it for long term revenues, enjoy life with my family, travel, and of course hunt for top conditions rare birds like a CK 2915, a Gilt GMT Master, a SM 300 BT, a Floating Daytona 16520, a rare Heuer Carrera, early El-Primeros …

9. Where would you spend the next 24 hours if you had a teleporter?

On an island in the middle of the ocean without internet!

10. How many times a day do you watch … your watch?

Funny enough I don’t always wear a watch, but when I wear a watch, I look at it dozens of times everyday to admire it…. without even looking at the time….. (errr, how bad is it Doc ?) … Watch nerds will understand.

11. The last watch you bought?

A top condition Speedy pre-moon ref ST 145.022-69. I already have this reference but I could not resist … It is so beautiful.

12. What’s on your wrist today?

Speedmaster ref. ST 145.022-69 with a rare 220 bezel.

Thank you Frédéric.

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