Officially a Union man..

Officially a Union man..

Postby Thunder1 » March 13th 2017, 5:47pm

Slamming my near empty beer stein onto my desk masked the sound, for a short while, of the wind as it whistled through the oaks that surround my house. As I wiped away a few drops of ale from my desk top, I took a quick glance at the PanoReserve on my wrist that late February night. And then I buried my face in my hands. Acquiring its’ companion piece was proving to be something of an ordeal.

Two weeks earlier, I had located my latest quest on Chrono24. It was an international advertisement from a seller based in Germany. In my naivete, I had contacted the owner via email and provided him a generous offer. I heard nothing back for a couple of days. I again contacted the owner and provided him with that same offer, the one that I felt he could not refuse. If he was smart. And if he knew better. Again, no response.

Being in a good mood a few days later (as I had earlier picked up a bottle of Knob Creek SB at a very good price), I made one last, above board, attempt to contact the seller and provide him with my generous offer. This time, tucked away safely (or so he thought) in his German abode, he dared to answer me back. Not only did he make the mistake of not accepting my offer, he informed me that he would not do business with me at all. He had heard about ‘dirty’ Americans, and he would have no dealings with them, if he could help it. He would not soil his tiny hands.

Back to that late, windy night in February. I poured a fat two fingers of KC SB into my nearly empty stein of Fat Tire ale. As I tossed the ale and chaser back, the deep burn in my throat brought back memories of another recent struggle. Last month, on a cool Saturday morning, two young bucks (both about 12 points each) had locked horns together in a bitter contest. The winner would own access to the small herd of does that called the back of my lot their ‘home’. It was that sweet and violent alcohol induced memory that helped make my decision. This ‘would be’ German purveyor would live to regret his decision, one way or another.

One doesn’t have to be in the watch acquisition ’bidness’ for long before one starts hearing stories. Stories about how things can ‘get done’. A euphemism for a particular style of negotiation technique. I decided then that if I went that route, I would have to choose the ‘right’ fellow. A good fellow. Someone with extensive connections on the other side of the pond. And then, it hit me like the next 2 fat fingers of Knob Creek SB that I had just thrown back. I knew who I needed for this job.

For some years I had heard about an ‘associate’ that went by the moniker The Gerdson. Although born to a family of minor nobility, he had made a life of his own. The hard way. He didn’t owe anything to anybody (save his landlords). The Gerdson was known to be tri-lingual, a sophisticated collector, and handy with the tools of his trade. He called both Germany and Denmark his home and negotiated their borders with practiced ease. And it was his very particular style of ‘negotiation’ that I needed now. But at what price?

An early March evening found me sending The Gerdson a PM. I explained in the PM that a smalltime dealer in Schwäbisch Hall, Ge. had refused my generous offer. I also provided him with ‘The Mark’s’ address. Although I was yet to formally make his acquaintance, his reputation was well established. I inquired, would he consider taking it upon himself to personally intervene upon my behalf in this matter?

The Gerdson responded both quickly and in the affirmative. He stated that he was familiar with Schwäbisch Hall. Or the Hall as he called it. A small town in the state of Baden-Württemberg, the Hall was known for its’ many salt mines. The Gerdson mentioned that those same abandoned salt mines(as well as the nearby River Kocher) had proven of some use to him in his line of work.
He would pay ‘The Mark’ a visit and get back to me soon he wrote. He didn’t go into further details and I didn’t ask. I didn’t want to know. He also didn’t mention compensation.

Mid-March found the Texas Hill Country in an early spring. All along the highways blue bonnets were beginning to blossom, as were the crepe myrtles in the front of my casa. Working from home one day, I heard the doorbell ring. I opened the door and was greeted by a smiling postal employee who offered me a package and wished me a good day. A quick glance at the address on the box confirmed my hopes: the watch, a previously loved Union Glashutte Klassik Gangreserve, had arrived!!
After a careful examination, I replaced the Ebel I had been wearing w/ the new to me Union. The Watch Gods, after taking some time off, had smiled down upon me once again. But at nearly that exact moment, I noticed that I had just received a new PM. The Gerdson. The Gerdson already knew!!

I thanked him profusely for both his intervention upon my behalf and his success. He replied back that he visited The Mark’s storefront in the Hall last week with a couple of his associates, Igor and Bruno. The Gerdson said he plopped 1800 Euros(200 less than my offers) on the display case and ‘suggested’ to The Mark that he take it. The Mark quickly accepted and the crackling of knuckles ceased.

A shiver coursed the length of my spine as I again thanked The Gerdson and asked if there was something I could do for him in return. He just wrote back “ So no worries. Who knows, one day you might help me out. Or in other words, someday, and that day may never come, I’ll call upon you to do a service for me..” I then poured myself two fat fingers of Knob Creek SB, and threw the elixir down my throat. This watch collecting ‘bidness’ was either going to be the life or the death of me yet.

OK, for the watch itself. It is a Union Glashutte Klassik Gangreserve. Probably made after 2000 and before 2008. As a reminder, Glasshutte Union is the sister company to Glasshutte Original. Beginning in the late 1990's and continuing through the year 2007, the Union produced watches using simpler versions of Glasshutte Orginals' movements. They were the same basic movement, but utilized machine finishing versus hand finishing. And they had fewer points of regulation. After 2007, under Swatch control, Union watches utilized modified ETA movements. So, these pre 2007 Unions are pretty unique. It measures 40mm wide w/o the crown. The SS case utilizes sapphire crystal front and back. The automatic Union 26-44 movement is based upon the Glashutte Orginal caliber 30 movement. Consequently, the finishing is done by machine and not by hand. Here are some photos of it..

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(My thanks to Olof, otherwise known as Gerdson. I contacted him after a watch seller in Germany refused to do business with me. Olof was good enough to handle both the purchase and shipment of the watch. As a bonus, he negotiated a much better deal for me then the sellers' original offer!!)

i.e. edited 07/17 as to replace dumped Photobucket pics...
Last edited by Thunder1 on July 8th 2017, 7:01am, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby jason_recliner » March 13th 2017, 5:53pm

Go Team Watchlords!
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby spanky1 » March 13th 2017, 6:03pm

Nice story thunder and congratulations on a beautiful watch.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Tzimisces » March 13th 2017, 6:15pm

It's nice to know we've got some muscle in Germany.

Absolutely beautiful watch. NIce find, and cheers to Gerdson for the assist.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby tiktok » March 13th 2017, 6:29pm

Dude, you and I have very similar taste for watches that fly under the radar. I have always loved the original Union line, and loathed what Swatch did to the brand. That is pure German class and adds another unique, beautiful piece to your stellar collection.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Hawk » March 13th 2017, 6:36pm

Fang. Duck.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby SaoGage » March 13th 2017, 6:48pm

Oh, I love it! Congrats!

I always go German if I'm not going Japanese. Their watches are so underrated and so incredibly well made.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby biglove » March 13th 2017, 7:16pm

Great story and what a beautiful watch. Gerdson is a scholar and a gentleman.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby foghorn » March 13th 2017, 7:17pm

That entire post was fucking wickitt pissa!!

Well done Sirs!
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby MKTheVintageBloke » March 13th 2017, 7:31pm

Lovely watch- really like the 1960s style lumed stick hands.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby jaw » March 13th 2017, 7:55pm

Outstanding story. Here's to the Lords :Beerbang:
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Racer-X » March 13th 2017, 7:56pm

Some fine writing here - props to gerdy and that is a lovely watch. WL Rocks.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Mark1 » March 13th 2017, 9:29pm

:CSTBRO: I usually post this smilie as a smart ass remark but not this time. Good on Gerdson for getting it done. Congrats.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby gerdson » March 13th 2017, 10:37pm

:lol:
Thanks, Chuck, it's been a pleasure. Though my knuckles still hurt.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby conjurer » March 13th 2017, 11:20pm

Yup. This story is what Watchlords is all about. While our numbers may be small, our reach is wide. A fine watch, no error, Mr. Thunder. And, it highlights something we all should know--while Herr Gerdson is a sophisticated gentleman, with fine taste (he's one of the few Lords who can wear a smoking jacket and get away with it), he's also a Bad-Ass Motherfucker.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby 3Flushes » March 14th 2017, 12:01am

That's awesome, the story's better than the watch. Almost.

Nice catch.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby bobbee » March 14th 2017, 1:06am

Very nice T1, a great catch and a fun story.
Beobachte Lords grüße dich Gerdson, in deiner Rolle als Vermittler.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby codguy » March 14th 2017, 3:59am

The watch :Thumbsup:

To Gerson :bvbvbv:
.

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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Datsun240Z71 » March 14th 2017, 4:22am

Well done. Great read, great outcome, great watch!
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby AntFarm » March 14th 2017, 5:08am

Quite stunning. Wonderful story too. Nice job gerdson.
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Re: Officially a Union man..

Postby Wasp » March 14th 2017, 5:16am

A-1 all around.
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