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Amazing watch and a great story

This is one of my favourite watches in my collection. It one of the most beautiful of the Monaco line, and the dial and hands are in incredible condition. But the story behind it is what makes it really special to me.

It is the "Sammy Davis Junior" watch, which came up in auction a few years ago. I took a chance on it because I didn't have a transitional Monaco but mainly because this photo is just so cool:

I won the watch, and was really delighted when I picked it up as the condition was just amazing. Check out that lume colour! Part of the auction lot was the photo and also the auction receipts and catalog from the guy who bought the watch at the original auction of Sammy Davis Junior's estate. So all the provenance looks really good. I think the guy paid around $200 for the watch at the auction in 1991!

The only problem was that watch did not work at all. Nothing. Not even for one second. Have to say I was a little disappointed with Antiquorum - they described the watch movement as "service recommended" - I think "not working" would have been more honest, but hey, it is par for the course for auction houses. I was a bit worried about two things, firstly, what I would find when the watch was opened - a totally rusted movement? Or a wrong movement? The second thing I was worried about was who would repair it. I tried contacting TAG Heuer directly, explaining that it was a historically significant watch and they needed to be sure not to change anything. I got a stock answer about policy of not returning replaced parts - very dispiriting, so I crossed them of the list.

Finally I entrusted "my precious" to Nic "HeuerBoy" Green. He did a fantastic job in repairing the movement and confirmed everything was as it should be for an early Monaco. Thanks Nic! Here is another photo - the photos don't do justice to the watch; it is just too nice today to take photos in doors and I'm struggling with the sunlit pictures.

There have been numerous posts about the early Monaco dials, I love the way the colour changes as the light changes. Here is another mediocre photo of the dial in different light:



The story doesn't end there. A year ago, my dad passed away. I was wandering round his apartment and I saw an autobiography of Sammy Davis Junior. I asked my mom if I could take it to have as a package with the watch, and she said "sure, but be careful, it is signed from when we met him at some charity event". So a perfect companion for the watch! And to make it even better, I flicked through the photos in the book, and was amazed to find a photo of him wearing the watch...

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