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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
While evaluating a supposedly-pristine Pogue the other day (and finding that it was in fact a total bitsa, with mostly aftermarket or transplanted parts), I started wondering about the authenticity of bezels (the Pepsi external, not the rotating inner bezel/chapter ring - that's another chapter in itself …)

Now, there are several tell tales known about already - comment if you think these are still correct or not?

  • Most known aftermarket bezels don't have a white box under the 60 at 12-o'clock - but lots of genuine, especially early, watches don't either (incl Pogues own) - [EDIT - thanks to post #2 :)] - and aftermarkets are now showing up with a block, so it's no longer a reliable way to spot them.
  • There was once a tell-tale about the shape of the 5s - real bezels have 5s that are nearly closed, whereas AM ones were noticeably more open - I don't think this is reliable now
  • Some AM bezels don't have a crisp division between red and blue between the 6 and 0 - it should be straight down the middle, though on a later genuine bezel with the block under 60, the start of the red can look closer to the 6
  • Some AM bezels have the 80, 85 and 90 very close to - even touching - the edge, but the latest seem to have fixed that, and on old genuine bezels, it can be hard to tell (look at Pogue's again...)
  • The horizontal stroke in 4 in 140 on a genuine bezel should be nearly touching the zero, which means it can look longer than the 4 in 54. This still looks to be the case on the latest fakes, but it's not jumping-out obvious. The marker at 140 though, on genuine bezels, finishes below the tip of the one and between the 1 and the 4, whereas on the fakes it's often closer to the 4 and finishes above the 1.
My recent observations - they may be already known, but I couldn't find reference to them and though perspective may play a part in spotting these on photos, I think they're worth noting:

The TACHYMETER font is sometimes a bit variable too - on later AM bezels it's quite close to the markers on the lower edge of the bezel and the lettering is quite square in shape, whereas on genuine bezels the letters are a little taller and there's a bigger gap between the bottom of the letters and the markers, than there is between the top of the letters and the upper edge.

Some earlier fakes had even taller-looking lettering that was practically touching the upper edge of the bezel so again, there's little consistency I think.

Looking at some pics lately, I think I've spotted a reliable tell tale that is pretty much visible to the naked eye - the stroke below the 2 of 250 on aftermarket bezels reaches the end of the 2, whereas on genuine bezels, it doesn't.

Anyway, enough text - here are some photos - see what you think, tell me if I'm wrong and submit evidence by the way of graphics :)

Look at the 140 vs 54:


Here are two genuine bezels, without and with the block under 60:




and here are two known fakes, one from a frankenwatch sold on Ebay a couple of years ago and one that is currently being sold by the usual vendor of fake dials...



 

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Point number 1 is now incorrect.
I was under the impression that no aftermarket bezels had the "Box" under the 60 marker until yesterday...........:)


#142969544151


I think point #5 is now the most accurate way to tell if a bezel is original or aftermarket.


You do realize the BB is probably taking notes...........lol
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
thanks Tom - edited for correctness, and added another observation about the marker at 140. And the fakers probably are keeping notes, but the only way we can be ahead of them is by sharing our knowledge...

Here's a slightly tweaked version of the AM bezel referenced with the block - I've rotated it a bit, upped the clarity and dropped the lighting and colour so as to highlight the differences.

 

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You have to admit, that appears to be a rather decent aftermarket bezel.
 

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Personally I believe the aftermarket are doing a great job supplying hard to get parts for old watches. I've been involved in classic car restorations which would not be possible without the aftermarket re-producing important parts. These manufacturers are often licensed by the car companies. Quite honestly I don't have a problem with am bezels if they are good (Yobokies for example). But there is a clear difference between aftermarket and fake. Fake dials are sold to deceive. An aftermarket bezel is only a fake if it is sold described as an original Seiko part.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You have to admit, that appears to be a rather decent aftermarket bezel.
Yeah, but it's still got the tells at 140 and 250 and probably others.

What I don't understand is, why can't the fakers take a genuine bezel and just make an *exact* copy of it? I'd have thought it would be only a little harder than trying to make a copy by recreating it vs just scanning it...

Of course, when the fakers *do* start knocking out perfect bezels, dials etc, and they are genuinely indistinguishable from the NOS real thing, then worn and discoloured dials, bezels etc will become more desirable because you'll know they _are_ the real thing :grin:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Personally I believe the aftermarket are doing a great job supplying hard to get parts for old watches. I've been involved in classic car restorations which would not be possible without the aftermarket re-producing important parts. These manufacturers are often licensed by the car companies. Quite honestly I don't have a problem with am bezels if they are good (Yobokies for example). But there is a clear difference between aftermarket and fake. Fake dials are sold to deceive. An aftermarket bezel is only a fake if it is sold described as an original Seiko part.
You're right, Jim - lots of other industries will happily see the coexistence of compatible aftermarket and "genuine"/OEM products. And in the case of bezels, hands, bracelets etc - who cares if they're aftermarket or genuine, really? Except that if you see a watch with a definite aftermarket item and the seller is saying it's "all original", then it's a great big warning sign to walk away...
 

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Personally I believe the aftermarket are doing a great job supplying hard to get parts for old watches. I've been involved in classic car restorations which would not be possible without the aftermarket re-producing important parts. These manufacturers are often licensed by the car companies. Quite honestly I don't have a problem with am bezels if they are good (Yobokies for example). But there is a clear difference between aftermarket and fake. Fake dials are sold to deceive. An aftermarket bezel is only a fake if it is sold described as an original Seiko part.

Not so sure, in the case of Volkswagen, after they threw in the towel for making any air-cooled parts, and an entire industry grew that pretty much has an AM part for mostly all restorations, VW came in and slapped lawsuits to cease and desist on a ton of small companies who were putting out products with their VW logo in a circle. Not only did it put a huge damper on getting good parts, it put a lot of good people out of business.
 

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Yes Pogue AM parts are getting very decent for sure in the last few years.


These tachy rings are another example of the AM being close to the OEM.


I agree it is good for the hobby in general. What we need are honest repro parts producers who market their wares truthfully.


Then the issue of 'how much of this Pogue I just bought is AM" comes into question. Oh well. Hobbies change like everything else in life. Caveat Emptor and Buy the Seller.
 

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This after market thing gives me a headache :)

Personally I don't like using after market parts but having said that in the past I have used inserts for the 6309/6105 etc and there good and much better than a totally knackered original but.....there after market, crystals I have no problem with them either or gaskets as these are service replacement parts but i'm not keen on big lumps like bezels etc masquerading as originals, custom bezels no problem for me as they are what they are and not pretending to be originals.

In the case of the 6139 after market bezels if you havent got an original then a after market is better than nothing but I wouldent want one that is identical to the original I would want one that looks superb but has a easy "tell" so you know what it is.

Take Larry's GL831, pretty much identical to the original but with plenty of markings to show you it isent original.
 

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One of the easiest ways to tell usually is if the bezels have a beveled edge or not. AM bezels never have the beveled edge. However i think some genuine early bezels might also not have the beveled edge. Can anyone elaborate on that?
 

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One of the easiest ways to tell usually is if the bezels have a beveled edge or not. AM bezels never have the beveled edge. However i think some genuine early bezels might also not have the beveled edge. Can anyone elaborate on that?

Sekosis's (aka BB) aftermarket bezels have both the box under 60 and the bevel on the underside,


#223051367661
 

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Not so sure, in the case of Volkswagen, after they threw in the towel for making any air-cooled parts, and an entire industry grew that pretty much has an AM part for mostly all restorations, VW came in and slapped lawsuits to cease and desist on a ton of small companies who were putting out products with their VW logo in a circle. Not only did it put a huge damper on getting good parts, it put a lot of good people out of business.





MG did that too :mad:


I have a '67 ('66 in the USA type1) Beetle and some MGBs / GTs
 

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This is a photo of a NOS bezel Russell/Seikozen owns and asked me to post for him.
I pray this post will not prove to be laden with bovine defecation. If so please excuse. Lord knows we have seen too much of that lately. Posting out of genuine curiosity as I purchased one exactly like it here on SCWF and it adorns my SpeedTimer -6031 now for what I consider an upgrade, but something has been bugging me since I got it. Now would the time to ask. So here goes:

I agree to it being a genuine -603X bezel above. Proper fonts and spacing, envelope and all that. FYI I purchased one just like that. Yet it has an interesting feature that I want to discuss - the "box under 60".

Pogue lore says this should supposedly be sign of a "newer Pepsi Pogue" bezel. Maybe introduced in 1974 or 1975 I seem to recall. Somebody chime in there.

I thought the last RESISTANT 6139-6032 using the coke bezel was produced generally 1973-ish but again I am no expert. Happy for a learned case back-tologist to jump in with proper facts.

So if -6032's production did indeed end before the accepted production dates when boxes started to appear under the 60 marker of pepsi style bezels, that would be interesting.

Ah, so much to learn ! So much to contemplate !
 

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Fake, right?

Seller was shifting these on and I bought one and subsequently cancelled....seller took 2 weeks to refund but probably something lost in translation...

Anyway glad I'm not into these so much as this is really quite a mess isn't it!
 

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What do you think about this 6005?

It looks correct to my novice eye (although the dial appears to have been relumed), but I defer to the experts....
 

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