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Letters to GP: July 2014


You guys really like to write — and not quick half-baked emails cobbled together over lunch. We’re talking real letters here, detailed ones with intros and critical reviews of what we’ve been up to along with some to-the-point memorandums. The point is, we appreciate your thoughtfulness, and we were glad to hear back you guys regarding affordable watches, imported stogies and the Lone Star BBQ.

Got a burning question, a great idea, serious concerns or just feel like reaching out? Please send your emails to sayhello [at] gearpatrol.com and help us keep the conversation going.

Your Letters

Re: Want this, get this watch inquiry

Hello all!

You guys have a great selection of articles. One I particularly enjoy is “Want this, Get this”. For many years I dreamed of owning a Rolex submariner but it was beyond my budget. I’ve been very happy with my Steinhart Ocean 1 vintage model to quench my submariner thirst. My grail watch is a Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph. While the least expensive perpetual calendar still resides in the realm of haute horology; what budget conscious watch would you recommend? Thank you for your time and help in advance. Keep up the fantastic job!


GP: The perpetual calendar, or Quantieme Perpetual, remains the pinnacle of watchmaking achievement… and prices of those available reflect this, as you’ve noted. This week, we ran a Want This, Get This post that featured a Patek QP and a more “budget conscious” rendition by Montblanc. While the Montblanc is certainly not a bargain for most guys’ budgets, it is at least a watch an average working man could aspire to without buying weekly lottery tickets or blowing $12,000 on a fishing boat.

best-texas-bbq-gear-patrol-animation-lead- A Salute to Texas BBQ
Re: The Lone Star Smokeshow: 6 Must-Eats on the Texas BBQ Trail

Barbecue can be a divisive subject as you so alluded in your article, and I posit this is most evident in Texas, central Texas to be more specific. Leave it to the hipster jihad of Californians moving throughout Austin with their omniscience of all things cultural and culinary to further oxidize the embers left from the conflagrations of family infighting of the Muellers and Kreuz/Smitty clans. Your suggestions are spot on…as are your notable omissions.

I thank you for saluting some of the stalwarts in Texas barbecue. Hunting trips out to San Angelo made complete by a stop at Cooper’s, weekends out at a buddy’s property near Taylor/Circleville fortified by Mueller’s (and red hotdogs and beer from the Circleville Store), and making the most of the Salt Lick’s BYOB policy throughout high school; growing up in Austin could have been worse.

I’ll tell the wife I found a short cut through Dawson the next time we head north on 35.

Thanks for the good read.


Avant-Garde-Gear-Patrol-Lead- A Dispute about Price
Re: Avant-Garde Watches on a Budget

Hey guys,

Love the site. It’s an incredibly poignant, useful and helpful place to go. I learn a lot on your site just by virtue of covering what you cover.

That said, seeing an article that says “affordable watches”, and then looking over the list and seeing that the watches are actually between $960 to $13,000 makes me believe you can do better. That’s not affordable (to me at least anyway). $500 to $900, sure that’s a little bit more in range for the “everyman” but I was surprised and disappointed to look through that list for something relatively attainable, only to find that the majority of the list of watches is over $1,500. There is nothing about a watch that costs as much as a Honda Civic that is remotely affordable.

Like I said, I was surprised because I come to expect a lot, and this was unusual. Keep up the great work, I love the site other than this unusual occurrence.



GP: The term “affordable” is a tricky one, especially with timepieces, as evidenced by the feedback we get from readers as regularly as clockwork. Everyone has a budget; not all allow for the purchase of an $8,000 watch. Still, for some, a luxury watch is not unattainable. The fact of the matter is, a lot of the watches that are the most interesting tend to also have several zeros in their prices. The trick for us is to strike a balance, walking the line between aspirational products and practical ones. It’s for this reason we also test drive Ferraris and also Subarus. But we’re not deaf to the requests of readers: next week we’re kicking off a new Timekeeping series called “Time is Money” that will focus on interesting sub-$1,000 watches that we hope will be considered affordable to all our readers.

california-drawer-gear-patrol-lead A Legality Issue
Re: Kit: The California Drawer


I love your site and find it a great read on a regular basis, however, I have an issue with a recent post. Last time I checked Cuban cigars were still illegal in the United States. Yet I noticed that you included a Cuban cigar in your list of essential desk drawer kit in a recent post. While not Cuban myself, I do have friends that are, and I know how strongly they and members of their family feel about the regime in Cuba.

Still a fan, just disappointed.


Matt Turner

best-chefs-knives-gear-patrol-lead-full Brought Together by Knives
Re: Prime Cut: 6 Best Chef’s Knives

Hey there,

Just read your sharpening article by the owner of Bernal… Love the website.

I’m a knife maker in Georgia specializing in hand forged carbon steel blades and handles that utilize reclaimed lumber. I am curious if you ever need subject for editorial… if so, please let me know.

Many regards,

Will Manning

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