Watch Specialist, Watch Book Writer, Founder of Forumamontres
Joël Duval is a real watch lover whose passion began with his grandfather, who repaired pocket watches: sometimes, he used them secretly.
In 2005, Joël has created Forumamontres, the n°1 francophone forum.
In 2015, he published a book by Albin Michel on the history of the Zenith manufacture.
He has written and still writes many articles on watches for various magazines.
1. Do you remember your first watch?
I remember very well this very first watch that my mother had given to me for my 8th birthday. It was a KELTON watch, with a red second hand and a plastic bracelet. I was very sad when it broke down after 5 or 6 years. I was the only kid in my class to wear a watch.
2. The 3 most iconic watch models?
If we only have to mention three, I’ll say the Reverso, the Speedmaster and the Navitimer.
3. A noteworthy anecdote with one of your watches?
When I was 10 years old in 1969, I dreamed every day in front of a shop window where a watchmaker had a cardboard cosmonaut wearing a real OMEGA Speedmaster on the wrist. Eight years ago, I returned to the city of my childhood. The son of the watchmaker took over the business of his father, but he moved the shop. I was lucky enough to find the new shop, and spoke with him about this story. We are about the same age… He opened a safe that was in the old store of his father… The watch was brand new, and had only been worn by the cardboard cosmonaut. I could not contain my emotion and he sold it to me: I was able to buy this watch new, 40 years later…
4. Are you more modern or vintage?
Both, I wear both contemporary watches and vintage pieces.
5. I love Speedmasters because …
I followed the lunar space adventure live. I was ten years old and I was passionate about this event to the point of cutting all the newspapers that I found for each mission. The Speedmaster was part of the lunar conquest. This watch is a witness of the greatest mankind adventure.
6. Your favorite Speedmaster?
The ones with straight lugs and a 321 caliber with its column wheel.
7. A single personal item you would take with you for a long stay on the Moon?
A folding knife. A piece made by one of my friends who is Meilleur Ouvrier de France. But maybe I would hide a Speedmaster in my pocket at the time of boarding.
8. You just won the lottery. Do you first buy a sports car or call a financial advisor?
None. I’m able to advise myself and I’m not interested in sports cars. Let’s say that I would start with a month to the Seychelles, a place that I really love.
9. Where would you spend the next 24 hours if you had a teleporter?
I would go see my father again in 1998 before he disappeared.
10. How many times a day do you watch … your watch?
It depends on what I’m doing… but I often look at my watch – not really to check the time. I think it could be around 20 times a day.
11. The last watch you bought?
It was yesterday: a silver EBEL pocket watch.
12. What’s on your wrist today?
Today, I’m wearing a LIP Nautic Ski. This is the reissue of a 1968 watch in a self-winding version. It brings back many memories.