Grail Timepieces: How the F&^% does this only cost $59???

Dudes and dudettes!

So, I just received my 3-watch roll travel case from @grailtimepieces.  This is a review.  I paid for this travel case with my own money, so ain't no paid sponsorship or shilling or whatever.

(Though, just as a note, I would LOVE to be a corporate shill!  Like, what an awesome job.  If I could have one job in the world, it would be to be like Paris Hilton.  Get paid millions to go around wearing free clothing and bags and shoes that people send to you!  Get paid millions to show up to random night clubs!  So, god, if you're there, please make me the next Paris Hilton.)

Here's my take:  How the F&^% does this only cost $59???  Like, seriously, @grailtimepieces, I don't mean to tell you your business, but I'm almost certain that you must be losing money on every sale, and if you lose money on every sale, you can't make it up with volume.  Pets.com and Webvan and countless others have tried it, and the empirical evidence seems to be that it doesn't work.

Now, take what I have to say with a grain of salt, because my only experience with watch rolls is having paid $29.99 for a handmade 3-watch leather roll off of Etsy.  It took 3 weeks for the thing to arrive.  When it did arrive, and I put my watches in it, it was like an extra large marshmallow.  It had no form, no structural integrity, and it would loll about on my dresser and then roll off, due to the imbalanced weight of my watches.  So, you know, I paid $29.99 to have 3 of my watches smash onto my hardwood floors.

Nonetheless, I do have experience with nice watch accessories.  All my watches go into Wolf winders, I'll spend obscene amounts of money on custom straps, and the build quality of this watch roll is such that if you'd told me it cost $400, I would totally believe you.  It's soft to the touch, the velvet on the inside feels super luxurious, but everything is also incredibly well structured and sturdy - ain't no lolling going on here.  The watch pillows slide into their slots with a very satisfying exactness.  The Saffino leather - what the hell is Saffino?  Some dude?  A type of cow? - is very high quality, and reminds me of how those ubiquitous Louis Vuitton bags feel.

(I only know what they feel like, because a co-worker had one, and I had to make fun of her for spending so much on a bag.  She then lectured me on handbags and quality Italian leather, and made me feel the leather to understand the difference between it and cheapo bags.  I kinda understand how other people feel now when I lecture them about high horology.)

OnTheGo MM Monogram - WOMEN - Handbags | LOUIS VUITTON ®

I'd thought about getting a nice watch roll in the past, but every time I've seen something nice online, via all the sites we all know, and influencers' shops, etc., etc., I could never get my head around paying $299 - $349 for a tube of leather.  Honestly, for $59, I sorta figured this watch roll might be one notch above my Etsy amoeba.  It ain't.  It's like a quantum leap in quality.  I suspect you're getting the same level of quality, if not higher, than the comparable roll on those other sites that charge 4x - 6x the price.

Anyway, if you need a watch roll, get this watch roll.  It's crazy good.  

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Dude! Don't tell them to raise the price until I buy one!

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Oh wow...thanks so much for posting your review @Omeganut!  I really appreciate all the kind things you have to say!

Also, I'd like to respond to a few of your points...

This is a passion project for me.  Technically, yes, it is a business and I am trying to turn a profit.  However, this is not how I feed my family so I don't need to squeeze every last dime out of each sale.  My goal was to make the highest quality, affordable watch roll available.  I feel like I've done that, but it's very reassuring reading your review.

I'm perfectly ok with coming out slightly ahead on each sale and also producing a high quality product that can fit any budget.

Yes, you would be correct, many other brands are the same quality with a price tag that is a multiple of these.

One of the reasons I wanted these to be really nice and affordable is because I feel like a lot (most if not all) watch accessory companies try to take advantage of watch collectors with exorbitant prices.  It's my suspicion that behind closed doors their meetings go something like this: "Watch collectors are rich and have a ton of disposable income so we should make our products really expensive to capitalize on that."

I'll quit rambling on, but I do appreciate you posting this review and sharing your experience...thank you!

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artman

Dude! Don't tell them to raise the price until I buy one!

The Black Friday price ends at midnight and then it's going to $299.99 😂

In all seriousness, there's no rush, I don't see the price going anywhere even after @Omeganut's post.

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Have had the same roll design in black as well as brown leather for about the same price on Amazon in 2020.. 
 

Whatever the Chinese source for these is, they are well made and very fairly priced as well as well packaged. Mine were $59 in 2020, still the same price on Amazon and branded "M-Mirage." Also they come in single and double watch rolls. 
 

bG8GJgZN7o0IvPX2g2DeqLedVljRW5vdplGGvoNt.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=9e42fd23c7c4c4eaa4c1b256f19c745e
H6p9bBAc0Q2fzn4o8Ksd44t6SCSn2TJwadmQVdvM.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=77b95798ce69cb70eb689fd3d2754214
WQBlVTZosLbBXoTztcbpwou4iRiweVUuaUmi7RLr.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=67d26249e626c9d614a2b313a460716e
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biglove

Have had the same roll design in black as well as brown leather for about the same price on Amazon in 2020.. 
 

Whatever the Chinese source for these is, they are well made and very fairly priced as well as well packaged. Mine were $59 in 2020, still the same price on Amazon and branded "M-Mirage." Also they come in single and double watch rolls. 
 

bG8GJgZN7o0IvPX2g2DeqLedVljRW5vdplGGvoNt.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=9e42fd23c7c4c4eaa4c1b256f19c745e
H6p9bBAc0Q2fzn4o8Ksd44t6SCSn2TJwadmQVdvM.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=77b95798ce69cb70eb689fd3d2754214
WQBlVTZosLbBXoTztcbpwou4iRiweVUuaUmi7RLr.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=67d26249e626c9d614a2b313a460716e

1 and 2 watch rolls coming soon...

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biglove

Have had the same roll design in black as well as brown leather for about the same price on Amazon in 2020.. 
 

Whatever the Chinese source for these is, they are well made and very fairly priced as well as well packaged. Mine were $59 in 2020, still the same price on Amazon and branded "M-Mirage." Also they come in single and double watch rolls. 
 

bG8GJgZN7o0IvPX2g2DeqLedVljRW5vdplGGvoNt.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=9e42fd23c7c4c4eaa4c1b256f19c745e
H6p9bBAc0Q2fzn4o8Ksd44t6SCSn2TJwadmQVdvM.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=77b95798ce69cb70eb689fd3d2754214
WQBlVTZosLbBXoTztcbpwou4iRiweVUuaUmi7RLr.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=67d26249e626c9d614a2b313a460716e

I can respect that you found a source for watch rolls that you feel is high quality and low cost.  However, the reality is that there is significant "search cost" associated with finding high quality / low cost items.  There are several ways that the market helps us overcome search costs:

  • Only the highest quality producers have the budget and longevity to make advertising and marketing worthwhile.  But, as a result, they must recoup those fixed costs, and prices for higher quality items tends to be much, much, much higher than the lower quality items
  • In ye olden days, retailers would curate for the consumer.  Thus, I could walk into a Macy's and know that whatever they carried, they would put their brand and their reputation behind.  Thus, I could purchase that item with the confident knowledge that it would be high quality
  • In the modern, Internet-mediated era, I can buy a watch roll from Bark & Jack or Jenni Elle or Hodinkee or Teddy Baldassarre, and once again, due to their need to maintain their reputations, they will carry high quality products.  Yet, once again, to recoup costs associated with all the content they produce, maintaining their website, etc., etc., the price they charge will necessarily be high
  • If I go to Amazon, and search on watch rolls, here are some of the results that I get:  
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biglove

Have had the same roll design in black as well as brown leather for about the same price on Amazon in 2020.. 
 

Whatever the Chinese source for these is, they are well made and very fairly priced as well as well packaged. Mine were $59 in 2020, still the same price on Amazon and branded "M-Mirage." Also they come in single and double watch rolls. 
 

bG8GJgZN7o0IvPX2g2DeqLedVljRW5vdplGGvoNt.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=9e42fd23c7c4c4eaa4c1b256f19c745e
H6p9bBAc0Q2fzn4o8Ksd44t6SCSn2TJwadmQVdvM.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=77b95798ce69cb70eb689fd3d2754214
WQBlVTZosLbBXoTztcbpwou4iRiweVUuaUmi7RLr.jpeg?h=320&ixlib=php-3.3.1&s=67d26249e626c9d614a2b313a460716e
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  • Now, maybe all 8 results there are AMAZING.  And, yet, I look at the OleksynPrannyk for $34.99, and here's what occurs to me:  "This is the same F&^%ing watch roll that almost shattered my White Birch, my Chronoscope, and my AVI 1953 Re-edition."  Yet, that listing has, what?  A 4.5 star rating from 98 reviews?
  • What this tells me is that what I consider high quality is very different from what the typical Amazon reviewer considers high quality.  Half the time when I buy random S&^% off Amazon, for $39.99 or $59.99, I expect it to be utter crap.  But, whatever.  I don't care that much.  It ain't gonna break the bank.  And worst case scenario, I can just donate it to our local school yard sale
  • My wife said, "Baby, maybe we should take more time to figure out what's actually stuff we want to buy and keep, because probably people give 5 stars to stuff on Amazon when it's cheap.  And what we're looking for is good."  She's probably right

Sorry for the long-winded diatribe, but all this is to say that I hate search costs.  Why?  Because the one and only non-renewable resource in this universe, as far as we know, is time.  I'm old, and I ain't got that much time left on this earth.

So, when an enthusiast comes on WatchCrunch, and participates in our discussions, and has insights and fun things to say, and then offers up a free watch roll giveaway, and then out of the blue a number of WC members get aggressive and attack that person in their thread?  I don't know!  I kinda take umbrage on behalf of that enthusiast!

I bought this watch roll from this enthusiast, because I trust that if you're an enthusiast, and you're geeky enough to participate heavily on this forum, you know what I, as an enthusiast, want in a watch roll.    

So, I'm happy that you found a watch roll on Amazon that suits your needs, but I think I'm gonna stick with this one.

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HotWatchChick69
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  • Now, maybe all 8 results there are AMAZING.  And, yet, I look at the OleksynPrannyk for $34.99, and here's what occurs to me:  "This is the same F&^%ing watch roll that almost shattered my White Birch, my Chronoscope, and my AVI 1953 Re-edition."  Yet, that listing has, what?  A 4.5 star rating from 98 reviews?
  • What this tells me is that what I consider high quality is very different from what the typical Amazon reviewer considers high quality.  Half the time when I buy random S&^% off Amazon, for $39.99 or $59.99, I expect it to be utter crap.  But, whatever.  I don't care that much.  It ain't gonna break the bank.  And worst case scenario, I can just donate it to our local school yard sale
  • My wife said, "Baby, maybe we should take more time to figure out what's actually stuff we want to buy and keep, because probably people give 5 stars to stuff on Amazon when it's cheap.  And what we're looking for is good."  She's probably right

Sorry for the long-winded diatribe, but all this is to say that I hate search costs.  Why?  Because the one and only non-renewable resource in this universe, as far as we know, is time.  I'm old, and I ain't got that much time left on this earth.

So, when an enthusiast comes on WatchCrunch, and participates in our discussions, and has insights and fun things to say, and then offers up a free watch roll giveaway, and then out of the blue a number of WC members get aggressive and attack that person in their thread?  I don't know!  I kinda take umbrage on behalf of that enthusiast!

I bought this watch roll from this enthusiast, because I trust that if you're an enthusiast, and you're geeky enough to participate heavily on this forum, you know what I, as an enthusiast, want in a watch roll.    

So, I'm happy that you found a watch roll on Amazon that suits your needs, but I think I'm gonna stick with this one.

Apologies if this last reply was less than perfectly gentlemanly.  Unfortunately, I had just gone back to the original watch roll giveaway post, read through all the commentary, and found a couple of posts incredibly aggressive and rude.  

So, apologies.  I think my persona on here is that of the guy who's always striving to lighten the mood and make fart jokes at every opportunity.  But, I think those comments on that other thread got my autonomic system riled up.

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HotWatchChick69
Image
  • Now, maybe all 8 results there are AMAZING.  And, yet, I look at the OleksynPrannyk for $34.99, and here's what occurs to me:  "This is the same F&^%ing watch roll that almost shattered my White Birch, my Chronoscope, and my AVI 1953 Re-edition."  Yet, that listing has, what?  A 4.5 star rating from 98 reviews?
  • What this tells me is that what I consider high quality is very different from what the typical Amazon reviewer considers high quality.  Half the time when I buy random S&^% off Amazon, for $39.99 or $59.99, I expect it to be utter crap.  But, whatever.  I don't care that much.  It ain't gonna break the bank.  And worst case scenario, I can just donate it to our local school yard sale
  • My wife said, "Baby, maybe we should take more time to figure out what's actually stuff we want to buy and keep, because probably people give 5 stars to stuff on Amazon when it's cheap.  And what we're looking for is good."  She's probably right

Sorry for the long-winded diatribe, but all this is to say that I hate search costs.  Why?  Because the one and only non-renewable resource in this universe, as far as we know, is time.  I'm old, and I ain't got that much time left on this earth.

So, when an enthusiast comes on WatchCrunch, and participates in our discussions, and has insights and fun things to say, and then offers up a free watch roll giveaway, and then out of the blue a number of WC members get aggressive and attack that person in their thread?  I don't know!  I kinda take umbrage on behalf of that enthusiast!

I bought this watch roll from this enthusiast, because I trust that if you're an enthusiast, and you're geeky enough to participate heavily on this forum, you know what I, as an enthusiast, want in a watch roll.    

So, I'm happy that you found a watch roll on Amazon that suits your needs, but I think I'm gonna stick with this one.

Have no doubt this gentleman's rolls are of a nice quality. Same Chinese source as the Mirage rolls, no doubt. 
 

Appreicate a free giveaway. Nothing wrong with that. 
 

But to claim these as a original design is fluff at best and dishonesty at worst. That is what is at issue. Not the giveaway, not the quality but the way these were presented. 
 

Imagine I present my new watch "company," and claim it took me a year to design the watches. Turns out they are Bernhardt watches that I have had my own logo put on. I didn't create anything, I just had my label placed on a preexisting product. 

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Coming into this late, but saw the original post yesterday and knew right away it was the same drop shipper as Mirage. Everything is identical except the stamped logo. Not saying that is a bad thing, whoever is manufacturing them for this company, Mirage, and others are in fact making nice roles. I gave two Wolf rolls away after getting a Mirage, that is how much better I think they are, but ultimately, they are a quality dropshipped product.  

To Omeganaut's point, most of the youtubers are doing the same thing. It is finding the right source and if they are willing to spend a little more, they can get a slightly individualized product. Either way, for the money, these rolls are a lot of value.  

Edit; I think like many generic watch releases on Kickstarter, etc.  When a "creator" comes up with a story dedicated to research, testing, etc, when it is clearly a restamped product, that is when it upsets people.  To me, be honest; "Hey many of you like these style cases, but perhaps you do not like "Mirage" because it looks an awful lot like the casino logo, so here is one with an arguably better logo." I would be okay with that, because again, these are quality rolls for less than $100. No one is going to mistake it for a Bosphorus role, but for a cheap bang around roll, hard to beat.   

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AllTheWatches

Coming into this late, but saw the original post yesterday and knew right away it was the same drop shipper as Mirage. Everything is identical except the stamped logo. Not saying that is a bad thing, whoever is manufacturing them for this company, Mirage, and others are in fact making nice roles. I gave two Wolf rolls away after getting a Mirage, that is how much better I think they are, but ultimately, they are a quality dropshipped product.  

To Omeganaut's point, most of the youtubers are doing the same thing. It is finding the right source and if they are willing to spend a little more, they can get a slightly individualized product. Either way, for the money, these rolls are a lot of value.  

Edit; I think like many generic watch releases on Kickstarter, etc.  When a "creator" comes up with a story dedicated to research, testing, etc, when it is clearly a restamped product, that is when it upsets people.  To me, be honest; "Hey many of you like these style cases, but perhaps you do not like "Mirage" because it looks an awful lot like the casino logo, so here is one with an arguably better logo." I would be okay with that, because again, these are quality rolls for less than $100. No one is going to mistake it for a Bosphorus role, but for a cheap bang around roll, hard to beat.   

Perfectly said. I can vouch for the quality of these, regardless of name stamped on them. 

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AllTheWatches

Coming into this late, but saw the original post yesterday and knew right away it was the same drop shipper as Mirage. Everything is identical except the stamped logo. Not saying that is a bad thing, whoever is manufacturing them for this company, Mirage, and others are in fact making nice roles. I gave two Wolf rolls away after getting a Mirage, that is how much better I think they are, but ultimately, they are a quality dropshipped product.  

To Omeganaut's point, most of the youtubers are doing the same thing. It is finding the right source and if they are willing to spend a little more, they can get a slightly individualized product. Either way, for the money, these rolls are a lot of value.  

Edit; I think like many generic watch releases on Kickstarter, etc.  When a "creator" comes up with a story dedicated to research, testing, etc, when it is clearly a restamped product, that is when it upsets people.  To me, be honest; "Hey many of you like these style cases, but perhaps you do not like "Mirage" because it looks an awful lot like the casino logo, so here is one with an arguably better logo." I would be okay with that, because again, these are quality rolls for less than $100. No one is going to mistake it for a Bosphorus role, but for a cheap bang around roll, hard to beat.   

I don't want to belabor the point, but after looking through the Mirage watch rolls, I don't believe that they're the same.  The leather looks significantly different - the Saffino dude makes different leather, or the Saffino cow is different from the Mirage Cow?  Whatever.

Regardless, I would say the following:

  1.  There is no call to be rude and aggressive in any post anywhere on WatchCrunch.  I think the reason we all came here was to get away from that kind of behavior elsewhere on the Internet
  2.  Some people may have issues with how things are marketed.  That's fine.  Those people are free to feel howsoever they want to feel about whatever they want.  But, the moment the commentary becomes rude and aggressive, I will absolutely avail myself of the "report" functionality on this site
  3.  Finally, I would ask that if anyone has rude or aggressive commentary, please feel free to start your own thread and make those comments elsewhere, but certainly not in my thread, yeah?  I'm here to make fart jokes and enjoy others' enthusiasm, not to participate in unsubstantiated accusations against other forum members
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HotWatchChick69

I don't want to belabor the point, but after looking through the Mirage watch rolls, I don't believe that they're the same.  The leather looks significantly different - the Saffino dude makes different leather, or the Saffino cow is different from the Mirage Cow?  Whatever.

Regardless, I would say the following:

  1.  There is no call to be rude and aggressive in any post anywhere on WatchCrunch.  I think the reason we all came here was to get away from that kind of behavior elsewhere on the Internet
  2.  Some people may have issues with how things are marketed.  That's fine.  Those people are free to feel howsoever they want to feel about whatever they want.  But, the moment the commentary becomes rude and aggressive, I will absolutely avail myself of the "report" functionality on this site
  3.  Finally, I would ask that if anyone has rude or aggressive commentary, please feel free to start your own thread and make those comments elsewhere, but certainly not in my thread, yeah?  I'm here to make fart jokes and enjoy others' enthusiasm, not to participate in unsubstantiated accusations against other forum members

Well said sir. I never joined WUS for that reason.
 

I always dismissed Mirage when I ran into them on Amazon, but then he started selling them on etsy and he had a different selection, which more closely aligns with the product from Grail, albeit at a higher cost, probably due to colors, but literally add any of his products to a watch list you get a significant discount offer from him.  That said, his service is awesome, I will give him that.  Either way, Mirage, Grail, etc, I stand by my statement; better than any Wolf roll I have owned.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/1062658648/leather-watch-roll-case-3-watchtravel?click_key=bf7b3ab8731060073fe79ca2f8a2d4e688aa4221%3A1062658648&click_sum=f7b2ad28&ref=shop_home_active_4&frs=1

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I will instantly throw my money at whichever of these makers makes a vegan option with red interior.