Vintage watches are all the rage, and fakes have flooded the market. In this era, most people want the next best shiny gadget, and some want a keepsake from a different era. If you are the type that values vintage, then you need to know a few things before hunting for a vintage watch. The best timepieces do not come cheap, and it is up to you to either spend thousands on an expensive new piece or take more time to look for a vintage timepiece. You might want one made in the year you were born, or for various sentimental reasons. Here are a few tips that will help you while buying a vintage watch.
You might get tempted to buy a vintage watch displayed in an antique dealer’s shop. Buying on impulse is the worst thing you can ever make. You must do your research before purchasing a vintage watch. Some vintage watches have a price tag of up to $10,000, and this is not money you want to blow without thorough research.
Before buying anything, go online and find out as much as you can about the watch you want. Go to authority websites on the model or brand you want. If the watch is a major brand, such as Danish watch brands, this search becomes much more comfortable. Offline, you can find books written on vintage brand collections such as iconic watches, chronographs, diving watches, etc.
These books are available on websites such as WatchPrint and on Amazon or E-bay, where you can find books that are no longer in print. Make price comparisons of watches at different watch shops, either online or in physical shops. Pay close attention to tiny details such as the similarity in the hands, dial printing, etc.
Find Like-Minded People
The internet has made it easy to connect with like-minded people. They often share knowledge and passion for their preferred brands. Look up, watch forums on the internet and find out what other people have posted. Before asking any questions, search on the forum because most of the questions already have answers posted. If you have already identified a watch, attach a few pictures and state which model, the specific caliber and reference number if possible. These details allow the experts to give you accurate answers. Give opinions and share experiences to help others as well.
Contact The Manufacturer
Most watch brands retain an archive of their past productions. Some of the brands, upon request and payment, you might get an archives extraction about a brand’s tear of production, the number of watches produced, country of destination, and reference or case number. It would help if you were patient, as this will take time, considering they get these questions from many collectors. Wait two weeks, and if there is no response, send them a friendly reminder.
Find A Knowledgeable Watchmaker
Next to reading a lot, a watchmaker is the way to go. Look for one who works for a retailer or an independent one. Look for a watchmaker with numerous references, and find out if they can source for replacement parts. Ask the watchmaker about prices, and how long repairing or servicing watches takes. Since some vintage parts are hard to one by, repairs may take longer, while some parts are no longer available and may have to be fashioned from scratch. Ask how much the watchmaker can do, and what he cannot do, ask for referrals to other colleagues. Some watchmakers may only have specific specialties and skillsets, and it does not hurt to ask.
Find the Right Price
Prices vary on similar watches, and the essential thing is comparing your selected watch to others in the market by looking at online-watch market platforms or checking for offers in watch shops. If it is not too much above the market price, and you are satisfied with it, it does not hurt. You, however, do not need to pay too much for a watch that is not worth the amount, so make sure you compare. Ask if the seller will give you a guarantee in case it does not function as it should, or you find out it is not an original. Ensure you buy from a reputable watchmaker.
Buying a vintage watch needs patience. You have to do some online and offline research by joining online forums and purchasing books. Ask questions on the forums and look for a watchmaker who can answer most of your questions in regard to repairs.