Collector’s guide on buying a vintage watch (Pt.3)
Collector's guide on buying a vintage watch (Pt.3)
The world of vintage watches is as rich with true finds as it is riddled with “Frankenwatches”, this we’ve established in our last article. No matter your age or experience in the watch world, everyone must be alert and careful so as not to make a misstep.
Error to avoid: Saving a few bucks at the cost of quality
Previously, I talked about the pertinence of Wabi-Sabi, the Japanese aesthetic philosophy interpreting the “imperfections” of an object as something authentically beautiful. Like patina on a dial for example…which can be literally exquisite.
However, the Wabi-Sabi concept doesn’t mean that all defects should be accepted! Some collectors tend to buy at low prices, and in turn sacrificing quality. Big mistake…huge. A beautiful patina can be an added value, provided however that it is homogeneous and that it’s harmonious with the overall aesthetics of a piece.
The so-called “lacquered” dials, which are very fragile, have an unfortunate tendency to crack over time. It’s necessary to differentiate between cracked “Spider” dials (which ressembles a spider web) and ones sought after by collectors for their aesthetics.
Another example, the so-called “Watchco” from Omega. These timepieces are much more affordable than old ones and in better general condition. There are different Seamaster models made with original “New Old Stock (NOS)” parts in perfect condition.
My advice is to opt for the original models. True and authentic vintage timepieces with a genuine story to tell are much more sought after by collectors.
Only after verifying these different elements can we then allow ourselves to be guided by our hearts for the final choice. As always, give precedence to the origine of a timepiece instead of having to retrace a long path due to a defect which in reality may not even be one…
Happy hunting to all!