A Guide to Buying Vintage Watches in ChicagoBack to News & Exhibitions
There’s something quite thrilling about finding a quality vintage or pre-owned watch. While finding the perfect vintage watch isn’t a science, it can be a tricky idea for those who have never done it before. So, whether you’re in search of an investment, would like to expand your watch collection, or simply want to become more well-versed in vintage watches, this guide will tell you everything you need to know:
1. Identify the age of the watch
First thing’s first, you will need to know the difference between a vintage watch and an antique watch. A vintage watch is one that’s at least 25 years old, while an antique piece is over 100 years old. You can sometimes use a serial number from the watch to find out the specific age. This is very useful as it can help you discover how many of each watch model was produced, which will help you estimate its value.
2.Recognize the value of watch movements
It’s also important to consider the watch movement, which is the parts moving within the casing. If you are in search of a collectable item, then a mechanical watch movement tends to be the most desirable, as it indicates to the time-intensive crafting that went into its construction.
Quartz watches, in which the movement is powered by a battery and regulated by a crystal, tend to be less collectible. However, some may fetch high prices, particularly if they were crafted from unique materials or sport a rare design.
3. Recognize the value of certain materials
It’s important to know the value of certain materials, as the value of a precious metal is relative to the age of a watch, determining whether it is vintage or not. So, if a watch was developed after 1985, then it is more likely that platinum was the most valuable and desired material at the time it was designed. This would then have been followed by pink, white, and yellow golds.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that it’s the most expensive precious metals that carry the highest price tag. Rarity and scarcity are often a bigger factor in deciding the value, rather than just the cost of the materials used to produce it. For example, a steel chronograph watch from the 1940s could be much more desirable than a gold one, due to the rarity of that design. Try to look for materials that are no longer around, such as Burmese rubies or red coral. These materials will increase the value of a vintage watch.
By considering these factors when buying a vintage watch, you can be sure you will be purchasing something of quality.