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Old pocket watches assessment

Watchmakers of the past centuries works offered for sale for a variety of reasons – whether it’s uselessness is dusty attic grandfather clock or need to make changes in the direction of developing the collection. But anyway, the cash equivalent of vintage pocket and wrist watches for owners to part with them, as well as the amount requested for this entertaining micromechanics in many antique shops often do not correspond to the true timepieces value. However, not every collectioner has expertise in the field of watchmaking and, as a result, – exceptional clarity in regard to the vintage watches acquisition.

The rare gold timepiece

First of all, it should be noted that some oldest vintage pocket watches are of great artistic value, so they should be considered and estimated more as a piece of art (compared with exceptional exterior design, great finishes and exquisite decorative style in which sustained case, dial and arrows, etc., technical features such hours sometimes negligible).

In order to set the historical value of watches, it is necessary to clarify exactly when they were made, where and by whom were created (this can be a masterpiece of an unknown master, build their own miniature designs in single copies).

If it comes available in almost any specialty store models of mass production of  XIX – XX centuries, there are important mark of the manufacturer,  the total number of clocks produced by this company and the circulation of this model. Equally important are the information about the first owners of hours, which can sometimes be found, for example, surviving accompanying and/or payment documents, and a dedicatory inscription on the back cover or jacket hours.

The next step in the evaluation of vintage pocket watches is their degree of complexity.

The most interesting feature arrangements by several additional devices (eg, moon phases – integrated calendar device, repeater – a special mechanism designed to indicate time by sounds of different pitch, and chronograph – an additional mechanism for measuring the predetermined time intervals).

To assess the state of vintage watches (watches in general as well as enclosures and mechanisms separately) used four main categories: very poor, poor condition, good working condition or collector (perfect) condition. Particular attention is paid to the possibilities (and expediency!) Repair or restoration of hours, that is, to bring them into the perfect collector’s condition by cleaning, grease, polishing, special coating, as well as replacement, repair or manufacture of lost parts (restoration carried out only in rare specialized workshops).

For example, the state of the most commonly encountered today timepieces gathering items can be defined as the working poor or very poor. And if in the first case, you can still repair or even significantly raise the price of clocks of restoration, the second clock estimated no more than spare parts (and their gold or silver body – as scrap) recovery of these hours are much more expensive purchase exactly the same in good state.


Incidentally, contrary to popular belief,  state or pocket watches (precision, absence of defects and malfunctions, the safety of the accompanying documents, the original box, chain, the winding key, etc.) in the evaluation is more significant than the name of metals from which they are made, and the size of their precious housings. According to experts, the difference in the cost of identical clocks (the same brand and series) in the collection and a very poor condition up to 95%.
The most serious damage is considered vintage pocket watch broken enamel dial.

If the master or owner of the clock has not exactly the same part, it’s dificult to correct this problem: the enamel dial restoration is a very long, very difficult and very costly (the cost of work can strongly exceed the clock value),  and carried out only in exceptional cases. So, it makes sense to buy clock with a broken dial only if they set an interesting mechanism – with complex functions or a good brand (eg, Breguet and Patek Philippe).




Old pocket watches value
Works by masters of past centuries hour, in the great set of the existing today in the antique market, exhibited for sale for various reasons - whether it be unnecessary to cover with dust in the attic dedushkinyh hours or need to make changes in the direction of developing


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