With the vintage watch craze sweeping through continents and many collectors jumping onto the bandwagon without having a clear whole picture in mind, we would like to share with you guys what we think is some important things you should take note of and think about before making your first vintage watch purchase.
Stepping into the world of vintage watch collection, you have to lower your expectations on the condition of the watches. Surviving the test of time of at least 40 years, most watches will come with hairlines scratches on their case, crystals and original bracelet (that is if you are lucky enough to get them with their original bracelet).
Do however avoid watches with major dings on their cases, over-polishing, damaged dials and movement.
Let alone vintage watches, even contemporary watches of certain age have problem keeping water out of the case. Waterproofing should not be expected from vintage watches due to multiple reasons; deformed/worned/aged case back, crystal and gaskets just to name a few. Finding replacement gaskets will also be an issue.
That said, it is possible to get some watch “splash-proof” after gasket replacement and pressure testing from a competent watchmaker.
Unlike contemporary watches, not all watch companies accept their vintages watches from their own company for servicing (eg. Seiko). Same applies for watchmakers, they do not take in vintage watches for servicing as well due to the lack of knowledge and parts.
With replacement parts remaining a huge issue for watch servicing, it is therefore wise to get a watch in good running condition.
In summary, it is important to read up and understand your own needs when you plan on your vintage watch purchase. Be an informed buyer to avoid any rude shock after purchase.