For all of those who are thinking about buying a vintage watch of high class need to know a few things to look out for. There are, unfortunately, many pitfalls and it can all end up with you paying a lot of money for a watch worth less than half of what you have paid. To make things easier Marcels Watch Group will here give you a few pointers.
“Frankenwatch” means that you put together a movement or a whole watch from many different watches. It’s a common way to repair old watchers to which it can be tricky to find the correct spare parts. Thus, even if the watch is running well this way of working is not very reliable since different parts suits different movements in a certain way. Problems will arise when someone uses parts from the same size movements but different calibers. As stated above, the watch may run well for now just like Frankenstein himself did, but in the long run this is not reliable. The best way to avoid this is to make sure that the stated caliber in your watch matches the model its supposed to be. If this is correct you look at the color match inside the movement (the movement should have almost identical color through all parts (of course, some exceptions do exist)). If this seems ok you should make sure that the texts match the certain caliber, for instance, an Omega CAL 564 should not have any text stating other than “24 jewels”. You need some fundamental knowledge to be able to do this.
“Re-dial” or “Re-printed” means just as it states that the dial is remade. Maybe not the entire dial but the varnish and or the texts, index, logos, etc. The dial is one of the most valuable parts on the old watch. Is it remade the whole watch will lose value. There are several companies and persons who today working with reprinting dials but most of the time the result is not as good as the original and most of the times you can spot it. Some pointers to find redials are:
- Check the numbers and letters in all prints, do they look the same throughout the whole watch?
- Look at the index markers (not the index themselves), are the evenly spread and are the positions straight in front of the index?
- Are the texts centered compared to the rest of the parts of the dial or do they seem to be crooked or tilting?
“Polished cases” are cases that are grinded to get rid of scratches and other traces of use. It can be ok when it is made by the authorized watch shop for the certain brand. The main issue with polishing arises when the watch is over polished. The size and form of the watch changes and markings like case number or serial number are thinned or in all disappeared. Sometimes even logos are erased.