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  • Universal Genève Compax

    Universal Genève

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  • Tudor Advisor Vintage

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    Bubble Back

    from $1,948
  • Omega Seamaster Vintage

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    Seamaster Vintage

    from $567
  • Movado Vintage

    Movado

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    from $589
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    Eberhard & Co.

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    from $1,793
  • Breitling Navitimer Vintage

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    Navitimer Vintage

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Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 15505 Good Gold/Steel 34mm Automatic United States of America, Florida, 34242
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date
$3,999
Verified Dealer
 
US
Piaget Malachite Dial Open Work Textured "Manchette" Bangle Watch Unworn Yellow gold Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York, New York
TOP
Piaget Rare 1970s Malachite 18kt "Manchette" Cuff Bangle Watch
$56,500
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
30
US
Vacheron Constantin French Case Very good Rose gold 34mm Automatic
TOP
Vacheron Constantin French Case Automatic 18K Pink Gold Rose...
$8,087
Verified Dealer
561
DE
Longines 7412-5 Good Steel 38mm Manual winding United States of America, California, San Francisco
TOP
Longines Chronograph flyback (with extract from the archives)
$5,700
Verified Dealer
 
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1503 Very good Yellow gold 34mm Automatic United States of America, California, Marina Del Rey
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 18kt Yellow Gold Mens Vintage Watch
$4,495
Verified Dealer
59
US
Rolex Air King Precision 5500 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic United States of America, California, Pasadena
TOP
Rolex Vintage Air-King model 5500, 1 Year Warranty + Bonus Straps
$2,345
Verified Dealer
 
US
Rolex Datejust 16013 Very good Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Mens Datejust 36 Carbon Fiber Diamond Dial SS/18kt Box...
$4,987
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Rolex Day-Date 36 1803 Very good White gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Mckinney
TOP
Rolex 1803 Rare Purple Diamond Dial unique band, 18k wg bracelet
$21,233
Verified Dealer
5
US
Tudor Prince Date Very good Gold/Steel 34mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Tudor Men's Prince Date ref.740001 34mm Gold-Capped Automatic...
$2,300
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1501 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic United States of America, California, Los Angeles
TOP
Rolex 34mm 14k Yellow Gold Date 1501 VINTAGE w/ Brown Leather...
$4,900
Verified Dealer
14
US
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex GMT Master 1675 w Service paper
$17,932
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Rolex Sea-Dweller 1665 Very good Steel Automatic
Rolex Sea-Dweller 1665 Tritium
$17,932
Verified Dealer
14
DE
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3893J Very good Yellow gold 33mm United States of America, Massachusetts, Chatham
Patek Philippe Yellow Gold Calatrava, Ref. 3893j
$9,500
Verified Dealer
14
US
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Jumbo 5402 Very good Steel 39mm United States of America, New York, New York
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak
$85,000
Verified Dealer
5
US
Rolex Day-Date 36 18038 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Rolex 18K Day Date President Champagne Index Single Quickset...
$11,599
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
53
US
Rolex 69174 69160 69240 Good Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26 Rhodium Roman Dial Fluted Bezel Boxes...
$3,665
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Rolex Day-Date 5314966 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date President 18038 Mens Watch
$10,999
Verified Dealer
366
US
Omega Very good Steel 37mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Omega Men's Omega Ref.2505 37mm Manual Wind, c,1950s Vintage...
$3,300
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Datejust 1601 Very good Steel 36mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Rolex Datejust 36MM, Diamond Dial, Green
$4,000
Verified Dealer
56
US
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Steel 36mm Manual winding
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 from 1964
$48,589
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1500 Good Gold/Steel 35mm Automatic United States of America, New York, Massapequa
Rolex 1500
$5,999
Verified Dealer
26
US
Patek Philippe Calatrava 570 Very good White gold 35.5mm United States of America, Massachusetts, Chatham
Patek Philippe White Gold Calatrava Ref. 570g
$38,000
Verified Dealer
14
US
Patek Philippe Hour Glass 1593 Good Yellow gold Manual winding United States of America, Illinois, Chicago
Patek Philippe Hour Glass
$13,495
Verified Dealer
8
US
Rolex Lady-Datejust 69173 Very good Gold/Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Rolex Ladies 18K/SS Datejust Champagne Diamond Fluted Jubilee
$3,899
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
53
US
Rolex Lady-Datejust 69173 79173 Very good Gold/Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26 Tahitian MOP Diamond Dial Bezel Boxes...
$4,764
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Rolex Lady-Datejust 69178 Very good Yellow gold 26mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust 69178 18K Yellow Gold Presiden...
$6,099
Verified Dealer
366
US
Tudor Prince Oysterdate Very good Steel 22mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Tudor Ladies Princess Oysterdate Ref.7981 22mm Automatic,...
$2,100
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Submariner (No Date) 5512 Good Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, Georgia, ATLANTA
Rolex Submariner (No Date)
$18,500
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
36
US
Rolex Daytona 6263 Very good Yellow gold 40mm United States of America, New York, New York
Rolex Daytona
Price on request
Verified Dealer
5
US
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3923 Very good Steel 32mm Manual winding United States of America, Massachusetts, Boston
TOP
Patek Philippe Stainless Steel Calatrava (Very RARE only 150...
$13,900
Private Seller
 
US
Patek Philippe Golden Ellipse 4226/2G Very good White gold Manual winding United States of America, Massachusetts, Chatham
Patek Philippe White Gold Ref. 4226/2
$7,500
Verified Dealer
14
US
Patek Philippe Beta 21 3587/2 Very good Yellow gold 42mm Quartz United States of America, Illinois, Chicago
Patek Philippe 3787
$27,495
Verified Dealer
8
US
Rolex Day-Date 36 18038 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Rolex 18K Day Date President Champagne Diamond Single Quickset
$12,449
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
53
US
Rolex 69174 69240 69190 Good Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26 White MOP Diamond Dial Bezel Boxes Books
$5,093
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1503 Good Yellow gold 34mm Automatic United States of America, New Jersey, Oradell
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date - Jubilee - 14k Gold - 1503
$7,995
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
404
US
Piaget Very good 30mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Piaget Men's Piaget ref.9591 30mm 18k Gold Manual Wind...
$3,900
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 Fair Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, Georgia, ATLANTA
Rolex GMT-Master 'Pepsi'
$17,500
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
36
US
Rolex Datejust 1601 Very good Steel 36mm Automatic
Rolex Datejust 1601
$4,628
Verified Dealer
16
FR
Rolex Datejust 16013 Good Gold/Steel 36mm Manual winding United States of America, Iowa, Bettendorf
TOP
Rolex Datejust
$3,950
Private Seller
 
US
Rolex Day-Date 36 18038 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, Michigan, Southfield
Rolex Day-Date 18038 18KT Gold 36mm Black Diamond Dial
$12,500
Verified Dealer
5
US
Vacheron Constantin Patrimony 6318 Very good Red gold 33,5mm Manual winding
TOP
Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Superflat 18K Gold Rosé Rotgold...
$5,194
Verified Dealer
561
DE
Rolex Lady-Datejust 69173 Very good Gold/Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Rolex Ladies 18K/SS Datejust White Roman Fluted Jubilee 69173
$3,599
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
53
US
Rolex Lady-Datejust 69178 Very good Yellow gold 26mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Lady-President DateJust 26 White MOP Diamond Dial Box Books
$8,271
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Rolex GMT-Master ROLEX GMT-MASTER II YG BLACK DIAL JUBILLE 1978 - REF 1675/8 Good Yellow gold 40mmmm Automatic United States of America, Florida, Miami
Rolex Gmt-master Ii Yg Black Dial Jubille 1675/8
$28,950
Verified Dealer
 
US
Vacheron Constantin Very good Yellow gold 33mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Vacheron Constantin Men's Vacheron & Constantin 18K Gold Dress...
$5,400
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Yellow gold 37mm Manual winding
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 14k gold w certificate
$127,257
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Rolex Submariner Date 1680 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Rolex Submariner Date 1680 Vintage Stainless Steel Year 1978
$9,999
Verified Dealer
73
US
Rolex Datejust 16013 Good Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic United States of America, California, San Diego
TOP
Rolex Datejust
$4,500
Private Seller
 
US
Patek Philippe 3523/1G Very good White gold 30mm United States of America, Massachusetts, Chatham
Patek Philippe White Gold Bracelet Watch Ref. 3523/1g
$12,000
Verified Dealer
14
US
Omega Constellation 168005/6 Automatic Chronometer Very good Yellow gold 35mm Automatic
TOP
Omega Constellation Pie Pan 18K Gold Gelbgold Automatik
$4,616
Verified Dealer
561
DE
Omega Omega Pocket Watch with Sub Seconds Good Steel Manual winding United States of America, Florida, Bradenton
Omega 121.1740
$995
Verified Dealer
10
US
Rolex 69174 69240 69190 Good Steel 26mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, HARRISBURG
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26 Boxes Papers White MOP Diamond Dial Bezel
$5,169
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
99
US
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3429 Good Rose gold Automatic United States of America, Connecticut, Greenwich
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3429
$15,000
Verified Dealer
16
US
Tissot Very good Steel 42mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
TOP
Tissot Men's Tissot 40506 Seastar T.12 Hand-Wind Chronograph,...
$2,500
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Day-Date 36 1803 Very good White gold 36mm Automatic United States of America, New York, NEW YORK
Rolex 1966 Rare DoorStop Dial Day-Date President 18k White...
$7,600
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
 
US
Rolex Submariner Date 1680 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex 1680 Red Submariner Mk4
$22,559
Verified Dealer
14
DE
Rolex Submariner Date 16800 Good Steel 39mm Automatic United States of America, Colorado, Longmont
TOP
Rolex Submariner
$6,995
Private Seller
 
US
Rolex Submariner (No Date) 5513 Good Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Rolex Submariner (No Date) 5513 Vintage Stainless Steel
$9,299
Verified Dealer
73
US
Omega Speedmaster Mark II 176.00120000000001 Steel 42mm United States of America, New York, New York
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Professional Mark II 145.014 Vintage Mens Watch
$2,799
Verified Dealer
366
US
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 Good Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Rolex GMT-Master
$19,000
Verified Dealer
56
US
Rolex Submariner Date 16800 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic United States of America, Michigan, Southfield
Rolex Submariner Date 16800 MOP Tahitian Serti Onyx Diamond
$8,500
Verified Dealer
5
US
Patek Philippe Golden Ellipse 3589G Very good White gold 33.5mm Automatic United States of America, Massachusetts, Chatham
Patek Philippe White Gold Ref. 3589g ‘grand Ellipse’
$12,000
Verified Dealer
14
US
Fortis Very good Steel 42mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Fortis Men's Marinemaster Super-Compressor 42mm Automatic,...
$2,200
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
701
US
Rolex Datejust 68278 Very good Yellow gold 31mm Automatic United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Rolex 18K President Midsize 31mm Champagne Diamond Fluted...
$10,599
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
53
US

Vintage Watches: A Piece of Watch History

Vintage watches appeal to a wide audience. They offer the chance to buy high-quality, pre-owned watches at attractive prices. Both watch enthusiasts who love particular designs and collectors of expensive, rare pieces will get their money's worth.


This page contains information about:


5 Reasons to Buy a Vintage Watch

  • Rare and coveted models make good investments
  • Many older watches are much more affordable than new watches
  • The perfect accessory for fans of styles from bygone decades
  • Watches with character: Each watch comes with its own history
  • Vintage watches come with a sense of nostalgia

Not New, Not Retro, but Old and Charming

Whether it's furniture, cars, or watches, vintage products are in vogue. The community of fans has flourished in recent years, especially in the watch sector. Many vintage watches have long been out of production, making them particularly rare today. They often feature exotic designs from times long ago. Lovers of particular decades will find the perfect accessory in a vintage watch.

Furthermore, every dent, scratch, and mark on older timepieces comes with its own unique story. Some models are even the stuff of legends, having been owned by actors, politicians, or famous athletes. Of course, such vintage watches aren't exactly a bargain. Take Paul Newman's personal Daytona, for example – it is the most expensive wristwatch of all time.

Mass-produced vintage watches, such as the Junghans Trilastic, sit at the other end of the spectrum. This model is available at very affordable prices today. You can even get some examples for less than 100 USD. A popular vintage model is the Omega Speedmaster Professional with the reference number 145.022, which was produced from 1968 to the early 1980s. At around 5,800 USD, it is one of the more affordable vintage Speedmasters.


When does a watch become vintage?

Vintage watches have enjoyed widespread popularity for a while now. Watch fans around the world are on the hunt for rare, decades-old timepieces. But when is a watch considered vintage? No one can say for sure.

Time is an important factor. Watch expert Robert-Jan Broer from the site FratelloWatches considers watches from 1990 or earlier to be vintage. However, Broer also says that everyone can decide for themselves if they consider an older watch vintage or not.

However, once a watch is around 30 years old, it's safe to say it is vintage.


How much do vintage watches cost?

Model Price Features
Rolex Daytona Paul Newman Starting at 234,000 USD Chronograph, Paul Newman dial
Rolex Submariner "Red Sub," Ref. 1680 Starting at 15,200 USD Diving watch
Rolex Explorer II, Ref. 1655 About 20,800 USD 12 and 24-hour displays
Heuer Autavia, Ref. 2446C Starting at 11,700 USD Chronograph
Omega Speedmaster Professional, Ref. 145.022 About 5,800 USD Chronograph, first watch on the Moon
Breitling Navitimer, Ref. 806 About 5,600 USD Chronograph, slide rule bezel

Coveted Vintage Omega Watch: The Speedmaster

The Speedmaster Professional is one of the most coveted Omega models. Even though the Biel-based manufacturer still produces an almost unaltered version of this wristwatch, vintage versions of the so-called "Moonwatch" are extremely popular. This is especially true of those with the reference numbers 105.012 and 145.012 , the original Speedmaster Professional models and also the ones that flew to the Moon with Apollo 11. Buzz Aldrin was wearing his ref. 105.012 as he became the second person ever to step on the lunar surface. If you're interested in this watch, be prepared to spend around 13,200 USD. You can purchase the ref. 145.012 for as little as 9,200 USD.

Omega released the first Speedmaster in conjunction with the Seamaster 300 and the Railmaster back in 1957. The original Speedmaster bears the reference number CK2915, but is not a Moonwatch. The Speedmaster ref. CK2915 is so rare today that its prices have risen astronomically. One of the earliest examples from 1958 sold at auction for a record 275,508 USD, making it the most expensive Speedmaster of all time. The ref. CK2998 succeeded the CK2915 and has a design more similar to that of the Moonwatch. Prices for this timepiece come in at around 29,200 USD.


Heuer Autavia – a Vintage Chronograph in High Demand

Collections no longer in production usually yield high prices in the vintage watch market as well. The Autavia chronograph from Heuer, for example, was beloved by race car drivers in the early 1970s. However, the manufacturer is now called TAG Heuer, and the Autavia was only reintroduced in 2017. Pre-owned, it typically costs more than a significant number of new watches from this Swiss brand. A well-maintained Autavia can cost upwards of 12,800 USD. However, whether someone would choose to part with such an old treasure is a different question altogether. The new Autavia with an automatic in-house caliber demands around 4,100 USD.


Breitling Navitimer – an Icon Among Pilot's Watches

The Breitling Navitimer is one of the world's most famous pilot's watches. A slide rule bezel is the most characteristic feature of this chronograph. The wearer can use it to make various mathematical calculations, such as rates of climb and descent, speed, and fuel consumption. Early Navitimers from the 1950s have the reference number 806. Manual calibers like the Venus 178 and Valjoux 72 are still ticking away inside these timepieces. Those with a Valjoux movement are particularly rare. If you're looking to purchase a Navitimer ref. 806, be sure to have between 3,500 and 11,700 USD on hand.

The first automatic versions of the Navitimer are also interesting collector's items. One of the world's first automatic chronograph movements powers these timepieces: the caliber 11. The Breitling Navitimer Chrono-Matic is characterized by both its left-hand crown and its "fried egg" shaped case. You can purchase examples from the 1970s for as little as 2,300 USD. Well-maintained pieces and gold models can cost as much as 11,700 USD.


Often Much More Affordable

Purchasing a vintage watch has many advantages, including the price. One good example is the Omega Seamaster, a prestigious collection that has been in production since 1948. A new Seamaster with a mechanical movement costs between 3,500 and 5,800 USD. However, you can find automatic and manual versions from past decades for between 580 and 1,200 USD in good or very good condition. If you're a fan of vintage watches, you can get a famous watch from one of the top Swiss manufacturers for relatively little money. A 50-year-old Omega, Rolex, or Breitling displays your status as a watch lover just as well as a new timepiece. That being said, not all vintage watches are less expensive than their modern counterparts.


Vintage Watches as an Investment

Many vintage watches are so rare and highly sought-after that their current market prices have reached enormous heights. The most famous example is probably the Paul Newman Daytona from Rolex. When this chronograph first came to market in the 1960s, it had a slow start. This led Rolex to produce few examples of this timepiece, meaning there aren't many early examples that still exist today. Moreover, the Paul Newman Daytona is one of the most popular vintage watches in the world. Paul Newman's personal timepiece sold at auction for a record-smashing 17.8 million USD in 2017, making it the world's most expensive wristwatch. If you can settle for a Paul Newman Daytona that wasn't previously owned by the actor and race car driver, you'll need at least 117,000 USD.

Vintage Rolex Submariners are also popular collector's items. Models from the 1950s are well known for their record-setting prices: Expect to pay around 93,500 USD for the ref. 6204 and 46,700 USD for the ref. 6205. The so-called "Red Sub" is somewhat younger but just as coveted. Plan to spend at least 15,200 USD on this timepiece. However, examples in very good condition can cost over 35,100 USD. All in all, vintage Rolexes usually make fantastic investments.


Small Mistakes Lead to Vintage Treasures

There are many similarities between buying a vintage watch and purchasing a classic car. That being said, some fans of older watches are more like stamp collectors. They look for rare printing errors and are willing to pay major sums when they find one.

Once again, we turn to Rolex for the perfect example: the Explorer II. Pieces from the 1970s included an additional, reddish-orange hour hand with a 24-hour scale. This colorful hand had a problem with sunlight and would fade over time due to exposure to UV rays. Despite this shortcoming, examples with the reference number 1655 and a faded 24-hour hand demand five-figure prices today. This is much more expensive than a brand new Explorer II. Actor Steve McQueen is also said to have worn this timepiece, which only adds to its appeal. Connections to a celebrity are often a significant selling point. This just goes to show that vintage watches are a sound investment and much more than just an easy bargain.

A vintage watch kept in good condition is likely to retain its value. Sometimes prices increase for reasons not directly related to the watch itself. Anyone who bought a solid gold pre-owned watch 20 years ago surely is not regretting that purchase today, as gold prices have more than tripled since then. When reselling this watch, it is sure to get a high price thanks to its material worth alone. Likewise, a pre-owned pilot's watch from the 1940s will be well received because it survived WWII.


What should I consider when purchasing a vintage watch?

Searching for information and comparing prices from a large selection of watches is part of the watch buying experience. This also includes checking the price. To avoid purchasing a fake, the following rule applies: If the price is unrealistically low, then you should proceed with caution. You can easily find the amount that a particular pre-owned model usually sells for on Chrono24. There should always be a clear reason given if a watch is either much more or much less expensive than comparable models. Thus, an Omega Seamaster for three figures shouldn't raise any suspicion. A Rolex Submariner at that price, however, should raise alarm, as Submariners are usually much more expensive.

Knowing whether a watch is being offered at a fair price requires experience and expertise. Watch magazines and websites can provide you with a lot of helpful information. You can also ask questions on watch forums and receive competent, informed answers from experts.

The price structure of the vintage watch market can be a bit tricky to understand for the average person. For example, a somewhat damaged-looking watch can be much more valuable than a similar watch in almost perfect condition. This is because the original condition of the watch is what matters most. It's not a big deal if there are signs of wear and tear; what matters is if the watch has its original parts. Not even good looks can save a watch if many of its components have been replaced, such as the dial, hands, and crown.

Prices also increase when a watch is sold with its box and papers. The original packaging and documents from the manufacturer and dealer are all part of the original purchase. They serve as important proof that the offered timepiece really is the correct one. However, watches without their box and papers cannot be avoided. There is usually a simple and understandable reason for the lack of box and other accompanying materials: They couldn't be found and were likely thrown out at some point by the original owner.

If you don't have the time or you're simply not interested in immersing yourself deeply in the subject, then you're much better off depending on a serious dealer. A dealer can offer you a watch that they have inspected at a fair price and in some cases, even offer a warranty.

Watches without previous inspection are also offered, mostly by private sellers. In these cases, it's a good idea to have a bit of money on hand for any necessary maintenance. Even a simple inspection or repair can cost around 200 USD. When you buy a vintage diving watch, you should have its water resistance checked and exchange the gaskets if you want to wear the watch underwater.


Nostalgia and Vintage Watches

There is yet another benefit to purchasing a vintage watch: Rather than being limited to current models, there is a much larger selection of timepieces to choose from. You may even find a watch you like better among the earlier versions than one from that manufacturer's current catalog.

What's more, vintage watches are authentic. They were really there back in the 1960s or 70s. This detail is what makes them truly special and what sets them apart from retro watches. While a retro watch will look like a watch from a certain time period, it is still a new timepiece. They are just made to look the part of something historic. A true vintage watch offers real nostalgia.

Vintage models are sometimes the only way to acquire watches with specific qualities. Take the Rolex Explorer, for example. Since 2010, Rolex has offered it with a larger, 39-mm case. If you want a smaller size, then you need to look for an older Explorer model. The last 36-mm Explorer had the reference number 114270. You could also take a look at reference numbers 6610, 1016, and 14270.

This example demonstrates the importance of being familiar with reference numbers when buying a vintage watch. Reference numbers help you identify and find watches from a certain time period or with other special characteristics faster and more easily.


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