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Heuer Autavia GMT Pepsi,
TOP
Heuer Autavia GMT Pepsi,
7,900 
Seller
Juwelier Pichler / Filiale Innenstadt
28
DE
Rolex Oyster Precision
TOP
Rolex Oyster Precision
3,200 
Seller
KronologY
53
FR
Rolex Explorer II Orange Hand Full Set
TOP
Rolex Explorer II Orange Hand Full Set
25,946 
Free shipping
Seller
M J GILLAN LTD
10
UK
Rolex Submariner Gilt Gloss Meters First Dial Pointed Crown...
TOP
Rolex Submariner Gilt Gloss Meters First Dial Pointed Crown...
34,589 
Seller
Xupes.com
163
UK
Omega Seamaster 300 165.024-64
Omega Seamaster 300 165.024-64
4,990 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Tudor Big Block Chrono 79180
TOP
Tudor Big Block Chrono 79180
5,200 
Seller
Filipucci Juweliers
449
NL
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Lady Datejust
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Lady Datejust
1,990 
Free shipping
Seller
Bottinelli s.r.l
17
IT
Omega Constellation C Date
Omega Constellation C Date
950 
Seller
Harri Asunta
9
FI
Rolex GMT-Master Vintage UAE Air Force 1675
Rolex GMT-Master Vintage UAE Air Force 1675
109,549 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Rolex Explorer II
Rolex Explorer II
24,000 
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
289
DE
Rolex Oyster Precision Topolino Mickey Mouse,
Rolex Oyster Precision Topolino Mickey Mouse,
2,350 
Seller
ROSSI OROLOGI s.r.l
49
IT
Rolex Datejust
Rolex Datejust
3,200 
Seller
Watch Montre Paris
 
FR
Rolex Submariner Date
Rolex Submariner Date
8,900 
Seller
L'Officina del tempo
 
IT
Heuer 2446 "Jochen Rindt" very rare and original
Heuer 2446 "Jochen Rindt" very rare and original
19,900 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Rolex 5513 Vintage Submariner Beautiful Even Patina WOW (29411)
Rolex 5513 Vintage Submariner Beautiful Even Patina WOW (29411)
14,601 
Seller
European Watch Company
171
US
Rolex Submariner 5513 Maxi Dial MK3
TOP
Rolex Submariner 5513 Maxi Dial MK3
14,000 
Seller
Vintage Watches Avellino SRLS
 
IT
Patek Philippe Automatic back winder Calatrava 1981
Patek Philippe Automatic back winder Calatrava 1981
8,360 
Free shipping
Seller
M J GILLAN LTD
10
UK
Rolex Submariner Non-Date 5512
Rolex Submariner Non-Date 5512
45,549 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Rolex Datejust Model 1601, 14k/SS
Rolex Datejust Model 1601, 14k/SS
3,672 
Seller
Swiss Brands, Inc.
 
US
Rolex Datejust Plexy Full set Grey Sigma Dial Grigio  1974
Rolex Datejust Plexy Full set Grey Sigma Dial Grigio 1974
4,500 
Seller
ROSSI OROLOGI s.r.l
49
IT
Heuer Camaro - Réf 7220
Heuer Camaro - Réf 7220
4,800 
Seller
Watch Montre Paris
 
FR
Rolex Daytona Cosmograph - Ref. 6239
Rolex Daytona Cosmograph - Ref. 6239
42,000 
Seller
TimeSelect Watches
 
DE
Omega Constellation Chronometer Electronic f300Hz 43mm 1972
Omega Constellation Chronometer Electronic f300Hz 43mm 1972
990 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Rolex Tropical Mk II Meters First Red Submariner 1680
Rolex Tropical Mk II Meters First Red Submariner 1680
43,243 
Seller
Finding Time Ltd
5
UK
Rolex Bubble Back
Rolex Bubble Back
9,000 
Seller
GENS AUREA SPA
 
IT
Rolex GMT-Master Pepsi Gilt Dial Stainless Steel Men's 1675 -...
TOP
Rolex GMT-Master Pepsi Gilt Dial Stainless Steel Men's 1675 -...
32,282 
Seller
Xupes.com
163
UK
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Gold Semi-Bubble Back
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Gold Semi-Bubble Back
25,946 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Rolex Datejust Vintage Model 6305
Rolex Datejust Vintage Model 6305
3,318 
Seller
Swiss Brands, Inc.
 
US
Rolex GMT Master Gilt Dial  from 1965
Rolex GMT Master Gilt Dial from 1965
15,980 
Seller
Juwelier Wilfart
26
DE
Rolex GMT Master
Rolex GMT Master
10,900 
Seller
TIMELOUNGE Uhren- und Schmuckhandel GmbH
AT
Rolex Datejust
Rolex Datejust
3,000 
Seller
Tempo Prezioso Bologna
 
IT
Heuer Kentucky 1975 750.705 Trade/Offer
Heuer Kentucky 1975 750.705 Trade/Offer
1,290 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 PCG Mirror Dial
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 PCG Mirror Dial
43,762 
Seller
Finding Time Ltd
5
UK
Rolex Datejust Plexy 1971 FULL SET
Rolex Datejust Plexy 1971 FULL SET
4,500 
Seller
ROSSI OROLOGI s.r.l
49
IT
Rolex Watch Explorer 1016
Rolex Watch Explorer 1016
17,009 
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Rolex Datejust Vintage Rare 1601
Rolex Datejust Vintage Rare 1601
28,829 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Breitling Navitimer 806 AOPA Chronograph - Venus 178 - Vintage...
Breitling Navitimer 806 AOPA Chronograph - Venus 178 - Vintage...
4,248 
Seller
Swiss Brands, Inc.
 
US
Omega Seamaster  29.90 -1 Pre- Ranchero –
TOP
Omega Seamaster 29.90 -1 Pre- Ranchero –
2,100 
Seller
Pascal Karp Watches Expertise
 
BE
Breitling Navitimer
Breitling Navitimer
3,950 
Seller
TIMELOUNGE Uhren- und Schmuckhandel GmbH
AT
Rolex Daytona Cosmograph 6239 Top Condition "Stretch Bracelet"
Rolex Daytona Cosmograph 6239 Top Condition "Stretch Bracelet"
49,999 
Seller
TimeSelect Watches
 
DE
Heuer Montreal PVD Automatic 110.501 Trade/Offer
Heuer Montreal PVD Automatic 110.501 Trade/Offer
2,990 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Omega Seamaster 300 Full Set Perfect 1966
Omega Seamaster 300 Full Set Perfect 1966
19,027 
Seller
Finding Time Ltd
5
UK
Rolex Black Dial Mens oyster perpetual datejust CAL 1570 watch
TOP
Rolex Black Dial Mens oyster perpetual datejust CAL 1570 watch
5,765 
Seller
Fine Auction Club
213
UK
Rolex Watch Submariner 5513
Rolex Watch Submariner 5513
10,090 
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Rolex Submariner Nipple Dial 1680
Rolex Submariner Nipple Dial 1680
34,018 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Breitling Vintage Breitling Navitimer Twin Jet Panda Gold-Plat...
Breitling Vintage Breitling Navitimer Twin Jet Panda Gold-Plat...
2,561 
Free shipping
Seller
Collectors Coins & Jewelry of Smithtown
 
US
Rolex GMT 1675 Cornino
Rolex GMT 1675 Cornino
11,000 
Seller
COMPRA-VENTA JAVIER CALVO
ES
Patek Philippe Calatrava
Patek Philippe Calatrava
25,900 
Seller
TIMELOUNGE Uhren- und Schmuckhandel GmbH
AT
Rolex Oysterdate Precision - Aus 1971
Rolex Oysterdate Precision - Aus 1971
2,700 
Seller
Mercarus GmbH
175
DE
Omega Speedmaster Mark II Racing Dial All Original
Omega Speedmaster Mark II Racing Dial All Original
1,990 
Seller
Chrono Finland
54
FI
Omega Genève - 1970 - Fully Serviced
TOP
Omega Genève - 1970 - Fully Serviced
974 
Seller
Time Rediscovered Ltd
19
UK
Heuer Autavia 2446C GMT 1st Execution - Serviced & 3 Year...
Heuer Autavia 2446C GMT 1st Execution - Serviced & 3 Year...
12,779 
Seller
Horology 411
 
US
Rolex Watch Submariner 5513
Rolex Watch Submariner 5513
8,649 
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Rolex Submariner Date 1680
Rolex Submariner Date 1680
11,820 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Rolex Submariner 5513 "Non Serif" No Date
Rolex Submariner 5513 "Non Serif" No Date
11,500 
Seller
Ten2Two.nl
36
NL
Rolex Oyster Precision
Rolex Oyster Precision
1,300 
Seller
Just in Time Orologeria
 
IT
Omega Genève
Omega Genève
1,685 
Seller
Kaisaniemen Kello ja Kultaliike Oy
7
FI
Breitling Navitimer
Breitling Navitimer
3,950 
Seller
TIMELOUNGE Uhren- und Schmuckhandel GmbH
AT
Rolex 18ct Yellow Gold 36mm Datejust, 1601, Boxed
Rolex 18ct Yellow Gold 36mm Datejust, 1601, Boxed
8,066 
Seller
Pomerance Boutique
74
UK
Heuer Autavia "Arabic Orange" Double Grain Bracelet
Heuer Autavia "Arabic Orange" Double Grain Bracelet
19,027 
Seller
Finding Time Ltd
5
UK
Rolex Oyster Perpetual non-date With Original White Roman Dial
Rolex Oyster Perpetual non-date With Original White Roman Dial
4,607 
Seller
Sanderson & Son Fine Watches Ltd
6
UK
Rolex Watch Submariner 1680
Rolex Watch Submariner 1680
14,933 
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Rolex Daytona Vintage Steel Gents 6239
Rolex Daytona Vintage Steel Gents 6239
51,315 
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
236
UK
Rolex 1675 GMT-Master / MK I / long E
Rolex 1675 GMT-Master / MK I / long E
12,400 
Seller
THE WATCHGUY GmbH & Co. KG
 
DE
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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.

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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