Friday, 5 July 2013

Buying Waltham Pocket Watches Online

Waltham pocket watches can be difficult enough to buy online. One of the main reasons for that of course is that they are no longer produced as new watches. The last one produced would be some 50 years ago so in essence you are looking to buy what is classes as an antique.

I go around various jewellers and I have yet to find one there and that is even in the second hand stores that do sell some antiques. I have manage to pick up a couple at different auction venues but it can be a bit of a hit and miss to be honest.

I have found the best place to buy Waltham pocket watches is online but you do know exactly what you are looking for. eBay is a great place to buy but some of the sellers on there have a much higher expectation of their value that I would have. You tend to find that with sellers in general. They put high values on products and especially antiques.

They assume because they are old that they are worth a lot of money and this is just not the case. With Waltham, Elgin or most of the older American watches the value is actually not that high. What America managed to do was to bring the mass production of watches to the market. That made them affordable for many people back in the day which was a great thing.

However mass production also means that there many of them were produced and that in itself is a bad thing for collectors like me. Waltham produced watches from 1851 and stopped producing these in 1957, the year before I was born. they did produce high quality watches but they also produced lots of them.

Both of those impact heavily on their current value. There are of course situations when Waltham produced limited versions of watches, and these are the perfect ones for a collector. You will of course pay more for these but they tend to hold their value a great deal better. I guess it is the old saying that you get what you pay for in life.


The one in the video above would fall into that category. You can see it is a very clean working watch and the case I think looks really good. That fact that it is in good working order will certainly add to its value.

I also like this Waltham seaside antique pocket watch.


The one thing that would concern me is that they both look "too" clean. Quite often cleaning an old antique watch can actually reduce its value. Unless I had this one in my hand, I would not be able to tell for sure, but at a glance it is a nice looking watch.

How To Look Online For A Waltham Pocket Watch

If you go to eBay and type in a search for Waltham Pocket Watches you will get a screen that looks something like this.
Buy Waltham Pocket Watches Online

The first thing I always check is the person selling this is a top rated seller. Anything else I tend to avoid unless I see a super low price. I just check for auctions as I find with the "Buy It Now" option that the seller is always asking way above the real value. If you take my advice you will ignore these as well.

I always click the Auction button only at the top of the page as that is all I am interested in. In this case this drops the number of listings from 2,600 down to 800 or so. Normally you find it cuts them down by about 60%.

After that I only look at ones where there are multiple bids going on. You can see what I mean from the picture below.
Waltham Watches Online at Ebay

I would only bid on those with around 10 or more bids. My reason for this is simple. Other people who are collectors or experts in this field will have already checked out the value and authenticity of the watch so you are removing the risk.

Before I bid though I usually read the advert in depth. I want to see the serial number and check that against the year it is being advertised as. I also want to check the return's policy in case it arrives not as expected.

If you follow these simple tips I have given above you will be a lot safer online when trying to buy a Waltham pocket watch.