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By Bob Tascione

Copyright 2007

Let's talk about collecting watches.

Wait! Come back! Okay, Okay... I admit collecting watches can be a little tricky, maybe even a bit risky but hopefully this series of articles will help dispel most of your fears and concerns. Watch collecting can be one of the most fulfilling, fun and often financially rewarding hobbies you can get into. Ironically, the very reason one may shy away from collecting watches is also one of its most appealing characteristics....that miniature mechanism that mysteriously and faithfully ticks off the passing seconds...that constant, familiar life mimicking maternal heartbeat that has congealed a feeling of warmth and security into our lives for as long as many of us can remember and...well alright, maybe I like this stuff a little too much, how about we just like the ticking sound.

If not for the fact that watches have miniature mechanical movements, collecting them wouldn't be much different than building a coin collection. Just as with coins there are books to help identify make, determine age and production run numbers and of course price guides to help place a value to a watch and again, just as with coins there are many different categories to choose from. A few examples within the watch collecting realm might be wrist watches, pocket watches, American railroad watches, European fusees or perhaps you have a keen interest in commemorative pieces or maybe period watches with historical provenance such as those produced through the American civil war era or “trench”watches, those military watches produced before and during world war one or possibly the highly collectible character and comic watches. There's something out there for everybody. Of course learning as much as possible about what one plans to collect is just smart business. It's essential to making smart purchases and sales.

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So why don't more people collect watches? Often times they are a bit gun shy having been on the receiving end of a modern day watch repair estimate. A watches mechanical aspect inherently increases the risk to reward ratio for the collector...unless, one makes a little effort to educate oneself. While the addition of the mechanical movement adds a certain amount of functionality and appeal to the watch that many other collectibles may not offer it can also add an additional element of risk for the collector. Todays watchmaker justifiably commands good money for properly servicing a watch. I emphasize the word "properly" here as regrettably there are people in the watch repair industry doing poor quality work for low prices. This is not the type of repair work you want performed on your fine collectible timepiece. A watch that has been well maintained and kept as original as possible will certainly be more desirable and valuable than one that has been neglected or abused by a less than professional repair man.

Choosing and building a relationship with a reputable watchmaker is important if you wish to grow and maintain a fine watch collection. But there are steps you can take to avoid much of the sting of high cost repairs. Before purchasing a watch as much as possible should be learned about the condition of its movement. You will learn through this series of articles some valuable diagnostic techniques that will help you determine whether or not that ticking treasure you've just discovered is a good candidate for your collection.

Future articles will also address different watch organizations and forums that you can join to increase your exposure to watch related topics and to get answers to questions you may have from other collectors. We will also discuss how you can begin building a "quality" collection for a small investment.

So keep your eye out for the next article.

................Bob Tascione is owner of Tascione Watch and Clock Courses and has been teaching Watch and Clock repair through his video and DVD courses and books for over 17 years and has been repairing and restoring watches world wide for over 30 years.

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Copyright 2006-2019








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