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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
You guys post such beautiful watches. Where do you find them all? I've scoured eBay to be sure...
Many of the other vendors who specialize in vintage watches and have an online presence seem to charge an arm and a leg. Any suggestions as to where I might find high quality, but somewhat more affordable, pieces?
I live in the Southeastern US, with only one local brick-and-mortar option of which I'm aware.
Thanks!
 

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well, i can assume you're not talking to me as all of my watches have come off ebay. and really, it isn't hard so i'm not sure what you're "scouring" for. something rare? a particular watch?
 

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some guys buy off ebay and some buy off flea markets seen some great watches that people have bought from flea market
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
well, i guess i should be clearer...
i'm brand new to this and pretty cautious. there are plenty of nice watches on eBay, though not all in my intended price range. i'm also a bit leery of some deals, and still too green to tell original from fraudulent. certainly don't mean to bash eBay, just looking for more options.
 

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Sorry to say... all (95%) of my watches come off ebay...

You need to get accustomed to refining your search using the tabs to the side! It helps if you can be specific when searching and search (add description) the description.

The other 5% comes from carboots (flea markets)

Both ebay and markets take time and patients!
 

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you could always try the sales corner on this site or ask sparcster for his ebay id he is always selling
 

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well, i guess i should be clearer...
i'm brand new to this and pretty cautious. there are plenty of nice watches on eBay, though not all in my intended price range. i'm also a bit leery of some deals, and still too green to tell original from fraudulent. certainly don't mean to bash eBay, just looking for more options.
ahh, i get it.

i understand your reluctance to engage ebay. it is a den of thieves and murderers- and yet, a lot of good honest people. the first thing you really need to define is what you're interested in. let's say for the sake of an example, you like early to mid-century hamiltons. look at every picture you can look at. read every post you can find- familiarize yourself with the 'search' button and abuse it. i doubt you will have a question that hasn't been asked before- look for them. go to the fora that specialize in this type of watch. the one you're on is pretty good.

basically, you need to really dig in and do your due diligence. even reputable dealers won't always realize the watch they're offering is a re-dial, or has a swapped movement. become an expert in the things you like. then, you can wade into the waters of watch collecting with a little confidence.

and don't hesitate to post pictures of the watches you are interested in and ask opinions. you'll get some good info that way from collectors who have been at it for decades.
 

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you could always try the sales corner on this site or ask sparcster for his ebay id he is always selling
I dont sell ALL the watches I buy....

I agree with Sherwood... research is very important! It would help if you could start with a brand you are interested in!

However... I realise there is a great temptation to buy, buy, buy.... plus, with the huge variety out there, its very hard to narrow the search!

Again, as Sherwood says... ask here first and you will hopefully get the advice and reassurance you need before taking the plunge!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks, all. Very helpful advice. I would be happy to keep tabs on Sparcster's eBay offerings; I have admired a number of his watches.
 

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Thanks, all. Very helpful advice. I would be happy to keep tabs on Sparcster's eBay offerings; I have admired a number of his watches.
Im actually on my hols at the end of the week (to the states!!) so have stopped buying and selling at the mo... but have a large amount I plan to sell when i return, as i want to save up for a certain watch!

That said... I have sold 1 or 2 watches through the forum - not that I intended to.... I was just messaged!! I normally list my watches as UK only... but I have (on occasion) also added links in the 'ebay sales forum' and stated I would post abroad to WUS members!
 

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Nearly all of my vintage/antique watches, I've gotten on EBay. The one exception is a Waltham WM Ellery, 18s, kw/ks that I bought from a Civil War re-enactor (it was made in early 1866, less than a year after the war ended, but is identical to Civil War watches except for the serial number). Both of my kw/ks watches need repair and cleaning (I also have an 1882 vintage 18s Elgin). I just scored a great deal on a ca. 1927 Illinois 12s Marquis Autocrat 17j (the seller did not know what she had). Just watch, read the ads carefully, ask questions of the seller - and "snipe" at the last second! ;)
 

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I stayed away from ebay for a long time. Two reasons really: 1) just to easy to buy more often than is good and, 2) not feeling like I knew what things were worth. I was still able to collect a variety of watches but had less control over the direction of my collection.

Good sources outside of ebay are antique stores, flea markets, occasionally pawnshops and goodwill stores, occasionally yardsales. Often overlooked are watches redone by local watchmakers. Many people who work on watches for a living buy non-working vintage and service them. These are for sale in their stores. Watches from watchmakers are nice because they are already serviced and ready to go and generally have a warranty.
 

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Enjoy your time Stateside. I will keep my eyes open for your sales. Thanks.
Cant wait... its my first trip to the states.. NY, San fran and finishing in Vegas! I was hoping to snoop around any markets I came across... I dont think the other half would let me know!!

Im 'Sparc1982' on the bay... I like to think I am an honest ebayer and try to give as much info as possible.. I think my feedback speaks for itself!! if I am ever selling something you come across and are interestes in... message me through here and Im happy to do a deal!! I am not a business seller... I do this as a hobby and its a way to fund my collection!!

Good luck with the search...
 

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Two of mine are from eBay (Orvin and '48 Bulova), one is from Etsy (New York Standard), and the rest are family heirlooms (Accutron, Gruen, Hamilton, etc).

I find the heirlooms are the best for a good reason.
 

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I find the bulk of mine on eBay. I don't use ShopGoodwill as much as I probably should. I find others at junk shops, thrift stores, etc but those are few and far between. I've also gotten a few as gifts because people know my obsessions with watches.
 

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I've purchased most of my watches from the bay as well. The thing with that site is, you have to rely on the sellers description (which they may or may not know much about the item) and photography (which is usually horrible). As an amateur photographer, it is a pet peeve to see really poor photos on something costing many hundreds of dollars. I've also purchased from an online vintage watch reseller. The good thing from this standpoint is that almost always you will end up with a better watch. You're essentially paying for the seller's expertise and reputation. I also keep an eye on the local pawn shops, but as of yet have not seen anything that interests me.
I cannot stress enough that research is your best ally when hunting for your next watch. Learn what the watch should look like and what movement (with what markings) it should have.
 

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I got my vintage watches from eBay, provinces, watchmakers/repairmen, flea markets. I also have an ad in the classifieds, Wanted to Buy Vintage Watches. I got some good deals there too.
 

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I get mine from flea markets, ebay, boot-sales (rarely) and charity shops. Last week I found a Jaquet Droz (£3) and a boxed Corvette (£4) in two local charity shops. Fortune certainly smiled on me that day.
 
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