Brand New Watches leaving a jeweler’s often have fine marks from in-store handling , polishing (even a soft piece of common fabric can leave scratches), bouncing against a hard plastic box interior, band or battery change marks and light superficial corrosion caused by body oil left during these activities. In the rating below I use percentage% – understand, that represents the sum/total of all deviations from factory fresh. An item’s description will frequently unscore where the various aspects of wear occur, e.g.”flawless glass, light wisps to case”. So in that example, the case is carrying the rating down, not the glass. Some of this is subjective: we rate glass very conservatively, since most people consider a scratch that covers 1% of their crystal to have essentially destroyed it.
NOS (New Old Stock) – 99-100%. Appearing unworn, flawless function, with no deteriorated leather, rubber, cloth or plastic parts. Vintage(20 yrs.+) Watches in this condition are seldom seen and command significant premiums. NOS items can rarely escape some of the same extremely minor handling marks commonly suffered by BRAND NEW watches, so these watches may in fairness, in my opinion, be referred to as NOS while having some signs of extremely minor handling. NOS only speaks to the item’s “social life” – never sold/worn/used. If not properly stored, occasionally lubricated or cleaned, leather bands oiled, etc., a NOS piece could obviously be in horrible shape.
MINT: 95% – 99%. Virtually factory new appearance, 100% perfect function- A watch showing very minor handling or use blemishes only under close visual inspection. I have arbitrarily placed “Mint” at 99% and lower. If you have questions about “how MINT is this piece?”, just ask. I try not to play loose with this term.
NEAR MINT/”Minty”: 85% – 94%. Shows signs of light, careful use if one stops to look.. A very presentable watch at arm’s length.
EXCELLENT: 75% – 84%. Wear and occasional use are evident but the piece is still quite presentable, proudly showing signs of careful use. There may be minor “brassing” (base material showing through plating) on plated/filled cases, but only in the more inconspicuous areas, such as the clasp and lower back edges of the case or band. There may be minor dings or scratches.
FAIR: 50% – 74%. Daily and frequent use are obvious, easily noticeable brassing and wear, and possible dings and scratches.
POOR: 49% and under. Broken parts, heavy scuffing, scratching, non-functional.
We hope the following list will assist you when making purchasing decisions, and we encourage you to email if more information is needed in regards to a particular piece. * Please reference the sku # found below the “Add to cart” button on each item’s page.
The following factors create the basis of rarity levels of most collectibles:
(a) Market availability, both past and present.
(b) Technical quality and innovative design.
(c) Historical importance of particular model or maker.
(d) Condition in relationship to other examples of same model.
(e) Artistic case design, i.e. enamel, customization, unusually shape.
(f) Low survival rate of similar models.
(g) Investment potential of increase in demand and price.