Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600
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Thread: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

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  1. #1
    Member humanalien's Avatar
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    Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    Auction going on currently Christie's, dial has been reprinted and hands have been relumed, lightly polished but good condition case and extract from archives confirming its date of sale circa 1957.

    It does have original crown and the quite rare 12-600 movement (first automatic from Patek) though. Movement is not serviced but seems to be in working condition.

    Some online researching about this movement:

    Calibre 12-600 AT was introduced by Patek Philippe in 1953 at the dawn of automatic movement technology. Today, Cal. 12-600 AT is considered one of the best movements in the history of watchmaking. About 7,100 Cal. 12-400 AT movements were made between 1953 and 1960. Patek was quite proud of this movement and wanted to differentiate it from the other automatic watches on the market, the majority of which used hammer movements. Therefore, they billed it as a "self-winding watch", not an "automatic". - from watch wiki.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. I know re-dials are devastating to vintage watches but the overall look + fact that it has 12-600 movement looks very attractive.

    Redial is quite poor imo because even I can see that the 12 is not aligned properly and the lettering of the brand logo is a bit different from the original.

    I am almost 100% new to vintage watches, never put them on my wrist & owned before, not sure how to put values in them. If it was me I would have put more value into the movement for its historical significance (first auto Patek), and would have asked Patek manufacturer to officially give me a reprinted clean dial, but I've read some threads here through searching and general notion was that redials are terrible and they decrease the value of the watch significantly. But up to what extent? Are they really to a level where if you hear dial is reprinted, you walk away?



    Here are some photos and link attached:

    Man, I know 12's alignment is terrible and logo is weird and stuff, but otherwise the layout design of the dial itself looks terribly good to me. Especially that domed sapphire glass, so beautiful. But the dial, dial is what is holding me back! Any thoughts?


    https://onlineonly.christies.com/s/c...2551-134/64704


    Click image for larger version. 

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    *another random thought.

    I have posted before, https://forums.watchuseek.com/f2/tru...s-4795857.html, that I have a watch that I not only designed but created with engraving machines myself. My girlfriend wrote the letters logo on the dial (initials of my name). I say, I could even try to somehow find a watchmaker and incorporate this movement into that watch. Franken watch I know, but I will like it. Well it's only a thought at the moment, I'm sure sizing and those stuff matters too. My watch is 34mm.
    Last edited by humanalien; December 1st, 2018 at 17:47.
    Favorites brands, in order:
    Andreas Strehler, Grönefeld, Romain Gauthier, Rolex, H. Moser & Cie, Moritz Grossmann, Raul Pagés, Lang & Heyne, Urban Jürgensen, Glashütte Original, Vacheron Constantin, Schwarz-Etienne,Czapek & Cie, Zenith, Ressence, MING, Arnold & Son, Jaquet Droz, Hentschel, Maurice Lacroix, Girard Perregaux, Dornblüth & Sohn, Eterna, Parmigiani, Perrelet, Raymond Weil, Tag Heuer, Bulova, Tourby, Orient, and many more :)


    ~ Musician ~

  2. #2
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    Re: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    Quote Originally Posted by humanalien View Post
    ...

    but I've read some threads here through searching and general notion was that redials are terrible and they decrease the value of the watch significantly. But up to what extent? Are they really to a level where if you hear dial is reprinted, you walk away?

    ...
    I can only speak for myself, but the only reason I would consider buying this watch would be as a project. That dial would be unacceptable for me for a watch of this quality. So, I would need to know how much a decent or NOS replacement dial would cost, and have some reasonable hope of finding one. Then I would subtract the cost of the dial from the value of the all-original watch (considering the condition of the case), and then subtract another $1k or so to account for a significant amount of my time and energy, and that would be my upper limit for bidding. Don't forget that Christies has a hefty buyer's premium as well (25%?).

    My experience tells me that it's almost never worth it to take on a project like this. However, if it's a $15k watch that you can get for $7k all in, and a NOS dial is readily available for $4k, then of course you should do it. I just don't know the value and the price and availability of parts because Patek is not in my wheelhouse. And I would need to have a lot more specialized knowledge before jumping into a project like this.
    Last edited by badbackdan; December 1st, 2018 at 05:49.
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  3. #3
    Member humanalien's Avatar
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    Re: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    Quote Originally Posted by badbackdan View Post
    I can only speak for myself, but the only reason I would consider buying this watch would be as a project. That dial would be unacceptable for me for a watch of this quality. So, I would need to know how much a decent or NOS replacement dial would cost, and have some reasonable hope of finding one. Then I would subtract the cost of the dial from the value of the all-original watch (considering the condition of the case), and then subtract another $1k or so to account for a significant amount of my time and energy, and that would be my upper limit for bidding. Don't forget that Christies has a hefty buyer's premium as well (25%?).

    My experience tells me that it's almost never worth it to take on a project like this. However, if it's a $15k watch that you can get for $7k all in, and a NOS dial is readily available for $4k, then of course you should do it. I just don't know the value and the price and availability of parts because Patek is not in my wheelhouse. And I would need to have a lot more specialized knowledge before jumping into a project like this.

    Hear hear. I mentioned at the very bottom of my OP as well but yes, I was considering such project too. If I every bid & buy that one I would of course focus more on the movement and try to either replace the dial to legit one or make a franken watch with my self-created dial (not for resale ofc). Current value including the hefty premium was about $7k. I've never been to auction sites so not sure what to think currently, and I do think those premium is kinda too much. 25%, are you kidding me. I would need more knowledge on that movement as well, like it says there's only 7,100 made and it's historically revered by watch collectors, but exactly how much?

    Oh and by the way I tried a search and it says a legit, very good condition all original vintage Patek 2551 (as shown in the OP), is priced around $14k in the vintage market. Hmm.
    Last edited by humanalien; December 1st, 2018 at 17:48.
    Favorites brands, in order:
    Andreas Strehler, Grönefeld, Romain Gauthier, Rolex, H. Moser & Cie, Moritz Grossmann, Raul Pagés, Lang & Heyne, Urban Jürgensen, Glashütte Original, Vacheron Constantin, Schwarz-Etienne,Czapek & Cie, Zenith, Ressence, MING, Arnold & Son, Jaquet Droz, Hentschel, Maurice Lacroix, Girard Perregaux, Dornblüth & Sohn, Eterna, Parmigiani, Perrelet, Raymond Weil, Tag Heuer, Bulova, Tourby, Orient, and many more :)


    ~ Musician ~

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  5. #4
    Member humanalien's Avatar
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    Re: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    I am coming up with bunch of questions, does anyone know the answer?

    1. Is auction usually the best place for getting vintage watches?
    2. Is it safe to assume that the final sold price in auction usually is the market price for that watch?
    3. Has anyone contacted the manufacturer, whatever brand it is, to get a OEM re-dials? Or in this case, would it be called rather restorations?
    Favorites brands, in order:
    Andreas Strehler, Grönefeld, Romain Gauthier, Rolex, H. Moser & Cie, Moritz Grossmann, Raul Pagés, Lang & Heyne, Urban Jürgensen, Glashütte Original, Vacheron Constantin, Schwarz-Etienne,Czapek & Cie, Zenith, Ressence, MING, Arnold & Son, Jaquet Droz, Hentschel, Maurice Lacroix, Girard Perregaux, Dornblüth & Sohn, Eterna, Parmigiani, Perrelet, Raymond Weil, Tag Heuer, Bulova, Tourby, Orient, and many more :)


    ~ Musician ~

  6. #5
    Member bloody watches's Avatar
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    Re: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    Its all about the reason you are going to buy the watch
    If its to resell down the track - then dont buy this watch, it will not sell easily, with your inexperience with vintage watches even you are questioning it

    if its for an heirloom, or something like that then you pay your money and take your pick.
    but for 8k you could pick up 3-4 reasonably priced collectable watches (watch-recon our the sales forum here), and achieve but the prestige a vintage collection has and some gain later if you sell
    research is the key
    I like the 2 watches you built

    good luck
    I wish i could think of something funny to put here.

  7. #6
    Member Tony C.'s Avatar
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    Re: Currently looking at a vintage Patek Calatrava with 12-600

    Quote Originally Posted by humanalien View Post
    I am coming up with bunch of questions, does anyone know the answer?

    1. Is auction usually the best place for getting vintage watches?
    2. Is it safe to assume that the final sold price in auction usually is the market price for that watch?
    3. Has anyone contacted the manufacturer, whatever brand it is, to get a OEM re-dials? Or in this case, would it be called rather restorations?
    1. No. Bargains can be found in smaller auctions, but watches sold at better-known houses tend to bring high values even before factoring in the buyer's premium and taxes.

    2. Absolutely not.

    3. Some NOS dials exist, but typically for older watches, say pre-1960, manufacturers will typically offer refinished dials.

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