IWC cal 853 buying advice
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Thread: IWC cal 853 buying advice

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  1. #1
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    IWC cal 853 buying advice

    Hi.

    I'm looking to buy my first vintage IWC watch, and have an eye out for this Automatic cal. 853 from 1958.
    What do you think? Does the dial look refinished? (The wear around the edges leads me to think no.) Does the movement look alright? The opened case is quite dirty around edges. Should that be a concern? It does not have the fish logo crown, but from what I can tell, this model did not come with a logo crown. It does however come with an IWC steel bracelet. Could this be original for the watch or is it a later addition?
    Any advice or thoughts appreciated.

    Thanks.
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  2. #2
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    Re: IWC cal 853 buying advice

    At the right price, this could be worth buying. Fish or no fish, I don't think the crown is original, it's just not correct. The bracelet is probably not IWC, but a generic BoR bracelet to which someone has added a later IWC clasp. So don't pay much for that. Usually aftermarket bracelets (or bracelets from a different brand) don't have end-links that fit another watch very well, so unless there are photos that really convince you the bracelet is a great fit, most likely you wouldn't even end up using it.

    Obviously the movement is filthy, and so has not been serviced in a very long time. Could be a concern, but maybe not a dealbreaker. The dial has obvious damage around the outside, but looks correct to me. Here is the data from dateyouriwc. The dates of the case and movement are close enough for me to believe that they started out together. You didn't mention the size, but I'm guessing 34-35mm or so, since that was typical at this time. If it's one of the larger 36-37mm cases, then that would add a lot of value.

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  3. #3
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    Re: IWC cal 853 buying advice

    EBay is a great source for research. Look for watches with that calibre to compare prices. The dual is original it has typical wear for an older IWC. If it were pristine it would more likely be a fake. My vintage IWC from 1948 is built like a tank with its cal. 89. Its manual wind though. I got it off EBay my first gold watch. Mine IS a redial even has the wrong 'I' font in International but I can live with it.

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  5. #4
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    Re: IWC cal 853 buying advice

    Thanks a lot for your replies.

    The watch is 35 mm and listed at 850 USD, which does not not seem like a lot to me compared to other similar watches on eBay...

    I figured something was off with the bracelet since there were no pictures of it on the watch. It does not matter too much though, since I was planning on wearing it with a leather band anyway.

    Regarding the crown, what makes it look wrong? Looking at pictures of similar watches, most of the crowns look quite like it I find. Some have a more domed crown though. Here are three different similar looking 853's. Any of these look more correct?
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  6. #5
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    Re: IWC cal 853 buying advice

    I really wouldn't worry about the crown, it's just a quibble. As long as you're satisfied with the overall condition, then I think it's ok.
    -- Dan (formerly known as @badbackdan)
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  7. #6
    Member DaBaeker's Avatar
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    Re: IWC cal 853 buying advice

    $850 isn't a bargain but it isn't ripoff either. I think @badbackdan is good advice. As for the crown.... It looks like there is a different unoriginal crown in the 3rd or 4th photo op provides. The seller probably had a new shiny crown put on to replace the worn round top in photo 3. Good luck
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