Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby brownsrplm » Tue Jul 19, 2016 6:08 pm

[Ed: New topic, posts moved]

You do know that Richard died not long ago and his son is selling all this stuff through Ashland...
Raymund L. Brown
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Re: Interesting Black Dial New England Duplex

New postby 4brokenow » Tue Jul 19, 2016 10:11 pm

Actually I did not know. His name is on the 2016 book. I had no idea.
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Re: Interesting Black Dial New England Duplex

New postby Neilywatch » Sat Jul 23, 2016 5:42 pm

Shugart is dead too.

The PG is just good for toilet paper now.

I had the same watch with a white dial and display back. I got $60 for it.
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Re: Interesting Black Dial New England Duplex

New postby brownsrplm » Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:48 pm

Most are dead: Shugartt, Gilbert, Meggers, Ehrhardt. With the exception of Tom Engle and William Selover I believe (he may be gone too). So that begs the question what will happen now that most are gone? Will there ever be another guide, or will it be left up to osmosis as to what has value and what does not? The guide may not have been the best, but it gave a basic idea of what watches were worth and kept me out of trouble in my early years...
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Re: Interesting Black Dial New England Duplex

New postby Neilywatch » Sun Jul 24, 2016 12:21 am

Hey Ray -

Unfortunately it is general agreement that the best days of organized PW collecting are behind us. The Guide has NOT been updated in several years as the effort to keep it updated required the input of many knowledgeable people - as you noted are gone now.

I had looked into making a book just for Walthams, but I was discouraged by 2 people who I spoke to directly who had published and with all the effort they put into the research, they had ordered several hundred copies of their book. They are still trying to sell them all. One was the Marion books, it was thought between the 2 of them would boost the brand to a popular one on the hobby, that fizzled out after just a few years. I only know of maybe 3 Marion collectors. The second was the Bunn Special book which followed up on the original edition made by Ehrhardt and Meggers. I spoke to that author who stated that he would not do it again.

I thought maybe I would buy a server and just build my own Waltham Website, and upload my whole collection for people to see and learn from, but it is an enormous effort. Tom McIntyre started something to that effect, but even he neglected to update his website. He told me he had several thousand emails to comb through for corrections to the original ledger and Grey Book, something that would have taken the mystery out of the brand once and for all, but he never pursued it, much to the disappointment of the volunteers who helped him build the original Waltham DB. Currently the server is 16 years old and crashes every other month. He has promised for years now to update the server and the DB. He's pretty old now and I don't think it gonna happen. Once he goes, that whole source will just disappear. I entertained just asking him if he will sell it.

A collector friend of mine complains that people have gotten very lazy - they will not buy the books and educate themselves on what they are collecting. They are relying on secondary data, and the PG which is out of date. Many people have gotten burned or don't have the money to continue collecting. IT is when all is said and done, an expensive hobby.

Based on talking to people, the 2 strongest brands are Hamilton and Illinois, followed by Rockford. Mainly because the data is relatively complete and there people who are still researching them. Waltham for some reason has a stigma attached to it by less informed people they all they made was low-end, which as you know is far from being true. I am happy to have it to myself, but I doubt there is more than 10 people in the country who have the level of interest that I do with the Waltham Brand.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby Stephan » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:05 am

I agree times have changed but alas pocket watch collecting has not.

We now live in an information age and younger people expect to be able to look up stuff on the net or via their phone.
If they can't find it most don't start to research but rather move on to something else.
That's why book shops are going broke and newspapers are struggling.

One the other hand while there are a few in our hobby who want to share there are just as many who prefer to keep their data to themselves.
This gives them to opportunity to buy low or catch a sleeper cause the data is not out there.
The flip side is less and less are interested.

I appreciate the time and effort many have put in to learn what they know but just because you did that does not mean someone else will want repeat your journey.
For myself I consider the time I put in as entertainment. I enjoyed it and don't mind sharing the little I have learnt.

As for an online database I don't think one person can build it.
Rather you need to build a program that many can contribute to that will build itself over time.
I believe someone did that using ebay sales but alas their motivation was profit and not the well being of the watch collecting hobby in general.
You also need a bigger source of information.

I continue to believe it could be done.
They have it for used cars and there are just as many variables yet I can find out what my 1993 xxx car with 4 speed and air con and 166.000 miles on it is worth
in just a few mins. Why not with watches ?
Learning all the time.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby richiec » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:49 am

I think the biggest issue is in the little variances in the plate designs, jeweling, dials, cases, etc. With cars you were dealing with a maker, with watches you were dealing with the maker, jeweler, case maker, changes made mid production in damaskeening, adjustments, etc. People put different values on different things. Just look at the size of the price guide, car guides aren't that thick. But with watches you are dealing with things that were made over 100 years ago or more. I wish we could be more exact in our valuations, it might make a difference in the hobby. For example, you see maybe 5-6 gold flashed Model 1888 Walthams, 17 jewel, Riverside and 100 Waltham 21-23 jewel watches with the up/down indicator but people value the up/down indicator over the gold flashing 20 to one though there are more of them and are not particularly rare. And finding the 1888 in an original case is even harder.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby Neilywatch » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:15 pm

There arent enough collectors to make the distinction among all the variants worthwhile - with cars you are talking millions of collectors and many more cars. Everything an automaker did is much more well documented.

As I mentioned before, I was going to publish a book on Walthams only, I think I have somewhere around 80-85% of all the grades. But I spoke to several watch collectors who published their research. And they all said it wasn't worth it. It did not bump the prices of the watches any. The perfect example was Marion - 2 very good books were published, and yet now the whole brand goes begging at the marts and auctions, unless the watch is PERFECT.

A good watch example is Hamilton - all the ledgers are still available, and all the research and documentation has been done, so everybody knows what they have, did it bump up the prices? Not really, this past week, Hamilton #30 was offered on eBay from a seller in Canada, it did not sell - asking price was about $3000. I thought it was worth the money? So, go figure.

Rich, dont worry about it - just collect what you like.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby richiec » Tue Dec 27, 2016 9:37 pm

I do Neil, mostly Walthams and Centennials from my great, great grandfathers business, Cross and Beguelin. Keep looking for variations, found one marked Trenton this month, never saw one before and it had a maroon dial which I had not seen before so I bought it for likely more than it was worth at $65.00, thankfully it runs well and still has the glass display lens over the movement. Must say Chapter 2 has become nothing but a gold scrapping feeding ground, very little buying going on, clocks were dead at the last mart. Oh, Neil, I did trade one of the 7 jewel Walthams I bought off of you earlier this year for a clock with a Westminster chime.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby Marty101 » Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:28 pm

My view of things comes from a slightly different angle I suppose. I am concerned with hands,of course-buying and selling etc.,but also with small parts,dials,running and non-running movements. Several makes but all American and usually 17J / 16s and 18s. The ebay competition for these has been very strong all year. Selling-for me-hasn't been slow either. Yet I have heard many discouraging words about the lack of interest in our hobby...
Maybe many who are interested are going loner;I suppose many always have been. Maybe the focus is different,too-Steve may have touched of a part of that. :?:
Keep winding things,
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby JerryT » Fri Dec 30, 2016 6:48 am

What a depressing thread so far. Let’s look at some other angles.

It is difficult to imagine another price guide in the current economic and collecting environment. The prices are just too unstable and subject to so many caveats. However, the PG remains one of a few useful all-encompassing guides to watches, if you just ignore the prices. In this it still has significant value for newbies and even some of us who have been around a while. My focus has often been narrow (mostly Waltham) and I still refer to the PG for some basic information on other companies. I also refer to Abbott, Crossman and anything else I can get my hands on. As all of us recognize, any book that attempts to cover the entire field will have errors in it. That is why it remains important that we continue to research AND PUBLISH information on individual companies, types or eras. As for value guides, I am afraid there is no easy answer in the near future. Perhaps as the investors leave the field (and values decline) there will be more opportunity again for those who are really interested in horology and not just the dollars. This will be a good thing.

I think we will all benefit if we can back off on the mantra of “condition, condition, condition”. A well-used watch, or even a broken movement, may still have just as much “value” in documenting the history and technology of the watches as a pristine example might. If our watches don’t have to be perfect there will be much less switching of dials and cases. One may also be much more willing to take apart and study a movement that won’t really show one more scratch among many. I learn so much from exploring my collection of running or broken movements, each demonstrating some nuance of a particular company. It sounds like Neil is telling us that there are plenty of Marions to go around if you don’t demand perfection. I don’t have one yet so maybe this is the time for me to add one or two to my study collecton. (I have and enjoy both books, by the way).

Some of you talk of the influential collectors and researchers who have passed and moan about what are we to do? What we need to do is become the new experts. Many of the new experts share on the various watch discussion sites. Some publish, but too many sit on their secret hoard of information. Neil, as long as you are not out to make a profit on your book or see a “bump” in Waltham values I would encourage you to get a book out on Waltham. You mention a stigma for Waltham among the less informed. Your work would help greatly to inform those who need it. You could show why a watch does not have to be high-end to be interesting. I know of collectors in many fields who have found it feasible to get collector books published without much personal outlay. The royalties may be slim, but there is great satisfaction in making a contribution to the field that will last beyond an ephemeral web site. I don't expect most web resources to last more than a decade or two (if we are lucky), but I have books going back to the 1800s.

As for Tom McIntyre’s web site … yes it is down right now, but he is working very hard on a new and improved version. (I am helping him with some of the data preparation).
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby richiec » Sat Dec 31, 2016 8:39 pm

Well spoken. I don't think I have ever owned a "pristine gem of the ocean" but if I did I would never be able to wear it or show it off too much for fear of damaging it. My personal feelings are that there Is no happier sound then a nicely ticking pocket watch in hand and in the pocket. I mostly use the price guide for comparison between grades, mostly Walthams. I have two price guides, the Meggars and Erhardt Gold Book, a few other Erhardt books and various other publications and enjoy them all. I wish I had the resources to stock up on good quality watches right now. Of course, I too wonder if prices will ever rebound again. But I will hang on to what I have for now and hope. Wish everyone a happy new year.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby Neilywatch » Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:17 am

Jerry -

I will still put something together for the Walthams. I will also ask all the known experts to proof and evaluate each model as I develop them. This will include you. I have enough of these watches that I will likely start this year.

My challenge now is learning to use desktop publishing and photoshop to put this together.

Thanks for the encouragement!

Richie - I have nearly 200 model 88's and 300 model 83's. These 2 models will be the last to get published due to the volume of watches I am dealing with here.
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Re: Price Guide - Shugart, etc.

New postby Marty101 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:21 am

THAT's the spirit Neil!!!!!! :D
We aren't paid in bucks for all we do,that's true-but any man who adds to this hobby is not forgotten.
Keep winding things,
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