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  1. Davide Benve

    Davide Benve New Member

    Jul 23, 2020
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    Hello everyone. I am Davide and I am looking for information about a pocket women's watch, inherited within my family for many years. I did a lot of research, but it wasn't profitable. The watch in question, of which I will attach photos (I hope detailed) is evidently for women, on the dial there is the inscription L Audemars, it is in 18k gold, embellished with 8 diamonds and enamelled and engraved floral decorations. I'd like to know more about its history, the movement inside it, the decorations (coeval or added later) and, if possible, a more or less estimate. I thank anyone who can help me on this historical journey and I greet you. David

    IMG_20200723_153750.jpg IMG_20200723_153901.jpg IMG_20200723_162012.jpg IMG_20200723_162240.jpg IMG_20200723_161452.jpg
     
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  2. Ethan Lipsig

    Ethan Lipsig Registered User
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    Jan 8, 2006
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    Welcome to this message board. You have an interesting watch. Louis Audemars was a highly respected firm. It went out of business in the 1880s. Various members of the Audemars family then launched successor companies, none of which matched the original Audemars firm in ambition or quality, although they produced some fine watches. I believe your watch was made by one of the successor companies between 1890 and 1900. The giveaway for me is that the dial is signed Ls Audemars -- Geneve. Most of the original firm's signed dials were signed Ls Audemars -- Brassus or Brassus & Geneve.

    The movement in your watch appears to be a cylinder movement. Cylinder movements were becoming obsolete around the turn of the last century. They were inexpensive movements in their late days. They are difficult to repair now because the special expertise required to fix them is vanishing.

    Because the watch has been in your family for many years, I hope you will restore it, although you almost certainly will never be able to recover the cost of restoring the watch if you sell it. The watch needs a new crystal (not very expensive). The dial may need restoration. The watch is missing its hour hand (unless you have it). The enamel is badly chipped. The hinge looks like it was inartfully repaired.

    You asked about value. In the watch's present condition, it probably is only worth about the net scrap value of the gold in its case, perhaps 200-300 Euros. Fully restored, it would be a very pretty little watch, probably worth 600-900 Euros.
     
  3. Davide Benve

    Davide Benve New Member

    Jul 23, 2020
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    hello Ethan, first of all thank you very much for your valuable information. Of course, it would certainly be necessary to refurbish and repair what does not work, even aesthetically. I am afraid that the expense may abundantly exceed a subsequent resale, so if I had to decide to restore it, at the price you indicated I would keep it. However, I remain confident of other opinions, not however doubting your enlightening words.
     
  4. Dr. Jon

    Dr. Jon Moderator
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    Dec 14, 2001
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    I agree with Ethan's attribution but I think the watch has more value, not as a watch but as an fine piece of Art Nouveau.

    The restoration of the case may be a good value. There are modern epoxy based enamel systems that a good restorer can use to replace the missing enamel.

    I agree with Ethan that repair restoration of the watch adds little value.
     
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  5. Audemars

    Audemars Registered User
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    Aug 6, 2010
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    Ethan is absolutely right.

    The original Louis Audemars company was bankrupt in 1885. There were three "successor" companies established by four grandsons of the original founder, Louis Benjamin Audemars.

    One of them was Louis Audemars & Cie, founded by my great-grandfather. also named Louis-Benjamin Audemars.

    Your watch was made - or at least, assembled - by him. He established his successor company in 1185/6. He went out of business in about 1900.
    Your watch is typical of his production of small decorative ladies pocket or pendant watches. I would date it at around 1895-1900.

    Of the three "successor companies" his is the least well known and therefore your watch has a rarity value. It's also very pretty.

    Sadly my incomplete family archive does not include details of the productions of the three successor companies, so I am unable to track your watch in detail.

    Best wishes
    Paul Audemars
    www.audemars.co.uk
     
  6. Davide Benve

    Davide Benve New Member

    Jul 23, 2020
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    Hi Mr. Paul, thank you for the fantastic story, it is a great emotion for me to think that this little watch had it in his hands and created his great-grandfather. Life is a wonderful thing. Thank you, as I also thank Ethan, for shedding light on the history of his house and the watch produced in those times. The clock has been in the safe for many years, but a recent discovery has aroused great curiosity in me (I am passionate about modern watches) and I am really happy to have listened to this fairy tale. Being young and inexperienced, I looked for the economic value of the watch, when the most important value it possesses is certainly artistic / collection. And I don't know banks to whom to contact for a possible sale, net of the story I believe that I will fix it with great care and I will keep it as a souvenir, certainly a nice memory. Thank you for giving me a strong emotion. Greetings Davide
     
  7. Audemars

    Audemars Registered User
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    Aug 6, 2010
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    Hallo Davide,
    I don't know if this is too late for you to pick up on it, but here is a picture of the man who made - or assembled - your watch.
    Louis Audemars-Valette.jpg
    Best wishes,
    Paul
     

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