My First Patek Philippe Pocket watch

A.F.W.

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May 11, 2005
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Gentlemen, I purchased this watch very recently. Patek movement housed in an American made case by Jeannot & Shiebler of 14K gold.
I know we do not discuss prices here but just in very general terms:
How do the values of Patek watches in American cases compare to those made by Patek and signed as such?
I see early Pateks with signed cases but unsigned movements.
Are those less valueable than those with both movement and case signed by Patek?
This one is from 1884 or 1885 and is a hunter case measuring 47 mm.
Back has 3 covers with one having a crystal, last picture.
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MartyR

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Dec 16, 2008
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How do the values of Patek watches in American cases compare to those made by Patek and signed as such?
My experience is that the price is determined by the quality and style of the case, not whether the case is American or European, nor hwo the case is signed. Yours is a classic American style case, which would be considered very fancy compared to a traditional Patek case (which tend to be almost entirely plain). But J&S is a good name, and the case looks good quality. Some collectors will prefer (and pay more for) yours than a Patek case, and some vice versa.

I see early Pateks with signed cases but unsigned movements. Are those less valueable than those with both movement and case signed by Patek?
I would say yes - the Patek signature is worth something extra. But a top retailer signature on the movement (such as Shreve or Galt or Tiffany) will usually make up for most of the difference. Double-signed movements will be worth more than single.
 

Dr. Jon

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A lot depends on the watch. Patek made several grades. To me, grade, originality and condition trump signature. I don't erxpect a railroad watch to be pristine, it was intended for hard wear, but I do expect a Patek or other luxury watch to be clean and crisp as do most colectors. These were prestige waches. As a jeweler told a friend of mine when his luxury wrist watch kept breaking, "Your watch was made for a man who does not open his own car door."

Also early Pateks were not signed on the movements but, generally, most collectors don't like them as much as later ones. It may be the number of signatures but it may also be how much they like the later ones compared to early ones.

The dial signature looks like "Depollier". If so, it has a very good retailer's name.

A lot of Pateks in the US went into J&S cases, which IMHO are the best made in the US. Often, these cases have serial number that match the movement. You should check yours for this.

Part of the problem may be a suspician that US cased Pateks may have been switched into other cases. If it has matching serial numbers IMHO it is equal in value to a factory case. A J&S case adds credibility but is not reliable, unless the number match, and in these times I would look at the number carefully for diddling. A J&S case with a display cover is a very fine item. These went to very good movements.

All Pateks are good, but some are a lot better than others. Although the price does not always reflect grade, truly outstanding ones usually do command very high prices.
 

A.F.W.

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My Patek was made for J. Scooler of New Orleans.
First four digits of the serial number of movement and case match but not the last one...
 

tick talk

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Sep 16, 2008
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"Your watch was made for a man who does not open his own car door."
LOL, I like that :p At least in the V&C world, those American-cased movements are viewed suspiciously so may have less collector's value unless other factors elevate interest, such as movement quality, case purity, and above all provenance. Let's face it, the more a prospective collector has to dig into the watch's history to satisfy its legitimacy, the less interested many will be (those with OCD like myself excepted of course). OTOH, your New Orleans dial may have extra interest in that city and area. I think its an interesting field with great regional interest but not as competitive in the international market...
 

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