Is My Vintage Seiko Watch Worth Anything at Auction?
Seiko watches are one of those items that should be coming into our valuation days more often, but they don’t. They have been sold all over the world for over 60 years, so there must be plenty hidden in drawers and misplaced in the attic. Perhaps their value isn’t as understood as the popular Rolex or Omega, and the other big names in gentlemen’s watches, but our hope with this article is to show how you could be sitting on a rare and valuable Seiko watch.
Where Do Seiko Watches Come From?
Seiko watches are made in Japan. From humble beginnings to worldwide recognition, they are extremely popular. The Seiko brand started in 1881, repairing watches and clocks before moving on to produce wall clocks. In 1895, Seiko developed the first pocket watch, and this established the future of the wristwatch. However, it wasn’t until 1913 when the ‘Laurel’ was created – the first wristwatch made in Japan. From this stepping stone, the first ‘Seiko’ branded watch was then produced in 1924. And the rest, as they say, is history!
This stunning vintage Seiko 5 gentlemen’s day date automatic wrist watch sold for £45 at our Fine Art sale this March
How Do I Know if My Seiko Watch is Valuable?
Due to the long history of Seiko, the company has released so many incredible watches. Lots of these timepieces are now widely seen as design classics. They have influenced designs and styles across the globe. So, how do you know if your Seiko watch is valuable?
The vintage Seiko watches that bring in the most money at auctions are listed below. These are the ones to look out for:
- Seiko 6309 – The classic “go anywhere” watch.
- Seiko 6139 – The Pogue. This watch is one of the few watches worn on early space missions.
- Seiko 6138 – The ‘Panda’ or ‘Kakume’ watch. One of the most collected and expensive vintage Seiko watches.
- Seiko 6105 – Worn by Martin Sheen's character, Captain Willard, in Apocalypse Now and popular with American troops in Vietnam.
- Hi-Beat King Seiko or Grand Seiko “GS” – This watch features the Seiko flagship mechanism.
- Seiko 6117 – The Navigator. The watch is Seiko’s variation of the popular Rolex GMT.
- Seiko 0674 LC, Seiko M354, Seiko G757, 5020, H357, 5040 – These Seiko watches are infamously known as ‘James Bond’ watches.
- Seiko 6159 – The Tuna. One of the world’s best diver watches of its day.
More Seiko Watches to Look Out For
- The Seiko D138-4009 LCD digital watch
- The 1970s Seiko a159-0059g LCD digital watch
- Seiko UC-3000 computer watch
- The Seiko C515-5009 calculator watch.
Whilst we’re talking of watches, there are a few other brands that will be worth keeping an eye out for, especially if you’ve ever wondered, “Is my Rolex watch valuable?”.
Other Watch Brands That Are of Interest at Auction
- Omega TC-1 Time Computer LED LCD Digital Retro Watch
- Omega Chrono 1611 LCD
- Heuer Chronosplit LCD TAG Heuer Wristwatch
- PULSAR P2 Time Computer LED LCD Digital Retro Watch
- Braun dw30 LCD/Digital German Watch
- Any military watches
There is a huge market for watches, and they will always stand the test of time as a ‘timely investment’. They still work well for birthdays and milestones events. Why not invest in a watch? Or see how much you could get for a family heirloom?
This gentleman’s 1970s Seiko Quartz Digital calculator watch, in an original box with paperwork, sold for an incredible £120 at a recent auction.
It’s worth noting that the watches don’t always have to be in working order, we can help deal with repairs, or signpost to people who can help, but the watch can still have value at an auction even if it’s stopped ticking.
Selling Your Seiko Watch at Auction
If you have items such as vintage watches for auction, get in touch and we can help you with a valuation. Talk to our team of experts who will be able to give you an accurate auction estimate of your Seiko watch. You can join us at one of our valuation days every Tuesday, email us for an appointment on [email protected] or call us on +44 (0)1782 638100 Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm.
If you can't come in and see us in person but would like to submit items for auction or valuation, send us an email to [email protected] with details and a photograph (eg make, model, model number, measurements, condition) and one of our experts will provide information and auction estimates. Alternatively, give us a call on 01782 638100 to arrange an appointment.