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TOP
Vacheron Constantin Special Order 1960s Asymmetrical Sapphire...
AU$ 17,284
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
25
US
TOP
Cartier Baignoire Large size LM Pink Gold
AU$ 16,255
Verified Dealer
48
JP
TOP
Breguet 7038BB/1T/9V6/D00D
AU$ 36,092
Verified Dealer
7
HK
TOP
Chopard L.W Genève
AU$ 4,601
Verified Dealer
33
CH
Rolex Day Date President
AU$ 21,266
Verified Dealer
74
US
Patek Philippe Aquanaut White Gold Blue 5168G NEW
AU$ 101,127
Verified Dealer
1127
NL
Corum Gold Coin 347446 Unisex Watch in 18kt Yellow Gold
AU$ 7,064
Verified Dealer
110
US
Girard Perregaux 1966 50th Anniversary Watch 49525-53-134-BB60
AU$ 12,444
Verified Dealer
94
US
TOP
TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-02T
AU$ 19,800
Private Seller
 
AU
TOP
Patek Philippe --------
AU$ 60,000
Private Seller
 
AU
Audemars Piguet Quartz 33mm Ladies Royal Oak
AU$ 48,289
Verified Dealer
52
US
Harry Winston [Nagoya] 【HARRY WINSTON】ハリーウィンストン/オーシャンダイバー/クロノグ...
AU$ 45,491
Verified Dealer
13
JP
Vacheron Constantin Vintage Oro Giallo ref. 7811 art. Vc43
AU$ 4,731
Verified Dealer
355
IT
Dewitt Twenty-8-Eight Black PVD and 18k Rose Gold Automatic...
AU$ 12,159
Verified Dealer
51
US
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 45mm Ful 18K Gold
AU$ 36,456
Verified Dealer
307
PL
TOP
A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk 140.032
AU$ 73,568
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
558
US
NOMOS Orion Handaufzug Revision 750 GG Leder 35mm Saphirglas
AU$ 9,254
Verified Dealer
7
DE
Rolex Ladies 18K Gold President -Red Vignette Diamond Dial -...
AU$ 9,912
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
129
US
Dior Watch - Ladies - C0EQ5J
AU$ 4,114
Verified Dealer
517
UK
Rolex Datejust Lady - Gold President White Gold - Fluted Bezel...
AU$ 33,410
Verified Dealer
52
US
Omega Vintage Constellation Automatic 18K Y/G Cal.682 Ladies'
AU$ 11,500
Verified Dealer
37
AU
Franck Muller Master of Complication 5850cc 18k White Gold...
AU$ 29,950
Private Seller
AU
Fortis Terrestis Orchestra Am Classical Auto Watch 18k R/gold...
AU$ 19,363
Verified Dealer
167
AU
Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra
AU$ 16,112
Verified Dealer
307
PL
TOP
A. Lange & Söhne Saxonia Datograph Perpetual 410.032E
AU$ 111,968
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
558
US
Rolex Medio Datejust Oro plastica art. Rm1160
AU$ 4,899
Verified Dealer
355
IT
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26
AU$ 22,997
Verified Dealer
24
CH
Dornblüth & Sohn Quintus Klassik Rose Gold German men’s watch...
AU$ 19,500
Verified Dealer
13
AU
Rolex Datejust Medium 31mm Gelbgold 750 18kt Yellow Gold...
AU$ 12,801
Verified Dealer
467
DE
Omega Vintage 9K Y/G 60's
AU$ 1,900
Verified Dealer
37
AU
Yves Saint Laurent
AU$ 394
Private Seller
AU
Fortis Terrestis Orchestra Pm Classical Auto Watch 18k R/gold...
AU$ 19,363
Verified Dealer
167
AU
Harry Winston Premier Ladies 36 mm PRNQHM36RR001
AU$ 27,286
Verified Dealer
94
US
COSMICSTAR 宇宙之星 Diamond Gold Watch
AU$ 6,362
Verified Dealer
CN
Patek Philippe Nautilus Brown Dial 18K Rose Gold Men's...
AU$ 176,160
Verified Dealer
376
JP
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26
AU$ 26,831
Verified Dealer
24
CH
Hentschel Commodore WERK 1 Rose Gold / Bronze German men’s...
AU$ 16,000
Verified Dealer
13
AU
TOP
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 14k gold w certificate
AU$ 183,110
Verified Dealer
8
MC
Rolex Vintage President Day-Date 18K Y/G 1803 - PRICE REDUCED
AU$ 9,999
Verified Dealer
37
AU
Rolex GMT-Master II Everose Gold
AU$ 56,000
Private Seller
 
AU
Fortis Terrestis 19fortis Am Classic Auto Watch 18k R/gold...
AU$ 15,908
Verified Dealer
167
AU
TOP
Rolex Lady Datejust Pearlmaster Masterpiece 18K Gold
AU$ 14,799
Verified Dealer
360
DE
TOP
Glashütte Original Senator 40mm 18K Roségold white Roman...
AU$ 14,980
Verified Dealer
496
DE
A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk
AU$ 91,122
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
9
AU
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust 26
AU$ 29,899
Verified Dealer
24
CH
Armin Strom Elegance white gold white dial Swiss men’s watch...
AU$ 15,770
Verified Dealer
13
AU
Rolex Daytona Cosmograph Green Dial Yellow Gold - 116508
AU$ 70,414
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
169
CH
Omega Constellation Quadra 18K Quartz Ladies
AU$ 2,350
Verified Dealer
37
AU
Rolex Datejust
AU$ 26,026
Private Seller
 
AU
Fortis Terrestis 19fortis Am Classical Auto Watch 18k R/gold...
AU$ 15,908
Verified Dealer
167
AU
TOP
Patek Philippe Ellipse TV Screen 18K Gold Automatik Automatic...
AU$ 13,300
Verified Dealer
360
DE
TOP
IWC Da Vinci Chronograph 18K Gold white Dial 39 mm Ewiger...
AU$ 13,149
Verified Dealer
496
DE
A. Lange & Söhne Double Split
AU$ 150,816
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
9
AU
TOP
Breguet Héritage
AU$ 38,334
Verified Dealer
24
CH
TOP
Piaget Polo Mother Of Pearl, Jumbo, Rare
AU$ 16,103
Verified Dealer
12
CH
TOP
Rolex Datejust Zebra ltd edition
AU$ 54,767
Verified Dealer
144
UK
Zenith Captain Vintage 18K Gold
AU$ 2,250
Verified Dealer
37
AU
Patek Philippe Aquanaut 5168G
AU$ 97,000
Private Seller
 
AU
Fortis Terrestis Orchestra Am Classical Auto Watch 18k R/gold...
AU$ 19,363
Verified Dealer
167
AU
TOP
Rolex OYSTER PERPETUAL CHRONOMETER 18K GOLD HONEYCOMB WABENBLATT
AU$ 13,300
Verified Dealer
360
DE
TOP
Baume & Mercier Hampton 18K Gelbgold Perlmutt MOP Diamond Dial...
AU$ 7,989
Verified Dealer
496
DE
A. Lange & Söhne A. Lange & Sohne Automatic Pink Gold Terra Brown
AU$ 30,796
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
9
AU
TOP
Rolex Day-Date 36
AU$ 36,033
Verified Dealer
24
CH
TOP
Ebel 1911 Chronograph, Mother Of Pearl-Dial, Full Set, Rare
AU$ 15,337
Verified Dealer
12
CH
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Gold Watches: Elegant and Valuable

A gold watch is the epitome of luxury. For thousands of years, this precious metal has been a symbol of permanence and wealth. Most gold watches are elegant dress watches, though some have a sportier design.

Features

  • 18-karat or 750 gold indicates it's 75% gold
  • 14-karat gold or 585 gold is less common
  • Many gold-electroplated vintage watches
  • Watches with modern PVD coating are in the lower price range
  • Some manufacturers offer their own alloys such as Everose or Sedna gold

Gold Cases: The Mixture Makes the Difference

When gold comes to mind, people most often think of yellow gold. However, many types of gold are used in the watch industry, such as white, pink, and red gold . There are also in-house alloys made by manufacturers like Omega's Sedna gold and Rolex's Everose, both red gold alloys. A unique alloy is Hublot's Magic Gold, which combines yellow gold and ceramic, making it extremely scratch resistant.

Technically, a timepiece can only be considered a gold watch if the case is made of solid gold . However, you can count watches in a lower price range as well, as their cases are made of stainless steel which is then coated in gold.

A gold watch is almost always produced from an metal alloy. Pure gold, which you find in the form of coins or bars available for purchase, is used to plate the surfaces of cases made of a different material. As it's relatively soft, some manufacturers mix it with other metals in-house in order to make it harder and more scratch resistant or to give it another hue.

A value of one karat means that the material is composed of 1/24th gold. Pure gold is thus 24 karat. Watch cases with the highest percentage of gold are 18-karat cases , a value equal to 750 gold. The 750 represents the percentage of pure gold out of 1,000. In a 750 alloy, 75% of the material is pure gold, while the rest consists of other metals. Silver and copper are mixed together with yellow gold. The amount varies, however, in order to slightly change the tone of the yellow gold.

Red and pink gold have a much larger percentage of copper than silver, which gives the gold its reddish-pinkish hue. White gold, on the other hand, has more silver than copper. Particularly valuable 18-karat white gold watches are made with an alloy containing platinum or palladium.

Cases made of 14-karat gold (585 gold) can also be found, although most manufacturers offer 18-karat gold watches today. This applies to watches in both mid and upper price ranges, such as those from Longines, Maurice Lacroix, and Tissot.

Some manufacturers use gold-colored coatings that resemble gold, but are actually something else entirely. The most common of these methods uses a PVD (physical vapor deposition) coating. During this process, the coating is applied via vacuum deposition. PVD coatings can also be made of gold and are regarded as very scratch resistant.

An alternative is electroplating gold on stainless steel cases. The gold layer is very thin; 20 microns is the norm. One micron is 1/1,000th of a millimeter. The gold plating is either 18 or 24-karat gold and prone to scratches, but can be redone if necessary. The PVD method has grown in popularity in recent years, so you will most frequently encounter electroplated watches in the vintage market.

Buying Advice

If you want to buy a gold watch, then you should pay attention to the karats. An 18-karat gold watch is an 18-karat gold watch, regardless of the manufacturer.

The price difference between gold and stainless steel versions of the same watch can be quite considerable. A stainless steel Rolex Submariner with a date display costs about 7,000 euros new, while a yellow gold version in the same condition costs 21,000 euros.

The price and value of an 18-karat gold watch also depends on the price of gold. The market price varies, but has usually been over $1,000 for one troy ounce (31 grams) of gold over the last few years. In the summer of 2011, it shot up to around $1,900. It is unlikely that the price will drop below $1,000. The price of gold watches has gone up simply due to their material worth. In the 1990s, the price was still oscillating between $300 and $400. Since gold also functions as a replacement currency in crisis situations, gold watches are a relatively secure investment. In the worst case, the watch retains value based on the weight of its gold. For this to be the case, however, one should imagine that times are tough and the gold price is thus very high.

Normally, the collector's value and the manufacturer's reputation play a deciding role in determining the price of a timepiece. Gold watches from an independent manufacturer powered by in-house calibers cost the most. Rolex's Submariner isn't the only expensive gold watch they offer. Other series have gold models, such as the Daytona or the Day-Date. The Day-Date is offered with a white gold, yellow gold, or Everose alloy, and the cases are available in many different sizes.

The story is similar with Omega. Their diving watch Seamaster is available in 18-karat gold, and the company offers a large selection of gold watches in their De Ville collection.

Patek Philippe is the ultimate manufacturer of gold watches. No other renowned Swiss manufacturer relies so much on the precious metal like the Genevan family business. The Calatrava is Patek Philippe's most classic series.

Patek Philippe is one of the few manufacturers who doesn't only make the case out of gold, but important parts of the movement as well. A good example is the rotor of an automatic movement, which is often decorated with engravings. Rolex also uses white gold indices - even on the models with a stainless steel case. Not just for aesthetic reasons, either: Gold doesn't tarnish.

Swiss Dominance

According to tradition, the first solid gold wristwatch was made by Girad-Perregaux and was delivered to the German Emperor William I in 1879. Now, around 500,000 gold watches are produced each year, with 90% of them being made in Switzerland. Rolex plays a prominent role in this, as they alone produce 200,000 of these gold watches. In one year, Rolex produces around 800,000 watches, making gold watches a quarter of their total production. The company produces cases in their own foundry. Gold plays an even more important role for the luxury manufacturer Patek Philippe, however. Gold watches dominate Patek's portfolio; there are only a few stainless steel models available. Usually, it's the other way around. Gold remains an expensive exception for most companies. A popular compromise is to create a bicolor watch, where parts of the case and bracelet are made of stainless steel and others of gold. Rolex calls this Rolesor.