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Thread: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

  1. #1

    Default Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I'm a new poster on this board and a lover of all things music. I have 3 vintage luxury Gibson watches and after much research, cannot find any information. Please take a look at the pictures attached. Any help is appreciated. I do know that they are from 2008
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  2. #2
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Oh my. So cool.
    Indulge responsibly!

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    Registered User G7MOF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Are they oval hole or F hole?
    I never fail at anything, I just succeed at doing things that never work....


    Fylde Touchstone Walnut Mandolin.
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    These look like real watches that you have to wind, those are always my favorite.
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    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Well, the Gibson logo does indeed resemble the Gibson logo found on some mandolins. But I had no idea that there were Gibson wristwatches.
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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    These were being sold on eBay a few years ago with multiple logos on them. If Gibson had anything to do with them, and I have no idea if they did, they would have been some sort of incentive. They didn't market them to the masses that I'm aware of. There are a few mentions of these watches in some old threads but no pictures. I see they are still selling Gibson logo watches on eBay.

    Maybe Joe Vest might chime in as I believe he was a Gibson employee during this time period.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  8. #7
    Mandolin Friendly Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Thanks for that info Mike! Those watches may not be kosher but they're kool

    How about a "NEW, RARE" Gibson watch from Malaysia for a few bucks?

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  9. #8

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    These that I have are quality luxury watches they do use battery they're not wined up and they're not the cheapy ones that you're seeing on eBay these are Swiss Movement all stainless steel genuine leather and the one with the leather straps you can't see it in the picture but it has mother of pearl inlay in the center of the face I posted on the Gibson website and one of the customer service reps did verify that they are Gibson watches authentic timepieces they are from 2008 and from what I can tell I can't find them anywhere else I can take other pictures of the back and you can see that they have Gibson even on the wristbands show stainless steel if you zoom in on the faces it shows Swiss movement and 50m water-resistant the black one has an alarm .and the center actually pops up and it's Japan movement but these are not the little cheapy knockoffs like on eBay these are top quality luxury watches. they are heavy when you hold them in your hand
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  10. #9

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I don't know why these come upside down but you can't see the black one pops up and it has an alarm back in 2008 it showed pictures like being on a nightstand in a hotel room has an alarm as the main feature for that particular watch and it flips up so you can set it on the nightstand and still see the face

  11. #10
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    They were not made by the company, they were made as bonuses and/or incentive award pieces most likely for sales staff. This kind of thing used to involve much higher quality watches, now they are now more often cheap low quality movements in equally low grade cases.
    While these are pretty cool, they are most collectible to this market, we mandolin (instrument) folk tend to enjoy this king of thing.
    I do at least. <Removed by Moderator. Please ask this in a PM>
    Last edited by MikeEdgerton; Dec-06-2017 at 8:50am.

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    Mandolin Friendly Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Razor D,yes, it appeared from your first photos that you have some nice, earlier watches there. They are very cool! I also thought the cheapies Mike linked to were interesting, and especially the sales pitch, "RARE, NEW"

    First I've seen of any of these.
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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Sorry Mike, slip of the digits!
    Will do so.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

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  15. #13
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I seem to recall Big Joe Vest talking about these years ago but haven't been able to find that thread.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I think I remember a thread about several kinds of “promotional” materials before too, don’t remember when, sorry.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  17. #15

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    This is how I found this board was doing research Google pull this up this is how I found you guys the thread is in Equipment ....and was started by Mandoman July 28th 2004 I don't know how to copy and paste it but I did bump it with a reply so it is in equipment pushed to the top I think LOL..att. MikeEdgerton

  18. #16
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Thanks, the old thread is here. I thought we had one with pictures. Joe pretty well defines at least one bunch there.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  19. #17

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    From 2004 so not vintage but sitting in my house.

    Gibson watch

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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I knew I'd seen that watch someplace. That would probably sell. I'd consider buying that design.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  22. #19

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    As mentioned in a private message that was sent to me Timbofood you are correct brother I think I will take them to a jeweler just to see if they may need oiling the battery takes a little effort it's not something simple but it's not hard I am a contractor changing the batteries just takes a little patience and attention I'm going to take pictures of the back so you could see just how detailed these watches are and Timbofood I did look up years ago the black one with the alarm was on sale for 550 and another one I saw for 650. It was a long time ago I think after taxes and everything I believe the total cost for that one was actually like six and a quarter maybe 650 at the most is what I gave for that one

  23. #20
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    I’ve seen lots of simple battery projects turn into much more costly repairs when done by someone with great mechanical aplomb but, little specific knowledge if the delicate nature of the contacts and so on.
    Save yourself the headache, have a watchmaker (not necessarily a twenty year old at a chain jewelry store)change the battery, should not be more than fifteen bucks even if they need to replace a caseback gasket. One slip of a pair of tweezers can damage the coil and subsequently cost you a new movement.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  24. #21

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Mr. Administrator do you have a rough estimate of what that watch in the picture is worth and I can't tell or see it is that one Swiss Movement or Japanese movement does it show genuine leather for the straps and is the casing stainless steel just curious want to compare that one is it 2004 if that's correct from looking at the post I know my black one for sure is from 2008 I'm going to go ahead and open up the other two and see if they have the year inside of them also and Timbofood I was not feeling like my bubble had bursted they are really high-end watches they're very nice I don't feel like I overpaid at the time they were worth but I had spent for them as I still have them and they are very high quality and I could just pass them down to my son as they will last a very long time . I'm still struggling with the fact though there is no information on these watches no pictures or anything anywhere about 5 years ago I believe it was I did find the black one with the alarm on the internet but that was it. I am in Nashville born and raised I believe I will take them to a jeweler downtown on 2nd Avenue or somewhere in the area of downtown close to Music Row I believe that would be my best option is getting information or maybe finding someone with some interest that could probably get some knowledge of these watches as I've spoken with a couple of guys at Gibson and another gentleman that owns a vintage guitar shop here in Nashville that work for Gibson at that time and he said that they just didn't keep archives or records of anything at that time that Gibson was going through a lot of changes that the licensing Department did a few things Without Really the general knowledge of the rest of the company but it's somebody mentioned up above here in this thread I believe they may have been a limited run and maybe incentives for sales people or maybe for special clientele thanks guys for all your help

  25. #22
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Incentive/award is most likely. The fact is with so many of these items the actual collectible market is pretty small, what you have is really cool but, collectors are unusual to say the least. I doubt there will be a date of manufacture inside the case, a serial number is the way to find out the date, talk to the jeweler and get the data. Please let the shop guy open the cases, when you think about the size of the teeth on the gears in a watch movement, a tiny speck of dirt can really cause problems in a hurry. Just my jewelry knowledge and affinity for watches coming to the surface.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  26. #23

    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor D View Post
    .........It was a long time ago I think after taxes and everything I believe the total cost for that one was actually like six and a quarter maybe 650 at the most is what I gave for that one
    OK, I'm confused. I keep reading the word "vintage" and you mention "it was a long time ago" and then you say these watches are from 2008 -- which, last time I checked was not "A LONG TIME AGO!" Or at least not long enough for most investments to show much of a return, IMHO.

    Timbofood has more jewelry experience than I have, but I have collected watches for a long time and enjoy them. Swiss Made or Swiss Movement used to mean a great deal -- a quality watch -- usually a mechanical, jeweled watch with NO BATTERIES. Probably sometime in the 50's "Swiss" movements were sold to other makers to use in their watches. The term certainly doesn't carry the weight it once did, but still there are fine Swiss watches being made today. Like Timbofood stated, you need to find out who the manufacturer was and if there is a serial number, which would indicate a higher quality watch. Obviously, Gibson did not make them -- they were farmed out to a watch maker. That being said, if you paid $650 for it in 2008 it probably has some quality. I say probably because you can go to Walmart and find very similar watches for $29.95 that look very impressive and have vintage styling -- at least to the untrained eye. Find out who made the watches. I also agree that a watch can be damaged by someone changing the battery who doesn't have the experience. I can add that some, not all old time jewelry stores will change batteries for "free" just to encourage foot traffic and you might actually have the battery changed by a real jeweler.

    As far as value, who knows? Mostly, we determine value on collectibles based on prior sales, such as eBay, etc. Also, collectors would require the original box, paperwork, receipts, etc. -- which add to the value and make the item more appealing. I'm thinking the market for these watches would be to guitar (or mandolin) players/collectors than it would be to watch collectors. I did check eBay just now and among all the unlicensed Gibson knockoff watches that sell for $14.99, there was actually a nice Swiss watch by Raymond Weil that was licensed by Gibson with a Les Paul theme and it sold for $2300.......so the jury is still out, IMHO.
    Last edited by Jeff Mando; Dec-09-2017 at 8:17pm.

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  28. #24
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vintage Gibson Watches Help

    Thanks for the tip of the hat, Jeff!
    One rather important little fact.
    Rarely are “jewelers” watchmakers, not many speak both sets of skills, a bench jeweler is, also a skilled craftsman but, again, not a watchmaker. The saddest part of this whole story for me is the fact that the age of watchmakers on site in a lot of jewelry stores is declining very rapidly. Many of the really well trained guys were servicemen using the GI bill after WWII and Korea. They are not getting any younger, it’s a very sad fact but,their shoes are not being filled by more than a handful of people willing to learn a very specific set of skills in the world of $29.99 throwaway Chinese junk.
    There was a stretch of time when “Swiss made” on a dial meant there was some part of the watch which had been produced in Switzerland but, not always the movement.
    The Swiss watchmaking industry, has a long history of “cottage industry” and companies called “Ebauche” that produce movements for many brands who in turn put their names on the dial. Sometimes private labels for small companies, business promotions (like these),
    Special events, are made in numbers as small as fifty or as many as five thousand.
    The age on these from the pictures makes me think these are maybe at oldest, late 70’s but, I could be wrong. Value will be determined by desire for the “cool factor” more than the Swiss manufacture, instinct makes me think these may be “ETA” or “ESA” movements which are decent but not necessarily top shelf goods.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

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